Once upon a time people were applauded for being experts at something. Or maybe they were simply in admirable, enviable positions. We looked up to those who seemed to have everything we wanted or who emulated everything we wanted to be. Those were the cool people.
Disillusion took place and, over the last few years, something has changed.
We’ve begun to celebrate the imperfect. It’s en vogue to ridicule Martha Stewart (even if we all secretly want to be her) and to flaunt our flaws. We call it “authenticity.” We delight in snarky accounts of mistakes or rotten circumstances. We want to be THAT family (the obnoxious ones in the grocery store) or the world’s worst missionary (the politically incorrect antithesis of expected standards). They’re the cool ones!
The new rules: whoever has the most shocking, least put-together story wins.
As a result, I am miserably, hopelessly uncool. I’m a far stretch from Mrs. Cleaver, but if dysfunction is cool, then I’m definitely not. (Childhood history excepted. Of course, back then, dysfunction wasn’t cool.)
Perhaps this is why I’ve not blogged consistently this month. I have nothing to complain about. With no terrible mishap to report, I have erroneously concluded that I have nothing to say. I lead a rather charmed life. I mean, yesterday I ate in the sunny corner of a lovely cafe. I had the most delicious crepes, a Chai Latte and an hour all to myself, just to read my Bible or people-watch down the village street. According to contemporary standards, that’s not raw and, therefore, not cool.
Earlier this week Mary DeMuth posted ten reasons why she’s not cool. Here are mine.
- I’m a natural blonde. Everyone loves to hate blondes.
- I’m rich. We don’t have a pool filled with gold coins or a place in Cabo where we retreat on weekends. It’s nothing like that, but we have all that we need and just enough to share with those in need. That makes me rich.
- I’m comfortable. I am currently lounging before a crackling fire in our big, beautiful house while my two miracle children dutifully complete their homework.
- I can zip my wedding dress all the way up — thirteen years after we got married. It took me six years to lose all weight gained during back-to-back pregnancies, but we’ll just forget about that part. The dress fits. The End.
- I love my husband and will never tire of telling you how great he is. Oh, we have our moments, but I don’t play The Husband Bashing Game. My man works hard. He puts up with me, my many quirks, my unfair expectations and emotional mood swings. As a result, only very closest bosom buddies (of which there are maybe two or three — you know who you are!) will ever hear me complain about him. I am blessed and I know it full well.
- I get to stay home … and I like it! Sure, I have aspirations that extend far beyond the walls of our home, but I absolutely love being a mother and a homemaker. Yes, there are days that I get cabin fever and my kids add a few too many wrinkles to my growing collection, but I am extremely fortunate that our ability and desires enable me to stay home. Even more: I am able to pursue those far-reaching aspirations from right here.
- I am often mistaken for a teenager. My only complaint here is that I, at age thirty-five, am still consistently carded. None of my friends think this is cool.
- I have the best mother-in-law in the world. I’m not kidding. She’s the BEST. I know no one else who can boast a mother-in-law who will drive two hours just to scrub their floors or do their laundry for them. I know no one else whose mother-in-law consistently encourages them, prays for them, thanks God for them, applauds them, brags about them … The more I share this, the more haters I receive. I’m okay with that.
- I’m not afraid to use taboo words like “submission.” This point is terribly uncool. I’ve even had friends walk out on me because of it.
- I aspire to less rather than more. Occasionally I’ll fall into the materialistic trap of typical American suburbs, but more often than not, I seek to have fewer activities, fewer hobbies, fewer additives, fewer meetings, less stuff, less drama … I crave simplicity. This is definitely not the norm in Jersey.