Standing in the grocery aisle looking at the magazines covers, I find myself pondering. Not on who is divorcing, marrying, cheating, too fat, too thin, or simply confused about their sexuality. Nope; I’m pondering how amazing the ladies who grace these covers look. Well, of course they do, there is a wonderful software called Photoshop!
I’d look pretty darn good, too, if they did that to me! But alas, it’s not going to happen—don’t even really want it to. But at one time, photo-shopping the imperfections out of my life is something I would have seriously considered. I did not want my blunders, errors, and life faux pas to be seen by the masses.
That is no longer true! A bunch of years ago I decided I was going to just be a little bit easier on myself. When I took a minute to look around, I realized that the mistakes I was kicking myself for were shared by the masses. And if we all admitted it, we could share a laugh—maybe even give a sister a hand.
So let me share some of my very own life faux pas and what I learned:
• The year I gave my friend a perm (yes, it was that era) and forgot the necessary use of a timer because we were just chatting… I was mortified when I realized I had just given a pale, white girl quite an impressive Afro! We found a way to fix the hair, our friendship became stronger, and we had one great story for the ages.
• The first time I lost a child in the mall I was terrified while simultaneously convinced that I was the worst mother in the entire world! Through the years of sharing that story, I have yet to find a mom who hasn’t said, “Yeah me too!” Welcome to the motherhood imperfection club—it’s a great stress reliever from unrealistic expectations.
And if we all admitted it, we could share a laugh—maybe even give a sister a hand.
• I accompanied one of the bands I managed on a tour once, and we found ourselves traveling on the Euro-rail through Germany. Still figuring out the train system, I drug these poor guys out of their seats three times in a row before I got it right because I thought our stop was next; I was so embarrassed. After traveling with them in two more countries, I realized that musicians are incredibly talented—but not with directions. So, I might have thought I looked foolish back in Germany, but these guys could still be touring Europe had I not been there!
• Early in our marriage, when I overdrew our meager checking account because I just forgot stuff, I kicked myself for days. Calling the bank, I quickly realized I had joined the ranks of the masses. Every wonder how the banks make payroll? Overdraft fees! You’re welcome bank worker.
• Running into Wal-Mart a few years ago, I had about 4 ½ minutes to complete my errands between meetings and I also had to go to the restroom. I ran to the back of the store, the restroom in front of the store was being cleaned (of course), left my cart and ran in the door. As I exited the stall I realized I was looking at a urinal, and it was not unmanned! Eyes on the floor, out the door, I left that place not to return for a very long time. I learned to stop and read all signs, especially those of public restrooms!
Honestly, I wouldn’t want to Photoshop a single one of those life faux pas. They are too wonderfully woven into my life, even the restroom experience! So ladies, next time you wish you could remove some crazy thing you’ve done, take it easy on yourself! It will be a great story one day. And while you’re at it, when you see another lady mortified by some craziness in her life, take it easy on her too. That really is the grit and grace life!