Thursday, October 6, 2011

razor stubble and a contrite heart

Have you ever noticed how, the more intimate a relationship is, the more you are forced called to die to your own selfish desires? Of course, being a married woman, and a mother, I find this intensely true in my life, because those are all intimate relationships. Obviously, unmarried women, or those who are not mothers also find themselves in deep and meaningful relationships, and I would say the same still applies. The deeper the bond, the greater the potential to show our true selves...something that is not always pretty.

This week has been an intense one around our household. We are in the throws of doing a fairly major re-modeling of our main bathroom. We really only have this one 'full' bath; we also happen to have a shower stall in our basement laundry room, so we are currently showering there as this is the state of our bathtub right now. (You will see it is non-existent.)

The aforementioned shower stall is about 2 feet by 2 feet. Literally. Now, I don't mind small fact, I love them...but trying to shave my legs in such a tight little box...that I'm not so much a fan of. Plus, our former bathtub is barely worthy of being called a tub, in my bath-lover's opinion. This fact, accompanied by the falling-off-the-wall-tile surrounding it is what prompted the renovations.

Now, you must understand, my husband and I have very opposite personalities. He is a maintainer and tweaker. I am a starter. I love projects and something new all the time. He craves peace and order. We make for a very interesting say the least. I'm more of a flash-in-the-pan, let's do everything fast kind of gal, and he is more a slow-and-steady, get it right kind of guy. These dynamics make home improvements...intense...around here.

(I'm getting to my point, I promise!)

The past few weeks I've had a lot on my plate, as has my dear hubby. We've both been strung a little tight. But, being the 'pusher' that I am, I sort of couldn't let the bathroom thing I guess I was nagging a bit... about how long it would take. When he informed me he was figuring it was a 2-3 month project...well, let's suffice it to say, I had a meltdown. Without going into unnecessary (and incriminating) detail, I will confess that in a fit of spitefulness I leveled a decree that until the tub was in, I was NOT going to be shaving my legs. (There...take that!)

Now, I will add, that in reality, the shaving thing is a real issue. It's incredibly difficult for anyone who is a non-gymnast me to get my leg up to a place that is safely conducive to scraping my skin with a sharp blade. However, this was not the main reason for the declaration, punishment and retaliation was. And boy-oh-baby did I feel justified.

That was yesterday, and in the light of a new day, and a reminder that His mercies are new every morning, I felt regretful of my behavior. I felt compelled to, not only apologize to my husband, and confess my wrongness to the friends I had spewed my venom onto the day before...I also had to shave my legs. Not because I think God cares about stubble, but because He cares about my heart. I felt like I was being asked, would I be humble enough to do all the hard things...confession, apology and action. It may seem like a silly thing to you (as it did to my daughter when I relayed this story to her, since she had witnessed my spiteful outburst), but to me, it was a real heart struggle. As I stood in that stall thinking..."I am sorry I was nasty...but the stubble would still be a good 'motivator'..." I knew that I had no choice. To full uproot any ounce of manipulation of my husband or the situation, I had to go all the way. Tonight I will be going to bed with silky smooth legs...and a repentant and forgiven heart.