Cheer Up, Sleepy Jean.

Sometimes, all you need is a burrito and an attitude adjustment.

I have the look. Not the look that gets the touch. I have the look of a person that incites the quirkiest of odd ducks to make beelines right to me. I pretty much have a figurative neon sign on my forehead that reads: “Are you a social outcast? Down on your luck? Just plain weird? Sign up over here.”

Most days, I love this sign. It’s inherited — it belongs to my mother, and to my mother’s mother. The lessons I’ve learned from it, namely that outsiders are the ones worth getting to know, have served me well. I’m a profound believer in rooting for the underdog. Dream big.

That said, I’m taking a break.

Spread the word to all the clingy students, too-chatty cashiers, and crybabies: I am super strict and intimidating. I am the least tolerant person this side of the I-17. Don’t come near me; I WILL judge you. I will not give you a second (third, fourth, OR fifth) chance. I will brush you off my icy cold shoulder while handing you the pink slip. I will. Watch me.

“I wish I were a girl again… laughing at injuries, not maddening under them.”  Cathy says that in Wuthering Heights right before she kicks the bucket. Well Cathy, you’s a dumb broad. You never left your two-house neighborhood, and you died because you let life’s drama overwhelm you. I liked you better in the beginning, when you were a snot-nosed jerk running amuck on the moors. You had spunk. What happened?

Rewind to last week. After realizing seven months into the school year that “Ms.” indicates that a woman is not necessarily married, I was approached, mid-Gatsby, with a charming question. “Do you know where the father is?”

I laughed. A year ago, I would’ve internalized. But nowadays, I’m a bad mama jama. Sure, inside, it felt like one of my ribs fell out. But I know now that that one’s just a little loose. I know how to put it back in without skipping a beat; I’ve had practice.

“Nope,” I shrugged. “It’s so hard to keep track of that sort of thing.” It’s fun to watch jaws drop.

I’m awesome. I’m smart and (don’t tell anyone) kind, and I’m done trying to relandscape for the sake of appearances. I’m tired of being sensitive. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

It’s probably the weather that has had my head so muddled up. The hots and colds are reminiscent of a low-quality Katy Perry remix, and I’ve found myself on two occasions now having to head back upstairs for an outfit change. I was particularly stubborn about the skirt — but alas, after giving the neighborhood a free show, I’ll admit that the wind bested me. No worries, I’ve found clarity in the knowledge that come two more weeks, it’ll just be uncomfortably warm, and then at least I’ll know what to expect.

I wonder if God ever gets tired of polishing the same piece of coal. If he ever looks down and says, “Really, Heather? You’re on the couch, eating cereal for dinner again? I designed you for so much more than that. Get a hold of your life.”

Other times, I feel like he’s ok with the breaks I cut myself — like foregoing the organic produce in lieu of affording new work clothes, going to bed at 8:30pm just because I can, and letting Carter go to Sunday school without shoes.

Ok, maybe not the last one. But I think he knows that we’re doing the best we can, and I think he’s rooting for the underdog, too. But I’m not the underdog. I’m Mike Tyson. I’m Gabby Douglas. I’m Tom Brady. I’m Heather Lynne. I’d bet on me.

4 thoughts on “Cheer Up, Sleepy Jean.”

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