Monday, August 10, 2009

Happy plastic people?

I have been told, since forever and a day, that I wear my feelings on my sleeve. My mother could have made a recording of that statement and saved herself a lot of breath. I always thought she was right. I cry when I'm sad, happy, other words, waterproof mascara is a given. I consider myself a transparent person. I don't tell everybody all of my troubles, but I am pretty open. Or at least I thought I was...

Last week my neighbor and I were having a conversation and she said, "You're so confident and sure of yourself." I laughed. Really. I was shocked. My husband calls me "medium", not because I can communicate with the other side, but because I agonize over decisions, second guessing, analyzing and trying to anticipate every possible outcome.

This conversation made me realize that she doesn't see the insecurities and fears of my daily life. Sometime I do share them with her because, to be honest, she is the most formidable prayer warrior I have ever met. But for the most part...I don't want people to know the daily worries of life. Nothing major, no deep dark unmentionables; just everyday fears of failure, financial strain, defiant children, messy house...the things that I feel judged and measured by..and not usually hitting my goals.

Part of keeping it to myself, is nobody wants to be the person with the black cloud, the Eeyore of the group... and really, nobody wants that person in their group either. ;) But part of it is really well expressed in the song Stained Glass Masquerade by Casting Crowns...
"Is there anyone that fails? Is there anyone that falls? Am I the only one in church today feeling so small? 'Cuz when I take a look around, everybody seems so strong. I know they'll soon discover, that I don't belong. So I tuck it all away, like everything's ok. If I make them all believe it, maybe I'll believe it too. So with a painted grin, I play the part again, so everyone will see me the way that I see them. Are we happy plastic people, under shiny plastic steeples, with walls around our weakness and smiles to hide our pain? But if the invitation's open, to every heart that has been broken, maybe then we close the curtain on our stained glass masquerade... "
I harbor the (false) belief that everyone else has a perfectly ordered and tidy life with no failures, missed goals or flops while my life is not working like a swiss watch. (Is that even a good metaphor anymore?). Rationally, I recognize that everybody has their black clouds, their flops and their "stuff" and probably a lot of people are going through tougher things...but we're all so busy putting on our "painted grins" we don't even know they need the kind word, the smile, the hug or the help. We can't swoop in and save the day for everybody, but even in our "stuff" we can be the hands and feet of Christ with a smile or kind word. Sometimes, we might even have part of a solution...
-Peace and Blessings

1 comment:

  1. Oh how very true...there are so many days I feel the same way. So many days I feel like I fail at being a housewife, a parent, and keeping a neat, organized house. I have so many fears and worries. I try to hold them in, but I have a feeling that's where my headaches and other ailments seem to come from.

    By the way, if you are EVER looking to see another home that is in an almost constant state of disarray, stop by my house unannounced. :) I do my very best to make it nice looking if I know people are coming to my house, but that's certainly not the norm and I usually have to set playdates and so forth several days ahead of time just to give myself time to get my house in order. UGH! I hate that about myself.

    And just so you know, if you ever need to vent or relieve some burdens, you know how to reach me. ;)