The Job Description

This weekend I had the pleasure of enjoying lunch with old friends.  The McGill’s have been in my life ever since I met The Mister and as the in-laws of his sister, Mrs. McGill and I somehow seem more like family than acquaintances. We share a love of knitting and The Goodwill store and usually I can glean some tidbit of wisdom from her.  This weekend over a fine southern meal in which she introduced me to “Copper Pennies”, a delectable relish of pickled carrots that were so good I had a second helping, we all talked about weddings. It would seem that the upcoming year is full of weddings among all the families and we enjoyed hearing about venues and flowers and what to wear to the rehearsal dinner of her grandchildren. In the middle of it, she looked at me and said, “Well, I know what my job is….My job is to wear a nice dress and smile for pictures.”  We laughed at her remark and the conversation turned to other things.

Perhaps the wisest thing I’ve heard in a long time.  It’s important to know your job description.

And your job changes as your life changes.

And no one appreciates you doing what is not your job.

“My job is to wear a nice dress and smile for pictures.”   Sometimes a simple things is the hardest thing.

Sometimes it’s my job to just wear a nice dress and smile for pictures…..not  to tell people my opinion of their life choices or determine motives of those around me.  Most times, others would prefer me to  shut up and smile just to be completely  honest.

Lots of times I feel it necessary to right some wrongs or at least point out the arrogance in others.  These are the times when it would be best to simply stand to the side and look stunning in a nice dress, smile broadly for the camera and let the chips fall where they may.

In a season where my girls are adults and are making decisions without consulting me it’s time to rock the  nice dress and make sure there is nothing stuck in my teeth. That’s it. Nothing more, thank you.  No need for me to share my tidbits of wisdom or help them develop a game plan when they have not asked.  If I could just turn my head slightly to the right and lift my chin, now say “cheese”  There, that’s all we need from you at the moment, you can go now…….

And in case you are wondering if it hurts my feelings…….I find some solace in knowing  the family picture is complete when I concentrate on wearing the nice dress and smiling my best smile.  My children will be happier in years  to come when people look at the wedding photos and remark about how beautiful the family looked that day.

So perhaps you struggle as I do sometimes, in letting them go and watching them stumble a time or two.  Perhaps, metaphorically of course, you fight the urge to “pick out the flowers” or ask her just this once if she is sure she wants to mix those two colors…..and then you remember the words of the grandmother of the groom….”I know what my job is….wear a nice dress and smile for the pictures.”

I’m dressed up and flashing my pearly whites for all I’m worth Mrs. McGill……nothing more….nothing less…


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