“Don’t Judge Me…”

DON'T JUDGE ME...

I was on my third day of being sick. She wanted to bring me coffee anyway.

I’m not one to turn down a piping hot beverage someone else volunteers to bring my way. It’s just not in my nature. So I let her come.

Even though I didn’t feel up to it, I showered. Brushed my teeth. Put on my nicest (coincidentally my newest) pair of sweatpants. I even dabbed on some eyeliner in an attempt to look more like a real person. She came over, we sat and chatted, and she treated me to a piping hot cup of vanilla latte. Not even a small. She got me a medium.

This is friendship, folks.

And as good of friends we are, when she went to throw her used kleenex away, I wouldn’t let her.

I didn’t want her to go into the laundry room where the trash can is, because it was a little smelly in there. Ew. She offered up an alternative and said, “Okay, bathroom trash then.”

My eyes got wide. I laughed that “oh-no” nervous laugh. As she walked down the hallway to throw away her tissue and headed to open the bathroom door I uttered, “Don’t judge me….”

I’d been sick for three days. I’m not sure what I thought she’d expect. Sparkling floors? No signs of laundry? No trace of anyone actually living here, let alone living here while being sick, or being under 2 years old, or sleeping here after a long day of work, or living out the imaginative stories that have to wait until after your day of Kindergarten to come to life?

“Don’t judge me….”

Even as I said the words, I cringed. On the inside. I didn’t want her to see me cringe. Because….well because I didn’t want her judge me for judging my own words.

Ugh.

THIS IS OUT OF CONTROL.

Here I have a friend, trying to be a friend, and I’m immediately putting myself on the defensive, not trusting her friendship. I’m in SWEATPANTS and had to force myself to brush my teeth, and I let her come over. But I’m worried what she’ll think about our bathroom because I haven’t been able to clean it to white-glove standard?

She wasn’t judging me. Nor would she.

My friends say it to me, though. Often. Because they didn’t feel like getting dressed. Or cleaning. Or cooking. Or leaving the house. Or eating a real dinner before devouring dessert. “Don’t judge me…”

We need to stop saying this. Seriously, we need to.

If you come to my home and I’m sick, or in sweatpants, or haven’t brushed my teeth, I’m going to assume you still love me. I’m going to assume you’re not my friend because of my wardrobe (because, heaven help you, you would be the first) or because of my level of cleanliness or because of how often I run the battery low on my rechargeable toothbrush. I’m going to believe you love me. As a friend. A real deal, true blue friend.

And if I go to your house and you forgot to flush the toilet, or you haven’t taken the garbage out in a while, or your socks don’t match or it’s the third time I’ve seen you in that shirt – this week – I’m not going to judge you. I’m going to your house because I love you. As a friend. In a nonjudgmental way.

You would think if I had my wits about enough to realize this friend knew I was sick, brought me a coffee of my favorite variety in a size that completely spoils me, and stuck around without wearing a mask or being afraid to be a part of my life that day, I would be pretty clear on the fact she wasn’t wearing a black robe of authority under her gavel-hiding sweatshirt.

Chances are, if you’re judging me, you have no desire to come over to see me on a good day. Let alone when I’m a bit down in the mouth.

So don’t judge me for saying this, but let’s stop saying “don’t judge me” for things that don’t even qualify as a trivial offense. My house is littered with toys and laundry and the trash bag is stinky. Big deal. I wear sweatpants every day sometimes. Big deal. I left evidence in the bathroom of the kids being bathed the night before. Big deal.

So, to my coffee-bearing-errand-running dear friend, I’m sorry I ever uttered those words. I’m not sure why I said them, since I’m entirely confident judging me would have been the last thing you’d do as a result of trying to throw a kleenex away.

I don’t have hard-hearted friends who want to boost their own egos by coming over to observe my shortcomings. I don’t have to qualify someone wanting to throw their kleenex away with a dissertation on why my home is in disarray and perhaps if they come back when I’ve had a chance to catch up on life and homemaking, they can use the trashcan of their choice. I don’t have to worry I’m going to be judged for something not at all judge-worthy.

Let’s stop turning the trivial into critical. Live life, especially with those who can do life with you in all kinds of stages and phases, and whatever happens…is going to be awesome.

I was sick for three days, and my home fell apart but you know what? I got to nap. And write. And wear sweatpants.

And nobody judged me for any of it.