So yesterday I had coffee with Shemane Nugent. I know that statement sounds rather casual, and I wish it was. Truth be known, I was dying with excitement. Giddy even.
Shemane is, like, a big deal. And her husband, Ted Nugent, is an even bigger deal. Famous, in fact. And I had the privilege to sit with her at Starbucks for over an hour...as though we were BFF.
I will be helping Shemane and several others with the new Zumba website that will launch pretty soon. My role will be that of a guest blogger, and it all started because my sweet friends, Heather and Stephanie, printed out my "Why I Enjoy Shaking My Booty" post and brought it to Zumba class to give to Shemane. One thing led to another, and before I knew it...I was sitting with Shemane at Starbucks.
Honestly speaking, the fame associated with the Nugent family is not really why I was so giddy. I was mesmerized by the fact that I was drinking coffee with my Zumba instructor. I'll be the first to admit, though, that I can get quite starstruck....pretty easily. In elementary school, I wrote a letter to Johnny Depp professing my never-ending love for him, and I was mildly surprised when all I received in return was an autographed letter from his fan club. In Junior High, I traveled with some friends to see New Kids On The Block. I sat in that stadium actually believing that Jordan or Jonathan Knight would choose me out of a crowd of thousands to ask me to be his girlfriend. (In case you're wondering, it never happened, and I'm still upset about it.) In college, I agreed to go on a date with a music store manager whom I had no romantic interested in whatsoever, just so I could go backstage with him to meet Clint Black. And the fun doesn't end there. Just this past year, I had the honor of helping our church host Phil Wickham and Steve Fee in concert. All of my coolness was thrown aside when my sister called and I thrust the cell phone in Phil's hands and shrieked, "Will you say hi to my sister?" Gary Rhodes has asked that I never volunteer in this position ever again.
So as you can see, people with any amount of fame are SuperStars in my book. And I'm not too ashamed to let them know. But with Shemane...things were different. As much as I'd love to give you the "dirt" -- that she's super snobby.....that up close she's not that attractive....that she treated people around her like servants--it just wasn't true. She was friendly. She was warm. She was interested in my thoughts and opinions. She was real. The fame associated with her name did not define her. It was simply a blessing in her life that she seemed humbled by and grateful for.
The price of fame is high, as is evidenced by fallen stars such as Lindsey Lohan, Britney Spears, Corey Haim, and Heath Ledger just to name a few. It's a big responsibility and one that is often abused.
I was reminded of a scripture out of Luke, "to whom much is given, much is required." Shemane Nugent seems to have a pretty good grip on what she is called to do with the life she leads. A friend of mine recently shared with me a heart-warming story of a little girl with brain cancer. She was part of the Make-A-Wish foundation, and her wish was to spend the day with Ted Nugent. I asked Shemane about this story and as she shared some of the details, I think I saw tears in her eyes. The Nugents have been given much...and they give back even more.
From that coffee date, my eyes were exposed to a different side of fame....one that will impact me forever. And to think that this realization came about all because I chose to shake my booty.