This weekend Stef and I were supposed to be in Porto for three days of sunshine, inspiration, photography, sleep and some away from the screen Makelight planning. It was all set to be our Makelight Spring away weekend. We make time for weekends like this a few times a year. It's super important for building our company, staying beautifully happy together and taking some time off from our busy family life.
Pretty late on Thursday evening we set off for Gatwick to stay at the ever so handy Bloc hotel, so that we didn't get caught up with any little people on Friday morning who might have made it a bit tricky to get to the airport on time. Over the years we've been ridiculously late for lots of holidays but we have never been late to an airport.
On Friday we got up nice and early, showered and headed off to get our flight. We got through security, Stef checked the board for details of our Gate and it wasn't showing yet, so went to get some breakfast. During breakfast Stef was keeping an eye on the board, while we were excitedly talking away about the Makelight Membership. After a year of planning, experimenting, launching, building, experimenting some more, we have finally got to the point where we are just weeks away from being able to turn Makelight into a Membership only adventure. To say we are happy about this is an understatement! We will be sharing lots more about what this means with you soon.
So, we're chatting away. I am getting slightly distracted by the way that Jamie Oliver's restaurant at the airpot had managed to hire such on brand people. And Stef is checking the board again. He tells me that the flight is now boarding and that the gate number is 157. "Do we need to just leave now then?" I say. "Oh no, it's fine, we can eat our breakfast and then head over."
Breakfast eaten, bill paid, we head off. Stef checks the board again and says "oh hang on, the gate has changed. Now it's saying 564." By this point I'm getting pretty stressed about whether we will actually make the flight and start walking very fast. I turn this into a run and then I get to the gate and all I can see is "Lisbon, 9.45am." Where is the Porto flight at 9.45am? I turn round and run back to Stef, ask him about Lisbon/Porto. "Oh no, I was looking at the wrong city. Ruuuunnn....!!"
So, I hand him the bags and I run. All I can think of is Marie Forleo in her Oprah Winfrey Super Soul Session. But I have this feeling in my stomach that this isn't going to turn out so well. I'm at gate 564 and I need to get to gate 157. And the sign says "gate closed", which I'm guessing is 99% likely to be true. But I keep on running and when I feel like stopping, I tell myself that this is why I train...to rescue situations like this! I feel like I'm in film. I also feel so ridiculous. Stef is absolutely amazing at so many things but having a sense of time or where he needs to be when are not on his list of awesome. Why on earth did I leave it to him to check the gates and know when we needed to leave?!
Marie made her flight. We didn't. But in what happened next it didn't really matter that we didn't make it. Yes, I've missed the sunshine that was promised this weekend in Porto and I've definitely missed taking a million photos of pretty colours and patterns in beautiful light. But we've come down to Brighton instead and we are doing all the other things that were important this weekend.
And the very best thing of all is that we were fed up for about 20 minutes, if that. We didn't get cross with each other. There was no shouting or mopping. There was no blame. We laughed at the ridiculousness of startup life, we admitted how absolutely exhausted we were both feeling and we had a hug and then we just put it to one side and made a new plan for our weekend.
Running a startup together is seriously intense. When you add four children into the mix, it's all kinds of crazy. To miss a flight to Portugal and to be able to just shrug it off and do something else instead is pretty amazing, especially when you're both a little burnt out.
Perhaps the missed flight was a little test of us and our resilience. And do you know what? In all of this I'm not cross with Stef for confusing his Portuguese cities or with myself for not double checking the gates, I'm just even more in love with my best friend and even more excited about the future for us, for new adventures and for the Makelight Membership. xo