Currently, I find myself sitting at a beach bar— in a place where white sand meets turquoise waters. People flock to this Spanish town; enveloped by the Mediterranean Sea on one side and the Atlantic Ocean on the other. It’s a city that finds its direction and domination from the wind. Being a female kitesurfer makes you a rarity in most locations, but in Tarifa, you simply blend into the crowd of colorful kites dotting the kilometers of coastline. Here, you are the minority if you don’t kitesurf, don’t have a fit and athletic body or toss your tangled beach hair over your shoulder while kicking back a sunset Mojito. Yes, it’s true.

I quite like the place my life has landed.

I quite like this town for its vibe, but I love this town for the intense sense of gratitude and awe that I feel over being here. Oddly, the reasons why I love experiencing Tarifa have little to do with the town. I love this town because it exposes every proof that— in the darkest moments of the past year— I was never forgotten. In the most uncertain times, there was something waiting for me. In the minutes that I heart-wrenchingly cried over the discouragements that clouded my dreams, something somewhere in me said—

“You will have more than this.”

Tarifa wasn’t “the more” that I was waiting for, but the wait had to exist because I needed time. Time to learn. Time to be ready for what lay ahead. You may need time. You may not understand. You may wish everything was different. I know. When you feel this way, remember this:

Nothing bad lasts forever.
Nothing good lasts forever.

Open your heart, mind, and paradigms in every single moment that you have. Because this is the moment that you have. “Your moment in Tarifa” may be the only one you ever have like it.

I was never patient, and I am never patient. I think I deserve more than I do, want everything to fall into place when believe it’s best and attempt to force my future forward. The time I was forced to wait to fly over the past year, the time that I was forced to endure with a broken ankle, the time that I was gifted to build a writing career in the interim of healing could NOT have been more of a blessing. I didn’t realize or understand that in the moment. There is a deep sense that I earned what I have now and what I am going towards; while also knowing that there was nothing that really could be done to make everything happen in the last few weeks. Ultimately, the priceless takeaway that I will never, ever be able to repay to the “Who” that is working behind the scenes in my life is one truth:

No matter what setback, comeback, or challenge faced— without any doubt— you will make it through. You are smart, capable, and will survive.

The most priceless gift you can ever choose to receive is to fully understand your value, purpose, and presence in this world. I can never teach this to you, but I pray that you will learn. I pray that you will always live every day moved with gratitude.

I feel so loved and blessed to be in Tarifa. It’s a gift and yet, I worked hard for this. I worked hard for the flights. I worked hard for the blog, the marketing work that I do, and the flying. I worked hard, but there’s more to it than that. The way the Universe works is more powerful and miraculous than we will ever understand. What I understand in this moment, though, is that the words that you speak matter. The words that you tell yourself— when no one hears you but you— are life-changing.

Let me explain—

  • I said I wanted three months off to do what I wanted to do creatively— I broke my ankle three days later.
  • I said I wanted to go to Spain in September— and so I’m here.
  • I used to sit on the ramp and wonder about a certain jet, saying I wanted to fly on it— and so I did.
  • I once thought I would never have a chance to live in Hawaii, work for a European company, and have the income to work from whatever city I wanted in the world— All narratives of my life now.

We think small. I know we do. I know we do because I do. So, let’s do better.

It doesn’t feel like I’m owed this adventure or certain flights or Tarifa because I’m a flight attendant. I am just incredibly glad that somehow, I managed to NOT go back to what was safe, comfortable, and easy. You don’t know how many times I almost said, ‘This is shit. I can’t do this.” But here I am. I don’t know if “I did it,” but shit is happening.

Getting to this town, this place in my life, and my corporate flight attendant career was painful, trying, and difficult. I didn’t really believe that I would have my dream job again. I don’t have my dream job now, but that’s because my definitions have changed. No longer do I expect someone else to make my life as beautiful as I hope it can be, but I’m in the process of creating my dream job— with all of the features, compensation, and freedom that I want. Dream jobs are not a one-time event, but require a process of constant reinvention and evaluation. Your life will be whatever way you want IF you create it. Have you ever thought about how you want to create it?

The worst advice I have ever heard, when determining what decision to make for my future was, “Well, if ‘it’— the next [thing], [relationship], [job], [sport] [insert the blank]— doesn’t work out, you can always go back.” Really? Is that what you really believe? Because in my experience and the truth that I am living is that— you can NEVER ‘go back.’ We don’t ‘go back’ because it’s impossible to stay the same. You better damn well be sure, I am so grateful for that truth. Why do you want to ‘go back’ when you have so much ahead?

Dream jobs. Create one. Although you can’t be in Tarifa with me as I watch the sky explode in pink and the sun dip below the sea, I’m really happy you are peeking into my world. Peeking in as I create a dream. It’s been an interesting trip. I can only imagine the surprises coming up with the next sunrise…



About the Author

Hello, I’m K. J. Watts, but my friends call me Kara. I fell into the sky and have worked as International cabin crew, on private jets as a corporate flight attendant, and earned an FAA Private Pilot Certificate. Over a decade ago, I started this blog, which developed into a love for writing and a debut memoir based on Flight Attendant Life. A California native, I now live in Sydney, Australia, where I enjoy spending time with my husband, writing, and surfing.

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