The brand new book is here! Order now Online!

Breathing through the pinkness

Uncategorized Aug 06, 2020

Some have to overcome cancer; others the loss of a child, divorce, or financial hardship. I had to overcome the aversion to what I thought was an equally regrettable affliction: being born pink.

I always knew I was a girl, never thought I was actually a boy in a girl’s body but nevertheless mourned getting the short end of the stick. Boys had more fun. My three brothers proved it. They could get dirtier, tease danger more aggressively, and wear pants all the time – even on Sundays, when I was tamed into skirts that made my knobby knees and calfless legs look all the more gangly and interfered grievously with Jacaranda tree climbing on the street where I grew up.

I have more proof of the pink disadvantage: Boys somehow look fine without make-up, and there are certain afflictions they don’t need to deal with twelve times a year. Say no more. On my first day in high school, I was awarded a cardboard lawnmower as a trophy for having the hairiest legs among the girls. That sealed it, understandably, I feel. Boys got bonus points for such things; girls got booed.

The insecurities only grew over time. Other girls knew how to do amazing things with their hair. Mine stayed where I put them for about five minutes, then went the way gravity pulled them. My friends’ limbs were in proportion to the rest of their bodies. I had four extra inches that made no visual sense and made me appear like I could do long jumping and shoot hoops when I really couldn’t do any sport well, except swimming the breaststroke.

Motherhood and wifehood added more experiences of “I can’t do this female thing.” Women’s conferences became my least comfortable place. Too much crying, too many flowery frocks (handmade with excellence and prudency that added to my shame), and women who owned every ounce of their femininity with poise. The two most intimidating types of women were always present in chattering swarms: those who knew their “color palette” and dressed according to that and their body type, and those who had perfectly tinted and plucked eyebrows.

Even after many years in ministry – mostly parenting ministry – I used all of these preconceived notions to avoid estrogen fests and prayed that I would never have to minister at ladies' mornings, girls’ nights out, sisterhood siestas … I used lame excuses to stay away: “Women just moan and cry and tell their sob stories. Whoever tries to help or counsel them are only wasting their time on these women. Women like their own drama. They don’t know who they will be when their trauma resolves, so they cling to it. They’ll still be clinging to it at next year’s retreat. I’m not about to join that bunch and I’m for sure not going to waste time trying to get them delivered, healed, or happy again.

Then God started chipping away at the entire construct. He, knowing all of my days, and the impending onslaught of one particular night a few months into my future, started showing me gorgeous shades of my own pinkness and prepared me to embrace it just in time…

Through a conspiracy of books He sent my way through friends and side-walk sales, Scripture passages highlighted by the Holy Spirit, and a collection of writings by Charles Spurgeon, He taught me the depths of the beauty of being a bride. His bride. A beloved bride. I looked in the mirror with increasing acceptance and with a sense that being a woman could be good after all.

That was about to be challenged.


50% Complete

Two Step

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.