All day long, I’ve been waffling back & forth about something so simple yet seemingly monumental. (It all depends on your perspective, really.) As the Supreme Court sifts through both sides’ arguments regarding marriage equality, I’ve seen this symbol popping up on people’s Facebook profiles:
It is a way of showing solidarity for those seeking equality. But instead of simply changing mine without comment, I felt it more important to write and explain, because I know there are some in my circles who simply won’t understand and who may, in fact, decide that our difference in opinion is enough to cause a rift or even sever our relationship. That risk is a scary one on some fronts but others: not so much. (You can decide which camp you fall into in my book and I’ll leave it at that.)
One of the biggest struggles in this year of focusing on my “fit” has been finding a church home. I didn’t grow up in the church and therefore many of the traditions & vestiges therein don’t resonate with me. But I don’t struggle with what I believe because that is just what it is – MY belief. My faith is important to me and what is equal in importance and tandem to that is my love for and service to others. I’m not interested in being part of a church that gets a story in the local paper because of the elaborate cakes it had out on Easter; I am interested in being a part of a community that LOVES and DOES because what I am held to is the great commandment in Mark 12:28-31:
One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
It’s right there, in the red letters: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
And there are people in my life for whom this is a very important issue. And because I love them, I want that which will make them happy, that which will make their lives easier and that which will make them a part, instead of apart.
I was sad to learn that TLC’s What Not to Wear is going off the air soon. Besides my great love of Clinton Kelly & Stacy London, I also secretly harbored hope that someday, some “friend” would nominate me. Because, really, after you get past the horror of being told you are a crappy dresser on national tv, you get $5000 to create a whole new wardrobe with the help of two savvy, snarky, lovely folks. How can you beat that? I’ve learned (though not always applied) so much from the show over the years about patterns and colors and styles and, most of all, about fit. For instance, about the tendency for people to try to hide their flaws but wearing their clothing too big, which ends up drawing attention to rather than away from the area. It’s all about clothing that fits, and sometimes that may mean getting a piece tailored to make it fit your figure better.
You may remember that I am all about “fit” in 2013 and it got me thinking. When I first made my big move, I spent a lot of time trying to figure out how I was going to fit in: what I could do, what I should do, how I would meet people and make friends. I tried a lot of different things…and am still trying a lot of different things. I described it to someone today as “throwing things against the wall to see what sticks.” An odd metaphor but a metaphor just the same. And lately, I haven’t been feeling like much is sticking. I’ve found myself trying to gracefully bow out or take a break from some of the things I thought were going to be the perfect fit for me, the “answer”, if you will..because they just don’t feel right or I just don’t feel like it. To a degree, some of those feelings may come because I’m disappointed in things not turning out as I had expected; some may be simply because I’m struggling with a touch of seasonal affective disorder brought on by The Winter That Will Never, Ever (Ever, Ever) End. Some may be just poor timing. But others may simply be an issue of fit. And just like on What Not to Wear, I have to try things on. I have to look at myself in the 360 mirror, get rid of the old, worn stuff and pick out some new, more flattering things.