A Promise Fulfilled

It was my last semester of college. I began the term by getting rejected by a woman I’d wanted to ask out the prior year. There were circumstances that prevent me from asking her out sooner, so instead of getting rejected and simply moving on, my feelings had grown in a stilted, one-sided manner for six months. In short, I was infatuated.

When the rejection did come, it struck deeper than it should have, and in the melodramatic way emotions can work, it put my dream of having a family someday in doubt.

At the same time, I was uncertain about what I would do after college. I was aging into a new level of responsibility and freedom, but instead of excitement, I felt fear. Continue reading “A Promise Fulfilled”

Choosing Joy with OCD and Messy Children

I have O.C.D., so it’s an understatement to say that I value order and cleanliness. When I was in high school, my friends joked about being afraid to enter my bedroom because it was so clean. When I was in college, I negotiated for the neatest roommate I could get. I’ve spent the last several years as on automotive detailer because I’m so obsessive about cleaning. However, having kids doesn’t fit that personal disposition.

Most Christians have heard the story about what happened during one of Jesus’ visits to Mary and Martha. Martha was the responsible adult. Martha cooked and got the house presentable, while her sister, Mary, sat at Jesus’ feet and listened. Yet when Martha finally complained to Jesus about Mary ignoring the work to be done, she received this answer:

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her” (Luke 10:41-42).

I am Martha. I’m an objective-oriented person rather than a people-oriented person. I like results. I want to achieve the goal, and although I can achieve a lot as a lone wolf, I resent being taken advantage of and having to carry more than my share of the burden. Continue reading “Choosing Joy with OCD and Messy Children”

My Maturing Relationship with Vomit

My children vomit while riding in the car like it’s an Olympic event. This first occurred with my eldest child half an hour into a three hour trip. Rather than turn around, I stopped at the nearest Walmart, and my wife bought trash bags, a new car seat, and clothes. We stripped Lizzy down, put the contaminated clothes and car seat in a trash bag, and continued on.

I was furious. This was not part of the plan. Besides, I’m an automotive detailer specializing in abused vehicles, and our car was now an abused vehicle. In addition to the extra hundred and fifty dollars we paid and the malodor perfuming our car, I was going to spend part of my weekend detailing for free. Continue reading “My Maturing Relationship with Vomit”

The Fifteen Minutes I was a Stud

In high school, a girl I liked called me “Bird Legs.” I don’t think she meant it in a negative way; she probably said it with a degree of envy, though I wished she had seen me as more than a pair of legs, spindly or not. Still, this was typical for my life.

Around this same time, I was demolished by a girl, two years my junior, in a game of backyard football. I was running for the end zone and didn’t think twice about the neighbor girl a good foot smaller than me who was in my way. Then she flattened me. Not in a graceful manner either, but in a slow motion, gasp-inducing, struck dumb, and followed by hysterical laugher from my friends kind of manner. I clung to the fact that I hadn’t fumbled as if it was a life raft. Continue reading “The Fifteen Minutes I was a Stud”