Let me preface this by stating that I love my husband. Really, I do. He's smart and funny and kinda cute. And I'm crazy about him.
But I hate his choice of TV shows.
Chris and I are complete opposites when it comes to our TV selection. I gravitate toward anything HGTV or any show where the men are referred to by words starting with "Mc" (i.e. McDreamy, McSteamy -- yep, you know the show! Which premieres on the 25th of this month by the way).
Chris watches obnoxious stuff on TV. And I'm not even counting the endless number of football games that seem to be on these days. He has this thing about watching people fall and watching balls hitting crotches, and he laughs out loud (yes, out loud) at their expense. Like those home video shows where people fall into water or have mishaps with birthday pinatas or slip on the dance floor at their own wedding.
There must be a whole group of people who like this kind of TV, because now there is a reality show (surprise, surprise) that is 60 painful minutes of watching people fall down miserably. And then they, of course, show the replay of the fall with commentary and sound effects. The show is called WipeOut. Chris Tivos it so as to not miss a single episode. Although, seriously, they all seem essentially like the same show.
In this show, the contestants go through really strange obstacle courses, planned by people with too much time on their hands, where they are supposed to make forward progress while running on a conveyor belt wearing a snorkel mask and flippers with water pouring from the sky while large barrels or blow-up plastic sea animals are rolling down the conveyor belt toward them . Essentially, the show's goal is to create the biggest, craziest, cringe-inducing WipeOut known to TV. Most of the contestants make zip-zero-no forward progress (understandably) and end up sliding backwards on the conveyor belt straight into the pit of cottage cheese, or whatever the pit happened to be filled with for that particular episode. Occasionally you'll see contestants who get into a groove and can leap over the blow up sea animals while wearing flippers, blinded by water in the eyes. And for a moment, those contestants think they are winning. Beating the conveyor belt. Until they trip on one little floaty, and they go flying backwards on their belly into the pit of filling de jour. And the crowd at home laughs obnoxiously, and the commentators roll the footage again with all the added effects.
Good quality use of family TV time. And brain cells.
Honestly, I don't want to spend my time sitting in front of the TV watching a show like this because I feel like, on many days, I'm surviving my own episode of WipeOut. Life can seem like one big game of WipeOut, where all kinds of things are being thrown at me -- all these responsibilities, requirements, non-negotiables, expectations -- and I'm like the dizzy contestant in webbed flippers trying to jump over the obstacles and make some forward progress.
Some days I feel like I'm able to jump the hurdles and "beat" that conveyor belt, but lately I've been failing miserably and ending up on my belly in the pit.
The irony is that the older I get, the better I should be at Life. I've been doing this grown up / working / parenting / wife thing for a few years now, and I should be able to juggle it beautifully. Wake up in the morning before everyone, cook and serve breakfast, pack lunches, help fix ChellBell's hair, take the car pool, kiss ChellBell goodbye, head to work and inspire my team to greatness while watching my own production grow rapidly, advise those around me, entertain clients, make it home in time to make a dinner with all the food groups, clean up the kitchen, help with homework, smooch with my husband, write a blog excerpt, read a little, smile at the wonderful day I've had, and make it to bed in time to get a good night's rest. All the while, being a good, communicative friend who remembers birthdays and takes dinner to you when you're having a not-so-great day.
I keep striving to be this combination of June Cleaver, Sarah Palin, and Martha Stewart, able to keep work at a successful hum, have dinner on the table, continually teach ChellBell necessary virtues, and have an inspiring craft to offer her at the end of the day.
The funny thing is that I've done it before and done it well. But with changes in life and work and energy levels, it just isn't working for me any more.
So lately I've pondered a lot on what can change and how I can multi-task. My prayers have been pleas for help and energy and another set of arms and a 28 hour day. Some days the prayers have included a new job or a winning lottery ticket.
And the answer is always the same.
"Rest. Get off the conveyor belt and Rest."
Okay, I don't have time to shave my legs some days, and You're telling me to "Rest." Sure, spoken like the God of the Universe who has a perfect son and doesn't have to worry about carpool.
Just kidding, but still... the answer isn't what I expected.
But God, as always, hasn't just piqued my curiosity and then walked away. He stuck around and started showing me the answer. He has shown me that if I Breathe. If I Rest. If I Trust. And if I Rely. Then He will be the all-sufficient help, energy, extra set of arms, and hours in the day that I need.
And ChellBell will grow up learning better values. So, maybe she'll go without an inspired craft at the end of the day, but she'll see a Mom who takes life one breath at a time and a Mom who is reliant on God, rather than a Mom who is so frazzled that it makes her dread the daunting task of growing up.
So I will Rest.
Not in front of WipeOut, but I will Rest.
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