“Whatever”

At one point this summer, I found myself in a friendship
that began to get … wonky on me.
I try so hard to just “be myself,”
but for some awesome, insane, driven, demented reason
when it comes to MALE friendships,
I just try too damned hard in some areas.
Yes, “damned” …
because my trying so hard,
may in fact damn these friendships.

Unlike my hero, Paula, I don’t always stay true to myself.
I try to be accommodating in ways
that leave me …. conformed, might be a good word?
It’s a learned trait.
You don’t want to be well-trained in this habit.
Trust me on this.

Once this summer, I was corrected by this guy-friend of mine.
I did something with an attitude that he didn’t think was healthy.
He called me on it.
Sooooooo …. the next time when a strikingly similar situation came up,
I remembered his PAST instruction
and I handled the situation in the way that he told me to the first time.
And he still didn’t like my action.
So, he offered a snarky remark.
It was uncomfortable … and honestly, left me frustrated and confused.

At that point, the big kids were both our of the house. Joy was away, as well. So, I was at home alone that evening. I cranked up my music really loud, poured myself a delicious drink and began to handle some dishes and laundry as if visitors were coming the next day.

I had just recently purchased Hot Chelle Rae’s latest album
so,  the song “Whatever” soon came up on the playlist.

I had heard it often enough on the radio that I knew most of the words.
I straightened up the dining table singing ….

(lyrics)

I woke up late, again, gonna get fired for sure this time,
So I’ll hit, the snooze, and sleep till it’s 4 in the afternoon,
The state, I’m in, is bound to land me in the loony bin,
And I don’t care at all, (What-Whatever)

I straightened up the den dancing ….

When the girl you like thinks you’re gay, (What-Whatever)
You got a bunch of bills you can’t pay, (What-Whatever)
When nothing’s ever going your way, (Whatever)
When you’re slam out of luck,
And you’re feeling stuck, say,
So, what, whatever

I wondered if the neighbors could hear me
as I washed and rinsed dishes ….

Hey, hey, life ain’t fair,
Three in the air if you just don’t care,
Hey, hey, life ain’t fair,
Three in the air if you don’t care

Nah!  ….  I kept singing.

I was talking on, the phone,
Ran into the back of a Cadillac,
Then I hit, the gas,
So the six foot chick wouldn’t kick my a$$,
But I’m not, alone,
My friends were all there when I got home,
And we don’t care at all, (What-Whatever)

I hit “replay” on the ipod
and kept singing ….

We’re going out, on the town again,
You better find a hot tub, cause we’re jumping in,
Cause you know (I know) that today straight sucked,
And if you don’t give a, what, I don’t give a what,

So, I could listen again to the lyrics
and as I thought about the message of that song ….
the chorus … the words …
“Hey, hey, life ain’t fair. Three in the air if you just don’t care…”

Hey, hey, life ain’t fair,
Three in the air if you just don’t care,
Hey, hey, life ain’t fair,
Three in the air if you don’t care.

And then ….
I thought about the words to my favorite verse in scripture …

Yes ….. there it was ….. “what – whatever! “

God is so good! He’ll use “whatever” it takes to talk to us.
He’ll speak in the language we can understand
and  communicate in a way that we can hear
about things that are going on right then-and-there.

God doesn’t want us to think “whatever” as in “I don’t care …”
He wants us to think of whatever is good, healthy, positive and righteous.

I had been brainstorming artwork that
might go in my over-the-mantle frame.
I could picture it then.

So, I choose colors, sketched a layout of my idea and began.

I painted, layered, trimmed  and pieced.

I love the piece …

 … and the reminder
that my appropriate response
when life doesn’t go as I hope,
when I try too hard to please others,
or when I am frustrated or confused  …
the best response is a healthy focus on ..
“WHAT.ever!”

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”  Philippians 4:8

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