I grew up in a brick ranch house in Mint Hill, a tiny suburb of Charlotte that had one traffic light. Behind my house were woods and a creek where my friends and I loved to explore and play. Across the street, behind my friend’s houses, were verdant cow pastures. I had a wonderful childhood in this peaceful neighborhood. But what I loved most about my brick ranch home was that the front porch had double (french) doors complete with glass storm doors. These doors were the perfect backdrop for taking pictures.
My friend Ashley and me in front of the storm doors
Standing on the front sidewalk and facing the doors, it was like looking in a mirror. My dream was to be a cheerleader at my junior high school, and these mirror-esque glass doors meant that I could practice my jumps and see how high I was getting. Jumps were always hard for me. I’m petite but solid so when I jumped I did not fly like my skinny-legged friends. It took many hours of practice for me to finally nail the holy grail of cheerleading – a Russian- but I was persistent. I finally did it.
Strangely, what I remember most about all of those years of hard work on my jumps is not the euphoria of achieving my goal of doing a Russian, but the unkind words that were uttered when I was trying but failing. I can’t remember who said it, but I will never forget the words:
“Lisa, your butt is so big you can’t even get it off the ground.” (more…)
“Today is going to require a lot of makeup,” I thought as I sat at my makeup mirror. A husband and wife at my church, people I had considered friends, had rejected me. They were leaders in my church and I both respected and trusted them. This was not just a minor bruise…I cried for 5 days. I even woke my husband up one morning, sobbing.
These beloved friends had deeply wounded my heart. In short, my heart hurt.
And on this Sunday morning I was going to see them for the first time since it happened. I was so broken that I wanted to stay home, but why delay the inevitable. So I put on a flashy shirt, lots of lip gloss, and a fake smile to mask my quivering heart.
Lately I’ve been praying a prayer that I know is a fantasy. I’m in a period of transition, between stay-at-home mommy to
“Empty nester” and I’m trying to figure out what I’m supposed to do next. I don’t know what my future holds, but this is my honest, fantasyland prayer:
God, give me a job or a ministry where my feelings don’t get hurt.
I’m wondering if maybe I could be an accountant, because numbers are kind. Maybe I could go volunteer for a local ministry or nonprofit and be their janitor, because toilets don’t talk. In my dreams, I could be a hermit in the mountains, not interacting with anyone.
This is a guest post by my dear friend, Elizabeth Mckenzie:
The phone rang. It was a person very dear to me and she was upset, and had been absolutely mortified. As she explained what happened to me I began to sympathize with how she felt. She told me she was on her way home and she stopped by a family member’s house. Before arriving she was unaware that they had a full house with company. And upon entering the the house her family member’s granddaughter said “What are you doing here? I’m tired of seeing you here!” They all laughed as the child proceeded to keep saying “What are you doing here? It’s you again?” None of the adults reprimanded the child but instead laughed and she did it more.
Something happened in my friend as she stood in that room full of people laughing at her. She felt embarrassed and rejected. Feeling hurt, she made her visit short, not because of what the child said but more so of how the adults responded. Not one person welcomed her as they snickered at the child’s rude behavior. In that moment she felt unwanted and rejected.