Within 30 seconds of getting in the car, I had started crying. It was going to be a brief car ride, maybe 15 minutes long, and I ended up crying for about 13 1/2 of those minutes. Considering our destination was a church we were going to speak at, the timing couldn't have been worse. I fanned my face. I forced myself to smile. I stuck my head out the window. I talked it out; reasoning with myself as to why I was just fine.
Except I wasn't, and just when I thought I had myself under control I'd start crying again.
Once we got inside, I went to the bathroom to assess the situation. I definitely couldn't hide it. The evidence of tears was hot on my face, streaking pale through my blush and forcing my eyelashes to bunch together; bonded by tiny droplets of emotion.
We went to meet the Pastor, a very nice young guy whose eyes lingered on me in confusion for a couple of seconds and then quickly transferred to the much happier husband standing next to me. I understood. No need to talk to the one who is clearly dragging some sort of baggage inside with her.
I began putting packets of information together and found healing (and a few more tears) speaking with a couple of my Aunts who were there to listen to us share. With a renewed resolve I stepped into the world and struck up a conversation with a group of teenage girls who had come specifically to meet us. I stood there chatting with them, learning their names, proving to them how cool I was, until finally I couldn't handle it and said something like this:
They responded with several seconds of stunned silence. (Had an adult ever talked to them like this before?) They said a couple of encouraging, sweet comments and then we went back to our normal conversation. From that point on, I felt so free, and so proud of myself for resisting the temptation of looking like I have it all together all the time. How come no one ever talks about how tempting that is? Does anyone else struggle with it or am I the only one?