It was April 21, 2005. My husband had a Company Awards Trip that he'd won to Las Vegas. It went totally against all of my want-to. I felt it an evil place. My thinking was that if the world themselves calls it Sin City, then what business would I (being a Christian) have visiting and vacationing there? How would the Holy One of Israel approve of my going? Should a princess to the Heavenly King place her presence upon the soil named for its reputation? I just didn’t feel it right. I fussed and fumed and was determined that “I shall not be moved” and would not go… But I was moved and went anyway... My husband wouldn't allow me to stay home, even against my most aggravated refusal not to. Please forgive my throes of rebellion. I did submit to my authority. I've repented for my uppity goody-two-shoes self-righteousness. I'm ashamed of my actions. I did go. I went!
Now, if you're not completely repulsed by my uppity-ness. Stay with me here, the story gets better.
One night while we were there we had a formal affair that my husband and I were to go to. No one gave me the memo that it was an all black affair! I thought “Black Tie” meant dress-up! So dress-up I did! And it didn't go unnoticed!
We were late. Tim had not tried his Tux on before leaving our hometown. In retrospect, he should have. It was too small. It took us way too much time to try to force buttons to connect to holes that were a far stretch from where we needed them to be. Our whole entourage of office people were waiting on us when we got there. We were to have a group picture made before the festivities began. On the backside of the pool area there were these two huge curved staircases coming down. All of our group (about 150 of us), except Tim and I, were already posed on its steps starting from the top of both staircases going all the way to the bottom. They were crowded. Hot. Squished. Sweating in the sweltering heat. All standing stiff in their ‘black-tied” dress! Totally stuck in their posed places awaiting only our arrival so that the snap of the camera could capture its moment, and they could all unfreeze from the frame where they had been strategically put.
On our way to the stairs, we had to walk past this huge pool area. Pools on either side of us. There was a concreted path between the two. I saw them (our party) before we got there. Instantly I began to panic, “I can’t do it! I can’t do it!” Zillions of them (it seemed!) ALL clothed in black! Every last one of them. All, that is, except the one that was coming. ME! The only thing that kept me from turning around and running was because my pride in covering my pride overshadowed my other pride. The whole company was attired in black, while I pranced to meet them garbed in the palest of pinks. Sequined, no less! And with a skirt full of feathers!
Yes, you read right. Feathers!
Ya know??!!!! What can I say?
All night long not one person mentioned my dress. Not that I wanted them to necessarily say something, but I was so different from everybody else's that I knew they noticed, and with their not mentioning it... well, it was even more obvious that they were pretending they didn’t to save my face. You know what mean? It wasn’t a good sign! Its silence said to me: “Oh, how embarrassing!” Because with their silence I knew that even they were embarrassed at the dress I had chosen.
And if that weren’t bad enough....
Before we had gotten to the steps to where they were frozen, as we were walking through the pool area (after I had been horrified at noticing all their black), all of the sudden all of the people lying around the pool started sitting up in their lounge chairs. Some started standing. They began clapping and cheering and yelling. Hooping and hollering. Making an awesome show and noise to applaud the thing that had captured their attention. I turned around to see what all the hoop-la was all about that had warranted such applauding, such praising, such yells……… and saw nothing there when I turned. Oh my goodness! IT WAS ME that they were applauding! I could have died! If I could have willed it hard enough to be so, I would have had the concrete open and swallow me up to take me to my death!
I don’t know how I made it! Poor Tim, he was just letting me hang onto his arm and he was walking with me as if there was not a thing different about us than all of the rest of them. Walking as if everyone else out there was dressed in feathers too! Walking like it was the most normal everyday thing to wear! I felt like a bird that had flown in from the South to a flock of birds that was of a whole different color! Featherless birds, no less! Bless his heart (and mine too!)! It’s a wonder he didn’t make me stay in the room.
He’s got another trip to go on this year, and he has already told me that I didn’t have to go if I didn’t want to. Well, I wonder why!!!! Actually, no, he didn’t say a thing, and he’s invited me to go this year too; but I wonder if he wonders what I’ll wear? And being that I’ve begun to awaken to myself, I wonder too! And I wonder if later we’ll both wonder why we let me?
Hold on. That's not the worst part!