I’ve been known to say a few awkward things in my life. Usually whatever is in my head just spews out. I don’t always have the best filter between my brain and my mouth. I’ve been told some of that is part of my charm. Although I’m not entirely convinced, it at least seems better than being weird awkward. Being in a new situation or group of people can be hard and intimidating for anyone and in places where I’m mildly comfortable I’ve found myself taking on the role of absorbing the awkward air in the room. Those of you may not entirely believe me but let me give you two stories to prove my point.
“Did you know I’m a youth pastor?”
A few years ago I had a crush on a fairly well known musician who shall henceforth be referred to as Mark. I was in a community group with Mark and slowly started developing a crush on him. We went to the same church, had similar groups of friends, and saw each other fairly regularly in the Nashville crowd. Mark is several years older than me and had every 5’10” hott blonde falling at his feet so I was pretty realistic on my chances with him. Mark and his roommates were doing a clothing drive for a local ministry and seeing as he lived on the opposite part of town, he offered to swing by my apartment to pick up the extra stuff I had after church. He followed me to my apartment and then into my room. My room was a disaster (no surprise there) so I quickly shut the door in his face and told him I’d be right out. When I reemerged a few minutes later with a bag full of clothes, I started to hand them to him as he went to grab them. We ended up breaking the bag and all the contents fell out – shirts, skirts, and… bras. We both turned bright red and bumped into each other as we were scrambling to put them back in a second bag I pulled out of the closet. We casually chatted as I walked him to the door when he threw me for a curve.
“So, Rach. What are you doing tonight?”
Oh.my.gosh. He’s going to ask me out!! I can’t believe it, finally! He wants to do something! Play it cool, Mueller.
“Uhh… Nothing. Ya know. Nothing.” I responded.
“Oh that’s cool. Well! I hope you have a good night!!” He reached for the door.
Wait, WHAT? What just happened?!?
And then with the desperation of a 20 year old who had never been kissed I yelled: “DID YOU KNOW I’M A YOUTH PASTOR?!?!?!”
“Uh. Wow. No. Uh. No I didn’t.” – He frantically tried to put more than the 18 inches of space that was currently between us.
NO. NO. YOU DID NOT JUST DO THAT. MUELLER. EXPLAIN YOURSELF. MUELLER WHAT DID YOU DO!?!?!?!
“Yeah. I uh. Yeah, I just started at this church and you see normally we would uh have youth group Sunday nights. But tonight we don’t, so yeah. I uh. That’s why, I’m uh, not doing anything.”
SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP. STOPTALKINGRIGHTNOWCLOSEYOURMOUTHSTOP!!!!!!
“Wow… That’s great, Rach. I ummm… hope that goes well for you. I’m uh, gunna head out. I’ll see ya later.”
“YEAH OKAY! Have a good tour!!” – I tried to smile and laugh like I had been in on the joke the whole time.
“Uh thanks… not leaving for awhile…”
“It could be the ham!”
Shortly after I moved back to CO, it was my parents turn to host their book club. Knowing most of the people in that group for the majority of my life, I didn’t want to explain why I was back in CO, what happened in Nashville, why I wasn’t TobyMac’s nanny, if I was excited to be back home, etc. So I took myself to get dinner and a movie to avoid the inevitable questions. On the way to the movie theater was a Chipotle, something not available in Nashville when I lived there. I’m not a huge Chipotle fan but it seemed like an okay option.
Side note – Earlier that day my mom had been baking a ham at our neighbors house. She asked me to go up and get it. Seeing as I got chased by a mountain lion, pulled out of my drive way and encountered bears, and knew there were various other creatures Nashville had de-sensitized me to, I justifiably did not want to be walking down the road in our mountainous neighborhood after dark with a freshly baked ham. Just not on my bucket list. I drove the 300 yards to my neighbors, put it in the car, drove back to our house and brought the ham in. In those 30 seconds, the smell of ham managed to permeate my entire vehicle. Sick. End side note.
I went into Chipotle and there was a very attractive guy working behind the counter. He was really sweet. Near the end of my burrito building process he stopped and said,”I know this is sort of weird, but you smell REALLY good. What kind of perfume are you wearing?” And I was so caught off guard 1) that a really cute guy was talking to me and 2) that he was complimenting me, that I fumbled around to thank him and explain the name of the perfume I wore. Then because I can’t leave well enough alone, I threw in this gem: “But it could be the ham you’re smelling, because earlier I was driving around with a ham in my car, so maybe you smell the ham on me.”
FAIL. epic. fail.
As the words were coming out of my mouth I realized how ridiculous they were so I was like…”Um. I’m gunna go over there and eat my burrito now.” I would have dashed out if I hadn’t been starving and had a half hour to kill. The common theme I’ve realized is that I’m most awkward in front of guys I think are cute. And it’s not your typical cute awkward. It’s the full – on didshereallyjustsaythat? type of awkward. If you don’t believe me, ask the entire Young Adults community at WVC about my signature phrase – Make good choices. Oh yeah. But that’s another story for another day. I’ve also realized that my awkwardness is one of the things I tend to struggle with when I want people to take me seriously. I constantly have a voice telling me that no one will ever believe what I say so I shouldn’t share my heart. In fact, that was one of my biggest reservations in sharing at SOFA a month ago – that I’m known as the awkward funny girl who does announcements and no one would be able to see past that to hear my heart. Thankfully the LORD works in spite and through my awkwardness. I managed to only say “ballsy” once.