I’m in Hawaii. In Maui. At the Sheraton on Kaanapali Beach, where I honeymooned almost thirty years ago. What could there possibly be to complain about? Yet I have had complaints. I have had Karen moments of which I am not proud.

Let me say, I have recognized it and reigned it in quickly, and am having a fabulous trip—laying in my comfy, fluffy bed writing this right now! But it is so easy to fall into the complaining, the disappointment, the irritation. And it doesn’t change anything except my own experience—sucking energy from the joy of being here.

But it’s so crowded! I knew it would be, but it is crazy busy. Like Jones Beach on 4th of July crowded. Sand Harbor on a Sunday. CRAZY! And why is it so busy? Because we’ve all been locked in our houses, our towns—afraid to get on planes for over a year. Many people, like us, had trips planned for last year and had to wait until it was safe, until we were vaccinated. And so, I want to be grateful. Grateful to be here, grateful for all these other people that they can be here, enjoying the beautiful parts of the world that are safe for us to travel to again.

So it’s crowded. There are no chairs at the pool. The beach is loud and packed. Restaurants have a two hour wait for tables. Places are trying to figure out how to host so many people safely again after so long of having no one.

Wah! Wah! Wah!

Okay, Karen, get over it! This is what I told myself, and it helped a lot.

I’m in Hawaii. The weather is beautiful. I’m with the man I love. So what if the logistics aren’t perfect?

It reminds me that so much of our life experience is what we make it. I may not be able to control getting annoyed at stupid people or policies, but I can absolutely choose to hold onto it or not. I can choose to turn my focus away from those annoyances and focus on the beautiful sunsets, the soft sand, the soothing surf.

So that’s what I’m trying to do. Mostly succeeding.