A friend of mine told me that I absolutely must catch one of the highly popular “Real Housewives” episodes. It really didn’t matter which location, as they were pretty much the same. I kept shrugging her off because I was just too busy with life.
The other afternoon, when Cliff’s exciting and riveting golf tournament (insert ‘yawn’ here) was over, he found something else to do in the other room. I snagged remote and started scrolling until I hit “Real Housewives of Orange County” with 15 minutes left in the episode. I settled in to an education I hadn’t expected. I guess all this time I thought I fell into the ‘housewife’ category. I was terribly wrong. I am confessing the error of my ways. Here is what I learned.
1. One must wear a bikini 24-7 everywhere you go. (Today snowflakes are flying, so I don’t think I will be getting out today—if ever. Like weather would be theonly reason for the Bikini Ban of 2011 in this house.)
2. One’s job is to lay by the pool all day and I imagine does not have ‘folding laundry’ on the list. (No pool and we are kind of fond of clean clothes around here.)
3. On a trip with your bff girlfriend to Cabo, one must write vows to pledge to each other and share them. (Call me crazy, but I think my friends and I know where we stand with each other. We have been there for each other through the happy dances and the mourning wails of life. Our unspoken vows are voiced through actions.)
4. When your friend has failed to share her vows with you, you throw a huge pouty hissy fit. (???? )
5. When hubby is wrestling the kids at the pool, you are totally aloof and oblivious to the family activity. (water+kids=Mom’s senses on code red alert the entire time.)
6. When child has a paper cut that the child doesn’t even know she has, one totally freaks out and rip the pool people from pillar to post, throw the child at husband and demand that little Buffy is run to the Emergency Room, while you sit pool-side and call your friends with the story of how this has traumatized you. (like I said before, we don’t have pool or pool people, so in my disqualification I bypassed all the rest.)
7. When upset, you claim postpartum depression no matter the age of the child. (Hmmm…I have been missing out on this treasure for 19+years, but now that I know, plan for me to whip it out at a moment’s notice. I can feel Cliff’s sympathy flooding over me now.)
8. You mess in everyone else’s business. For some strange reason drama seems to ride shot-gun with this concept. ( I have enough problems with my own, I hope I never measure up in this area, either.)
9. Most I saw were blonde. (ok, finally! A match.) and tan with perfect manicures and a list of plastic surgeries (just hit the gong now and get me off the stage.)
All those nuggets in just 15 minutes! Cliff walked in and caught a few minutes. He gently shared the revelation with me that “these aren’t real housewives”, much like when I tried to convince him pro-wrestling was not real when we were first married. These gals are real people, but much is contrived for the cameras. I already had this figured out, but it thrilled my heart that none of this attracted him-even the bikinis. He’d pick me on cleaning day in old purple sweatpants and red sweatshirt, looking like a bedraggled red hat lady over Cabo Barbie. Who would have thought?
Most of these characters’ problems are because they are bored and don’t know what to do with themselves. Their only purpose is to look good existing. Even that falls kind of fakey-flat. Somehow they have become so high maintance that it is everyone else’s job is to maintain them. It breaks my heart.
Lucky for them I have a solution. Whenever I whined to my mom that “I’m bored”, she always shot back “well, then I have some things for you to do” and would rattle off a list. I am going to offer for those gals to come and paint my house trim, steam clean some carpets….well, I am my mother’s child and can crank out a list a mile long in a heart beat. Actually, I bet they are creative enough to find things on their own to give them a purpose and something they can take pride in. Meanwhile, we can explore the example of the Proverbs 31 woman. We can work at it together, because it is filled with challenges to keep us all plugged into our families and our God for a lifetime.
After all, the best trophies a gal has going for her is the joy in her heart and the smile on her face that glorifies Him.
Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Proverbs 31:30