Two years ago, I had a consultation for a tummy tuck. Don’t judge. I lost a decent amount of weight, and I have what I affectionately call my “Click Tummy,” referencing Adam Sandler’s movie, Click. Anyway … I was curious about cost. It wasn’t worth it for me. But while I was there, the doctor was kind enough to point out a few things, “We could also take some of this off your thighs.” Thank you. He also noted, “One of your legs is slightly longer than the other,” not new information and not that uncommon. But Sal was at the appointment with me and chimed in, “Oh! Is that why you walk funny?”
Keep in mind two things.
- Sal has never mentioned this before.
- At the time of this appointment, we had been married for over 18 years.
Actually, no one has told me I “walk funny.”
After leaving the doctors office, I immediately text three people that I knew would be absolutely honest and had known me a long time, “Have you ever noticed I walk funny?” They all replied, “Yep.”
Sal made a similar statement the other night while hanging out with friends.
We were talking about personalities and how and why we each respond to the world so differently, and Sal says, “Oh yeah. Jenn always does her ‘8-Mile’ thing.”
Okay, what’s “my 8-Mile thing” and why has this never been mentioned before?
Sal explains … in the final rap battle scene in the movie 8 Mile, Eminem wins by laying out all his issues and leaving nothing for his opponent to insult him with. He says all the terrible things about himself up front so no ammo remains.
Yep. I do this.
I’m not sure when I started this strategy, but I “8-Mile” often.
When I speak or teach, some people see this technique as extreme vulnerability, others as a little shock factor, but it’s actually neither.
It is 100% a defense strategy. It’s a tool for self preservation and protection. If I can say all the things you might already be thinking, then you can’t “get me.” I am basically the Eminem of female Christian speakers.
There is this theory. The two socks theory. One day someone accidentally wears two different colored socks. They’ve already left the house and are almost to the office.
“Dang it! I have two different colored socks on, and I’m almost to work …What kind of “two socks person” are you? What’s your response?
- “Oh well, no one will notice.”
- “I’m turning around right now!” (unless there is a super close Target for a quick sock purchase)
- “I can’t be late!” (But I am going to be panicked all day worried someone will notice, constantly adjusting my pants.)
- “Well, that’s silly.” (Walks into work. If someone notices you’ll just laugh it off. If no one notices, that’s cool too.)
- Walks into the office … no one notices …”HEY EVERYONE I HAVE TWO SOCKS ON! IT’S NATIONAL TWO SOCK DAY!”
I’m not saying which of these strategies is healthiest. We each approach these types of things differently, but what I want to be mindful of in my #5 approach is the why behind an 8-Mile method. And when that why is meshed with fear, insecurity, false humility, and self-degradation … it’s just an odd way of hiding, a false sense of safety.
One of my favorite verses is Psalm 32:7 ”You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.”
During a conference a few years ago, this verse was used in a worship song, and as I sang I heard God speak over my heart, “Hide in me. When you feel like you need to hide behind sarcasm or downplaying, hide in me. When you worry about being seen, fully seen, hide in me. Let me surround you. Let them see me, as you hide.”
I’m not sure I can change my walk. I’m not sure I can entirely stop pulling an “8-Mile.” But we can all become more aware, right? We can all learn to listen for God’s guidance in the midst of our natural responses.
So let me ask, what would you do if you had on two different colored socks?