Pastors Wife Barbie

Retro Blog:  Once upon a time I use to blog elsewhere, original air date March 2008

Disclaimer:  I really don’t care if you agree with or like my opinions.  To find out why I don’t care you will have to get to the bottom of the blog.  
So when I wear my heart on my sleeve its not as funny as my other blogs but I will try.   As I am sure many of you know I have been married happily to a wonderful man with a strange profession for four years now (well almost four).  By strange I don’t mean urinal cake tester or zoo infertility specialist that collects “specimens” from the male elephants, I mean a minister.  So that would make me the “pastor’s wife”, or PW for short.  What a wild ride it has been trying to figure out what that means to me as opposed to everyone else.  It has been one of those ‘be yourself everyone else is taken” journeys.  So the brief chronicle begins, it’s a four part trilogy. 
Part 1:  The novelty
For the first six months it was more of a novelty as the bliss of marriage, with its extra dirty clothes and man hair on the bathroom floor, began to invade my life.  The hair on the floor is a literal invasion; they have their own navy and everything.  I think I just grinned and smiled through this phase, kinda like tour guide Barbie. “oh my cheeks hurt”. 
Part B:  Greater Expectations
Then I started seeing what was expected of me.  Obviously it would be tacky of the church to come right out and state many of the expectations.  For example, no one would say “don’t wear your blue jeans to church” even though it was a contemporary, laid back church and I had worn my jeans since day one.   The day I wore a dress (which I hate for many reasons) there was a comment from someone high up on the totem pole. They said “aw she looks like a pastor’s wife”.  Hmmm…. confused much??   I started catching on to the expectations and started to panic.  Way in over my head I joked that I was going to make a pastors wife Barbie.  She would come wearing a strand of pearls, with a book on how to play bridge, and 101 casserole recipes.  Don’t forget the accessory packs; how to decorate like Martha Stewart and how to dress like Mary Poppins. 
Part 3:  Becoming Barbie
I felt like perhaps I needed to re-invent myself.  I bought dresses (which now reside at good will), cooked for everything, allowed my home to be invaded by toddlers with chocolate fingers and hyperactive kids terrorizing my dogs.  I felt captive, like I wasn’t allowed to have my own space and my own rules.   Then I started to think pastors wife Barbie should come with a little pink Bible in one hand and a little pink Prozac in the other.  I don’t have the statistic in hand but the number of people in ministry that end up on mood altering drugs is staggering.  I thought about counseling, even though I was told by someone (again high up on the totem pole) that they didn’t believe in counseling, only deliverance. Point being I was stuck in a rut, and needed something. I voted for counseling instead of prescription drugs, they just weren’t for me.   So I guess you could say my demons made me go to conseling and it was well worth it.  Thanks guys, you’re the best? 
Part now: No more Barbie
Eventually, I came to see that their expectations were just that theirs.  Next step, I had to figure out what God put in me and who He made me to be.  Not what pathetic plastic clone with a stupid grin plastered on her face another wanted me to be.  If they were upset that I wasn’t what they expected that was their deal not mine.  It’s not about being a rebel or wearing a “here I am deal with it” chip on my shoulder, so please don’t misinterpret. It is about being comfortable as me.  We are in different church now that is so wonderful; everyone is genuine which makes it easy to be me.  I feel like I am back at step one but smiling for a different reason and minus the novelty.  The man hair has been here all along to comfort me. 
So in conclusion this isn’t a rant against where we were, or a pity party.  It’s to say two things.  First: don’t let anyone put you in a box that they have fashioned for you.  I guarantee the junk in your trunk won’t fit, believe me I got a lot of junk in my trunk.  Its hard some days, I still get sucked in, I have to remember to  let go and let Him.  Second: be genuine with your pastor’s wife.  If you missed her on Sunday morning just say you noticed she wasn’t there and missed her.  Keep your expectations of her just that, yours.  If she doesn’t match up oh well.  For goodness sake tell her she is a sexy woman of God, we love that stuff!!  So now you see why I don’t care, your opinion of me isn’t mine to worry about its yours.  Thank you and come again.