There’s a blog headline you don’t see every day. Today is VBS Sunday at church, and it will be the last time I’ll perform as Checkers the cheetah, the mascot of our VBS theme this year, G-Force (God Force).
I’m something of an amateur puppeteer. Along with performing in the puppet ministry at church, I have several puppets at home that I play with when the kids are around (and sometimes when they’re not). Jim Henson is one of my heroes. So you might think this past week was wonderful,,,
…and it was, in many ways. But it was also hectic and stressful and seemed to go on forever. After working all day, the last thing I wanted to do was pack my oldest in the van, go to church, hunker down behind a stage, and be a zany cheetah.
And it’s not like I performed for two hours or something. I had silly exchanges with “Coach” Ray, the kids watched a video, sang a song, and then went off to hear Bible stories and work on crafts. I got off the stage and helped prepare crafts for the little kids and got to know some people from church. One night, I had a great spiritual conversation with a guy, and the next night, I had a litttle mini-AA meeting with an addict; neither of us knew the other was in recovery.
So why the hell am I complaining? Well, I’m not at this point because it’s over. But the whole thing wore me out, and I’m still figuring out how to manage stress without drinking. I didn’t drink during VBS last year (like that’s some big accomplishment), but I’m sure I did it up big when it was over. I’ve been meditating, so that helps, and getting as much sleep as I can, but I was still ready for the night to be over by 7:30. I also started teaching my summer semester the day after VBS started, so that added to my stress. I know what I’m teaching, but the start of the semester is always a little rough. All in all, it was a lot.
My son had a great time at VBS, and I enjoyed it, too. Hopefully, I’ll be stronger next year and can handle the whole thing with more grace. If not, though, that’s ok. Progress, not perfection.