I am coining this word: FLUCK

So I've just returned from Cancun, Mexico. What a week it was.

And I don't mean just the vacation itself, which was beautiful and relaxing.

See, somehow, the universe has this weird way of knowing just when to drop a ton on your head right when you don't/do need it. You know how sometimes things happen and you're unsure if it's a blessing or a curse? Well, I've come up with the perfect word for this:


It started at 3:00 a.m. on Thursday morning, two days before we were to fly out. My cat, Smartikus, became deathly ill. My husband and I took him to the 24-hour vet and discovered he had a blocked bladder, and would require emergency surgery. It got progressively worse and worse as the day went on. The results of his blood tests were "incompatible with life" as my vet put it. I was preparing for the worst. If you follow me on Twitter, you'll know I was an emotional wreck that day.

We debated whether or not to cancel our trip, except that we wouldn't have gotten any refund, and we couldn't postpone the trip, either. But Smarty pulled through, and by Friday, the vet assured us he would be well cared for, that they would keep him for the week, that we were very fortunate to have taken him in when we did. Smartikus is fine now, recovering well and happily at home.

Just imagine: if he hadn't shown symptoms while we were here, and if he had gotten sick while we were away, things would have been so, so much worse. So we got really FLUCKY that day.

Our FLUCK doesn't end there.

On Saturday (St. Patrick's Day!), when we arrived at the airport, we discovered to our horror that we were supposed to arrive 3 hours before departure. We'd arrived 1 hour before, and were told they'd already boarded. But there was still time: we checked in and went through security at record speed, then made a mad dash through the airport. My lungs burned, my knees nearly gave out, but after the two days I'd had with my cat's ordeal, I couldn't allow myself to stop.

We arrived at the gate, me wheezing, my husband begging the attendants to open the door.

"Sorry! The plane already left!" The cheerful woman paused, then laughed. "I'm kidding! Fog has delayed the flight. It'll be at least another hour before we can even board! Ha-ha!"

My legs wobbled. I swallowed back tears of relief to help my parched throat, then promptly crumpled into a seat and apologized profusely to my husband for not reading the check-in instructions properly. He was very forgiving.

Fog made everyone else who'd been waiting cranky, but if it hadn't been for that, our whole vacation would have been ruined. SHEER. DUMB. FLUCK.

But wait. There's more!

In Cancun, with gorgeous weather, white-sand beaches and all you can eat and drink... It should have been paradise. It was paradise. In fact, I worked to make sure it would be because my history of stomach problems has not been kind when travelling. I'd taken Dukoral, and was mostly vigilant about what I ate and drank. Alas, on the first full day, I was stuck in bed with what I can only assume was mild food poisoning. By the evening, it had passed, and I was fine...until right before we got on the shuttle to the airport heading home, when I suddenly grew extremely nauseous and started shaking.

"But book-ending your vacation with illness is better than being sick throughout it, right?" my husband cajoled as I sat in misery and waited for the Gravol to kick in, scratching at fresh mosquito bites that, fortunately or not, I only got right then, in the lobby, just before our flight home.

But who's complaining, really? We had a wonderful time. Our cat is healthy, and while we're in the hole for his vet bills, we have what's most important--each other.

So really, FLUCK is all about blessings in disguise, about seeing the bright side of a bad deal. Shit happens, but sometimes it happens for the best.

Have you ever gone through a FLUCKY time, where bad things kept happening that either could have been worse or saved you from further hardship?

I'd love to hear your comments!

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