If there seems to be a singular trait that Little Lady has inherited from her mama, it’s a frustration from those who try too hard. For the past 2 nights we’ve had an evening spurt of her being tired and us holding her, trying to get her to sleep. Finally husband just put her down in the basket and, amazingly enough, she just falls right to sleep. We are learning that all the jostling and bouncing and holding and patting may just be the thing that is keeping her from the goal: sleep.

The try-too-hard is one of my biggest pet peeves, right up there with Times New Roman and Chips in the Ice Cream (*although Graeter’s chips have made me reconsider such blanket statements. But they’re not true chips. They’re morsels of fudgey goodness). Sadly enough, I find TTH offenders in all walks of life, both individually and corporately.

Husband and I were just reflecting on one such offender the other day, who is rather close to us. She’s a wonderful woman, and when she acts very natural and herself, she’s quite enjoyable. However, the TTH streak in her when she’s around friends or if she’s trying to show off is more than my eyes can handle and they typically start rolling toward the sky in exasperation. She just wants to be funny and cool, but it typically comes out mean and bitey. This probably raises my blood pressure because I know my own tendencies to be the same way. Humph.

Unfortunately the TTH phenomenon isn’t isolated to individuals; it perpetuates itself in groups as well. Thanks to a journey toward “relevance” there are several church groups who fall into this trap. While good intentioned attempts to make God and spirituality mean something for everyday life, sometimes these efforts fall into the “can’t see the forest through the trees” category. It gives me the feeling similar to that of that fuzzy feeling my teeth get after eating too much candy and I have the sudden need to brush my teeth.

It can have the same effect as our attempts to hold the Little Lady before bed. We try and try so hard to get people to “see the relevance” and all the jostling and patting and loving that we do keeps them from experiencing what they’re truly after. Sometimes we just need to offer a few tools – a soft bed, perhaps a binky at times to soothe, and them let them work through the experience. No need to create an experience for them or put on a show – just invite them to find what it is they’re looking for.

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