Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Bold (emotionally) (08/30/07)
By Patty Wysong
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“That man drives me crazy! I swear he’s the most inconsiderate person on the face of the earth. I’m sick to death having to follow along behind him, picking up his dirty clothes when he walks in the door after work.” Brenda took a deep breath, ready to continue her tirade, but Jill handed her a cookie.
Now, normally I keep my opinions to myself, but I must’ve had one too many Mountain Dews or something, because I was feeling mighty bold.
“I’m so thankful for my husband. Quite often he’s the one who empties our hamper. He’s great about helping out around the house.” I smiled at Jill, but when I turned to smile at Brenda I wondered what I’d done to make her scowl so. All I was trying to do was flip that husband bashing snake out from under our feet.
“It must be nice being married to Mr. Wonderful,” she said.
“Oh, believe me, he’s not perfect. There’s a million little things about him that would drive me bonkers if I let them, but I’ve decided to ignore those things and focus on the good instead.” I said. I gave that snake another tug.
“Are you sure your name’s Tess and not Rebecca?” Brenda looked down her nose at me.
“Huh?” I’m not the smartest egg in the basket and she’d completely lost me with that one.
“You know, Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm?” I must’ve still had a lost look on my face because she spelled it out in a way I finally understood. “Miss Goody Two Shoes Tess.”
I was floored. Had I been transported back to fifth grade without knowing it? That ol' snake struck at me and I hadn't even seen it coming.
Brenda glared at me. “When did you become too good for the rest of us?” She stood and walked over to the others who were watching the Annual Sunday School Washer Tournament.
I sat there in shock until Jill handed me a cookie. It was chocolate chip, my favorite.
“Jill, I’m sorry if I offended you. I've just been really convicted about husband bashing so I wanted to stop it before it got started, again. I thought if I pointed out something good about my husband it'd get her to think of something good about hers. I didn't mean to come across as high and mighty or to offend anyone.”
“Oh, you didn't offend me; in fact, I'm glad you spoke up, Tess. I've hated the husband bashing, but I've not had the guts to say anything.” Jill smiled and took a sip of lemonade.
A few minutes later some of the other ladies joined us.
“Wow, you've really done it this time, Tess,” one of them said. They had smug looks on their faces and I was sure I was in for it. “Brenda's fit to be tied. What on earth did you say to her?”
Jill hid a smile behind her glass. “She let Brenda know that you can talk about your husband without bashing him.”
Their eyes rounded. “You didn't.”
“I did.” I wanted to crawl under the nearest rock. “But I didn't mean to offend her and I certainly wasn't trying to be Miss Goody Two Shoes.”
The ladies traded looks and burst out laughing. “Oh, Tess, if not joining in on the husband bashing makes me a Miss Goody Two Shoes, then I'll gladly be one. I'm sick of all that.”
“Yeah, me too. It's killing marriages and I, for one, would rather have a good marriage,” another one said.
“I'm just glad Tess said something. It needed to be said a long time ago, but I didn't have the guts.”
Jill raised her lemonade, “Here's to agreeing to stop the sport of husband bashing and to having good marriages.”
“To good marriages,” we toasted.
With a silly smile I raised my glass with its one last swig of Mountain Dew in it. “To grabbing snakes by the tail and ignoring their hissing and striking.”
Jill snickered. “Yeah, I thought I saw some fangs, too.”
So it wasn't just me.
“The wise woman builds her house,
But the foolish tears it down with her own hands.”
Proverbs 14:1 New American Standard Bible
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