“Ma’am, I’m sorry. Your driver’s license is faded and we can’t verify the security so we’ll have to screen you as if you didn’t have any identification.” “Oh, no problem. I totally understand.” Well, yeah, that’s what I said on the outside, and I really did totally understand, but it didn’t stop me from searching for any ID that may serve as verification. You won’t be surprised to hear that while TSA may entertain your efforts when you pull out your Sam’s Wholesale Club Membership card, it won’t meet the need for identity verification.
In my mind I was thinking, “Unbelievable. I knew I should’ve brought my passport.” All the while proceeding up to the body scan.
“Ma’am, are you wearing a belt or do you have anything in your pockets? “
“Okay, well we are going to have to pat you down…..” and on and on went the description of how intimate the TSA agent and I would be there in the middle of everyone shuffling out of the security check point. They are so polite and asked if I’d like a private screening room. I declined. It’d just take more time.
Again, those nonchalant words, “no problem.” Honestly, it really wasn’t. I had just experienced a thorough pat down last month when we went to El Salvador. What’s one more? Can’t say I’d like to put myself on a monthly sign-up, but I understood and appreciate the need for security.
The agent proceeds with her assessment, honing in on my right leg. As she pats and then rubs and then pats and then rubs she pauses and looks at me asking, “What is this?”
“Are you feeling the edge of my pocket?” I’m internally reasoning that these are skinny jeans and you can pretty much outline every crease and crevice. Somewhat agitated, or maybe it was simply confused, she pats and rubs again firmly restating the concerned location, “No, right here.”
“Oh, you are feeling my scar tissue. I am a burn survivor and my scars are not smooth like skin.” No big deal right?
“Ma’am, I am so sorry, but I have to take you to a private screening room.”
Once more, my reply, “No problem.”
We trudged on to the private screening room. And you know what happened. I was depantsed! I’m not sure that’s even a word. Probably not since it’s underlined red on my screen, but it’s something my kids say when Gavin tries to be funny and unexpectedly jerks Caden’s pants down to his ankles. (He gets in trouble for that by the way. Gracious that boy is ornery!)
While this may or may not be an occurrence in The Meadows’ Home on any given day, I certainly never fathomed the possibility of it happening to me at the airport! And on a time I was already bummed about traveling by myself! The true irony is found in what I said for the week preceding my trip, “I just have to put my big girl britches on and go,” never imagining for a second those big girl britches would be pulled down the minute I checked in!
So maybe it kind of was a big deal. But I really do understand the caution and I appreciate it.
Today, shuffling back through the security line, I again had the whole body scan. The agent asks, “Ma’am, do you have on a belt or anything in your pockets?” I replied, “No.” She explained the need for the pat down again offering a private screening room. I told her I have metal in my body from an old burn injury and also, that when she pats me down she’d feel scar tissue. She continued, took a wipe-down sample of my hands and sent me on the way after that little machine popped up the results.
Needless to say, it’s been a very humbling airport experience, this trip.
But humility seemed to be the overall theme while attending my first writer’s and speaker’s conference here.
See, I stepped way out of my comfort zone and pitched my book idea to a publisher and agent while I was here. It’s a whole new world to me of One Sheets and Book Proposals, but it’s what the Lord has nudged me to step into. Why, oh why?
I’m so happy being wife and mom. I’m so happy being a NICU nurse. I’m so happy having the opportunities to speak for special events. And I’m so happy, tucked away with you here in my tiny, tiny spot in the massive blogging world.
But the Lord is asking me to humble myself and ask you to help me (which by the way doesn’t feel nearly as humiliating as having someone pull my pants down—it’s all perspective, right?).
You see, what is between my message of hope and healing being published, and getting into the hands and hearts of people who need it, is a number. The number publisher’s and agent’s want to see is at least 10,000 people who are already a part of my audience, who follow my blog and interact with me through it.
My words to the publisher, “I’ll never do that.” She said, “Don’t say that. You never know. You can get your numbers up and come see me next year.” I replied, “That’s just not where my heart is.” It’s not about a number to me. It’s about personal connection with people. It seems oversimplified and maybe impersonal merely trying to reach a number, but numbers are people and my heart is for people—whether it’s at the post office, folding endless loads of laundry, working as a nurse or speaking at a church.
Friends, I’m not sure exactly what this whole writing/speaking journey will look like. I just know I’m suppose to be right where God wants me to be, taking my little steps of obedience as He leads.
Today, I got to keep my pants on (praise the Lord!) but I’m humbling myself and asking you to help me build these numbers. It feels like a stretch but I remember another 10,000 number I felt was completely unattainable—and it was – in human standards. The website.
HeatherMeadows.com had a $10,000 price tag on it just a little over a year ago, and the Lord moved on the hearts of a generous, precious couple and they gave it to us for free! And became special friends of ours! Bonus! I’m thinking the Lord wants me to get something about this 10,000 number.
Thank you to those whom have given me the opportunity to come and speak for your schools, special events and churches. Your investment into me completely provided for me to come for this conference and gain development as a speaker and writer! I couldn’t have been here if it weren't for you and I can’t go on without you!
I appreciate you so much!!!!
See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:19 NIV ~ Thank you, Lord for new things and for making a way!
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Here are some fabulous sites to check out of some fabulous women I met at She Speaks. I feel deeply privileged to have learned and grown alongside them these last few days.
Jacob's Hope by Dr. Laura Sparks