• Jodie Barringer

You Are Not A Wallflower

Above my front door is a placard that Liz and Jessica gave me last year. The placard reads,

Shine on You Crazy Diamond.

Above that is the curved window that heralds the flag

for which I stand.

Above Shine On and Our Country is the clipped title from an article I read:

Adulting Can Be Hard

Above that is a cross the girls gave me.

Every day as I walk out of one world and into another, I walk under

My Faith

My Faith in My Country

My Faith in Growing Up

And My Faith in the Beauty of People

On my door are gift cards I hope to not forget and a comic strip of two dinosaurs standing on an island with one asking the other “Was THAT today?” as Noah’s Ark sails into the distance.

Beside that is a note from Libby and a quote of my mother’s, and a Leila quote, and a Max Simpson quote.

I like home made quotes.

Below that is another set of gift cards and the program from Whit Clark’s mother’s funeral.

I want to write for you what I learned from Whit that day. Whit adored his mother. And he shared his love for her with us. He told us that his mother fostered no regrets and no envy. His mother refused to be worried about and, thus, she was always “fine” when asked. She taught her children to get up when they fell and that life was sometimes the rising and the falling all at once. She taught her children:

Inner nature matures and strengthens its muscles.

Things unseen are eternal.

Hope is a golden chord that is holding you to heaven.

Middle children are the most well adjusted.

Don’t sign a birthday card; it can be recycled.

And, always, always dance.

“Dance, then, whoever ye shall be. I am the Lord of the dance,” said He, “and I’ll lead you all wherever ye shall be , and I’ll lead you all in the dance,” said He.

Beside Mrs. Clark are more gift cards and my calendar of social events and social things. My work calendar is in a calendar book. This is my door. My notes on life are here.

Above and to the right is a thank you note from a small neighbor who wrote to say thank you for a Princess Dinner Party. Beside that is a note from Cacie and Libby and Annie Coltea. Beside that is a note from Miss Lolly Cannon. Above all three is Psalm 23:

The Lord is my shepherd I shall not want. There are green pastures and valleys and still waters in life. Righteousness guides. Adherence comforts. Change strengthens faith. Goodness and mercy guide us. Goodness and mercy save us. Anointing does not mean really getting oil poured on you.

Below the 23rd Psalm is Bode Jordan’s eight line obituary.

Bode Jordan glowed life in white white teeth that smiled from his mouth a hello before you got close enough to get a hug. Bobby Jordan danced through life.

Beside Bobby is written a life in heaven and beside him is written a life in heaven, and beside her is written a life in heaven all of their dances were tethered and drawn up through a golden chord of faith that sometimes is hard to see in the mist of midst.

And I , so I dance.

It’s the learning to dance that’s key.

And, so I dance.

I will ask Daddy to dance to Janis Joplin and I will ask Johnny to play Brown Eyed Girl, and I will embarrass the heck out of my daughters and my two borrowed sons. And, I will pick up my red tambourine, and I will shake in this Christ’s day with a shimmy and a shout because it’s fun. And life dancing teaches us how to follow the beat, how to lead and how to follow. How to step to this side and how to step to that side. How to guage and compensate: adjusting and changing and retaining the birthing of change over change step.

Under the cross


the flag

that heralds

the growing up

that is buoyed

by friendships

supported by gift cards


but not redeemed


by advice of the lives of others


are remembered

by their very act of living.

Remember God in these days ahead of us. And dance, dance wherever ye may be.

He is the Lord of the dance.

And, you are not a wall flower.

Kiss your babies, tell your parents you love them, and take a walk in the park with a friend. With love, Jodie

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