It all started with a phone call. “Hey son … why don’t you let the kids stay at our house tonight?!” My mom says on a normal Saturday afternoon.
Now … I’m confident of 2 things … 1.) We set a world record for packing up and driving kids to a location … and 2.) We looked like Forrest Gump running full speed to the car after dropping the 3 Indians off at Grammy’s casa.
We decided on a simple date night … dinner and a movie. Velvet Taco is an amazing new place in the Domain that we’d been wanting to try so we started there (shrimp & grits taco is da bomb). After dinner we had a couple hours to burn so we decided to bar hop a bit on Rock Rose St.
“2 double Deep Eddy Lemons on the rocks” please Mr. Bartender … this is where the regrets started … one led to another … and then another at a different bar … before we knew it … we not only missed the movie … we were at our 4th bar having the time of our lives. Spring Break 2017!!!! Oh wait … its April … and we are not in Cancun. Just a couple of middle- aged parents with a babysitter for the night … makes sense right?
We are the worst dancers you’ve ever seen in your entire life … think Napolean Dynamite … but get a couple drinks in us and we are ready for the boom boom room. So we head to the Rose Room … it’s a Vegas style dance club with glow sticks … smoke machines … and people half our age (not sure if glow sticks & smoke are just in my mind but….). Trendy Hayley fits right in but then there’s me … rocking the gray hair complete with dad jeans and one of the only “going out shirts” I own. This is where both our memories end.
Sunday morning my eyes open. I’m laying completely naked (sorry for that visual) on top of hotel sheets … what hotel? I have no idea. I stand up and try to locate my undies … apparently we went thru the Bermuda Triangle the night before and they disappeared. Mama bear begins to emerge from her slumber … “where are we?” … good question babe. Have you seen my underwear? They never surfaced.
She checks her phone … and is greeted with a text from somewhere around midnight… it’s one of our ghetto dancer friends Arlo … “where y’all at?” Did we give Arlo my number last night she asks? Um … lil fuzzy still but I think I remember giving it to him when he followed us out of the boom boom room. I knew I shouldn’t have been using my best dance moves … they attract the gangstaz. Rookie mistake.
We get dressed and go to the elevator … it opens and a nicely dressed older gentleman is inside … I have jeans on, no undies, no credit card, and a shirt that won’t button … Hayley’s outfit looks like she just escaped from a prisoner of war camp … complete with sunglasses covering her cry eyes from when the morning-after reality hit, and she came to the conclusion that she needed to re-evaluate her entire life. Well y’all look like you had a good night” says the Dapper Don. “Yeah something like that” we respond. Now to find the truck … I’m not sure where it is but I think it ran us over last night … at least I feel like I was hit by something large at full speed.
Vehicle located and we jump in … we are late for the kiddo drop. My mom is late too so it’s all good … she walks in our house to us both puking in separate toilets. “Wow … fun night eh?!” She says. “Something like that ma … we woke up not knowing where we were … I have no underwear and Hayley has a text from a ghetto guy.” <Insert concerned mom eyes>.
Mom makes a Starbucks run for us and we begin counting down the minutes until nap time. One thing is in our favor … after nap time we have a sitter coming over for the rest of the afternoon. Pure geniuses we are. Just when we thought we hit rock bottom we go and Totally Redeem ourselves.
After naps we go to Hayley’s parents house to catch up on Homeland. We end up sitting outside telling our stories. They are partially amused, but mostly nervous laughing. Then my mother-in -law says “oh well I was wondering what that picture on Facebook was about with you and that girl … Nason.” She shows me a photo of me and a girl we grew up with Tisha. I don’t remember taking it … but it’s a typical selfie in a club … you know … the one you get tagged in and no one from church “likes” it … only old high school people like it and NO ONE understands it. Yup … that’s the one. It was an innocent pic with an old friend but I’m sure made some people also question our life in general.
We go on thinking and can only recall these things:
1.) We went out for dinner and a movie but …
2.) We didn’t know where we were when we woke up. Later found out it was The Archer.
3.) I have no underwear.
4.) Credit card is gone.
5.) Mah selfie.
6.) Mama fell down some stairs in a club.
7.) Mama has text from a ghetto superstar.
8.) Mama was denied entry into a bar from being too intoxicated. A ruling that was overturned after some discussion with Mr Professional Bouncer Guy.
9.) We both were throwing up when my mom dropped off the kids.
We were actually torn about sharing this story … it’d be different if we were 21yrs old but being 37yr old parents of 3 changes things. But then we decided it is our real life. We realize that it isn’t real life for every person out there but it happened to us. We aren’t proud of it and the point of sharing it is that we all have things we aren’t proud of in our lives. No one is perfect. We look thru social media and envy other people’s photos, family, vacations, houses, cars, etc. and the truth is …. they aren’t perfect and it’s not real. My cousin Amanda posted a stat the other day that said people who have social media have 20% more stress in their lives than people who don’t participate. Think about that. The world is missing real people sharing their real stories and that’s a shame. I wish everyone would take their freaking masks off and be raw. Be their real selves regardless of what other people think and what other people expect them to be … I wish we would all act the same regardless of who we are around.
Our kids are greatly influenced by this as well. Have you watched “13 Reasons Why”? It’s about suicide. Kids seem normal on the outside … like they have it all together … and then one day they kill themselves. I realize that’s an extreme example but there are many other examples out there about kids trying to be someone they are not and the pressure that comes with it. Especially in church. I was one of those kids … acting one way at church and living another way the rest of the time … until age 13(ish). I decided I was going to be myself. People can carry the weight of their opinions & expectations of me on their shoulders but I’m not carrying it. I’m me & this is my life. You can like me or not …. I don’t really care. I hope my kids are the same way when they grow up. I hope they are real, raw and unapologetic for who they are to this world. And I hope yours are too. What a refreshing world that would be.
Post a pic of your messy ass hair and your acne … or your love handles and imperfect body. Write about the time you messed up and what you learned. Tell your embarrassing stories and laugh at yourself. Quit comparing yourself and your life to other people’s facade … it’s not real … be freaking real for crying out loud!
The thing I don’t mean in all of this is to be arrogant or to live out your sinful desires or whatever feels right to you … or to only rely on yourself. Left on our own … we are a selfish shit show. The Bible says … no one seeks after God … not even one person. We all fall short on our own and this post is a great example of 2 people falling (in more ways than one) … short. This is the whole reason for Easter. Christ came so that we can be forgiven for all the times we mess up … so that we can live lightly and freely. There is a historical figure that lived on this earth … he died for you and claims to have come back to life after he died. That’s some crazy claims right there … but if it is true … it changes everything. It allows you to be real … to have struggles … to be imperfect. It takes the pressure off you to be perfect because He is perfect for you. All the religions of the world tell you what you need to do to be a better person and what you need to do to get to God. The Bible says that there’s nothing you can do (that’s refreshing) … it says you can’t do it on your own … It’s about what God did for you.
“But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
God doesn’t wait for you to get your act together … he meets you where you are , as you are … while you are STILL in sin … he loves you and died for you. Think about that.
So … somebody reading this … please … start being real. The secret is out … we are all seriously screwed up :)! Join the club.
***Side note – the Bible says that we should not use the forgiveness offered thru Christ as a free ticket to continue sinning. We realize this and we believe this to be true. We are not saying that the night we experienced is good. We are saying that it happened. We fell short and we have changes to make in our lives to be better representatives of Christ. The point of this post is to say it is ok to admit you are struggling or that you made a bad choice or that you don’t have it all together. Take it to God. Admit it. Be real. Don’t fake it. Ask for forgiveness. Be free and move forward … and teach your kids to do the same.