It’s Oscar weekend, and you cannot escape the pervasive buzz of Hollywood. Best Actress, Best Supporting, Editing, Soundtrack and the mother lode–Best Picture. After “Argo,” “Lincoln,” “Django Unchained” and more, the title that keeps popping up in my head is “Silver Linings Playbook.” Silver lining, silver lining. I am desperately searching for one, as I lie in pain, utterly void of energy, in a hotel room in Miami, FL, suffering from the flu. Totally down and out and missing every square inch of an awesome vacation I had fashioned for myself. I had planned 10 days in Florida, and the Weather Channel app on my iPad, virtually my lifeline to the outside world, shows big, bright suns and temps in the 80s for most of my trip. I was going to spend time with my parents, my daughter, her boyfriend and his family, and two groups of good friends. My husband was taking a few precious days off, and I was so looking forward to having some R and R with him. We were going to play lots of golf, bike, hang at the beach and have some great meals.
All those plans fell brutally by the wayside early in the week. To make a really long story short, I took a “Flight” down to Florida, feeling lousy, but pushed myself knowing that I had all these terrific plans and figuring that I just had to feel better soon. Most of the time you do. But not this time, and I was diagnosed with the flu – Influenza B – on my second day there. We moved out of my parents’ apartment pronto – I know, please don’t remind me, how bad it was that my flu and I ever crossed that threshold, but I didn’t realize – and I canceled virtually every plan I had. There would be no golf, no biking, no dinners and certainly no “Amour.” This flu was really debilitating; I had no choice but to go to bed and stay there. And have I mentioned that the bed in question is at a Ritz-Carlton hotel? You see, we are in Florida during President’s Week, and hotel rooms are hard to come by. So not only is this flu “Les Miserables” but it is also The “Million Dollar Flu” (from another season, I know).
Being a naturally optimistic sort however, I tell everyone it could be worse, and I know sincerely that it could be. And then, like a thunderbolt, it hits me, and despite my mood, a huge smile busts out on my untanned face. I have found my silver lining. The pounds are falling off! This is my “Silver Lining Flu.” And it is so damned easy. I have zero appetite. The thought of food is fairly repugnant. A corner of a saltine is about all I can manage. Things are looking up, or rather I should say, down. Although the hotel room has no scale, I know my weight has headed south. I can sense that my pajamas, just about the only thing I have worn from a suitcase brimming with outfits for all my favorite summer sports, are not quite so clingy. And a pair of shorts I did eventually venture into on departure day are so much easier to button it is not even funny! No, not funny, but awesome, terrific and fabulous all rolled into one. Yes, I did lose an entire vacation, but the weight I lost along with it is definitely my silver lining. And when times get tough, it’s always good to find one.
Now if I could only figure out how to keep it off. But that would probably be “The Impossible.”