For weeks now I feel like all I’ve seen on FB are lists. They range from “Top 10 Things Every Girl Should Know Before She Joins a Sorority” to “Top 10 Things Every Son Should Hear” to “Top 10 Ways to Avoid Divorce (from a guy who got divorced)” to “Top 10 Places to Eat in Alabama.” (I have to admit that last one got my attention.)
Child rearing, sorority joining, weight losing, career choosing, love keeping lists. So who made these list makers the experts? I’ve made many a list in my day, people. I mean I’m a HUGE list maker – just ask anyone in my family. And I’m an OCD list maker, so if I start writing and I have to switch to another pen or I don’t particularly care for my handwriting I’ll start my list all over… (yes, I have issues)…
Soooo, that’s why I type more than I write.
And in an effort to join the community of my fellow list-makers, here are 10 of my most embarrassing moments (I have many more, but they must remain a secret to protect the not-so-innocent people involved) and what I learned from them:
1. At the age of 4 or 5 I knocked a nekkid (for all you above the Mason-Dixon line, that’s a southern version of naked) mannequin off her platform and she dismantled herself into 47 different pieces right in front of me. Lesson learned – listen to your momma when she says, “DO NOT TOUCH THAT.”
2. In elementary school I was picked last for every single solitary stinking game of kickball. Every. Single. One. Lesson learned – I will survive, even if I get picked last every time. (And kickball is a stupid game, BTW.)
3. I once went to a piano competition and completely forgot the piece I was supposed to play (because I hadn’t practiced enough). As in I looked at the judge, announced I felt a little queasy (which wasn’t a lie) and left the room forgot. Lesson learned – practice + hard work = results, and the lack of those create embarrassing situations.
4. In middle school I got a note in my locker (yeah, that’s real old-school I know) that said a certain boy liked me and to come sit with him at lunch. I did. He was clueless as to why I sat there and never said a word to me. Lesson learned – kids are mean and I didn’t want to be a mean kid.
5. My junior year in high school I tried out for our school’s dance team (I was already on the squad that year). I made the squad barely as an alternate, which meant I really wasn’t going to perform with the squad my senior year. I resigned from the squad and moved on to other interests and was successful at other things. Lesson learned – you don’t get everything you want in life. You better figure out how to make lemonade out of a pile of rotting lemons.
6. In high school our MYF group took sex education through our church with our friends’ parents teaching us all sorts of things I didn’t want to hear about at that age and especially not from them. Lesson learned – it takes brave parents to take on that subject in front of their children’s friends.
7. Before going to Auburn University I went to Merle Norman for a makeover. Lesson learned – no one should hit a college campus looking like a “streetwalker” (no offense, Merle). Less is often more.
8. When I was engaged a friend of mine and I were hysterically sharing a story with my soon to be mother-in-law about her hairdresser who had apparently mooned everybody at his 50th birthday party. She wasn’t laughing. Lesson learned – sometimes people are naïve and you should let them stay that way. (2nd lesson on that one – THINK before you SPEAK).
9. My husband and I didn’t find out the sex of our first baby when I was pregnant. After she was born the nurse said, “You have a girl!” I looked right at her and said, “No I don’t.” She looked at my baby again and said, “Yes, I’m pretty sure you do.” Lesson learned – take the drugs the first time they offer them (natural childbirth ain’t all it’s cracked up to be).
10. Palm Sunday, daughter age 9, son age 4. Son DOES NOT want to walk down that long aisle waving a huge part of a bush at people. Pitches a “small” fit as I drag him to the doors of the church through a sea of sweet children in their Sunday best and hiss through clinched teeth: “You get a smile on your face and wave that leaf for Jesus!” I then turn around to see the director of children’s ministries standing right behind me… Lesson learned – don’t push your children to do the “popular” thing – even it if is for the right reasons.
Embarrassing moments offer immediate lessons. But they also offer this life long lesson: we can either be defined by them or we can learn from them. If I had hung on to my top 10 list up there I’d be a disobedient, mean scardy cat who bitterly birthed her first child while looking like a hooker. (Talk about issues…)
But thankfully Jesus has no desire for us to be defined by our past embarrassments or mistakes. He came to make all things new again! “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Corinthians 5:17) Don’t be defined by your past. Be renewed in the future Christ has for you.
You can follow me on Twitter @LeighThompsonAU and enjoy my sometimes inspirational, sometimes humorous, sometimes quirky Tweets!
And if you like what you read, please share with others! God told me to write for Him and my goal is to spread the gospel with a bit of humor and a lot of grace.