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Plans.  And The Weather. Oh, And The Sky

Erika Petrelli
Erika Petrelli

My six-year-old son is a big fan of racing, so in the past year I’ve tried to take him as many different styles of races as I can find—NASCAR, Indy Car, airplane, dragster, Monster Truck…  

This past Saturday we were planning to go to the Supercross race—dirt bikes!

This past Saturday we also experienced a snow storm. We were visiting with my parents earlier in the day, and watched as the snow kept falling and falling and falling, with an intensity more than was expected (and, certainly, more than is normal for the end of March).  

Yet at our scheduled departure time I enlisted the support of my family to clean off my car of the mountains of snow that were covering it, buckled him in and prepared for our adventure.

I am stubborn.  

The roads were terrible, and it took me until the third light I hit, wherein I proceeded to slide right off into the curb trying to stop for the red, to realize that sometimes stubbornness is not a good thing. Cars were off the road everywhere, and it was clear that heading downtown for our race was just not in the stars if I wanted to keep us safe. 

So we slipped and slided and crawled our way home, him in the despairs of disappointment about missing the race (and also a color commentator of the fact that if we crashed it would be his FIRST WRECK! as well as pointing out how much I was going to need to add to the “swear jar” by the time we got home). All the while I was thinking “Well, I’m just an idiot”: Looking out the window all day, any fool could see that the snow was coming down hard and the roads were bad. But I stubbornly held onto my plans. I stubbornly held on, even though the evidence had been mounting that it was time to let them go already.   

Sometimes we refuse to make a new plan… simply because we already have a plan. And the plan is so well planned that it feels totally set in stone. But plans change.

As does the weather.

Pema Chodron said: “You are the sky.  Everything else—it’s just the weather.”

If we remember that we are the entirety of the sky, then we can recognize that plans are a separate sort of beast and roll with the changing weather.

And you know what? Dylan and I got home safely and I found the race on TV so we got to watch it anyway, from the best seats in the house.   

Plans change. So does the weather. But you are the sky. 

How can you find the sky today?

Erika Petrelli

By Erika Petrelli

Erika Petrelli is the Senior Vice President of Leadership Development (and self-declared Minister of Mischief) for The Leadership Program, a New York City-based organization. With a Masters degree in Secondary Education, Erika has been in the field of teaching and training for decades, and has been with The Leadership Program since 1999. There she has the opportunity to nurture the individual leadership spirit in both students and adults across the country, through training, coaching, keynotes, and writing. The legacy Erika strives daily to create is to be the runway upon which others take flight. If you enjoy these blogs, you should check out her interactive journal, On Wings & Whimsy: Finding the Extraordinary Within the Ordinary, now available for sale on Amazon. While her work takes her all around the country, Erika calls Indiana home.