Since I’m a writer and not a talker (pause for a moment to laugh at that statement because anyone who knows me, knows I am most definitely a talker). Let’s re-phrase, along with being a writer of this blog, I am also a talker but a talker who prefers a smaller, intimate audience. So when faced with a group of 80 women, even though many are people I call friends and a large handful are even good friends, I’m probably not going to talk in front of them, no matter what the occasion because I hate-ity HATE public speaking. No matter how much I am willing to share about myself on this blog, talking in front of people makes my stomach do bad things, things I’d rather avoid.
Where am I going with this… well, today was our last MOPS for the year and its tradition that at the last MOPS we are all given the chance to say something, whatever that something may be. It could be a reflection on the year, a thought to pass on to others, sharing what God has been teaching us in our lives – whatever. It’s a very emotional meeting and I’ve always teared up and have downright cried in years past, but I have never spoken – at least I’m nearly certain I have not because that would be super out of character but I may have and have completely blocked it out. Anywho… today, when it was my table’s turn to share what was on our hearts, we all smiled at each other and made our best effort to avoid eye contact with Steph, who was holding the microphone. It was quite hilarious, really, because my table of ladies is all pretty vocal (and shall I say, verbose) and we all LOVED each other this year and really had a marvelous year – we were the poster children of good table experiences – but none of us wanted to talk. We are all chatty McChattersons, but we could not speak up so we sat there and smiled at each other and laughed at ourselves.
Personally, I knew that if I even started to talk, I would also start to cry and more than talking in front of a group, I hate crying in front of a group (imagine my chagrin when I cried through my whole wedding because I was so overcome with the emotion of it all – emotion that hit me the moment I made eye contact with my cousin’s husband as I was walking down the aisle – but that’s neither here nor there) so instead, here are the things I would have said, had I enough proverbial “balls” to grab the mic.
I love MOPS. I’m five years in and have three more years to go (because, I discovered, I can still go while Jack is in kindergarten – whoot!). I originally came to MOPS because my sweet friend, Sarah, invited me and I had no idea what I was in for – I thought it was more like a Bible study, which it was/is not but let me tell you that God has taught me so much through the people I have gotten to know at MOPS because God doesn’t just use the Bible to mold and shape us. I have gained some fabulous friends, friends who will remain in my heart and my life until long after this preschool phase. In fact, I’ve written about MOPS before here and that pretty much covers it so I’ll give you a minute to go visit that post (BTW – it’s because of MOPS – and Heidi’s encouragement and Sandy’s friendship that I started and continue to write this here blog). But I’d also like to add how thankful I am that because of MOPS my family has become part of a greater community – that my husband has new friends to go to hockey games with and play laser tag with; that my boys are super excited to see their church friends and are learning great things about our wonderful God; and that we’re all members of a new small group that is off to a great start and makes us all feel loved and accepted (really – I’ve had two other genuinely wonderful small group experiences as an adult so I’ve been pretty lucky in that regard).
There is to rhyme or reason to what makes a table work, sometimes it just works – but my table of ladies have so much heart and passion for the things in their lives that are important, whether it is adopting, missions, family, work or whatever and I have so enjoyed the chance to get to know all of them. I feel so far beyond blessed by the friendships I’ve been given, despite moments of insecurity (we all have them) and loneliness (we’ve all felt it), I’ve got wonderful friends – at MOPS and outside of MOPS. So I’ll just wrap this little lovefest up by saying, thank you for being a friend… (anyone else hearing the Golden Girls’ theme song).
That’s what I would have said.