Side Note: My book should be out in a few weeks so get ready! I think you will really like it. If you are a blogger with pretty good traffic or know of any bloggers or authors that could help me out, could you message me via my website? I can send them a free book to review.
On to the post!
I have a secret to tell you. It is a secret I have only told a few of my closest friends. It is such a stunning secret that I never even hinted at it to my last boyfriend, and I told him pretty much everything about my life. But not this. I knew that his view of me would change if I told him.
First, let me add here that I am a pretty deep person. As stated in a previous post, I have gone to monasteries all over the world to have solitude retreats. I work with homeless people on a regular basis and have even gone so far as to be homeless for a few days to understand them. I write music that makes people cry at times. I love books by contemplatives like Henri Nouwen and Thomas Merton.
I would like to make you believe that the deep, beautiful, mystical Kate is who I am all the time. To convince you that there is no such thing as the weak, insecure Kate.
But your view of me is about to change when I reveal my secret. Making this confession is especially scary to me, because you are now going to know a part of me that I don’t like very much.
OK. Here I go. Here is my secret: I watch The Bachelor.
Now I feel much shallower than I make myself out to be. I honestly would rather have admitted that I used to be a drug dealer.
I have always secretly looked down on people that watch a lot of TV. I was better than them. I would read books instead of watching television. I would not be materialistic. I would be counter-culture. I would be deep. I would be a super-non-TV-watching-intriguing-indie-music-listening-mystical-social- justice-loving-follower-of-Jesus-who-wears-Toms-shoes.
But during the last few years, when I was in ministry school and being taught about spiritual things all the time, when I was working with homeless people and feeling so sad for them, when I was touring and meeting so many people that I was sapped of all my energy, well, sometimes I just wanted to stop thinking.
During these difficult seasons, I realized that I could have TV on my own laptop and hide it a little more. It became less of a social event and more of a private event. So I started watching it. And The Bachelor became my one staple TV show.
I know, I know. If I’m going to watch one show, why would I choose this one? It is just ridiculous. Every season it is the same. The man with the perfect chest and perfect charm. The synthetically-endowed, bikini-wearing, bleached-hair-perfect, gorgeous women. Some of them are sweet; some of them are psycho. In fact, I heard a radio program in which a reality show producer admitted to trying to cast forty percent narcissists and people who are crazy enough to make good television but not crazy enough to bash the camera in with a bat.
And for some mysterious reason, I love every minute of it.
I admit, I have a problem. I all but tap my arm before I shoot myself up with a new season. Why, I ask myself? Why would I want to watch this show?
In order to feel less shallow, I like to tell myself that I’m not just watching TV, I am observing a sociological experiment. I ask myself with a very scientific air, “What is the psychological process of a man who is put into a room with a number of beautiful women? When he has to choose who he wants to break up with and who he wants to keep?”
I convince myself that I’m a lot like Jane Goodall, only instead of watching monkeys and the way they interact, I’m observing a bunch of hot people.
I’m not watching this for entertainment, people! I’m watching it for research! Under my blanket and with my headphones on, so my housemates won’t hear the mumbling of romantic TV encounters coming from under the door. What’s wrong with that?
There. I feel better now. I just admitted to you some of my strongest parts and some of my weakest parts. I hope you will choose to love both sides, and I pray that I will do the same for others, especially if I get married. If marriage is what God has for me, my spouse will be real and he will be hard to live with at times. But that is okay because I will be real, too, and I will be hard to live with at times, too. When I don’t expect my mate to be ideal, I won’t expect myself to be ideal. I will feel more free to be the imperfect me. I won’t need to hide anymore. I won’t need to have secrets. I can confess things and not be afraid that it will make me unlovable.
Even now, while we are single, it is important to love our friends and family for who they are, not for who we want them to be.
As my friend Brandon says, marriage should not be about finding a perfect person who will meet all of your needs. Marriage should be about creating a room where both of you can be human.
And I wouldn’t mind a room in which I am occasionally allowed to watch reality television.