(okay i just finished writing this and it's WAY longer than i expected. so grab a snack. pff. i guess i'm back to my old rambling self)
So. In the LDS church, we all gather together twice a year to listen to our current prophets speak at something we call General Conference. It actually takes place in Utah, of course, but they also broadcast it on television everywhere in the world. You can watch it online, or read it online, or even download the talks as podcasts on your iPod. ok that sounds kind of cultish but i swear it's not. it's actually pretty awesome. and super inspiring.
if you wanna learn more about this whole shebang, go HERE.
well, this year, there were many talks that stood out to me as answers to prayers, but there was one in particular that has really been weighing heavily on my mind. the talk was called
Be Meek and Lowly of Heart
by Elder Ulisses Soares
a member of the Presidency of the Seventy.
ok i know what you're thinking. this is religious hoohaw and i don't wanna read anymore.
it's not, i promise. you know me better than that. i hope.
i'm religious, but not a preacher, i just have to preface this story so you understand WHY the situation bothered me as much as it did.
i'm not a meek person.
if you've read my blog for quite some time,
you know that i frequently find myself in hot water because i lose my temper a lot.
i get really annoyed with annoying people. i can't help it.
actually i CAN help it. i just don't know how.
and that's why this talk stood out to me.
especially this paragraph:
"Meekness is the quality of those who are “Godfearing, righteous, humble, teachable, and patient under suffering.”3 Those who possess this attribute are willing to follow Jesus Christ, and their temperament is calm, docile, tolerant, and submissive."
and then this…
“Christlike attributes are gifts from God. [These attributes] come as [we] use [our] agency righteously. …With a desire to please God, [we have to] recognize [our] weaknesses and be willing and anxious to improve.”
it hit me.
i need to stop being a crazy woman when people piss me off.
i need to learn how to control my actions and not end up doing something i'll regret an hour later.
so i decided to pray asking Heavenly Father for situations that would allow me to strengthen my weaknesses.
what in the CUSS was i thinking?
i'm an idiot.
the VERY. NEXT. DAY.
i was faced with the challenge.
so. if you have a child in school (which i do, i don't homeschool my kindergartner) then you are all too familiar with the mayhem that is:
SCHOOL PICKUP LINES.
dum dum dum
everyday i sit in my car and i seriously look at the chaos and think to myself this very thing.
why are people so dumb?
ok. so i've hand drawn the kinder pickup system to be able to get my point across clearly.
yes i wasted 20 minutes of my life making a diagram for you.
the pickup circle at the school is for kindergartners ONLY. every kinder parent is issued a special pass to put in their window to show that they DO belong in this line. i say "issued" but seriously it's just a yellow piece of card stock with the school and teacher's name on it. real serious, people.
so this is how the system works. bear with me.
the cars wait in line as i've shown below.
the teachers, who are standing with their car riders, bring the students TO THE CARS and put them in.
all the teachers come out at different times each day so some cars in line waiting, will continue to wait until their kids' teacher comes out.
now you're saying,
"but wait! that blocks up traffic!!"
no no no.
here's the genius part.
you see those red stars?
THAT lane is for cars who already SEE their teachers out standing.
they can get out of the slow lane
and into the fast lane which should be continually moving since you're
only allowed in that lane if your teacher is OUT.
no one is supposed to get out of their cars.
but they do.
and they clog up traffic.
no one is supposed to get in the fast lane unless their teacher is there.
but they do.
and they clog up traffic.
i don't know.
i wish i did.
moms are annoying and they talk about stupid things for way too long.
but that's another blog post.
and besides the point.
you see that little pink area marked off by the crosswalks?
everyday, the principal of the school stands in that area and basically does a little traffic directing. and by traffic directing, i mean this:
i'm gonna be completely honest here guys. i don't necessarily LOVE this woman.
i have personally watched her almost cause about 3 car accidents.
she has absolutely NO IDEA what she is doing.
she's directing cars from all three directions all at the same time
trying to read all of the kinder passes in the windshields with her terrible vision
and directing certain cars to get out of line and into the fast lane.
it is a cluster cuss to say the least.
her daily routine includes her coming straight up to your car,
with her outstretched hand like so,
as she squints so hard, she's revealing the entire row of her top teeth.
you're making the face right now, aren't you?
and everyday i'm like,
"seriously woman. you don't have to put your hand up like that because i'm not going anywhere. i'm in a line. that is stopped. bumper to bumper. i promise you i'm not going to try to drive away quickly because i'm actually a kidnapper trying to steal kindergartners. on a military base. that is guarded with guns. in japan."
needless to say she takes her traffic directing seriously.
and i have to admit that i kind of enjoy pissing her off and a watching her feathers get a bit ruffled.
so on most days, when i see isaak's teacher come out, and i can slip into the fast lane,
i'll do so.
and of course,
here comes the palm.
but since i'm kind of a ninja (being in japan and all)
i can sneakily drive right past her and not stop.
and that makes her REALLY MAD.
some days i'll even smile real big at her as i drive by.
and then on some days when she's breakdancing in the middle of the street
and she's telling me i can't go because no one else is going either and that makes perfect sense, right?
i still just go.
yesterday i went to pick up isaak from school and heavens to megatron,
I FORGOT MY KINDER PICKUP PASS.
i had taken it out of my car to give to my neighbor to borrow
when she was picking up isaak for me a few days before, and i had forgotten to put it back in the window.
well i get up to the spot to turn into the pickup lines and there she is.
as usual, i just ignored her and started to turn in.
and then the palm went up and the squinting began.
here it comes.
i roll down my window.
and in her best mrs. trunchbull voice she growls:
"THIS CIRCLE IS FOR KINDERGARTNERS ONLY!!"
"i know. i have a kindergartner."
"YOU DON'T HAVE A PASS!!"
at this point, cars are trying to come from the other direction and here i am, being blocked in the middle of the oncoming traffic lane, because yoohoo wants to be all club bouncer on me.
so to avoid causing more havoc than she has already caused, i just drive past her.
this makes her EXTRA angry.
someone has slipped past her security?!?!
so i circle around.
isaak's teacher walks him to my car.
and puts him in.
shuts the door.
i mean CLEARLY i have a kindergartner.
well before i can drive out the same way i came in,
here comes the angry beaver.
hands on her hips
here it is.
this is my moment to SHINE and be MEEK!
she gets up close to my car and begins to do this gang sign type thing with her hand and i realize she's trying to tell me to roll down my window.
i roll it down.
"THIS IS FOR KINDERGARTNERS ONLY!!"
"lady. i have a kinder pass. calm down."
"WELL I DON'T SEE IT!"
"because i forgot it today and…"
"I THINK YOU NEED TO STEP INTO MY OFFICE TOMORROW MORNING SO I CAN TALK TO YOU ABOUT THE SAFETY OF OUR CHILDREN!"
oh no she di'nt.
at this point i've begun to get hot and angry.
blotchy red face and neck.
hands are shaking.
adrenaline is pumping.
here it goes, 3, 2, 1…
"ok two things. number 1, i don't see how me forgetting my kinder pass ONE FREAKIN DAY is unsafe for the children of this school. you see me drive through this place every day. how do you not know that i belong?!? number 2, NO, i will NOT step into your office in the morning to discuss safety because I AM NOT A STUDENT!!!"
and then i drove off. dust in her face and all.
and in the rearview mirror i see her shaking her fist at me screaming,
"OH WE'LL SEE ABOUT THAT!! WE'LL SEE ABOUT THAT!!"
ten minutes later she calls austin at work.
because he is OBVIOUSLY my father and can put me in my place.
except he isn't.
and he can't stand the woman either so he just deletes her message.
but then i go home feeling like dookie the rest of the night because
I BLEW THE OPPORTUNITY I PRAYED FOR!!!
for the rest of the day, evening, bedtime, middle of the night bathroom trips, early morning, next day, etc., every time it would pop into my mind i'd get this sick feeling in my gut. i knew i had to make this right.
i HAD to prove that i can keep my cool.
as the hours inched closer to today's pickup time, i started to get really nervous.
i kept thinking of all of the scenarios that could possibly go down.
i somehow conjured up in my mind that when i got to the school, the principal wouldn't give me isaak unless i came into her office to talk to her. like he would be held hostage. i wasn't even at the school yet and i was already getting angry. i had to calm down.
i had to think of an alibi.
some reason i wouldn't be able to come in.
maybe i wouldn't wear shoes. i could say i forgot my shoes so i can't walk in.
i could just not wear pants.
that's even better.
i can't come into the school without pants on. no way.
or i could tell her i was late to pick up my older three kids.
which wasn't false.
i really would be late.
right before i was about to leave, i messaged my friends to ask for prayer warriors.
i needed as much help as i could get because i didn't trust myself in a heated situation.
not for a second.
and just for the record,
i despise the phrase "prayer warriors".
so of course i had to use.
i was able to get some good advice and you better believe i took it.
i got my boots out.
and rubbed them like a genie lamp.
but i didn't wear them.
i didn't think it would be appropriate to wear boots AND no pants.
and then after all that stressing and imagining outrageous things, and sweating and having anxiety attacks for days on end (okay maybe just one day),
i pull up to the school and turn into the pickup lane,
she completely forgot it even happened.
she gave me the usual palm, eye squint check, and then went on her way.
all that stressing for nothing.
or maybe it WAS the boots.
or maybe she realized she WAS in the wrong after all.
Heavenly Father decided i wasn't strong enough to be tested quite yet.
that's probably it.