Monday, September 29, 2014

Why Does It Matter?

I noticed the odor, but couldn't tell where it was coming from. It wasn't strong, but it was clearly a person who hadn't bothered to put on their deodorant that morning before church.

Heaven help me, I remember thinking, I pray it is not me, because I'll just say it right now. My underarms act on their own accord, despite the fact that I use men's deodorant. That's right. Men's deodorant, because dainty Secret doesn't do anything for me. I actually went to the doctor to see about getting my underarms botoxed ( did you know you can do that?). Insurance would pay for the $350 per arm procedure, but not the $1200 per arm vial of Botox, and since this isn't a permanent thing (every six months!), I decided that Arrid Dry was looking like a much better deal. Lots of Arrid Dry.

I couldn't do the underarm smell-check without being incredibly obvious, so I put it on the back burner (which usually means I'll forget about it) of my mind until we got in the car, and I had actually forgotten about it until my daughter leaned forward and half-whispered in my ear, you need to tell JJ to remember to put on deodorant in the morning. 

So it wasn't me.

I waited until we got home so that my husband could have a man-to-man talk with him, because my man-to-man talks have historically gone badly.

A few days ago, JJ came down with wet hair after taking a "shower".

Me (giving him a kiss on the head but noticing his hair did not smell like shampoo): Did you wash your hair?

JJ (nodding emphatically): Yep

Me: Are you sure?

JJ: Yep

Me: Then why doesn't your hair smell like shampoo?

JJ (offended): I washed my hair!

Me: With what?

JJ: Water!

Me: You need to wash your hair with shampoo. NOT just water. SHAMPOO. Go get in the bed. Goodnight. I love you!

JJ: (no response)

Me: I love you!!

JJ: (no response, but offers a small grunt of acknowledgement)

It took him awhile to get over this wrongdoing (obviously the wrongdoing was on my account, not his, because water is a perfectly acceptable medium to wash one's hair with, and anyway, it takes less time), so I told my husband the next chat over personal hygiene needed to come from him.

Enter deodorant conversation, which included discussion over "being stinky" and "scrubbing your underarms with soap".

To which my son looked at him, in all seriousness, and asked a perfectly legitimate and logical question.

Why. Does. It. Matter?

Delivered with a sigh of why-do-we-keep-having-this-conversation.

We were both a little caught off-guard by his question. Why does it matter?

My kids ask the same question when I talk to them about faith and God and the importance of going to church.

They want to know why it matters so much.

Sometimes I can't come up with words to explain why it does matter so much, and all I have to offer is me. A changed life. A different attitude. A freedom paid for with suffering on a cross.

For twas on that cross
Jesus suffered and died
To pardon and sancify me.
{old rugged cross, george bennard}

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