I don't know about you, but game night in my house includes things like hide-and-go-seek, Xbox Kinect, and maybe, if we're winding down, something calm and soothing like Candyland. My first red flag that something was about to go wrong when watching this episode was seeing the dessert table at Dana's. While everything looked delicious, a mom of three boys will tell you that you can't get everyone hyped up on sugar and then just hope for the best. I've lost some valuables that way, trust me.
Before I start, I have to explain my absence. In no way was I trying to back out that night. What you are seeing took place while my family was in deep discussions and in final decision making-mode with regards to moving our basketball team. We had a series of business conference calls that night that unexpectedly kept me away, so while most people will see that as me dodging a bullet (or being sprinkled by angel dust!), I also see that as me not being there to try and prevent the bullet being discharged in the first place.
Now, about how that game of celebrity turned into a game of war, with the room going from Defcon 5 to Defcon 1 in a matter of minutes. . .
I think part of the problem going into that night was that Brandi wasn't able to get off on the right foot with the group as I had hoped (then again, in truth the poor girl had only one good foot at the time) and when you add in a competitive environment, new group dynamics and a few cocktails -- I think it's literally a recipe for disaster. Being friends with both Brandi and Kyle, I will be blunt in saying that neither one of them acted like the person I know that evening. Kyle was stressed and concerned about Kim's self-admitted state of anxiety, and as her sister was feeling very protective. It came across as aggressive, and because there are two of them, the sheer balance in the room was thrown off, with Brandi unfortunately left on the other side. Brandi has also had more than her fair share of detractors over the last year -- she's been in a media glare that no one ever wants to experience -- and there comes a time when you just can't brush off hurtful words anymore, so instead of biting her tongue and airing her frustration at another time, she went for it.
Good thing Dana hadn't planned a game of paintball in the backyard. I can only imagine how that would have gone. . .
Had I been in the room, my first instinct would have been to separate everyone until cooler heads prevailed. The second thing I would have done is try to convince everyone that apologies can save a lot of time and heartache. It's ironic that I'm about to quote our man of the hour. It was Winston Churchill who once said that "Eating words has never given me indigestion." This is so true, and sometimes so unbelievably hard to remember. I'm the first to admit that apologizing is easier said than done, and I obviously know from my own experience that in a tense situation, things rarely go as planned. Maturity has a tendency to take a flying leap out the window. But isn't it true? I mean, how many of us have been in the heat of an argument, and then those magic words "I'm sorry," just stop you cold? The wind goes out of your sails and you quiet down like a crying toddler who's just been given a lollipop. "I'm sorry" and lollipops, magic -- I swear.
It's so painful to watch this night play out; it’s like watching a wayward freight train just tear up everything in its path. From what I heard about that night, it's not about to get any better either. What's crazy is that collectively, you're watching a really dynamic, incredible group of women -- and I think that is what hurts the most in watching this episode. This episode didn't show the best of people I care about, and that is such a shame. There is so much in the world that is ready to bring us down as women, so we have to make sure we aren't doing it to each other.
Last thing, with regards to my lunch with Kyle. I chose her to talk to about Kim because Kyle is her family and I know she loves her sister no matter what. I relayed Paul's comments to Kyle, and then stepped back because it really isn't my place to interfere. I saw Kim later admit to her sister that she was feeling anxious and out-of-sorts and I honestly hope that everything works out for her.
Note to self: Next game night, wear full body armor and bring several pizzas as the hostess gift.