In life, things are always going to pop up that you don’t expect or that you don’t really want. Unfortunately, thats the way life goes and you’re going to have to just grit your teeth and bare with it. The past few weeks have been a roller-coaster of emotions- both good and bad. Being a tough, independent young women is fun when the goings good, but there are times for all of us when we have to just sit on the floor an cry like a little girl… I don’t often do a personal post, but I think the events of the past month merit one!

So it starts with me trying to move my furniture out of storage and into my friend’s flat in Johannesburg. I’d planned everything to the T and even took my lunch-break off to coordinate the moving. And what d’ya know? The moving company (which had already extorted copious amounts of cash from me) had sent a truck that was too big to enter the complex, incurring me costs of around R1500 more to get my furniture! It was just all too much-and I ended up having a particularly ungraceful episode in the parking lot…

This happened the day that I received something very special courtesy of Delta Airlines…or should I say someone? 🙂 So honestly, how could I stay upset? All was well in the world again and for the next two weeks, my foreign ‘friend’ and I toured the beautiful South African province of Mpumalanga and the Kruger National Park. We saw the Big Five (endangered wild animals) and spent long afternoons meandering through mountainsides, stopping for lunches at waterfalls (which we eventually got sick of) and generally having and awesome time! We even went caving in the Sudwala Caves (scrambling on hands and knees, wading through waist-deep water and squeezing our bodies through tiny rock crevices into a cave! Honestly the best thing I’ve ever done-true story!

The plan was for us to fly back to the USA together as we were both going for a conference there. The day we left, disaster struck once again! My car was broken into and everything we had packed for the trip was stolen! Laptops, cell phones, camara, ipod, ALL OUR CLOTHES for the conference.Ironically, the only thing we had was our passports (and the clothes on our backs). What ensued in the next few hours can only be described as ridiculous. Fight with useless security guards-waste time at police station-cancel and renew bank cards, visit embassy, shop for underwear-beg/ borrow/steal clothes from friends-rush to airport-get on plane-cry like a little girl. (yeah-I told you it was coming 😉 ).

The conference in Dallas on the other hand was very good! I am co-heading up a new committee -the Young Engineers Affinity Group (aka party-planning committee) which should be fun…:) And a bunch of us went salsa-dancing. I got to salsa with a real Venezuelan-which was probably the highlight of my-er-life.. (Just joking!) And finally I returned – very jetlagged – but happy once more – to work…yay.

I get to my desk Wednesday and turn on my computer, and find yet another HUGE surprise waiting for me. Although this one is arguably more difficult and more emotionally soul-destroying than getting everything I own stolen, it is just another challenge that life has thrown at me. I’ve learned that the more you get out there and strive to be your best, the more you get out of life. That means you get loads of good stuff, and also loads of crappy stuff too. Getting all caught up in the crappy stuff just wastes your time and prevents you from enjoying and striving for more of the good.

For this reason, I plan to hold my head up high, put on my sexy pink hard hat (not forgetting a smile) and take life by the horns. Even though all I want to do right now is cry like a little girl (and I probably will do that a bit later 😉 ), I know that life will go on and I will keep living, trying to be the best I can be. Being a woman means you are inherently emotional-which isn’t a bad thing, its just who we are- but sometimes you need to put it all on the shelf and as my friends told me, “man-up”.

Here’s to all my girls out there who are going through some tough stuff! You are alive, you are awesome and you are strong. You will get over this-its only a temporary hurdle. So go out there and show them that smile!