This is a story about a girl who received a gift that was even more than it appeared. To get to the part about the gift, we have to rewind a little bit. (You didn’t honestly expect this to be short and concise, did you?)
Once upon a Saturday, a mom sat down with her little children to watch an episode of Veggie Tales on NBC. Now the mom had been a fan of Veggie Tales even before she ever became a mom. At least now, she had three little reasons to justify her viewing. Together they sat down to watch “A Snoodle’s Tale.” The mom was just as excited as the little people because she had never seen this particular Tale. She had no idea that before half an hour had passed, God was going to speak to her in a big and mighty way through a little cartoon Snoodle.
“A Snoodle’s Tale,” in case you’ve never seen it, is about Snoodle Doo, a lovable little Snoodle who sets out to find out who he is supposed to be. Along the way, other Snoodles give him messages about who they think he is. They ridicule his ideas of what he thinks he should be or do and load his backpack with the pictures they draw of how they see him. The Snoodle has wings, but he can’t fly very high. He has art supplies, but when he shows the other Snoodles his picture, they tell him he is not an artist.
The mom sitting on the couch with the three little people suddenly realized that she had a lot in common with Snoodle Doo. Although you might not have guessed it just from looking at her or even from having a conversation with her in the checkout line at Super Walmart, the mom wasn’t really sure who she was supposed to be either. And her backpack was also filled to the brim with the pictures she’d collected of herself. Unlike Snoodle Doo, some of her “others” had drawn some really lovely pictures of her, but that in itself somehow presented a problem for her. She didn’t feel like she’d ever be able to measure up to the girl in their pictures. Like Snoodle Doo, she also had some unlovely pictures in her backpack. Some were doodles that others probably didn’t even realize they’d left for her in passing comments or offhand remarks. Some were pictures she’d drawn of herself that shamed and mocked her and served as reminders of everything she wished she’d done or despaired desperately of ever doing. The pictures made for a heavy burden to carry and she felt very, very tired and very, very sad.
The mom kept replaying a line in a book she’d read that seemed to describe her best of all: “I am not enough, and I am too much at the same time.” She wasn’t sweet enough. She didn’t listen enough. She wasn’t pretty enough. She didn’t know enough. She wasn’t godly enough. She wasn’t disciplined enough. She wasn’t good enough. She wasn’t enough for her kids, her man, or her friends. But she was also too much. Too talkative. Too wishy washy. Too needy. Too indecisive. Too weak. Too messy. Too hypocritical. Too opinionated. She just wasn’t what she was supposed to be.
She felt sorry for her kids. Why would God give her these three amazing kids snuggled up with her on the couch? She was just going to mess them up. All of her neuroses and hang-ups were just going to rub off on them. During a commercial break, she wondered if while her man saved up for their college funds, she should start saving for the little people’s therapy bills. She looked at the sweet little faces surrounding her and felt like a great big fake and an even bigger failure….
It has come to my attention that no one wants to read blog epics, so we should probably split this story into more manageable bite-sized pieces. This seems like as good a stopping place as any other, so let’s just leave the mom on the couch wallowing in her misery and we’ll catch up with her later.