Holding on

My recent plane trip to Dubai was very far from forgettable, and I’m going to tell you why.

The flight takes about 7 hours total and that was already a burden for me, as I do not like flying, nor do I like sitting in one little chair for hours pretending like we’re not 40 000 feet above the ground, while trying to enjoy food that looks like it has been canned for months (Sidenote: Shoutout to Emirates Airlines for making edible food that people can actually enjoy. Thank you for relieving us from the pain we have to endure on other flights.)

Anyway back to our moutons, I’ve honestly been starting to associate longer flights with bumpier outcomes. I know it’s probably completely wrong, but every time I’ve been on what I call “the longer flights” (+4 hours), we seem to have a lot more turbulence, and THAT my friends, is scary for me. It is both life-threatening & stress-inducing for my little heart to handle and I CAN’T TAKE IT OKAY, I’M SERIOUSLY THINKING OF TRAVELING VIA HORSE FROM NOW ON. I just need to be on the ground.

On this stressful-7-hour-long-flight, the first thing the captain told us when we fit our tired little bums into the narrow seats was “folks, the flight is going to be a little bumpy, so please keep your seat belts on when the seat belt sign is switched on”. The man was speaking as if we were on a bus driving 80km/hour on a rough highway. MY MAN, WE ARE FOURTY THOUSAND+ FEET OFF THE GROUND, WHAT DO YOU MEAN A LITTLE BUMPY?

And bumpy it was. I had never experienced such bumpiness actually. And I don’t think I have ever prayed this much on a plane (or anywhere, really). Jesus, Allah, Vishnu etc. they were ALL CALLED UPON. I needed safetyyyyyyyy. After a big “bump” that ended up dropping the plane literally maybe 1 foot in a matter of seconds, I was on edge.

And suddenly, the woman sitting in front of me asks her husband, sitting on her left, if he’s awake. In which he does not respond although his eyes were slightly open. So she looks at him anxiously and asks him again louder, while touching his arm. Things were starting to alarm her (and me, because I was looking at what was happening). She immediately removes her seatbelt and sits on his lap for direct and clear interaction with his face, as the plane was dark due to dimmed lights; and she starts talking louder, her voice shaking, calling his name and pressing her hands against his cheeks. She wanted to call a flight attendant but no one was there so I pressed the blue button you press for them to come. Slowly, people around the couple started noticing something was happening and people offered help, one man even slapped her husband to wake him up. Scary-long -story-short the man did not die, but he ended up needing 3 oxygen tanks to stay awake and breathing, as he was falling in and out of consciousness.

But strangely enough, even though I saw his face and all other encounters we had on the flight, the only image now glue-stuck to my brain is her face, looking at his like it was the last time she will be able to. It is a state you do not wish to see people in, whether you know them or not. It is a state of unfortunate panic, and what sticks to my mind is that mix of incomprehensible emotion I was seeing from a woman I had never met in my life. I saw shock, incomprehension, and all similarly unpleasant emotions, but I saw overwhelming immediate unquestioned love. That woman held his face and started kissing him before any of the flight attendants showed up, before anything started happening she put her face against his and did the only thing she understood at that moment. She held on while she still could.

As often as we see it on social media posts and quotes, do not take the moments we have with with loved ones for granted. Love them everyday and remind them whenever you can, because that moment you have with them is euphoria. Living right now at 7:05 pm on a Sunday in January,  breathing them in to fill your soul with enough of their presence in order not to feel empty when they are gone. And you still do.

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