And no fudruckin signal on my cell phone on the back porch. Double fudruckin fudruckis! It’s a good thing too, because I had a moment to collect myself before my daughter learned any more colorful language she hasn’t already heard from her grandmother, and to try to figure out if any of the windows in the house were unlocked. Oh sure – there were 2. On the second floor. I looked up there momentarily, contemplating the possibility of climbing up there and getting inside the house without either getting arrested or plunging to my death in front of my 7 year old. Then I walked out to the driveway and stood next to the car I had no keys for, and dialed her father to come and get her so she wouldn’t be late for school. And then I called my mom, the only other person I know, besides Todd who is 2 hours away and five minutes from starting his class, who has a key to my house.
This morning I got up thinking about running. Not that that’s anything new, I mean, I wake up everymorning thinking about running. Except this morning I looked out the window, saw rain, and thought, whew! Raining again! I guess that means no run for me! Otherwise, I wake up every morning just counting the minutes until I can go running. Not.
My motivation sucks. It sucks so bad, I am seriously going to fire it. I mean, many CEOs have been fired for not getting the job done. And Motivation is the CEO of my body. And he is definitely NOT getting the job done. If Motivation was flying a plane, this plane would be on cruise control forever, until it ran out of gas and fell out of the sky. If Motivation was a surgeon, the patient would bleed out long before the first Vicryl suture.
So while I paced around this morning waiting for the kids to be ready for school, I heard this little voice inside of me saying, you really should. You really need to. You’ll feel better. And then I said to myself, BUT. But I really have to do x, y, z and the forecast says it might drizzle more throughout the day, and … I can do it tomorrow. And the other voice was like a broken record – should…..should…. should…. And I was really glad that this little argument was taking place inside my head, rather than outside it – because that would make me a little crazy, right? Plus, I wouldn’t want Ava picking up any more bad habits from me, like the cuticle biting thing, because she already talks to herself in her room but I think that’s normal since she’s holding her Barbies while she’s doing it and I’m pretty sure it’s THEM that are doing the talking anyway.
So anyway, while she went upstairs to brush her teeth after breakfast, I sat on the steps waiting for her and picked up my phone to check emails. There was my daily spiritual email. Today’s title was, “Passing the Small Tests.” Essentially the main body of the message was that the voice you hear inside you, the one saying “I should,” or “I know,” is actually not schizophrenia but GOD himself talking to you. The message says that “The ‘I knows’ are God talking to you. Don’t ignore it.” Unless, of course, the voice is telling you to invite 100 people over for a Bar-B-Que and serve them Kool-Aid.
The reason to listen to that voice inside is that if we don’t pass the small tests, it will keep us from the greater things He has in store for us. Don’t put off what you know you should be doing. The actual scripture read, “If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is a sin for them” (James 4:17). Well if THAT doesn’t strike a fearful chord in one’s bowels…
And my mind suddenly darted back to one of the movies we were watching on Sunday – Bruce Almighty – but it wasn’t actually Bruce Almighty because I had mixed it up with the other Jim Carrey movie that followed it, Yes Man – where his character, who was always saying no until someone promised him a better life if he practiced saying yes to everything that came his way, learned the hard way not to ignore what he should be doing. His character essentially suffered a series of mishaps, including falling down a flight of concrete steps, because he turned down his elderly neighbor’s offer to give him “some release.” I won’t digress into where the story went from there, because it was tough enough to swallow (seriously, no pun intended) just watching it. BUT, suffice it to say, I took heed to the compounding signs this morning.
I threw on my running clothes and decided to ignore the pessimistic little bastard inside my head going, but … but… my schoolwork… out of shape… rain… And Ava came downstairs ready to go and we gathered our things and… I turned the lock on the doorknob and pulled the door shut. And THEN wondered where my keys were. The. Keys. To. The. House. And. The. Car. Oh holy mother of all curse words known to man. And Ava, asking me if I needed something pointy to pick the lock. Where does this kid get this stuff?
At least I had my coffee and a huge water bottle to keep me occupied while I waited, and the cat, who moved from window to window inside the house like the changing of the guard. Watching. Taunting. Sitting on my cutting board, which he knows is forbidden, and peering through the kitchen door at me. And never once losing that WTF-did-you-do expression on his face.
Well, after all that – I was feeling a little less sure of that little voice inside me. It was obviously f*$#%g with me, just to see how serious I was about taking it seriously. Or, maybe, because I did take it seriously, I was rewarded with something better today – an unexpected hour with my mom.
So the next time you lock yourself out of your house BEFORE you drive your kid to school – or whatever it is you were about to do when you locked yourself out of the house – remember that God has something better in store for you. Like Xanax. And margaritas.