I thought I might fly today …
To go against what most people say …
It is worth a try … don’t you think?
Maybe I will fail … maybe I will fly …
But no one will ever know if no one gives it a try …
On one morning in the course of your life,
you will wake up and find
that suddenly things have changed.
Today is that day!
Grace Manning, twenty-six,
is also having that kind of day.
She’s on a quest for self-improvement and discovery
here, you’ll join her on her most pivotal of days
as she shares her thoughts and reactions.
What will she do?
What will she decide?
You will laugh and cry with Grace as she recalls
the many moments that came to shape her life
Through her reflections,
Grace gives you a front row seat
for a very personal, funny, and honest tour
through her life so far.
Watch her fly!
Age 26 – Present Day… One morning, on someday in your life you wake up and suddenly things have changed… Today is that day! In reality, perhaps it wasn’t sudden. Maybe it has been this gradual evolution of my body but I still ‘feel’ the same. I mean my deeper inner self doesn’t know about this thing called time and the fact that it just passes. But on one morning, on someday in your life you just wake up. Today is that day for me! You wake up, just like any other morning. The alarm too loud so that you will in fact hear it and you won’t just think it’s part of some amazing dream. If you’re anything like me, your alarm will be on the other side of the room in an effort to limit your ability to get those extra 9 minutes of sleep by pressing snooze. It never works, but it’s worth a try. It is harder than ever to get out of bed these days. I’m just so tired… so very tired. Then like a bolt of lightening straight through your soul the alarm comes on again. Your 9 extra minutes is now 18. You HAVE to get out of bed or you will be late! But on one morning, on someday in your life, and mine, you just decide not to get up. Today… thank God… is that day for me! Late… For what? Late… To do what? Late… For who? I don’t know? I don’t have all the answers. But what I do know is that… On one morning on someday in your life you say to yourself… Not today! I’m not moving for anyone but myself today. I’m not going on that bus or that train where all the people are packed like sardines in a can. Certainly the smell is similar depending on who you get standing next to you. No! I’m not going. Not today! I’m not going to drive there either. Just because I’m too late to catch that same old bus and train. I refuse to sit in my little bomb of a car in lanes and lanes of traffic where you don’t seem to move. With my petrol gauge bordering on empty and the replacement price too much for this week’s pay packet. No! I’m going to lay here all cozy in my bed until it is too late to do anything other than stay right where I am. You know… On one morning, on someday in your life you wake up and suddenly things have changed… Today, it would seem, is that day. It’s time to take control of where I am going on this journey. At the moment it seems like I am on a massive wave that I can’t get off. A wave that may dump me right on my unhappy head. A wave that I can’t recall choosing to get on… My life wasn’t meant to turn out like this! No… Not like this! So here, here in my bed I will stay. At least until 9am. Oh, I am such a rebel! I was meant to be married or at least have a permanent partner by now. I should have felt enormous amounts of love and passion and I should have had loads of SEX! I should at the very least be having regular sex by now… What’s that all about? I have spent years obsessed with a guy I thought I never could get. I admit it’s safer for me that way. I like the idea of the amazing guy who is just out of reach. Well, apparently, he’s not! Ha! Imagine that! I have spent my whole life convincing myself that these guys were too good for me, that they would only ever think of me as a friend. But it would seem that it is totally the other way around. These guys think I’m too good for them! They don’t even risk my standard rejection and on the odd occasion when they do, I run away in fright. At 4am on some Sunday morning, whilst walking home alone once again, you suddenly get that your prince is not coming… He never was. In fact your prince probably is the guy that you’ve been obsessing about but he looked you over tonight because he knew you weren’t the type of girl that is going to let him get his load off. Not tonight anyway, not on the first night. They don’t even give you a chance. But you know what, at 4am on some Sunday morning whilst walking home alone you suddenly will get an enormous amount of clarity. In the scheme of girls and guys, where you are standing, is quite an empowered position. You like being the mysterious girl that the guys don’t ever understand. You really don’t want to be the one that lets the guy you’ve known forever, and loved for as long as you can remember, get his load off with you just for that night. Who needs that emotional torment! Not me! Not ever again! It’s true that… On one morning, on someday in your life you wake up and suddenly things aren’t the way you thought they would be… And no… it wasn’t really suddenly - you just noticed it all of a sudden. All of a sudden you realise that you’ve had a choice all along. At every stage in your life you have had a choice on which road to take and how to interpret every situation. Somehow after leaving Uni I managed to land myself a really non-challenging position in retail and now I work as an office manager, receptionist, PA, everything, in a large financial company in the city. There, the focus is on the money. I work too long, do too much for too little. But I shouldn’t complain… I did get that pay rise last week. Enough to buy an extra litre of milk! Big deal... Perfect really, for a young woman who did Environmental Science at University, thinking that she was going to somehow change the world. But on someday, at some time in your life you do really get the fact that you can’t change people and all you can really do is influence people on their own paths. Plant seeds that someday you can only hope will grow. Even helping an elderly person across the road changes the world. ‘It is on such small things that the world turns!’ And turn it will… On this day I am starting to understand that I have no one to blame. There is no one in this room but me. I have chosen the ‘easy’ road on most occasions. I now know, laying here all cosy, that sometimes, most times, what looks like the easy road is not necessarily the easier path. Sitting in the grandstand watching life’s game, while everyone else is playing it, is no place to be. So I am handing in my ticket and running out onto that field! Yes… On one morning, on someday in your life you wake up and suddenly things have changed… I do recall going to the bathroom last night and looking in the mirror, as you do… picking my face, as you do… in my normal evening fashion. I grabbed my toothbrush and looked into my little tarnished bathroom mirror. I look different. Is that, is that, is that a wrinkle? Some visible crows feet! It can’t be! A slight, yet significant wrinkle coming off the side of my eye. Oh my God! It’s coming off the other one too! I look different! My sixteen year old face that I see everyday, now looks worn out at the age of twenty-six! When did this happen? When did I become what I suddenly see? I don’t feel any different from when I was at school… I don’t! But on one morning or evening, on someday in your life you realise that you are different. You have actually changed. I’m not sixteen anymore and I certainly don’t look sixteen. My life is in the throes of young adulthood and my face now tells that story.
A well-known child protection and international development expert, Natalie-Ann McCauley has spent the last ten years living and working all over the world to improve the lives of children and families. She is a trainer, public speaker, writer, and independent consultant who currently works as a child protection specialist in Australia.