Year Two. Month Ten. #SEA.

Current feels.

I'm laying in bed at eleven in the morning, just finally waking up. The bedside table is littered with vitamins, Tylenol and various medicine to help me get rid of this bug in my system. I'm sipping hot tea and I'm doing everything I can to get well.

And yes, that includes not going in to work today.

This year, I am determined to have a better maintenance program for myself. Around this time a year ago I was not very good at taking care of myself. After traveling, I started to became very ill. Ignoring my body's red flags, I continued to work until the doctor ordered me to take ten days off of work. Even with her warning, I tried to sneak a day or two of work in, a local here, a stand-up here. It was too much. On a flight down to Palm Springs, I sat down in the galley and cried. I was in too much pain.

One of our new E175s, getting a final walk-through before being put into service.

Just like the aircraft we work on, constant maintenance is the most important thing you can do. Take a day off. Take a week off. Don't go out with the crew. Sleep. Work out a little. Do yoga. Stretch. Stay home. Don't travel on days off. Be grounded.

If you are wondering who the heck is writing this blog post, it's still me. I'm just trying out this whole new thing called "I'm going to take care of myself."

Yesterday, I went in to work. I didn't feel well. I hadn't been feeling well. But I went in anyways.

And it was a rough day.


Mother nature don't mess.

Heading down to the Los Angeles area mid-morning, our Captain called me. "It's going to be rough; we are getting reports of moderate turbulence," he said. I thanked him for the heads up, then quickly stowed the first class carts in my galley and walked down the aisle to warn the aft flight attendant, who was in the middle of service.

Moments after I returned to the front of the aircraft, the turbulence hit. I was lucky, the only thing I had forgotten to stow was a carton of cranberry juice, which was quickly upside down on the floor of the forward galley. The aft flight attendant, however, was stuck in the middle of the aircraft with a fully loaded cart.

As I rushed to buckle my jumpseat shoulder straps, I watched helplessly as the other flight attendant knelt down in the aisle, one arm trying to steady her cart and the other covering her head. The cart rocked back and forth violently, slamming into the armrests of the aisle seat passengers. A carton of juice went flying and the pot of coffee on top of the cart was threatening to follow suit. A quick thinking, long-armed passenger grabbed the pot and set it down in the aisle, where it quickly overturned.

Before the turbulence. Notice how the coffee is still on top of the cart.

And then the airplane lurched and my stomach dropped.  I watched as the poor aft flight attendant was lifted off her knees and slammed down against the floor of the plane.

Turbulence is real, folks.

And just like that, the earthquake in the sky was over. I waited until the Captain called back to say it was safe, and then I rushed out of my seat to help the other flight attendant. Her knee was bloody and she was shaken up.

"Well, better get out the paper towels and sick sacks," she joked, as a chorus of call buttons started to go off.

The rest of the ride was filled with clean-up and comforting the passengers. A few folks were sick, a few angry, but most of them thankful for how we handled the turbulence.

After the turbulence. Notice how the flight attendant is a hot mess.

By the time I was done with work, I was exhausted. And shaky. And feverish. Now, normally, I would just go home and down some cold medicine before returning to work the next day. But last night, I remembered my new maintenance plan.

So I went to urgent care. A high fever had the doctor ordering me to take antibiotics, rest up and call in sick to work.

And so I did.

And here I am. Listening to my body. Riding out the turbulence, instead of fighting it.

Take care of yourselves out there!


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