I’m just going to start categorizing my complaints this way, so that they cease to be complaints.
In the beginning of January, before the Chateau D’If night, which has now become synonymous with my mystical liberation from the sadness, depression, and hopelessness of Old Becka, my best friend told me this (after a prolonged whining sesh on my part):
Best Friend: Becka, is there anything you can think of that you would want God to do about this RIGHT NOW?!”
Me: Well, I would want Him to not put me in this position.
Best Friend: Well, that is not an option, Becka. I’m talking right now. In the present.
Me: ~considers a second, and then, with an air of resignation~ No, I guess not.
Best Friend: Then, you’re just going to have put on your Big Girl Panties and wait this out.
It’s pretty simple, and probably really elementary, but I think that may be some of the best, most profound advice my bestie boo has ever given me. And it lives on now in the hashtag, which has found itself employed in various emails, text messages, tweets, and face to face conversations.
The phrase “Put on your Big Girl Panties” is not meant to be some cliche clause urging one to obligatorily raise the white flag of surrender, however. It’s actually become a type of empowerment. I can acknowledge a circumstance is less than ideal, but I can also acknowledge that I have the power and choice to make the more sophisticated and mature decision. I suppose it evokes a lot of the same feelings you have when you suddenly graduate to the “big kids” table for Thanksgiving Dinner. You know you’ve arrived.
Recently, I’ve needed to put the Big Girl panties on for my college class. I mean, I don’t literally go teach a composition course in some oversized pair of Granny Panties, but I do in my mind. Yes, I spend every day after school grading college work. Yes, I spend every Sunday after church grading, planning, emailing, and more grading. Yes, I wake up every Saturday morning to at least two frantic emails. Yes, I get about 5 hours of sleep a night because I work about 14 hours every weekday.
Yes, I’m stressed, and I could be angry, panicky, awfulizing Old Becka. Or, I could put on my Big Girl Panties and realize this second job teaching college composition was my choice, even if I didn’t realize how much work it was going to be in addition to teaching high school and advising three activities on campus.
I could choose to believe that, while it tempts me to revert back to all the meltdowns from working full time and doing grad school, it also gives me an opportunity to experience all of that again, but this time with success and victory. It’s like a second chance. That’s God’s grace, not His punishment.
I could determine to see this as an opportunity to get a feel for what teaching college full time will be like. After all, that’s on my Absurdly Hopeful Dream List.
And, perhaps the most motivating, I can be thankful for the financial progress it is bringing me. For the first time in a long time, I’m not stressing about money. Even better, I’m going to Cancun for 8 days in July with my besties to celebrate the year of our collective 30th birthdays. It’s already paid for. And, I’m going to be able to pay for a brand new Macbook in a few weeks to replace my vintage, white, 2007 one.
All that to say, those Big Girl Panties are feeling more and more comfortable each time I put them on. They’re even spawning some new categories. #Cancun #DirtyThirty #Macbook