Saturday, December 16, 2006

Lessons in Humility and The Smile of a Child

Last night I had the opportunity to truly make a fool out of myself. I knew this ahead of time, but I didn't know what a fool I would really be.
You may have read on a previous entry that I was going to dress up as an elf for our church's Christmas dinner and sing silly songs. Well, I did. However, It didn't go as planned. My brain completely froze and I couldn't remember any of the words. So in the middle of the Sugar Plum Fairy (to the tune of the Little Drummer Boy) I began singing I'm the Sugarplum and doing stupid little "ballet" kicks. The song ended and I thought things could only get better. Boy was I wrong. I forgot the words to the next song after the first line. I tried to play it up, but I was so embarrassed that I walked out of the room. This has never happened to me before and I hope it never happens again. I was so humiliated that I didn't know how to face the people in the room (there were about 80). Somehow, about 15 minutes before the end of the program, I managed to work up enough courage and go back to my seat at the table. I couldn't look anyone in the eye. I was having my own little pity party inside when a gentleman came over to me and said, "My wife and I have been having some problems lately and it was really nice to be able to have that to laugh at. There's only a handful of people in this room that could have put themselves out there like that and I thank you."
How humbling. I appreciated the comment, but as a performer I was still beating myself up and feeling very depressed.
When my wife got home with the kids (they were at the church and we were in separate cars) they kids were very loving and cuddly. They worked really hard to cheer me up. When I put Ava to bed, she wanted me to kiss her forehead, the top of her head, her cheeks her nose, etc. I complied and she returned the favor. Seeing her beautiful smile and hearing her giggle during our "kissing games" lifted my spirits. It's amazing how a child's smile can do that. They just look at you with bright eyes and a big smile and it melts your heart.
Another experience that I had today was one that, after last night, I didn't want to have. I woke up this morning still feeling pitiful and wanted to do nothing but stay in bed. But I made a commit to help out my father-in-laws ministry "Spice of Life" by feeding the homeless and passing out much needed supplies, like blankets, coats, batteries, clothes and the like. Reluctantly I went. Once I was there and got involved, I really began to feel less pity for myself and realize that worse things could happen in my life the failing as an elf. I could be living on the streets as these people were. To see them come and have some warm soup and sandwiches and walk away with bags full of clothes and supplies they need was very satisfying to my soul. It's amazing how giving of yourself can make you feel so good about yourself. It can lift your spirits out of the dumps.
While my ego is hurt and I'll be quite embarassed to go to church tomorrow, I'll be able to go knowing that I helped some people who were seriously in need.


mm said...

Oh Eric, I would give a lot to see you in the elf costume...don't worry about the memory loss. It will be okay. It happens to the best of us! :) Hang in there!

dangie said...

We all have those memory-blanking moments Eric! Matter of fact, Angie and I BOTH had one this past weekend. Don't feel bad ... we still love you!!!

Anonymous said...

Hey Eric, that man was sent from made his day!! We all have those days and I now am officially a sieve brain. blame it on the lesions!!