Addicted to Ink

Monday, May 08, 2006

Nutcracker Sweet

It's 4:51 a.m., and I've officially decided that sleep won't be happening tonight.

Perhaps it was the four hour nap that I took after church today. I didn't mean to sleep that long. I was just all curled up in the oversized chair and then I looked at my cell phone and it was 6:30 p.m.

Or maybe it was the Nutcracker Sweet tea I drank with dinner. That's right, folks. Christmas tea in May. I bought it see, I have a habit of going past the "reduced" item cart at Fisher's. You never know what you'll find there. Usually, it's just dented cans of black olives or smooshed boxes of Pillsbury cake mix with sprinkles. But today, amidst all of the bags of leftover Easter candy, were these boxes of Celestial Seasonings teas. Two flavors. Gingerbread something-or-the-other and the Nutcracker Sweet. Vanilla. Almond. Cinnamon. Perfect. Even in May.

I saw the "caffeinated" label. Too bad I ignored it. Wish I wouldn't have drank two cups of it. Wish I wouldn't have taken my "Honey Vanilla Chammomile" tea to the office. If I'd had that here to drink instead, I'd be snuggled next to my husband dreaming of, well, I rarely remember my dreams anyway. But alas, I'm instead lying on the couch with all the lights off, freezing despite my two blankets, typing away on my laptop and trying desperately to get comfortable and trying to entertain people with silly words like alas. Ugh. I've counted sheep. I've read. I've prayed. I've tried to clear my head and not worry and think, "I am now getting very drowsy." Nope. Nothing works. Warm milk? We're out (of milk, not warm). Chammomile tea? Yeah, that's at the office.

I was thinking today, though, in Sunday School, how much one little choice can change your life forever.

Adam (yay for Rachel's brother!) was teaching on the story of Adam & Eve, in particular the good ole' apple story.

Here's me being human: You was just a piece of fruit. One bad, stupid choice. Believing one stupid lie. Giving in. Then, boom! Out of perfection. Broken communion with God. Going from paradise to Hell in one fell swoop. The pain of childbirth. The pain of death. Evil. One bad, stupid, choice. A lifetime of regret.

Five years ago, I covered a story about a guy who was leaving a party. He & his friend (both in their late teens) had both had too much to drink, but they decided he was okay to drive. He wrapped his pretty red truck around a utility pole, and she died instantly. He got out of jail a month or so ago, but he'll forever remain behind bars, in the prison of "if only" . One bad, stupid, choice. A lifetime of regret.

Which reminds me of Mike teaching Allissa how to drive. "There are no do-overs in life," he would bark at her, repetitively, drilling it into her pretty little head. "You MUST get it right, because too often on the road, there are no second chances."

But not all of our choices, good or bad, are that direct. We make a choice here, a decision there. What is the right decision? Will our one little vote decide the course of human history? Yes. No. I don't know. I'm really good at second guessing myself. I feel I've done pretty well in most of the big things, but then there are those choices like that darn Nutcracker Sweet. And when I screw up the little things so badly, it can send me into an anxious tailspin of questioning everything else. Or maybe that's just a lack of lucidity talking.

Free will, God? I know it's important, but we humans have a pretty bad track record of making some dumb choices.

So I guess all we can say


Blogger Andrew said...

Intersted thoughts- I am personally glad that God gave us the ability to make decisions- I have been thinking alot about the choices that we make and how they affect my long term game plan for life... makes one stop and think

8:56 AM  
Blogger amber said...

I'm glad, too - and I couldn't imagine life without choices. That's not a life at all!

I'm especially grateful that I was born when I was and not a hundred years earlier or something. Women had so few choices back then. Now, we can do anything :0)

9:10 AM  
Blogger dawn said...

Mmm... nutcracker sweet tea is one of my favorites!

Great post as usual Amber, and very thought-provoking. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who occasionally suffers the "what-ifs".

My great-grandmother used to say, Let your conscience be your guide. I think that my conscience is sometimes the voice of God telling me what I should do. (Too bad I don't always listen.)

2:19 PM  

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