I have this reputation that I like to drink. More specifically, I like to drink wine. My family gives me a hard time about it..."oh we better stock up on wine, Kate is coming". My college small group girls gave me a large wine glass as a thank you gift. I offer wine when people come over and usually fill my glass first. Basically, if you know me, you know how much I enjoy my beverages.
A couple of months ago this really started to bother me. I wondered if I have a serious problem. I worried that this reputation would be the only way people know me or remember me. Even my brother in law made a joke about how the only way I would go to cross fit is if they served wine and cheese (although it's very true, it did sting a bit). I was starting to get offended by this reputation that preceded me.
I told my sister this and how much her husband's comment about cross fit and wine and cheese made me feel shallow and frankly like a boozer. She actually saw it a different way.
She told me that they love that I always want to celebrate and that I enjoy food and wine and being with people. And that it's not a shallow reputation, but a call to the important things in life. Wine isn't the important thing, but raising a glass with someone you love and haven't seen in awhile is the important thing. Raising a glass on a sunny afternoon in the PNW is a cause for celebration. I began to think about her words and they really shifted my fears and concerns. I don't have a problem. I can stop drinking wine if I want to. But I don't want to.
Currently, I am reading a book about finding God in everything - "The Jesuit Guide to (almost) Everything: A Spirituality for Real Life" by James Martin SJ. This passage really stood out to me:
"For Ignatius many things - no matter how seemingly inconsequential - are occasions for gratitude. You recall them and you "relish" or "savor" them, as he would say. Savoring is an antidote to our increasingly rushed lives...savoring slows us down."
I don't want to have a reputation for drinking too much or needing wine to celebrate, but if my reputation speaks to my longing to savor and to celebrate the simple pleasures in life, well bring on the wine! To pause, to remember, to savor those moments that deserve gratitude takes intention and slowing down. If my reputation is more about celebrating and savoring and less about the wine or other beverage in the glass, then I fully embrace my reputation. It isn't what is the glass or on the plate that matters. What matters is the heart to savor, to appreciate, to taste and to celebrate. I think we could use more of that in our rushed, busy, duty-filled lives.
So I embrace my reputation! I like to drink wine, celebrate those I love, taste delicious food and relish simple moments. I will raise a glass to that! Cheers.