I was privileged to spend last weekend with my husband, watching him get his baseball 'geek' on as we like to say. It was the 2012 Cubs Convention in Chicago. Nik has grown into a major league fan of baseball, and he prefers to spend leisure time learning more about the sport and its players. For me, baseball is definitely a pasttime, and a way to pass time while being with Nik. I accompanied him for an overnight getaway, and we talked nearly all the way to Chicago and back and much of the time while we were there, except while waiting in autograph lines. We both brought books along and spent time catching up on our leisure reading.
I finished a book called Grace for the Good Girl that was recommended to me by a friend at my local gym. I knew all the symptoms of being a good girl, and what it meant when living my life and interacting with others. The book brought me closer to understanding why I act this way. For those of you not familiar with good girl behaviour, it means that we good girls have some concept of never doing wrong, and never wronging others, often to our own demise. I'm working to let go and give the need to be good over to Christ. It seems simple when I read Emily's (the author) words and reflections and when I myself meditate on the quotes from scripture and other sources she's included. But years, and I mean years of of conditioning have brought me to this day, and the undoing is not as simple as that, it seems. I've spent years touting my ability to change, and on the surface I can readily change and put on the good girl face to show the world how accomplished I've been. Inside, it creates tension and drama as I fight with myself over the face I'm presenting while showing the world that all is 'fine' (another four letter 'f' word that I'd like to remove from my vocabulary). It tortures my soul.
This morning I sat down to begin my day as usual, with a daily reading from the Gospel that is sent to me by subscription email. The passage is familiar: Mark 2:18-22, and reflects on the danger of putting new wine into old wineskins. In order for my change to be complete, I need to purchase new wineskins for my soul that I am fostering into health. Along this journey and change, it will be so important to keep lines of communication open, and to eschew the use of the word 'fine'. if I'm asked, I need to be honest with others and honest with myself. I need to understand that it's OK that my soul is hurting and it's OK for others to know about it. I can invite others to listen and to help rather than being the good, independent girl I turned into over the course of my youth.