Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Spaghetti for My Soul

Oh dear, I opened my mouth and out they came! Words! A string of words like a strand of hot spaghetti. Words I could never take back! Words that slipped out instead of in. Words that were awful, just awful.

I was mortified. They were the kind of words that immediately after you say them you think, "Did I really say that out loud? Did she hear them? Of course she heard them! How could she not have heard them! She now thinks I'm an idiot! She KNOWS I'm an idiot! What am I thinking? I AM an idiot!"

Let me fill you in. We were at "Spaghetti for the Soul," a conference for women at our church. I was the chairperson who had been working on it for weeks, months actually. Brenda McElroy, our director of Women's Ministry, and I had spent many hours on the phone, in meetings, at lunch and on our computers communicating about this event. We had prayed a lot about it. We were really, really looking forward to it.

Kathy Troccoli and Ellie Lofaro, two "big names" in the world of Christian women's ministry, had agreed to come to little ol' Paducah. They had agreed because they are not "Stars." They are servants. They wanted to spread some truth around, spread a little refreshment, encourage women.

So, the morning begins. I thought it started well since my voice worked and it hadn't worked AT ALL for the past six days. I opened my mouth into the microphone and out it croaked. "Good morning." I wasn't dazzling, but - hey - I got the point across and I hadn't fallen down getting up there. I don't know that our guests were as impressed as they should have been. Perhaps someone should have explained it to them.

Then, the schedule moved along smoothly. One singing session, one talking session and it was already time for a break. I directed the women toward the restrooms and muffins and coffee. I even attempted a lame joke. Hey, I was starting to like this.

That's when God decided to humble me the first time. Oh, Lord, why? Why did those words come out?

Kathy actually is a star, despite her humility, genuineness, great sense of humor and beauty. I mean the woman had a song that was #4, was a Grammy nominee, a Dove winner, is the author of award-winning books, was one of Today's Christian Woman's Most Admired Christian Women in America, etc., etc., etc.

And, as we left the sanctuary, she, this outstanding woman, took my hand and said, very gently, "You are so sweet." Guess what I said in reply? Just guess.

Mature woman that I am, I said, "Oh, I want to be your friend."

Now, I ask you, does that sound like something a 3rd grader would say or what???

"I want to be your friend."

How idiotic.

She probably thinks I'm going to be one of those stalker fans now.

I mean, why couldn't I just have said, "Thank you." and left it at that? Or simply smiled a sweet smile, for pity's sake.

The rest of the conference she called me Tonya. I think she was distancing herself subliminally. I don't blame her.

I want to be your friend.


Friday, April 24, 2009

Before I begin my blog today, let me apologize for having taken such a long hiaitus. I have had a psychotic schedule for the past five weeks. I suppose that's no excuse. If one is to have a blog there's a certain responsibility to keep that blog up and running. After all, I have 14 followers.

Fourteen people out there are counting on me to keep you up to date on critical information about my crazy, nutty life. So, sorry. I really mean it. It won't happen again. Now, onward...

I have so much to tell you that I don't know where to start. There have been wedding doings. You do know that our oldest son is getting married May 24th, don't you? There have been book marketing doings. You do know I have a flutterbies book out, don't you? There have been vacation doings. You do know I spent a week at the lake chasing geese, don't you? (That's a whole blog in itself!) And, there have been getting ready for Spaghetti for the Soul conference doings. You do know that special day for women is April 25th, don't you?

I should have been writing about all of that. But, I didn't. So, now, I'm just going to tell you about my walk today. Francie and I just returned from a walk with Patience and the whippets. It takes three rounds to walk the whippets. Francie doesn't mind. She likes all nine of them. They don't feel the same. Well, just one of them doesn't feel the same. Mama Pajama is not that fond of her. Francie is small, hairy, and gets in her space like a rabid rabbit might. Mama Pajama doesn't find that amusing.

Mama and the new whippets, Easy and Spice, go on the first walk. They are fairly happy to ignore the short, hairy dog. The second walk consists of Fat Charlie, Delia, and Giocomino. Of these three, Delia is the least crazy about Francie. Fat Charlie and Giocomino are unconcerned with her - unless she gets right up in Giocomino's face; then, he might give her a little lesson. The third walk is the friendliest for the furry tag-along. Swede William, Lindy Lue, and Sam I Am don't have issues with small, hairy Corkys.

In fact, Francie has a crush on William. He's from Sweden, so he's got that appealing foreign accent. He's got a different look about him. He's tall, dark(ish) and handsome. She's quite taken. Smitten, you might say. She tries to snatch kisses right there on the sidewalks of Paducah. Sometimes she jumps up on the curbs to make herself taller. She yearns to gaze into his eyes. "Look at me!" she calls with longing.

An interesting phenomenon happened today on our walk. Usually - we're talking 90 percent of the time - people go goo-goo, gah-gah over the whippets. "Oh, those are beautiful dogs!" they'll say. "Are they greyhounds?" Patience thanks them, tells them that they're a smaller version of the greyhound and we go our way. NO ONE makes a comment about Francie. I am not exaggerating. Ninety percent of the people we encounter on our walks IGNORE my precious dog. They make NO COMMENT whatsoever, favoring the long, sleek, elegant whippets instead of my low-slung, fuzzy, funny-faced Corky.

Occasionally my eyes well up with tears. I try to blink quickly. I bite my lip bravely. I look to the horizon and think of something else. I try not to care. But it hurts, people. It hurts.

Today, though, today was different. Four - count 'em - FOUR people out of six or seven (not sure now) commented on Francie! They said she was cute or noticed her in a positive way! Oh, I do love those quilters. What a day! What a day!

So, you see, I had all those big doings. Wedding. Book. Vacation. Geese Chasing. Women's Conference. And, when it really comes down to it, the daily walk is what matters.