It might have been the two dollar cowboy boots.
Or the recognition that followed standing up at that church event some weeks ago when I sprung from my pew to pay my father tribute for all the years he'd given. Maybe all the Mennonite elders and eldresses saw me in a new light that day: Wow. Kehler. Abe's girl! Maybe they saw new things in me, possibilities yet to unfold. Maybe they saw all this potential, lying fallow, awaiting a Mennonite ignition.
Maybe it was the way I handed out the programs at tonights annual meeting. I did it all without a walker, defibrillator, or seeing eye dog. I handed those papers out with a flair- I would have kissed the babies, but I think that I may have been the closest qualifier for that position, so I poured a little extra energy into shmoozing with the seniors.
It's a tricky dance, sitting on the board for my local Mennonite Central Committee thrift shop. (Well, its really not a dance at all, because that would be a sin.) But I've spent the past three years sitting. Mostly quietly, taking it all in, getting acclimatized, acculturated, laying low, staying humble, knowing my place, searching for things to apologize for. Trying to follow the right columns during the reading of the financial reports, never firstening or seconding those minutes because my severe and untreated terror of numbers caused my hands to grow numb and usually brought on a series of seizures.
But tonight- oh glorious night- my chance at fifteen more minutes of fame. A cabinet reshuffle of sorts, new delegations for old delegates. And I suppose my three years of humility bore fruit: a new title.
Secretary Of The Board.
I have a pretty firm idea its those boots.
Because I for sure don't have a spiral notebook and ballpoint pen that our now defunct secretary of ten years weilded at our monthly meetings. I used to gaze across the table from her and wonder; "What's it like to be a real writer? What's it like to get published every month?! Oh, to lose myself in such fervor- such singleness of vision, such dedication to the preservation of history!"
It will such a sweet relief to have the privelege of reporting to my father, the ninety year old forefather of many things Mennonite and thrifted. To be able to tell him that his act of bringing eight children into the world was not in vain, but that finally, in his last, most ambitious exertion, a child has risen to the prestigious title of Secretary of the Board Unto The Mennonites.
I know for darned sure it wasn't the double piercing in my right nostril. Or the holes I punched into my left ear after I turned eighteen and mama wasn't looking. It can't have been that I have an ipad and can bypass the notebook, typewriter, the blacksmith and the printing press.
I'm just thinking it must be those two dollar boots.