Dressed for Success

Tonight, I will be spending the night on a hard concrete floor of the church with two other chaperones and ten confirmands. Scratch that. Nine confirmands. One just dropped out of the entire program by email. Sweet. The mere thought of this exhausts me. I know it's important to these teenagers. I know it's an important part of their journey but... ugh.

It's things like this that further articulate to me that I'm not called to youth ministry. I fully respect the people that are called to youth ministry -- some of whom are good friends. I think you're amazing people to push these bratty, snotty teenagers in their faith and their personhood. But, I'm not one of you. I feel like a bad person every time I say this. I firmly believe that people look nervously at me when I saw that I don't like teenagers, but so be it. It's true.

I'm not sure I ever really was a teenager. But, really, the problem is that I still look like one. People always think I'm 12. I'm not sure why I can't seem to mature past 12 but I try really damn hard. It's symptomatic of so many of my young female clergy friends chopping their hair short. It makes us appear older. I'm that girl. Now, as I'm trying to anticipate how I want to present myself tonight, I'm looking at my attire and thinking about how little I want these teens to see me in pajamas. It feels so raw. So vulnerable. So personal. I'll bring my ratty hoodie sweatshirt from college, but I'm still squirming in my own discomfort. It's silly, but it's what's racing through my head right now.


Teri said...

I do youth ministry, and not even under duress...and still confirmation class is exhausting and the confirmation lock-in is something that...well...let's just say "don't look forward to" is a pretty serious understatement. We had ours in February and it's a miracle that we all lived. For the upcoming retreat I just called in another adult whose main purpose is to make sure we all live through the weekend.

RE pajamas--I'm there. I wear sweats for pj's at lock-ins. somehow feels less...you know...personal.

Sarah S-D said...

i'm so glad you're blogging again.

i'm so sorry about the break-up. Damn it. Miscarriage seems an apt metaphor. It is a loss. There is grief. A loss of possibility as well as actuality.

And I think your spiritual discipline is amazing. Blessings as you transition to color.

And i so know what you mean about being mistaken for a teenager as a pastor and how irritating that is.

And I wish you every blessing tonight. May there be some surprising grace in it. That is my prayer for you.

No wisdom on p.j.s. Sweats sound smart.

Audrey said...

i am right there with you but surprisingly in this season not working in the church, it is the youth i miss the most. wierd. i will be thinking about you - hope you have an air mattress!