Dec 032010
 


So.

I’m at Target yesterday with Tish and Amma. We’ve made it through the shopping part and we’re in the check- out line. I can see the Promised Land, which is: We’re Done Shopping, Let’s Go Back Home.

I watch Amma notice a pack of gummi worms. Her eyes widen. I brace for chaos. She grabs the worms, shows them to me with tears already in her eyes and says, “I need dese worms!” I say, “Uh-huh. That’s the curse of Target. It makes me think I need all this junk, too. The Target curse is why you’re not going to college, baby. No gummi worms. Put them down.”

Now. You know I try my hardest to describe my ridiculous little life to you. But there is no way to convey to you the drama that crashed down on poor unsuspecting Target immediately following the word “No.”

Amma threw herself down on the filthy Target floor and screamed like a person who maybe just found out that her entire family had died. Amma’s particular tantrum style is that she chooses one phrase to repeat seven million times at seven million decibels until everyone around her seriously considers homicide or suicide. Yesterday she chose, “I SO HUNGWY! I SO FIRSTY! (SKULL SPLITTING SCREAM.) I SO HUNGWY ! I SO FIRSTY! (SKULL SPLITTING SCREAM.”)

This was a long, crowded line. And every time the line scootched up I had to grab Amma’s hood and drag her forward a few feet while she kicked and screamed, like I do with my luggage in the security lines at the airport. And then Tish started crying because it was all so ridiculous. And so I gritted my teeth and made my scariest face at Tish and growled STOP at her like some kind of movie monster, and this sort of thing does not tend to calm a child down. So she cried harder. People started moving away from us and shoppers were actually stopping by our aisle to stare. I was sweating like I was in a sauna, and wishing the “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” song that was on replay would just end. With the kids jinglebelling and everyone telling you, be of good cheer!Riiiight. My experience exactly.

Up until this point, I kept my head down, but it seemed time to offer my best beleaguered, apologetic, what are you gonna do? looks to the other shoppers, in hopes of receiving some sympathetic looks in return.

But here’s the thing. When I finally looked up, I realized with mounting discomfort that there weren’t gonna be any sympathetic looks. Everyone was staring at me. Every. One. One elderly couple looked so disturbed that the grandmother had her hand over her mouth and was holding tight to her husband’s arm. At first it appeared to be an effort to shield herself from my rabid animals. And I thought, I hear ya lady, they scare me, too. But then I realized that she wasn’t looking disapprovingly at them, she was looking disapprovingly at me.I locked eyes with her and without subtlety, she looked down at my clothes, then to my cart, and then away.

So I did the same thing. Down at myself, then to the cart. Oooooooohhhh, I thought. Shoot.

My stupid Lyme is back, and I’ve been sick for a little while now. Yesterday was a bad Lymie day, and so was Wednesday, so I may have forgotten to shower or brush my hair. For 48 hours. And also, when I looked down I noticed that I still had on my pajama top. Which apparently I had tucked in to my ripped jeans. Like seventh grade. I looked bad. Not like a little bad, like offensively, aggressively bad.And also, here is what was in my cart: 6 large bottles of wine and curtain rods. Which wouldn’t have been so bad if my smallest child would have stopped screaming: “I SO HUNGWY, I SO FIRSTY!”

And since I was so tired and in such a state of self pity – I couldn’t even bring myself to feign sympathy towards my starving, parched child on the floor. Because I wasn’t sympathetic, not even a little bit. I definitely remembered feeding her the previous day. Faker.

But based on all of these things, I decided to forgive the frowny, judgmental lady. I had really left her no other choice.

I resigned myself to suffer through. I stopped trying to help the girls at all. Just left Amma there on the floor screaming and Tish beside her crying and prayed the line would move faster. I am sure there were a lot of people praying that the line would move faster.


All of a sudden, a uniformed police officer started walking toward us. At first I was alarmed and defensive. But he stopped in front of me and smiled warmly and winked at me.

He looked down at the girls and said, “May I?”

I was not sure what he was asking exactly, but I allowed myself to hope that maybe he had a paddy wagon and was planning to take them away. And so I nodded at him.

The police officer patted Amma on the head gently. She looked up at him and stopped mid-scream. She stood up. Tish fell silent and grabbed Amma’s hand. All of a sudden they became a pair of grubby little soldiers. At attention, eyes shining, terrified.

The police officer said, “Hello girls. Have you two ever heard of “disturbing the peace?”

They shook their little heads no.

He smiled and continued, “Well, that means that your mama and all of these people are trying to shop in peace, and you are disturbing them, and you’re not allowed to. Can you try to be more peaceful?”

They nodded their little heads yes.


The officer stood back up and smiled at me. I tried really hard to smile back to show my gratitude.

I noticed that the girls grabbed each other in a bear hug and held on for dear life. It appeared they had lived to die another day.


He said, “Being a parent. It’s a tough gig sometimes.”

For some reason, I became desperate to be perceived by him as something other than a struggling mom, so I blurted out, “I’m also a writer.”

He looked genuinely interested and said, “Really? What do you write”

“Lots of things. Mostly a blog.”

“What’s it about?”

“Parenting, I guess.”

His eyes twinkled and he grinned and said teasingly, “Oh. Does anybody read it?”

And I said, “A few. Mostly for laughs, though. Not for . . . well, advice. Obviously.”

I miraculously found the energy and ability and space and breath to giggle.

And my officer smiled and said the following:


“You know, my wife and I raised six kids, and I think that’s actually the only parenting advice worth a damn. Just try to keep laughing. Try to keep laughing. It’s good advice.You’re doing good, mom.”


Then he tipped his hat to me and my girls, and walked away.


In the end, only kindness matters. Thank you, Officer Superhero. Merry Christmas.


The girls were silent until half way home from Target when Tish announced loudly, “I can’t believe we almost went to jail.We better not tell daddy.”

And I said, “No way. We have to tell him. What if we don’t and then he sees the report on the news tonight?”


More silence.


Joy to the World.

Nov 112010
 

Monkee land is expanding, it seems. We are growing fast. My inbox is a little scary.

I realize that for most bloggers, growing is the point. But growing fast makes me nervous. Partly because I haven’t grown since 1982, so it’s unfamiliar territory.

My inbox is full of beautiful new Monkee emails, which I savor and save, but I have also started receiving three totally different types of emails.

The first type goes like this:

Glennon, we love your blog and we think that you and your readers would love our products! We’d love to send you a free (book, trip, ticket, halter top, baby genius tape, pan) for you to try and review for your readers!

The second type goes like this:

Glennon, we think your readers would be a perfect match for our (Zit cream, jewelry line, Cooking for Dummies Line, etc) We’d love to advertise on your blog!

The third goes like this:

Glennon, I write for such and such blog. I have one million bazillion followers. Would you like to swap links so we can access each other’s readers?


So far I’ve just been quietly ignoring these emails, but since they are coming fast and furious now, it’s time to respond once and for all. And I think maybe we should review a few basic tenants of Momastery. Just in an effort to stay true to our roots, to keep it real.

Kay. We Monkees and our Momastery are not for sale.

I have never, and will never make a penny off of this blog.I will never accept a freebie. On the rare case that I offer a giveaway, it’s because A MONKEE has something MONKEE LIKE she’d like to share out of love. And if I love the Monkee thing, I BUY the Monkee thing. So that there is never any confusion about what it is that I am doing here. And I will never, ever, reference a link I’m not in love with just to gain a few readers. Goodness gracious.

Listen, I honestly don’t know where this blog is going. But I do know how we’re gonna get there and how we’re not gonna get there.

One of the purposes of this blog is to prove that things exist that are not for sale. That money and efficiency and publicity and popularity might not be the answers, the end games, the highest goals, the keys to happiness.

Everybody keeps suggesting to everybody else that these things ARE the answer. But I’m suspicious. Isn’t the fact that Dr. Drew makes a good living proof that 15 minutes of fame and fast cash do not necessarily a peaceful life make?

Our goal is to go deep here, not wide. We are collecting hearts, not exposure, and certainly not cash.

Our goals are to be careful, to be slow and pay attention and look closely at each other and to re-think and pray and feel and wake-up and care and connect. So we can become braver and live bigger and realer on this Earth.

My favorite book is Walden, by Thoreau. Thoreau was this thoughtful man who became suspicious that the world’s hoopla was making him forget what life was really about. So he decided to perform a love experiment. He never called it a love experiment because, well – because he’s a boy, but it was. He went into the woods for two years and lived on the land by a beautiful pond named Walden. And he thought and he wrote and he read and he tried to remember what he was born knowing. It was easier to remember because it was so quiet, and so he ended up writing this beautiful book in which every sentence makes my heart leap and forces me to scream to no one: LISTEN TO THIS, LISTEN TO THIS! And so Craig hates when he sees me walking around with Walden because he knows he’s going to have to do a lot of LISTENING TO THIS!

The two hours I spend writing to you each morning are my Walden. Momastery is my way of starting each day remembering what I know in the quiet.

I’d prefer to go live in the woods for two years, trust me. But I know they’d find me. Also I really, really hate the woods. Spiders.

The point of all of this is that part of Thoreau’s experiment was to live in utter simplicity. And so he had almost no furniture in his little cabin that he built himself. And one time a lady felt sorry for him and offered him a doormat, but he refused it. He said, “It’s better to avoid the beginnings of evil.”

Now listen, I don’t think that Thoreau thought doormats were evil, and I certainly don’t think blog advertising or giveaways or link swapping are evil. I just think he meant that he needed to keep his love experiment pure.

And that’s what we need to do here at Momastery. We need to never become starry eyed and dazzled and forget what we are doing here.

People are always saying the following to me: “Can’t wait for Oprah, We’re gonna be on Oprah someday!” But listen. Oprah is not the answer! As a matter of fact, being on Oprah might ruin everything. Those things are shiny and bright and WOW but we are not a shiny, WOW Revolution. We are a quiet, slow revolution. We are a one at a time revolution.

We are not for show and we are not for sale. And we are not successful if we make it to Oprah or the Today show or start creating serious revenue or what HAVE YOU.

We are successful because chances are that tonight some tired and lonely mom will click on a friend’s link and get lost in our essays and our comments and our love for each other. And she will ignore her husband for hours and she will cry a little and laugh a lot and she will read on and on and on. And it may take her months to rally the courage to comment, but she will meet us here every day because she has finally found her people! She has finally found a group of women whose only motive is to love and laugh together and who are NOT FOR SALE. And this will help her believe and be peaceful and feel a little less suspicious and more comfortable and safe and brave on this Earth. And so she will be full of joy. DONE. REVOLUTION WON. Without Oprah!

Please listen to me. The revolution is not in the future, the revolution is not on the Today Show. The revolution is in one quiet kitchen at a time. One Monkee at a time. Slow and steady. Tiny as a mustard seed. The Revolution, the kingdom of God, is INSIDE each of us. It is won or lost THERE, in each heart. Not on Prime Time.

Listen. If Lou and Oprah both called me tonight, and they both asked me to meet them for coffee. .. I would meet Lou.

It is possible that when I arrived, I might ask Lou if she felt like going to meet Oprah with me.

But if Lou was tired and kind of comfortable and said NAH, I’d say, Okay Lou, you’re right. Latte, please.

If the Monkees need money, we’ll raise it. If we need a particular word spread, we’ll spread it.

But we are not for sale. We deal in a different currency here.

And that currency is this:

Are you more joyful when you leave this place? Are you more inclined to believe that you are good and brave and true, and that others are doing the best that they can? Are you more willing to consider that there might be hope for all of us?

THEN THE REVOLUTION IS WON!



Once, on being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied,“The coming of the kingdom of God is not something that can be observed,nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is inside you.” Luke 17: 20,21







Nov 112010
 

Monkee land is expanding, it seems. We are growing fast. My inbox is a little scary.

I realize that for most bloggers, growing is the point. But growing fast makes me nervous. Partly because I haven’t grown since 1982, so it’s unfamiliar territory.

My inbox is full of beautiful new Monkee emails, which I savor and save, but I have also started receiving three totally different types of emails.

The first type goes like this:

Glennon, we love your blog and we think that you and your readers would love our products! We’d love to send you a free (book, trip, ticket, halter top, baby genius tape, pan) for you to try and review for your readers!

The second type goes like this:

Glennon, we think your readers would be a perfect match for our (Zit cream, jewelry line, Cooking for Dummies Line, etc) We’d love to advertise on your blog!

The third goes like this:

Glennon, I write for such and such blog. I have one million bazillion followers. Would you like to swap links so we can access each other’s readers?


So far I’ve just been quietly ignoring these emails, but since they are coming fast and furious now, it’s time to respond once and for all. And I think maybe we should review a few basic tenants of Momastery. Just in an effort to stay true to our roots, to keep it real.

Kay. We Monkees and our Momastery are not for sale.

I have never, and will never make a penny off of this blog. I will never accept a freebie. On the rare case that I offer a giveaway, it’s because A MONKEE has something MONKEE LIKE she’d like to share out of love. And if I love the Monkee thing, I BUY the Monkee thing. So that there is never any confusion about what it is that I am doing here. And I will never, ever, reference a link I’m not in love with just to gain a few readers. Goodness gracious.

Listen, I honestly don’t know where this blog is going. But I do know how we’re gonna get there and how we’re not gonna get there.

One of the purposes of this blog is to prove that things exist that are not for sale. That money and efficiency and publicity and popularity might not be the answers, the end games, the highest goals, the keys to happiness.

Everybody keeps suggesting to everybody else that these things ARE the answer. But I’m suspicious. Isn’t the fact that Dr. Drew makes a good living proof that 15 minutes of fame and fast cash do not necessarily a peaceful life make?

Our goal is to go deep here, not wide. We are collecting hearts, not exposure, and certainly not cash.

Our goals are to be careful, to be slow and pay attention and look closely at each other and to re-think and pray and feel and wake-up and care and connect. So we can become braver and live bigger and realer on this Earth.

My favorite book is Walden, by Thoreau. Thoreau was this thoughtful man who became suspicious that the world’s hoopla was making him forget what life was really about. So he decided to perform a love experiment. He never called it a love experiment because, well – because he’s a boy, but it was. He went into the woods for two years and lived on the land by a beautiful pond named Walden. And he thought and he wrote and he read and he tried to remember what he was born knowing. It was easier to remember because it was so quiet, and so he ended up writing this beautiful book in which every sentence makes my heart leap and forces me to scream to no one: LISTEN TO THIS, LISTEN TO THIS! And so Craig hates when he sees me walking around with Walden because he knows he’s going to have to do a lot of LISTENING TO THIS!

The two hours I spend writing to you each morning are my Walden. Momastery is my way of starting each day remembering what I know in the quiet.

I’d prefer to go live in the woods for two years, trust me. But I know they’d find me. Also I really, really hate the woods. Spiders.

The point of all of this is that part of Thoreau’s experiment was to live in utter simplicity. And so he had almost no furniture in his little cabin that he built himself. And one time a lady felt sorry for him and offered him a doormat, but he refused it. He said, “It’s better to avoid the beginnings of evil.”

Now listen, I don’t think that Thoreau thought doormats were evil, and I certainly don’t think blog advertising or giveaways or link swapping are evil. I just think he meant that he needed to keep his love experiment pure.

And that’s what we need to do here at Momastery. We need to never become starry eyed and dazzled and forget what we are doing here.

People are always saying the following to me: “Can’t wait for Oprah, We’re gonna be on Oprah someday!” But listen. Oprah is not the answer! As a matter of fact, being on Oprah might ruin everything. Those things are shiny and bright and WOW but we are not a shiny, WOW Revolution. We are a quiet, slow revolution. We are a one at a time revolution.

We are not for show and we are not for sale. And we are not successful if we make it to Oprah or the Today show or start creating serious revenue or what HAVE YOU.

We are successful because chances are that tonight some tired and lonely mom will click on a friend’s link and get lost in our essays and our comments and our love for each other. And she will ignore her husband for hours and she will cry a little and laugh a lot and she will read on and on and on. And it may take her months to rally the courage to comment, but she will meet us here every day because she has finally found her people! She has finally found a group of women whose only motive is to love and laugh together and who are NOT FOR SALE. And this will help her believe and be peaceful and feel a little less suspicious and more comfortable and safe and brave on this Earth. And so she will be full of joy. DONE. REVOLUTION WON. Without Oprah!

Please listen to me. The revolution is not in the future, the revolution is not on the Today Show. The revolution is in one quiet kitchen at a time. One Monkee at a time. Slow and steady. Tiny as a mustard seed. The Revolution, the kingdom of God, is INSIDE each of us. It is won or lost THERE, in each heart. Not on Prime Time.

Listen. If Lou and Oprah both called me tonight, and they both asked me to meet them for coffee. .. I would meet Lou.

It is possible that when I arrived, I might ask Lou if she felt like going to meet Oprah with me.

But if Lou was tired and kind of comfortable and said NAH, I’d say, Okay Lou, you’re right. Latte, please.

If the Monkees need money, we’ll raise it. If we need a particular word spread, we’ll spread it.

But we are not for sale. We deal in a different currency here.

And that currency is this:

Are you more joyful when you leave this place? Are you more inclined to believe that you are good and brave and true, and that others are doing the best that they can? Are you more willing to consider that there might be hope for all of us?

THEN THE REVOLUTION IS WON!



Once, on being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The coming of the kingdom of God is not something that can be observed, nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is inside you.” Luke 17: 20,21