“These are the things that you should do; speak the truth to one another…” Zechariah 8:16
I’m talking about shopping at Target. I made a promise back in April that I would not go back to that store after the stand they took on allowing peoples of all genders to use the restrooms and dressing rooms. It was just not a place I wanted to be. ( Of course there were lots of folks that didn’t agree with me. That’s OK, too. Everyone gets to choose what they can live with or what they can’t. And, that’s the way it should be!) One of my biggest fears was having my grandson with me and exposing him to danger. And, as we have seen in other towns there have been quite a few instances where women and girls were assaulted, spied on or scared while in the bathrooms and dressing rooms. But, I am not here to rehash all that.
I have missed Target. I really liked to shop there and they have many things I can’t find in other places. Until last week I have kept my word. BUT..
****backstory*** For Christmas, Levi got this great new learning tool called an OSMO! You may have seen it advertised on TV or internet. It’s used with an IPad. Well, we ordered it and he was thrilled to use it. It is such an excellent product and extremely educational. It’s really well done. There are several parts to it that do differing things. Some you need to draw…some you don’t. Of, course, my little artist loves the drawing part. So, he was going through paper like crazy…I’m talking 25-30 pages each time he used it. There was a white board available separately that I did not order originally, but we decided that it would probably be a good idea to get it. So, off to order on Amazon and got it 2 days later. They sent the board and the specific markers and cleaning tools. Oh, my Levi was happy! He loves using the white board so much better. The markers however…were a different kind than I had ever seen. The brand name was YOOBI. I knew it would not be long before I needed to replace them….they are small. So I set about checking where I could order them…and…they ARE available…..at Target and Target only.********
Now, I was faced with a dilemma. Do I go into the store and get them or order them again and pay the shipping? Made better sense to go to Target and get them. And so I did.
Oh, my goodness. You cannot imagine the dread I felt going into that store. I do not like to break promises and here I was breaking one to myself. And, since I had been so vocal about my feelings…I just knew someone was going to see me and then I would feel worse. I decided to go as early in the morning as I could. As soon as I dropped Levi at school, I headed there. I hung my head and went in. When I walked past the bathrooms, I said to my self, “Well, at least I won’t be going near them today.”
Oh, it was nice to be back in the store. I could feel the excitement as I walked past my favorite departments. I went straight to the marker section first, because if they did not have them I could possibly escape before anyone was the wiser. I had to look on 3 aisles…but I found them. Bought all they had… 4 boxes! They are a liquid chalk marker and not just a dry erase type.
And, then, y’all…I lost all my reserve. “I’m in here and who knows when I’ll be back. so I’m just gonna walk through one more time.” I mean…it’s not very ‘stick your guns’ and all…but I was just weak. And, I caved. And around the store I went. First to the clothes, I needed some tanks to wear under things and their’s are the best! Then over to the children’s clothes! They really do have some cute things. They make a little v neck shirt that Suzanne and I both love for Levi. Just a little t shirt, but a little stylish. I perused the toys, for some of the new Star Wars things Levi wanted. (I can not tell you if I got anything or not…but if I did…it’s hidden for later). On to the books and magazines…love their books! I walked toward the back and almost cried when I realized I had gone a whole Christmas season without seeing their cute collection of ornaments and wrapping and seasonal things. They had out their valentine candy….and Easter was coming in fast! In the gardening area, I found some very cute patio and deck things. Passed those by, though. Swung back through the housewares and home decor. Then on to the bed and bath. Wow! I could have filled my cart..pillows and rugs and towels! Oh! My!
As I was walking and reminding myself that this was a one time thing and I would not come again…a feeling came over me. It was not a good feeling. I’m sure you have felt it before. And, I had no trouble interpreting it. I had to go to the bathroom. Not I had to go to the bathroom….but I !!!!HAD!!! to go to the bathroom. I asked myself could I checkout quickly and make it home. No!! NO, NO, NO!. I asked myself if I could checkout quickly and make it to Michael’s, next door. NO! Not even that. Actually, myself started talking back to me and said…”Leave your cart and find a bathroom…NOW!” And, then I moved. Straight toward the bathrooms. And, as I was walking, I said to the Lord, “I know this is payback for me coming here. I vowed not to and I broke my word. I took a stand and I failed big time. I told Him I knew what a hypocrite was. But, why do you have to remind me like this?” And, then I asked Him if he would kindly make any people in the bathroom leave. And, would He go with me and keep me safe. And, please, if He didn’t mind, hold the door so no one would come in!
Now you may not pray to God about everything, but I do. If it concerns and troubles me…I’m gonna share it with Him. Even though He already knew what a tizzy I was in. I couldn’t blame anyone but myself for this. And, I made it…to the bathroom area. And, did you know? Right there by the bathrooms that any gender may share…was another bathroom called the Family Bathroom. It was 1 room…1 toilet…1 sink…and a lock on the door! And it was empty!
“Thank you, dear Jesus”, I said. ” You can just wait for me out here, I’ll be fine, now.”
And, He did. I left the room, much relieved, and went to retrieve my cart. I found it and went straight to the check out. And, I left. I had pushed my luck and I got the message loud and clear.
(However, since I love their soft pretzels, I did order one of those and a coke on the way out….but, I ate it in the car!)
When I picked up Levi, he noticed the bags in the car. Now he knew very well we did not shop there anymore and he knew why. His parents don’t either. He buckled in and calmly said,
“Welllll, Lulu, looks like Target bags back there. Did you forget that we don’t go there ?”
I told him about the markers…and said I only went once…and that was it. And I was not going back.
Welllllll, you got markers in all those bags?
No, I walked around a little bit and just picked up a few things. But, I’m not starting to shop there again.
Well, Since you were there…did you go and look at the toys?
I did. I knew you want to know what was there. But, I felt bad about being in the store , I just looked quickly.
It’s OK, Lulu. You know I really don’t mind if my toys come from there. It really doesn’t matter to me, at all. So, if you got me something, I will be happy to have it and play with it. I don’t mind, really!
Sorry, no toys…just a tray for your art supplies, Little Man. And the markers.
I could feel the disappointment.
So, I said one thing…and did another. I confess that I messed up, and I feel ashamed. Not that I think it’s a bad thing if you shop there. That’s your business. It’s just not right for me.
However, Levi will be happy when his markers run out. And, he will be happy when his birthday rolls around. And, he will look cute in his new shirts. I’m going to stop writing now and read my new book…and the pretzel was delicious!
“Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.” Proverbs 28:13