People Pleasers...Reform, Honeys. Be Like Buttermilk & Tom

 This goat...I never understood people with their online cat videos until I met Buttermilk.
I just needed the right species to speak to my heart.
The other goats have grown weary of Buttermilk...they've lost the will to frolic...
and she does NOT give a crap:
 And oh, Tom.  How I want to be like you some days...with your red balloons and middle finger:
People pleasing is a crippling, paralyzing pursuit. Why do we bother? The worst part is that it is a moving target: there are so many darn people in the world, and they all need different things to be pleased. Just when you figure out what works with one person, you apply it with another, only to discover it falls flat - no, maybe even offends them.

Let's not look to anyone for a grade...except God...His grades are pretty gracious.
Also, don't keep jumping on a little black goat's back.  Yes, it's hilarious, Buttermilk, but don't get carried away.

depressed? burrow, but only with consent

where do you go when you're sad?

i like to weep right into the dog.
she's absorbent.
i want to say she's sympathetic, but that would be a lie.
in reality she just fixes a glazed stare over my shoulder and tolerates me.
it's all she can give,
but it's enough.

i just need more dogs,
specifically puppies.
i need a pile of them
and i need to be under it.

i don't think that's too much to ask.

imagine you just got fired...
pam, whaaaat?  that's horrible!

now imagine yourself underneath this:

doesn't matter anymore, does it?

don't like the pink puppy bellies against your face
(are you insane?  that's only the best part)
there's still an option for you:

problem solved.  just crawl under a belly-up pile.  you're never coming out.

don't make the mistake this girl made though:
sometimes we underestimate our needs,
resulting in inadequate coverage.

puppy piles work.
but sometimes it's hard to find one.
you know what IS easy to find:  a human.

this is a real life photo of Chris and me (i just took it with a high tech filter).
nothing dirty is happening here.
you can tell by his expression.

burrowing helps me,
when i'm sad,
when i'm cold,
when i suspect Chris is sitting on top of loose change.

try it...only with consent (that's just polite).
however, it's important to measure your partner before you make 
any long term commitments.
learn from our mistakes.
i mean, look what happened there.
significant exposure.

but, if you can get a burrowee that will just continue to read, 
let you burrow, and act like your pointy elbows aren't jabbing into his spine...
then even the slim partner can work.
believe it or not, not everyone is natually good at it.
that requires a certain type of personality and strength of character (and a little training).

In honor of Lou Reed, decease October 27, 2013

In honor of Lou...a Sweet Jane story:

On our honeymoon in Aruba, the resort had a karaoke night. It was awkward

and quiet, and no one much wanted to take a turn. A guy got up and did a
  hilarious version of Like a Virgin (it was all honeymooners, and it went over great)…

Then my new husband Chris got up and sang Sweet Jane.
I had never heard it.
Neither had anyone else evidently.
Awkward painful dying crickets.
So I got up to support him and sing with him,

because that's what married people have to do, right?
(Better or worse was really quick out of the start gate).
Afterwards, he said, "Dude. What'd you do that for? You totally messed me up.

I was killing it up there."
Killing it? Were you now?
"I don't care if those people love their lame music. Mine was the best one all night."

I remember thinking, "He's the coolest one here, and he is not embarrassed about anything,"
and also, "I am going to have a lot of awkward moments in the next 50 years,"
and also "where is the bar?"

Together! A Tale of Two Lego Movies

This is what I do now:
I escort each member of my family to see the same movie, but all at different times.
That's what people with too much time on their hands do.
A few weeks ago, I took Walker to see the Lego movie.  Today I took Courtney.  I guess next week I'll take my husband.  And once we enter April, just call me to arrange a time I can take each member of your family.

I'm not sure why we've handled it this way, but it has been an interesting sociology experiment and study of the genders.

Taking Courtney was easy.
I understood it.  It made sense.
Courtney and I do it the same.
We saw that movie together.
Her hand rested on my arm most of the time, because we were together.
We shared the popcorn.
We shared every joke.
Each time something funny happened in the movie, we'd gasp, turn to each other, look each other right in the eye with the expression, "Did you hear that?  I heard that!  Did you think that was funny?  I thought that was funny!  We heard that together!  We are laughing together! This is so much fun together together TOGETHER!"
And we did that on EVERY funny part...or creepy part...or any part with a Lego in about 1,000,000 times.
We went to Starbucks afterwards, and we didn't even talk about the need...we'd just LIVED that movie TOGETHER.  I knew what she thought about every part; she WANTED me to know as it was happening.

it mattered...

Taking Walker was like this:
"Mom, can I get an Icee?"
(10 minutes later)
"How's your Icee?"
(Later after 2 hours of riveted silence)
"Did you like the movie?"
"It was cool."

I haven't gone to see the Lego movie with my husband, but I know him well enough to guess how it would play out...(probably riveted silence and an Icee).

Chris may not be into seeing movies together, but he loves the idea of reading together.  If he's reading, he gets really happy if I come sit next to him and read also.  I know this because he has stated this, not because of any discernible clues while it's happening.  And if he "invites" me to read together, he's definitely initiating a "parallel" activity if you know what I mean.  I'm reading + he's reading = Reading Together.

I don't know what to call the activity I'm going for: perpendicular?  If perpendicular means me stabbing my chatty line into his straight quiet line, then yeah, I guess that's perpendicular.

Reading with Chris is like this:
Pam:  "Whatcha reading?  Is your book good?  My book is good...Look at us we're reading together....together...Look at my page - it's funny--is your page funny?  Our pages are funny togeth--whoops, no yours isn't funny.  Yours is historical.  That's okay.  Hey look, mine took place in the past 2003.  Look at us reading TOGETHER.  It's fun, right?"

(Turns the page).

As a woman, you almost wonder whether it matters with the guys.  But I think it does.  You just don't know until later.

(Three weeks after the movie with Walker).
Walker:  "Remember when Emmett fell down that tunnel and said, 'That wasn't so bad' and then he fell on the spikes!"
Pam:  "Yes!  I remember!"
Walker and Pam together:  Hahahahahahahahahahhahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhahaha!
He smiles.
I smile.

it mattered...

(Three weeks after reading with Chris).
Chris:  "Oh are you coming to read with me again?  I love when you read with me."
Pam (surprised)  "No shit?"
He smiles.
I smile.

it mattered...

swim team cartoon

swim team is hard when you're a Lyon kid, just hanging out with your abacus...and your parents' lame principles

Women's Knees & Brow-beating...basically everything you always wanted in one place

Walker Percy really enjoys looking at women's knees.
He talks a lot about round knees, tan knees, grabbable knees...he just enjoys a good knee.  They don't have to be skinny bony knees either, so no pressure, girls.  (But no capri pants or knickers please; skirts and shorts only).

When he takes a break from discussing knees, he says some pretty profound things, and since I have a blog, I will discuss them at my every whim.  
This is the latest that hit me:

Walker Percy, Love in the Ruins

I just like it.
It makes me think things.
It reinforces what I've learned over the years:  You can't always assume you know where someone stands, really on anything.

Well, obviously, Pam.
But we do it all the time.
We're always judging, measuring, trying to figure out someone's beliefs or faith.
And we usually have no way to do that without basing it on the external.  I know, I know, fruit shows what kind of tree you've got growing, etc.
However, I feel like we are all in progress....pretty much until death.  Let people wrestle through at their own pace.

Once in law school, I went on a retreat with the Christian Legal Society.  It was a small group, about 10 of us, and an older attorney (Old... maybe even 43) came to teach for the weekend.  We'd never met him.

The first night we met in a circle, and somehow the topic of abortion came up.  Everyone seemed to be on the same page, anti-abortion.  I didn't say anything.  I didn't have an opinion, because...well, I just didn't.  I guess I was just a boring white-bred suburban girl who was sheltered and had given it no real thought.  Maybe I'd been busy roller skating and poofing my bangs all my life (photographic evidence does back this theory).  And thank God my life had been so boring, I'd never had to think about it.

Anyway, I admitted my no-opinion to the circle.
A few minutes later, the "teacher" said something to the effect of "I was going to teach on the book of Luke this weekend, HOWEVER, I have decided to change gears.  I really feel led to spend the WHOLE weekend teaching on abortion and why it's wrong."  (Insert uncomfortable eye contact directed at the redhead).

You know me.
I am not controversial.  I prefer peace.
I don't mind getting attention for a snarky comment here and there in a group, but believe it or not, I do not love to be the focus of attention...especially if the situation has just turned into a Pam-Intervention.

For the rest of the weekend, we sat in that circle.  In theory, the man taught everyone, but mostly made eye contact with me.  I am a pleaser, so I returned eye contact and nodded a lot.  And that's not all.  The group went on bike rides and hikes, so I also had the benefit of him "falling back" to ride beside the Pro-choice Girl during the down times as well, to see how I was "processing" the teaching.

I had a knot in my stomach for about 72 hours.  I couldn't eat.  I got so thin.  It was like a forced fat camp.  It was awesome!

It was not awesome.

Guess what, by the end of the weekend, I DID agree with him.  Wow.  Mission accomlished.  Well done, sir.

...and it left the worst taste in my mouth ever.

I know he was doing what he thought was helpful, but y'all, if he had NOT taught on abortion that weekend, I really don't think I would have returned to school and gotten OR given an abortion the following week.  I had NEVER EVEN had sex.  Also, I owned zero medical instruments.  It was not an emergency situation, people.

And I'll be honest, whereas I dislike the idea of abortion now, everytime someone is super pro-life, I associate it with that weekend a bit.  And it sort of makes me want to play devil's advocate and argue the other side.  I don't even like having that feeling, I just do.

I just feel like with faith or issues like that, it's okay to give people space.  If you're a person who believes in God and that He is in control, shouldn't you feel even more free to trust Him and back off a bit?

But hey, that's just my opinion.  What do I know?
I know I have a blog, so I can say what I want.
Again, they're free.  You can have one too :)