Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Church Lady Gets her Groove On

There is a part of me that is self-righteous, indignant and extremely judgmental.   It's the same part of me that is ruled by shame--the shame of being, well, human, I guess for lack of a better descriptive.   That part of me, the darkest part of my soul, is not the largest part -- not even close.  I think I have a big heart and expansive soul full of love for most of God's creation.  But that little nasty part is powerful.  And I don't mean powerful in a good way.  I mean that bitch will tear through my life like a CAT 5 Tornado without a backward glance or the offer of a tissue.

The one thing I have practiced often in my life (and some may say have even perfected) is giving up on myself.  I have caved in on pretty much every meaningful pursuit that I've undertaken since I was about 19.  The problem with doing something repeatedly -- anything -- is that you get better at it. It gets easier.  That can be dangerous sometimes. 

Anyway, what I mean to say about that is that even at forty-shma-ma years old, I can do something different with my future.  I can learn to not give up on myself.  I just saw the coolest quote from Peter Drucker:

The best way to predict the future is to create it. 

This claiming and creating a more fulfilling future would never have been possible without first slaying a few internal dragons--the first of whom was the dastardly church lady self-righteous wench at the heart of my shame.  Her weapon of choice: Perfectionism. She uses it like Christian Grey uses floggers in his Red Room of Pain.  Funny to think of the Church Lady in the Red Room of Pain.  Not the best place for her as it would probably take her all of 17 seconds to be seduced by the dark side.  Because, let's face it, the behavior exhibited by those at the extremes of righteousness and abject impropriety are but a hair's breadth apart.  I think self-righteousness belongs under the noon-day sun.   My ex-husband used to say "Sunshine is the greatest antiseptic."  I love it.  (Even if he is an unabashed Michigan Fan) Because it's true.   Shame and perfectionism belong right there, too.

I'm going to fire up a burn barrel at noon with those three witches inside. 

I've decided to replaced self-righteousness with the phrase "It is what it is, baby."
Perfectionism will be supplanted by good enough.
Judgment out, empathy in. 

Judgment, well, that's just so damn lame and frankly rather un-Christian.   I don't know somebody's whole story.  I know that excessive drinking causes liver cancer but that's no excuse to have any judgment for an alcoholic with cancer.   I'm not inside that person's head. I don't know what compelled them to do what they did.  (And who the hell am I, anyway!?) But I do know that loving them while they're sick is better than judging them. 

Jeff says something even more profound than my first husband's nugget of wisdom:

We don't need more criticism. We need more encouragement. 

As hard as this is to admit, the most important person to start with in that whole equation is me.  But after a lifetime on my back forcing me to give up on myself repeatedly for my imperfections, it's going to be an adjustment process for the Church Lady.  So I've decided to coax her down with the promise of some salsa lessons. 
Church Lady Drools over Justin Bieber while doing the Superior Dance
Cuz the Church Lady loves to get her groove on! 

No comments:

Post a Comment