Ok. We have all have them. Our face turns red. Our stomach may turn a little. We want to bury our head in the ground. We wish we had some supernatural power so we can quickly remove ourselves from an embarrassing moment. We laugh because we are horrified, it was really funny, or for no reason at all.
I thought I’d share a few of my little moments so you can think back to yours and give yourself a little giggle. Perhaps you’ll be reminded of how your cheeks hurt from laughing so hard that you want to share it with your friend. We’ve had embarrassing moments in the past that we were so thankful there were no cell phones or social media. Now, when we have one of those moments (and if we have friends with us), they may even take a picture of us or record us on their story before cracking up so bad they are going to pee their pants. Our friends may be going to Insta before even helping us out of that, what we feel as tragic, moment.
So. I’m digging through the closet of my most embarrassing moments to give you some chuckles. Enjoy. Go ahead and laugh. But laugh with me. Laugh with joy.
Only one restroom.
One restroom. 5 employees. A restroom that was supposed to only be used by employees. This particular day, the manager decided to let a customer use the restroom. But…there was already someone in the restroom. The one time this young lady forgot to lock the door. The. One. Time. This gentleman walks in while said young lady is pulling up her pantyhose (some of you may remember those). Her eyes were bigger than golf balls. The shock on her face. She was so thankful she wasn’t still sitting on the throne. Thank heaven she only had to go number 1 and not number 2 (or 3, or 4, know what I mean?) Thank goodness there was no smell. He didn’t see any undergarments or any skin. This young gal was so mortified, she would have slept in that restroom for 3 days, avoiding being seen by anyone. You can bet from this experience, this young lady, ME, is sure to lock the door of any restroom not in her own home.
The unfortunate incident of the high-heel shoe and pant leg.
I can’t remember how long ago this was but I was picking up my girls from the after-school program at their elementary school. It was baseball season and games were about to start. The parking lot, right next to the baseball field, was full. All the moms, dads, and grandparents were arriving through the same gate that gets to the after-school program bungalow. So. Many. People. I was walking joyfully along the sidewalk, I may have even by skipping. I was thinking I was looking all fly in my cool, light teal (sort of boot cut) pants and black sling back high-heeled shoes. When, all of a sudden, I found myself smack down on the cement of the sidewalk in front of the moms, dads, grandmas, and grandpas. You know that laugh that is funny and painful, all at the same time? This was me. I couldn’t stop laughing, I was probably about to throw myself into an asthma attack. This was one of those moments when someone asks, “Are you hurt?” and you want to reply, “Just my pride.” It turns out the heel of my cute, black, sling-back shoe went straight through my light teal pant leg. Straight through. How, I do not know. So, you can imagine, it was like my legs were tied together, and the only thing I could do was just go down. It happened so fast. A sweet man asked if I needed help and I could only laugh nervously and say “No.” I just wanted to tell him to “Carry on with his business.” This was one of those moments you don’t dare look around at the people around you. You don’t even want to know how many people saw you fall on your face. I got up quickly, went in to get my girls and walked straight to the car. I did not pass go. I did not collect $200. You can be sure I did not make eye contact with anyone, each day that I picked up my girls, for at least a week.
Where is the caterer?
I was involved in the planning of an event for 150-200 people, a few years ago. At the church. For the church. One of the tasks that I was in charge of was the catering. Simply ordering the food and getting it to the church on time. Seems easy enough, right? This particular event was on a Sunday, as most church events are. Well, it turns out the caterer was closed on Sundays. I had confirmed the order and delivery time on Friday. So, I thought, we should be good. The time came for the food to arrive so I was waiting outside to greet them. Waiting. Waiting. Waiting. No car. No caterer. No food. I called the caterer to see if they were on their way, only to find out that they didn’t have my order. It seems I placed the order (on previous Friday) with the owner herself, and she forgot to tell her cooks.
When I finally got a hold of the owner’s son about the order, he felt horrible. You see, we had used this place for catering many times in the past. No problems. But…the one time I am in charge of it…I am pretty sure I was sweating profusely at this point. I was desperate. I was trying to figure out what to do. Where can I get some food for this many people? Like, right now? Am I going to have to get a gazillion five dollar pizzas from Little Caesar’s? After wanting to throw up a few times, I had to finally tell someone.
The most embarrassing part, as if it wasn’t bad already, was the fact that our senior pastor, and two other pastors decided to attend this event. I felt like I had 200 sets of eyes staring at me. They knew they were getting dinner but where was it? I wanted to run, never to return. There’s nothing worse than something going wrong with something you were tasked to do.
After stalling as much as we could, the food finally showed up about an hour and half later. I am sure that was very pleasant for the speaker, trying to come up with some improv conversation with the attendees. The caterer blessed us with so much food when they arrived. Extras that we hadn’t even ordered. I am beyond blessed by the grace shown by the pastors and the team I was working with. The grace and patience of the attendees. I think I grew 100 more gray hairs in that short amount of time. I have to remind myself now, call and confirm the order a couple hours beforehand to avoid this situation in the future. Maybe this is a good reminder for you too?
I have had several embarrassing moments due to my clumsiness or just plain ole silliness or forgetfulness. I get embarrassed when I make a mistake or get something wrong. I start to feel insecure. I start to worry about what people think of me. I am sure we all have. The thing is, there is always something we can learn from them. There is something about them that sparks us to share these stories with our kids and grandkids. We share these crazy moments with our friends. We get to share these sweet memories, sometimes even the pictures, with our tribe, our people. Even though, in the moment of what we think is so terrible, we can look back with joy and be glad that we were able to laugh about and through them. We didn’t let these moments change us, other than what we learned from them. We see that we are still human and we are going to make mistakes. We are going to have these crazy embarrassing moments the rest of our lives. You may have just experienced one a few minutes ago.
I pray you find the joy in your life, your legacy, including the funny and “I can’t believe I just did that” moments. Share them with your people. Notice the laugh lines growing on the faces of your loved ones, at your expense. See the tears of laughter. Make fun of the ones who are about ready to pee their pants. Friend, don’t let yourself get so down if something goes wrong, you fall in front of a ton of people, or you forget to lock the door of the only restroom available. Take it all in. Tuck ’em in your heart.
Hugging you so tight,