Monday, November 11, 2013

4 Reasons Why Introverts Don't Want To Go To your "Team Building" Seminar and 7 Ways You Can Possibly Manipulate Us Into Going

1.  As a true blooded introvert, forced socialization is draining.  Now multiply that by thrusting me into a contrived scenario, purely for the sake of  drawing me out of my "shell," breaking down my "walls" and bonding my inner child to yours; I will find the experience excruciating.

Believe me, this personality trait makes being a believer in Jesus very, super duper hard, because the whole foundation of my faith rests on the nonnegotiable fact that I am called to be a servant to others, that God works through me and that absolutely involves interacting with people. And Lord as my witness, merely attending corporate church services is a mighty act of courage and ginormous leap of faith for me-- to which I'm positive God awards me extra heaps of brownie points for participating (I kid).

2.  I don't want to be caught dead in a situation that is embarrassing or makes me feel uncomfortable or awkward. And who does, really? But the nature of  these group gatherings are notorious for doing just that. Most introverts don't wear their hearts on their sleeves and small talk rates the same on our fun-list as sanding our teeth on a rock. Unfortunately, these "Team Builders" usually necessitate exercising both criteria to be deemed "successful." And to many of my emotionally extroverted peeps, getting someone to cry is the holy freaking grail.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

10 Reasons Why Moms Should Do ALL The Laundry

A really smart blogger mom-friend of mine once posted on the Facebook, "If you have a kid who is old enough to operate a tablet/video game/smart phone and you are still doing their laundry for them, you're doing this parent thing wrong." 

Humph!  I thought. After 21 years of parenting, I suppose I'll never have this mom-thing figured out.

But, as I was tenderly bleaching my son's socks yesterday, it finally came to me. And you know what, my highly respected mom-diva friend, washing my kid's laundry actually makes me an even more better parent-and wife! 

(And by "more-better," I mean, better than "less-gooder.")

Here's why:

Friday, October 25, 2013

Conquering The Dread Gremlins

Oh, they are real, let me tell you!  If I don't hit that pillow dead-dog-tired and I allow myself one iota of contemplative reflection, those little demons rise up from under my bed and plunge their claws of damnation right into my soul.

It happened again last night. I knew better than to read that article before bed! *Face-palm.* The snarly sadistic voices went into a rage, this time lambasting me for throwing my kids into the lions-den of public schoolery only to have them brainwashed by our government into narcissistic, co-dependent little communist trolls. WHAT HAVE I DONE, what am I doing??!!

Then I caught myself. 

Lisa, BE NICE! Stop talking like that. Wait for the morning, it'll be OK. It took about an hour of convincing myself to step away from the ledge before I fell asleep, concluding yet another episode of what I call the "Night Dreads."

You see, during the day, I'm a pretty optimistic and reasonable person. I usually make informed, prayerful decisions concerning my personal life and family. Though I tend to fly by the seat of my pants, I trust my gut, lean towards logic, follow the golden rule and try not to sweat the small stuff. I think I have pretty great coping skills and I'm generally even-tempered. But at night, when the gremlins creep in, I transform into a confused, irrational, self-loathing crybaby.

When I start to hear their sneering accusations, I become instantly rigid. My gut balls up, a slight sweat breaks out and my heart begins to race. My mind starts flashing scenes from everything I'd screwed up in the last 24 hours. In those moments, anything can be challenged-- my beliefs, my convictions, I become utterly hornswoggled that all my major life decisions were wrong-Wrong-WRONG!

The gremlins stand over my bed tormenting me, whispering that all my kids are going to rebel and reject everything we ever taught them. They predict that one day our house will burn down and that I'll probably get murdered in my sleep. I start believing no one will ever buy or sell another house through me, that ship has sailed, sister!  I need to start applying for a REAL job...but nobody's gonna hire me. And by-the-way, my silly dreams and trifle hobbies are pointless, I'm wasting my life. The gremlins remind me how unorganized, inconsistent, uncultured, uneducated, mediocre, not-enough and emotionally incapable I am of sharing my deepest, truest self with anyone, it's no wonder I have no friends. I don't even have my own 401K and Oh my Gawd, I haven't hugged my middle child in over a week! And guess what else, Lisa, YOU forgot to pay the sewer bill and we're probably not going to have running water in the morning. Not to mention, Armageddon is upon us and we are SO. Unprepared.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

"Regret" Is Not A Dirty Word

Word studies. I have been doing a few of  them lately because there is such rampant embracing and regurgitation of  totally ignorant and socially accepted sentiments running a muck in social media. I keep coming across these picture memes and quotables that I imagine were generated by entitled, hormonal, co-dependant teens or college kids who've never encountered a dictionary. What really blows my mind though, is how the social masses lap up these trite little proverbs as "truth."  Seems like everyone is drinking the koolaid so I realize challenging popular word-sentiments could incite an onslaught of hater feedback but this needs to be done, people. Words are powerful and vocabulary sometimes has to be rescued from our abuse and lackadaisical tossing it about. So the first word I'd like to unpack is none other than, REGRET.  


  [ri-gret] verb, re·gret·ted, re·gret·ting, noun
verb (used with object)
to feel sorrow or remorse for (an act, fault, disappointment, etc.): He no sooner spoke than he regretted it.
to think of with a sense of loss: to regret one's vanished youth.
a sense of loss, disappointment, dissatisfaction, etc.
  a feeling of sorrow or remorse for a fault, act, loss, disappointment, etc.

Notice, self-hate, self pity, feeling shame, condemnation or a belief I am less-than is not in this definition?!  So, what exactly, is so wrong about feeling sorrow or remorseful for something we've done? Has humanity degenerated so much that it's considered demeaning to feel disappointed in ourselves?  I've heard it said "never regret" because the choices we've made are what "make us into the person we are." Well, aren't sorrow, disappointment, remorse, admitting fault the very convictions that spurn us to do and behave better, to learn and grow from our actions, which in turn "make us who we are"? I thought life lessons were a good thing.

To illustrate my frustration, I've put a few of these picture memes into personal context. (I hope you'll still respect me after I've exposed myself.)

  • I'll never regret throwing that puppy down a flight of stairs, over and over again, because at one time it was exactly what I wanted. What 6yo wouldn't think that was hilarious?
  • I'll never regret that time I stole swimsuits from a department store after drinking that classy Boones Farm Strawberry Hill, getting strip-searched, handcuffed, arrested and fined because at one time it was exactly what I wanted. I did my time in the slammer, why do you think I'm so hard, durr.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Faith and Angst

and why I need my Crutches.

I've spent the last week flopping around in a torrent of emotion. I know, weird, right?  I think my eyes even got watery at one point last Tuesday.  It's really boiled down to a matter of where my heart and my head have been, colliding. Or maybe it is just hormones as usual, but as I slog through some unfamiliar feelings cluttering my judgement, I hold fast to this, Christ is in me. He is the only thing holy about Lisa Frey. The rest of me is a sanctified mess. Sometimes it's like I'm on the edge of  a cliff and the only thing between me and certain free-fall is this chain of commitment to God and Family tethered around my neck. I'm either gonna hang myself with it or it's going to save my life.

Now, I'm all about introspection and self-improvement but I snarked at author, Donald Miller's, challenge to his subscribers the other day to confess their three biggest faults on Facebook. Being the proud person I am, I'm pretty sure my first thought, Hell no!, was audible.  Although, I have noticed some sketchy things materialize in myself lately that, I suppose, have been dormant for years. The challenge gnawed at me. I tossed and turned all night and decided, why not? You want people to know the authentic Lisa, right? Yeah, okay, well here are four...

Like I said, I'm prideful.

I hate being embarrassed.  My fear of it is physically crippling and I will avoid humiliation at all costs, even if that means missing opportunities or feeling regret over never attempting something.  I mean, I can laugh at myself with the rest of you... right? Is it not entertaining enough that I fall down and spill stuff, daily? I know my absence of rhythm and coordination are hilarious. I've even learned to own my pigeon toes. But what I lack in physical grace, I make up for in self dignity. I think I was born with some blue DNA though, because I crave respect more than a desire to be liked and I've developed this all-sufficient attitude that inhibits me from submitting to anyone or thing.  I'm not going  to burden anybody with my complaints or needs. I keep my walls high and expectations of people low to avoid disappointment.  And sometimes, *gasp* I might only do the right thing because I just don't want to have to apologize later.

I want what I want.

And I'm not even talking about material things. Sometimes I feel more obligated to my commitments than a desire to be committed. There are days I get claustrophobic by my own life-choices despite that I have everything a girl could ask for, I still find myself daydreaming  over what I can't have, even envious over those who seem content with much less. Discontentment. Or is it, restlessness?  I've been 29 years old for a decade now, maybe it's the onset of mid-life crisis... I'm seriously considering a career change or taking up some adrenaline infused hobby... Anyway, I've made my bed, but there are nights I just don't wanna lay in it. Yeah, yeah, Somebody call the whaaambulance.