Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Ugly Truth About Me

Why I watched “The Ugly Truth” is somewhat of a mystery. It’s not one I’d recommend because it has some pretty crude humor. I watched it on a night Bob had to work late and I had NINE baskets of laundry piled like Mt. Kilimanjaro around my bed, begging to be folded and put away. I guess it was something to watch while I did one of the most MUNDANE task in the universe (whoa is me!).

So I find it pretty funny that it seems God used “The Ugly Truth” to open my eyes to some ugly truth about me. I was watching the star (Katherine Heigl) play out a role where she was a control freak and I thought to myself, “Hm, she seems pretty normal to me. Wait…what does that mean?! Could I have some control-freak-ishness in ME?”

This thought, of course, was followed by the five stages of grief, beginning with DENIAL. “I am not a control freak! I just like plans. Okay, I love plans. And I will admit that when plans don’t go as…planned I get a bit bent out of shape. Okay, REALLY bent out of shape. But I can go with the flow…as long as it’s flowing the way I want it to go!”

Next came ANGER. “C’mon, I am a good person! What are you saying here, God? Don’t I sing along with Carrie Underwood ‘Jesus take the wheel‘? Okay...I let you in the passenger seat. Well, sometimes I may ask you to stay in the backseat. BUT I DO TRY!” (Also in this stage I realized maybe my hubby calling my Mrs. Marx wasn’t a term of endearment like I had thought!)

This was followed with BARGAINING. “Okay, here’s the deal, God. I will try not to be a control freak if you make sure things go the way I want them to.” Enough said.

Then, DEPRESSION. “I give up.”

But, alas, there is hope with ACCEPTANCE! “YES! I do try to be in control of everything: from how the dishwasher is loaded to how my husband shows me he loves me. I need help, God! thanks for using something so crazy to show me the light!”

I really thought God was on my side (of letting me be in control) back in the day when I had my “60 Qualities in a Man” list. This was a list of what I was looking for in my future husband that I had begun at the age of 12 and steadily added to it until I met Bob at the age of 24. It was organized by categories (personality traits, spiritual traits, looks, etc.) and was a little checklist I used when I was in the dating world to determine husband eligibility.

Unfortunately, (or fortunately for Bob perhaps) most guys could barely make a number past 20 (unbeknownst to them of course) and it was “Sianara, Sweetheart!” Well, after a few dates with a spontaneous farm boy named Bob, I was shocked to see he had scored 59 out of 60--that’s a solid “A”! My plan was on track! (And in case you are wondering what he missed, it was “older than me”…yes, I would have changed that too if I could have!)

I’m realizing God may have let me think I was in control and had found just the guy I was dreaming about so He could get me to marry my opposite and shake my world up! And Bob has done just that, in the best of ways. He is a solid dose of realism to my idealism. If it weren’t for that, I may still be trying out for the Brady Bunch show.

Christmas time is a perfect example. I wake up with more than visions of sugar plums and fairies dancing in my head. I imagine our family (reminder: four children ages 4, 3, 1 and 2 months) stringing popcorn and cranberries for the tree while Christmas music plays as we decorate our warm home with laughter and joy. Bob is so kind as to warn me (the realist), “Don’t even try this, honey.” But DO I LISTEN? Nope.

So, here we go…and there goes my sanity. Here is what really happened: the popcorn is used as grenades in the boy’s Darth Vadar vs. Luke Skywalker battle, the Christmas music is drowned out by the sound of breaking ornaments and a crying baby and the only laughter to be heard is my delirious laugh as I realize: This is not going according to plan! Bob’s arms wrap around me and he whispers, “Just go with it.” And I am learning to do just that. By the end of the evening, we were all having fun. I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact that I have tied the boys to chairs with the Christmas lights…hmm…only joking! Mostly.

Take it from an X-Control-Freak (maybe I’m still in the denial stage…), sometimes life is just about “going with it”. Things may not always go according to MY plan, but the One who sees the whole picture, including our future, has a better plan anyway. And I promise that the next time I join Carrie Underwood in singing “Jesus Take the Wheel”, I’ll actually let him have it.


  1. Sometimes I think only first-borns have control issues, but you have just proved that is not necessarily the case. Brilliant post! Kind of crazy how we work so hard to make our picture (comparable to a three year old's crayon drawing) look perfect when God has a masterpiece in mind for our lives. Thanks for your transparency!

  2. I love how you word that, Jessica-about a crayon drawing vs. God's masterpiece of our lives!


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