Saturday, July 30, 2005

Flash Fiction #1

Here's my Flash Fiction entry... (thanks to Jacob for the tip) Mine is a short story in poem form. (I hope that doesn't break the rules. ;) I was trying to do something a bit different. So here it is.

The Goddess

Of course, hindsight is 20/20,
But in reflection not having any money
Dan could not have kept her anyway.

His mother always told him that a man
Should love a woman as fully as he can
Silly boy he took her at her word.

Rita’s hair was dark but captured light
And he believed that sometimes in the night
Its silken strands could hold back the day.

Her eyes were pearls of amber fire
What she wished, he could not deny her
Such recklessness he could ill afford.

She was lonely and he made it easy
But in her heart she felt a little sleazy
And tried to tell him she didn’t feel “that way.”

He said “just friends” was all he wanted
But she could see his eyes were haunted.
And such a fierce desire caused discord.

She begged and begged him not to love her
But for his obsession his occupation suffered
And soon he’d lost his only source of pay.

As she watched his world begin to crumble
She knew she’d caused a noble man to stumble
She withdrew, though against it he implored

As devoted as he was, her heart was silent
In the end rejection made him violent
And his treasure soon became his prey

They found her lovely body sad and broken
With a sparkling lock of hair shorn off as token
And flowers at her feet as one adored.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

A Poem

This is over 10 years old. I think perhaps it is one of my better efforts. Too bad the inspiration for it had to the shittiest thing I've ever done.


Regardless of what I may do in my dreams,
I cannot change what has been.
Although I may say:
"If I could start over"
I am fully aware that the sands have run out.

It is a painful thing to bear the words
"If it were I"
Again and again once the hour is gone.
Yet I understand the judgment and acknowledge it as
For I have explored the alternate universes of
"If I had only"
As one explores the points on a bed of nails.

So here I lay the burden at the feet of God:
to be judged by Him alone.
to be judged alone.
the blood of my enemies still warm in their veins
(who knew He would be so thrifty with His vengeance)

To share with you the history of a crime
Is to put my trust in you.
But I see now I cannot expect you to be without question.
I cannot expect your faith to go unshaken,
Nor your respect to stand as tall.
It would not be fair to ask you for such things.
(but wouldn't it be wonderful)

Perhaps I can never help you understand.
But know this:
What was too great for my hands
Now rests beneath the heel of God
And I have neither desire nor power
To bring it hence again.
To hold the knowledge from you feels like a lie.
So I offer my apologies for this poor excuse for an act of faith.
But I have seen even the strongest swimmer test the calmest sea,
Before diving into the water.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

7 Favorite Parts Of A Man

Lately, I've been bogged down by deep thoughts over things I have read on other blogs. Some dark truths are trying to bubble their way to the surface. But I'm still trying to figure out how to voice them. So since my contemplative side is occupied I thought I'd let my randy side come out and play for a bit...

Posting the sexy pic of Vin got me thinking. What is it that makes a guy sexy(in a physical sense)? Every woman’s got that one set of attributes that really turn her on in a guy. – And, no fellas it’s not always the size of your, uh,tool box.
  1. Smiles & Dimples:I’m a sucker for dimples, they go hand in hand with a fabulous smile. There’sa picture of my grandmother’s youngest brother; my Uncle Travis. It used to hang in the upstairs hall. He has this absolutely glowing smile and dimples so deep they seem to cut through his cheeks. When I was a child I’d look at that picture and think he was the handsomest man I’d ever seen.
  2. Hip Divots a.k.a. “The Groove of Apollo”:That wonderful curve of muscle and bone on a well sculpted man that just makes a woman melt.*SIGH* The elegant definition of the muscle structure that implies so much power. Let’s be honest, ladies, we sort of start imagining ourselves on the receiving end of that power, don’t we? No? Just me I guess.;-D
  3. Beards:I hated facial hair when I was akid. Now I can barely stand clean faces. What changed? I discovered that there were some delightfully kinky (and ticklish) benefits to beards and mustaches and that’s all I’m gonna say about that… use your imagination.
  4. Chest hair:Making out with a chest-hairless guy is like making out with a 14 year old…and I didn’t even do that when Iwas 14. My first serious “grown-up” boy friend in college had wonderful soft silky chest hair. Caveat: when it doesn’t stop at the chest and runs rampant and wooly over the shoulders back and ass … then it’s not so sexy. (A few strays are okay but not when you need to use extra shampoo in the shower to take care of things back there... eeeew! It's like, man-up and get that stuff waxed!!!)
  5. Rough But Graceful Hands:Michael is a Contractor so he works with his hands. They get really rough and tough looking. But his fingers are long and thin and graceful when they move. Something about that combination just gets me totally hot. When he touches me, I’m basically gone. I love hands that you know have DONE something. I need a few callouses to convince me I'm gonna get spanked by a REAL MAN. MmmmHmmm!
  6. Hairline: You know that soft, almost dewy spot on a man’s brow just where the hairline starts. I love that spot…mmmmwah! Made for kissing.
  7. Long Lashes:Especially long dark lashes on a guy. I don’t know one woman who doesn’tadore men withlonglashes. It’s that moment when he looks down at something and you see them laying all tender against the top curves of his cheekbones… and in that instant you can see what your future babies will look like when they’re sleeping. *double sigh*

Now mind you. All these delicious qualities put together mean NOTHING if he’s not sexy on the inside. That takes intelligence,a sense of humor, honesty, kindness, imagination loyalty and a whole hostof other qualities that you can’t get from a plastic surgeon.

I’m really serious about that. I once dated the manager of my health club back in NJ. This guy pounded all 7 of these points with hammer and DROVE ‘EM HOME, BABY! YEAH!!! But as a person he was shallow, vain, insensitive and basically a prick. So that lasted less than a week. Besides that I’ve noticed that guys with all of these traits tend to be “pretty boys” who go through women like a dog through a pack of T-bones. However, they are perfectly acceptable for random lusting and drive-by fantasizing.

Fortunately, my man has all the good stuff plus a healthy 6 out of my 7 faves. We’re working on the hip divots, but otherwise he’s Golden. Plus he’s got a naturally cleft chin which is like a Hunk Bonus Point.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Mmmm... Ponds.... Yummy!

because I promised a few days ago in the comments of my interview with Jacob -- Here it is. My most embarrassing childhood photo. I hereby share it with the world. ENJOY.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Friday, July 15, 2005

Jacob Interviews Me

I'm just cut'n & paste'n...
This could be considered a meme of sorts, but you need to invite yourself to the party. Here are the instructions:
1. If you want to participate, leave a comment below saying "Interview me." "Blow me" or "Eat me" are not acceptable substitutes.
2. I will respond by asking you five questions - each person's will be different. I'll post the questions in the comments section of this post.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview others in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.Got it? You have to ASK to be interviewed, and I promise I will try and be clever.

(I'm only gonna promise to interview the first 3 people as I don't know if I have Jacob's energy to interview everyone who asks.)

Anyways here are my answers....

1. You are travelling for a day trip, north to LA or south to Mexico? L.A. no question! In fact I am doing that tomorrow (which is kinda creepy that you asked that question, actually... jacob? psychic?). All my friends are there. Better restaurants. And if I want to shop for cheap goods, there's always Santee Alley in the Garment District (which is part of the reason I'm going... the other part being my darling Godson's 1st birthday.)

2. What is more embarrasing for a new boyfriend (hypothetically speaking) to pictures or your underwear drawer? Nothing especially embarrasing about my underwear (ceptin' maybe that pink thong I just bought that says "hot cocoa" and that's only embarrassing cause it's the only remotely sexy thing in there..) so I guess baby pictures. There's one pic of me after I attempted to eat a jar of my mom's face cream. I'd just woken up from a nap so my hair is like Phil Spector-scary and my mom caught me. She yelled and gave me a swat on the bottom. But because I looked so funny she took a picture. Way To Go, Mom!

3. Beach or swimming pool? Depends. Right now its beach cause I don't have an option. But if I had a pool and it was heated and it had one of those cool disappearing edges and some kick ass landscaping with like a waterfall that had a hidden swim up bar in a man-made cave behind it, and a jacuzzi that was just steps away from a polished teak and brass outdoor shower and we had a massive stainless steel grill with a mini cooler for the steaks and beers next to it, And we had like tree house palapas with a hammock overlooking it where we could invite our friends to climb up for drinks and jenga... then DEFINTELY POOL. (Did I mention we have subscriptions to like TWELVE different home improvement/design magazines?)

4. Tell us, what do you REALLY believe? I really believe that one of the single most important spiritual lessons you can teach your child is how to properly tilt his or her head back in order to receive a mouthful of Readi-Whip Whipped Cream. Everything else is secondary. (btw: that's the secret test St. Peter gives you to get through the Pearly Gates you know. If you over fill and "foam" at the mouth you're in Purgatory for at least 1000 years. And if you air blast it and get nothing it's straight to the firey furnace for you!)

5. You say you are figuring it out as you go...what have you figured out thus far? I have figured out that I cannot eat junk food all day and expect to feel good. I discovered that lack of sleep is a drag. I now know that people who watch "24" from week to week are masochists (I've been renting the full seasons from Blockbuster and I'm obsessed I'd kill somebody if I had to wait 7 days to see what happens next). Also I am looking for opportunities to use new vocabulary ("craptacular", "freshly-fucked-hair","bumpernuts" and "HNT") that I've gleaned from other blogs. Besides that I have figured out that there are a lot of smart people out there with really interesting thoughts some of which I agree with and some which I don't ... and oddly enough I am one of those people (except for that I always agree with myself.... NO I DON'T!!!.... YES I DO!!!)

Thursday, July 14, 2005

And Now For Something Almost Completely Different

For me and many other women
(and perhaps a few men)
this is proof enough that there is a GOD.

As Steph (who I lifted this image from) says, "There is a God and she loves me very much apparently."

A-Vin... I mean, A-men to that, sister!!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

What Do I Believe?

I believe God is perfect, that He created everything and that He loves us.
Yes life sucks sometimes. I think God allows us to get sick with horrible diseases, diseases that He created. I think He does it for a good reason. I don't know what that reason is for sure, but here's my guess: We are basically hedonistic. It's all about pleasure. If everybody were healthy and never got old we'd never know true compassion. We'd never know the overwhelming love and strength it takes to care for someone who is helpless. We'd never know how deeply we were loved in the physical world unless we were totally helpless and had to depend on a loved one. And then we get a glimpse of God's greater love to have given us someone like that. That's not explained well. And I know some people would rather be healthy than experience love that deeply. But God apparently thinks it's important so He lets/causes that suffering to come to us. At least that's what I think He thinks, but I could be wrong. Maybe it has nothing to do with Him and it's just some deal He's got with Satan where they each get equal time (kind of like with campaign advertising during elections.)

But life also sucks because People kill each other, they murder innocents and they commit unspeakable acts against each other. But quite frankly that's our fault. We screw each other over. That's our choice. Choice. That's a key word. We have free will. You can't be free to love God (or anyone for that matter) if you are a Stepford human programmed to be a bundle of Love&Joy. You have to be free to be hateful and ugly too if you are going to be free to love. I think God is totally free to hate us. But He chooses not too. I believe He will never choose anything but Love. I'm pretty much betting the farm on that one.

I believe that Jesus Christ is the literal son of God.
Not just some prophet. Not just a rabbi, or a holy man, or a sage. Not merely some reactionary who created a hubbub. Yes, he was all those things but he was also God’s Son. I believe His mother was a Virgin. I believe the Holy Spirit of God impregnated her. I believe He died on the cross. I believe He rose again from the dead. I believe He did this for the whole world to remove the guilt that blinds us from realizing we're loved in the most spectacular way. Don’t ask me to prove it to you. I won’t. I can’t prove it to YOU, because I don’t know what evidence would suffice. I could tell you how I know (and it ain’t just cause the Bible told me so) but you wouldn’t believe me. You'd pick it apart and call me crazy, stupid or worse... gullible. Suffice it to say that my evidence is supernatural, decidedly intimate and personal in nature. If you want proof, you’re going to have to ask for your own. (But I warn you, be careful what you wish for.)

I believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God… for the most part. But probably not the only one.
That’s going to piss my Christian brothers and sister off but that’s how I feel. The Bible like all historical accounts was written by the winners. These people were God’s chosen ones but they were still human. No matter how divine the inspiration we as humans will sully it as soon as we touch it. Even the most holy of us will not embrace guilt and hold it up for all of history. We will confess but we will seek to justify it at the same time. The men who recorded God’s works also recorded their own. And where God may not have condoned their actions I think they appropriated His approval even when He did NOT, in fact, approve. They had prejudices and bigotries that they sought to justify. Just as men do today, they often put words in God’s mouth. Just because we don’t have a bunch of verses crossed out in the bible don’t assume that all the misinformation has been excised over time. I think it's arrogant to assume that the human race got the message perfect ONE time. We all know how damned subjective we are. Let's be honest.

For this very human and fallible reason I believe that an infallible God wouldn’t put all His eggs in one divinely inspired basket. I believe that the Torah, the Koran, the Bhagavad Gita, the Tao Te Ching, the writings of Chaung Tsu, the writings of Native American Shamen, the orations of many of our great philosophers, and the discoveries of our most brilliant scientists and mathematicians are also inspired by God. (Sorry for misspellings in that last sentence.) I’ve read most of them except the Native American stuff, some of the philosophers and the uber-Geeks but I’m getting around to them Like the scribes of the Bible they too were human and probably didn’t get it all right either. So I look for themes. Overriding, prevailing truths that bind them all together like pearls on a string. And they ARE there I assure you. Chaung Tsu a student of Lao Tsu writes of the perfect man or the great sage as one who among other qualities would be able to lay down his life and take it up again. Sound like somebody you’ve heard of? And he wrote that more than a thousand years before anyone ever thought of Easter Sunday. But that is just a coffee table point. The truths that run through the room up and down the walls are: honesty, kindness, generosity, forgiveness, peace, moderation, courage, sacrifice, compassion, sharing and the greatest of all, from which all the others flow: LOVE.

I believe that all these written works along with music, art, history, sex, laughter, the birth of a child, the death of each of us, the life we live in between and what we discover of ourselves on that journey must all link together somehow to show us the wonder of this Infinite Being whose limitlessness is inextricably bound to His unfathomable Love for us. I know this somehow, instinctively but I have not been able to put two pieces of the puzzle together without discovering 10 more. That experience both thrills and frustrates me. But I long to continue it and I feel my soul shrink when I am not engaged in the search.

I believe that HELL is a state of being not a place.
Hell is the choice to live outside of God’s presence. It comes back to CHOICE. I believe that hell is God next you but you having no sense of Him. It is being a spiritual vegetable, you could say. Only you are aware of nothing but your own loneliness. The only thing that can save you is the one thing you cannot reach out to. Hell is the ultimate tragedy of being. There are people alive right now who are on the brink hell only they still have their physical senses. They still have God present in nature, in good things around them, the people they love, in love itself, in laughter, in physical pleasures. God is in those things. When those things pass away they lose God. The best example I can think of is that movie “What Dreams May Come.” Watch it if you haven’t seen it. The hopelessness of the wife in that movie, where she cannot even leave the darkness when her husband comes for her; she cannot even recognize hope and love for what they are. That is hell. It is not God torturing or punishing a person. The person does it to themselves. We must grasp onto the love of God that is around us now. It is the lifeline that ties us to heaven. Without it we fall utterly into ourselves. And that is just not enough; it is quite simply... hellish.

I believe that some, most or almost all of what I now believe could actually be wrong.
But I am willing to learn. I am willing to question any one of those beliefs but one… I believe God Loves Me. Nothing else is set in stone (wet cement perhaps, but not stone) I simply cannot know it all for certain, but I trust that God does know; and it doesn’t seem to be troubling Him in the slightest.

I don’t ask to you to believe me, convince me, be inspired by me or limited by me. I offer you ZERO proof. Sorry. Not gonna engage you beyond my own experience. My faith is no greater than anyone else’s. I am just a sparkling bit of Almost-Nothing searching for the Something Wonderful that I think is already holding me in the palm of His hand.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

A Poem: Are You Home?

I run away from the screaming.
The chanting throbbing mob.

It was only a question.
A simple question.
Not a test, or a challenge, or a call to arms.

Just a question.
Father, are you home?

They come down like stones
An avalanche of opinion
An inquisition, a trial, a demand for obedience

So I run from the voices.
Those who insist on eyes always forward.

I am looking everywhere
But I still cannot focus.
To the left, to the right, above and below

Why must it be so hard?
To go back to where you started

Let me lie down in a field
Wide open spaces under a sky
Let my mind find quiet, let my heart want nothing

Let the question rest at my fingertips
Father, are you home?

May the sky open up
May the stars shine in daylight
May the warm wind descend upon me with His answer.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Dream #1

I have been known to have weird dreams. From time to time I will share them with you.

Dream #1
Last night I dreamt that Michael ran into an old friend. She had been arrested unjustly because of her boyfriend who Michael also knew. He felt bad for her and said something to me about how he and she almost dated; but she decided to go for the other guy. So I said, "well I'm glad she did, because now I have you." or something like that.

For some reason this really hurt his feelings and he got all silent. I apologized right away cause I knew that I had hurt him somehow, but he just walked away. Then I tried to find him and I couldn't. I was running around asking everyone where Michael was and trying to figure out what I could say to make him forgive me when I found him.

All night long I was waking up and checking to see if he was still next to me. Then I'd go back to sleep and fall into the dream again still looking for him.

So this morning before I leave (I get up early so he's usually still in bed when I leave) I sit next to him on the bed to kiss him goodbye. Only I'm still unnerved by the dream and I'm looking at him sleeping and my eyes well up...

He opens his eyes and after a moment says "what's wrong?"
"If I ever say anything stupid to hurt you, will you forgive me?"says me, blinking back tears.
"Why? What happened?"
"I had a bad dream."
"Oooh," he surpresses a grin cause he now knows where this is going; having had much experience with my dreams. (I once woke up and hit him because he pissed me off in a dream.)
"Well there was this girl who you knew..." I tell him the whole dream and now I'm crying like a baby, "..I cccouldn't fffind you and (sniff)... and I kkkept waking up and grabbing you all nnnight!"
"I know, it was kinda nice. I thought you were checking to make sure I wasn't working in the garage." (That's usually what I do, cause he sneaks out there to work and eat monster-sized bowls of ice cream.)
"bbbut then I'd fall bbbback to sssleep and look for you again."
"Honey, I love you. I'm not going to leave you."

By now I'm laughing as much as I'm crying because I know how ridiculous it sounds. So I dry my eyes. Kiss him goodbye and head off to work (still kinda weepy though cause now I'm on a "HE LOVES ME!!!"-high. I'm sure he was shaking his head and laughing to himself as I left.

How on earth does he put up with me? I do LOVE that man.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Why I Love: Angelina Jolie

From time to time I'm going to offer reasons why I love something that a lot of folks dis. My first topic is one of my favorite actresses....
Angelina Jolie
I absolutely adore Angelina Jolie. I really do. Okay, the snuggly/kissy-face with her brother was a tad disturbing and she could probably use some counseling on her relationship with her dad. But, hell who doesn’t have a dysfunctional family in one form or another?

Here’s 5 Reasons Why I Love Angelina Jolie...

1. She’s a humanitarian: Sure the world is teaming with celebs and their causes. But I honestly believe she really cares about the poverty that plagues the world’s children. When you’ve been blessed with that much wealth and success it is far better that you should try to make a difference in the world and suffer the slings of public criticism than it would be to just indulge yourself J. Lo style. And she's done it without jumping on the Scientology or Kaballah band wagons (at least not yet, thank heavens).

2. She’s a solid actress: I don’t say great actress, although I think she has the potential, she’s not there yet. But she’s solid in that I honestly enjoy watching her in just about everything, even the stuff that sucks. She tends to take creative risks by choosing some rolls that are bound to go nowhere. But I like that Johnny Depp style of role choosing because you can really see an actor grow and get better. I hope she does more of that in the future.

3. She dumped Billy Bob: Really she had no business with that old coot. (Please note that I think he’s very talented as an actor/director/producer ….but as a husband? Eww! And the vials of blood… well I hope she’s past that. But hey, I’ve had my share of questionable relationships too, so I can cut her some slack.) What I love about the fact that she dumped him is that she did it for her son. The kids come first no matter what, in my book. Any guy who doesn’t love and respect your kid, who wouldn’t lay down his life for your kid, kick that sucker to the curb! That’s how I feel. Go ANGIE.

4. She’s adopting an AIDS orphan: I think adoption is one of the coolest things anyone can do. Who gives a fuck where the kid is from? A motherless child doesn’t know borders. Why the hell should a mother who has love to give a child bother with them. I’ve often thought that I would love to adopt a baby girl from India. I once read an article about how some lower caste Indian families felt that having a daughter was such a burden that they would kill them at birth (or even abort them if they found out the sex ahead of time.) I imagined myself rescuing an Indian baby girl, bringing her back home and raising her as my own. So just I love that A.J.'s adopting an AIDS orphan.

5. She doesn’t apologize for her sexuality: She has stated that she will take lovers and not get into any committed relationships until she knows she’s found someone that will truly love and respect both her and her son. She’s a beautiful woman, incredibly sensual and she doesn’t hide that. But she’s not trashy. Too many women in our society are forced to suppress their God-given sexuality and sensual beauty under the guise of nun-like propriety. Or else they go to the other extreme and become Anna Nicole. It’s the Virgin/Whore dilemma. A.J. doesn’t get sucked into that bullshit. She’s a woman, she’s a mother, she’s a vixen… deal with it. (I’m not surprised that a man would be tempted to leave his wife by that kind of honest femininity. Assuming that’s why the Bradster dumped Jen. Which I don’t entirely buy, but who cares why, really?)

Lost respect for me, have you? Too bad. I don’t take it back. A.J. is cool. Assuming she doesn’t go off the deep-end she’ll keep my respect. There’s a few other notorious celebs that I like even though they don’t always get the best press. Maybe I’ll post those in the future.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Conversations With God

I’ve been thinking about this communications impasse I’m having with God. And something Jacob (aka "cannot be trusted)" said in his comment on my last post triggered some memories. There have been moments in my life where I’ve been convinced that God was trying to get my attention. The Venus thing I mentioned previously is one. But there have been others. Here are a few of note.

The Rear View Mirror: I was working on a movie in the costume department. I think it was “Sphere” so this would have been circa ’97-‘98. It was a particularly shitty traffic day and I was bitching at every other car on the road. I think I was having a shitty day in general but I don’t recall why. It was the end of the day and I was trying to get back to the costume house. I think I started blaming the traffic on God or something because I suddenly got the impulse to check my rear view mirror. There behind me was the single most spectacular sunset I have ever seen. I just started laughing and then yelled out, “yeah okay, show off. That was worth slowing down for!” (I only call God “a show off” when He does something really impressive like that.) The rest of my drive felt like a vacation.

The Joke: I was living with my Aunt in View Park. Now if you don't know, View Park/Baldwin Hills in Los Angeles is known as “the Black Beverly Hills.” It’s very upscale. (In fact I heard a story once that there was a fire in Baldwin Hills back in the late 70’s and a helicopter cameraman captured the residents on tape trying to put it out. A white newscaster commented about how all the “servants” were trying to put out the blaze. His black co-host cut him off with a terse “those aren’t servants, those are my neighbors!” I don’t know if that’s true, but it made me laugh) In any case I was driving down a quiet street and out of nowhere a chicken stepped off the curb and casually crossed the street in front of me. This completely incongruous farm animal strolling along a million dollar street caused me to begin laughing uncontrollably! I now know who made up the “Why did the chicken cross the road?” joke. God did. And like a 6 year-old who's just discovered the joke He keeps telling it. I guess nobody told Him it’s old… then again I did laugh.

The Beggar at Laundromat & Horatio: People are a useful tool for recognizing God around you. Back when I was still in that relationship I had no business in I had two very special run-ins with human "Angels." One was a beggar outside the Laundromat. I had just had a fight with my then boyfriend who we shall hence forth refer to as "Evil Dave." I was barely holding it together on the verge of tears but trying to focus on getting my laundry done. A beggar outside the Laundromat saw my expression and approached me. He didn’t ask for money he just said with complete sincerity and compassion “are you okay?” Those three words were more precious to me than I can describe. I said I was fine and then walked away. But it touched me and I’ll never forget it. I probably should have given him a buck or something…

The second was similar in nature. I had just lost my job, I was desperate to leave Evil Dave and I was feeling lost and scared. I went to church and sat in a pew to pray. And then I lost it. I cried so hard I thought I would fall apart. I wanted God to tell me what to do but I was too distraught to hear Him. Suddenly an older man of about 50 or so came and sat next to me. “What is wrong? Why you cry? It is breaking my heart to see you cry so,” he said in a thick accent. At first I denied anything was wrong but since I couldn’t stop crying I wasn't very convincing. He assured me that whatever it was God could help, that I had only to pray to the Blessed Virgin and she would intervene to assist me. Well maybe she would but as it turned out I just needed the intervention of a perfect stranger. His name was Horatio, he was a businessman from South America (Brazil, I think) in Import-Export. He was in town for a few days and he had a few hours between meetings so he’d come to the church for a few moments of silence and prayer. (Can you believe there are people who do that?) He talked with me, prayed with me and managed to calm me down. Then gave me his address and we parted with a hug. Years later I found his address and recalled that day. I wrote him a letter thanking him for his kindness and about six months later got a phone call. He was back in town on business. We met for coffee and conversation. And although I got the distinct impression he was hitting on me, it really felt like I was catching up with a much loved old friend. I will never forget him, and if I find his address again maybe I will write him again.

The Big Shut Up: My best friend freshman year in college was this guy Adam. We argued constantly about stuff, which is why I liked him. You'd have thought we were married except there was no sex involved (actually that's not necessarily an exception is it? hahaha). One of the things we argued about was religion. Adam was an atheist. And the worst kind too. A logical one. No matter what evidence I tried to present of the existence of God he broke it down and made it sound like utter nonsense. At the end of the school year he went to visit his grandparents in Hawaii. I got a letter from him a few weeks later. Apparently his grandparents had taken him on a helicopter ride over the volcanos of one the islands. The astounding beauty of the island triggered a spiritual epiphany. He suddenly "just knew" that it all could NOT have been a cosmic accident. There IS a God, he concluded. So he found God in a freakin' helicopter while flying over a big smokey pit. I was floored. All those wasted hours trying to convince him and that's what it took. I felt very stupid. I could almost hear God saying. "I actually don't NEED your help to prove Myself. You get most of it wrong anyway, so if you wouldn't mind, just Shut Up and let Me handle My own introductions."

Well that's just some of my experiences. There's more but I'd rather not go through them all. Besides I'm finding this post lacks edginess and I don't want folks to think I'm going all soft. It's good to reflect on the past, to look behind you. But I still wish God would help me out a little right now -- when I'm struggling to get through to Him. I mean sheeesh, He should be happy that I'm at least trying. A lot of folks are perfectly happy to ignore Him on a regular basis. Shouldn't He cut me some slack and help a sister out?

Well, my quest for spiritual enlightenment continues... which, I suppose, is exactly as it should be.

Friday, July 01, 2005

All Alone In The World

I had posted this on another blog which I have since decided to delete. But I thought I'd share this little bit of my history, since I will be hard at work on wedding related crap today. I'm seriously thinking of writing a book about breakups. So this would be like the prologue or something. Is that a weird topic to be interested in when you are planning a wedding? I guess I just feel relaxed enough about it now that I don't have to deal with it anymore, that I can laugh about it.

Anyway, have a great 4th of July everyone. And to those international blog visitors -- have a nice regular old weekend.

It all goes back to my childhood. My first and probably my most devastating breakup happened when I was just a tiny girl all of 4 years old. It was the day my mom first dropped me off at Preschool. Of course, it wasn’t romantic, but a mother’s love is the archetype for every form of love a child will experience in life. It’s the foundation of affection, the cornerstone of relationship and the basis for all things emotional. And she betrayed me!!!! Why?!!! Whyyyyyy??!!!

Okay, okay. I’m calm now.

As my mother tells it, it goes something like this. The two of us walk hand in hand one bright fall morning to the schoolyard. I, blissfully ignorant, am babbling back at her all the cheery expectations she has been planting in my head for weeks about ‘school.’ I am going to play all day, meet new friends and have a wonderful kind and caring teacher at my beck and call. There will be snack time, nap time, play time, story time, crafts time… all sorts of delightful times. We enter the schoolyard teaming with the potential playmates who'll soon come to love and adore me. And there is my new teacher beaming with barely contained joy at my arrival.

After a few sparkling introductions my mom bends down to hug me and give me a kiss. The words, “mommy’s gotta go to work now” don’t quite register in the dreamscape of my new utopia at first. She stands up. The glorious teacher takes my hand. And then inexplicably my mother turns and walks out of the schoolyard.

Wait a minute! Something’s wrong. Where is she going? This isn’t right. She never said anything about me going through Preschool ALONE!!!! NO, NO… this can’t be happening!!! I pull away from the sweaty-palmed teacher but the gate to the schoolyard has been closed and latched. I’M TRAPPED!!! OH MY GOD!!!!!!!

My mom is walking away. Her back is to me. I run to the fence and grab the chain link screaming, “MOMMEEEEEEE! COME BACK MOMMEEEEE!” Inconceivably she does not stop. For a moment I think I see a hesitation. Will she turn? But no she doesn’t, she’s actually walking away faster. Hot tears are streaming down my face. “MOMMEEE, DON’T LEAVE ME MOMMEEE, DON’T LEAVE ME!!!!!”

And now she’s turned the corner. She’s gone. The evil, soulless, child-eating teacher is by my side trying to console me with empty promises that my mother will return for me in a little more than 8 hours. I want to believe her, but all I see is the empty sidewalk and the lonely corner that has led my mother out of my life forever!

Now mind you, I don’t actually remember any of that. That’s just what I see in my mind when my mom tells the story. She can tell it easily these days, but back when I was still a kid she would get a little choked up when she told it. That’s because when she was walking away to the agonizing screams of her only child, she was crying like a baby herself. She couldn’t turn around, because if she did she’d never have been able put me in school. She’d have probably ended up home-schooling me or something. That really wouldn’t have worked for her as a single mom at the time.

Abandoning me to preschool was torture for her and for me. But we got through it. And honestly I don’t actually remember the clinging to the chain link part. The funny thing is my real memory picks up the moment I turned around and faced the SCHOOLYARD. A vast expanse that was writhing with the unknown; a seething new universe that I had been thrust into. I was overwhelmed by the crushing loneliness of it. I didn’t know where to start. I felt defeated and terrified.

I remember huge 7-year old boys racing what looked like bicycle wheels through the schoolyard. I thought that looked like fun, but they’d never let me play, I was certain of that. I remember vague clusters of children laughing, children who didn’t know me and probably didn’t want to. There were balls being tossed around in games that I didn’t know how to play. I wondered if anyone would teach me. There was the serpent-teacher cooing, coaxing and comforting, but she couldn’t be trusted.

And then there were the swings. The one thing I recognized and was good at. I could do the swings. I could always impress Mommy with my swinging skills… "Mommy, look at me!!! Look how high!” Yes, the swings. I could do that, for now. But they were all taken. I had to wait. The troll-teacher persuaded another child to let me take a turn. That was nice of her I suppose (or maybe the other child was terrified of her and obeyed only out of fear of being tortured or worse, eaten alive.) When I finally did swing it was only numbly comforting.

Sometime during the day my iron walls sagged. Maybe it was story time -- or more likely nap time. Maybe it was my charmingly insightful teacher recognizing my artistic genius with flour paste. Or maybe it was that first kid who invited me to play something. I don’t remember. But at some point I relaxed enough to let it be alright. Not that I believed it was all right, or would ever be again. But I could let it BE alright even if I didn’t believe it WAS. Eventually I started having fun. Real fun. And then as suddenly as it had begun the emotional rollercoaster day was over. Mommy was back. Time to go home.

The first glorius day of preschool was over and I had survived. But you can bet I was relieved that she had come back for me. The best part was, she blinked first. She couldn’t live without me! I won! Maybe she THOUGHT she could just walk out on me and never come back. But when she had to face the cold hard loneliness of being without me she couldn’t even last one whole day - HA! But really the break up was complete. From that point on we would never "be back together." I had discovered that there really were "other fish in the sea" of human relationships. And as lonely as it might seem, I could swim in it by myself and manage to keep my head above water.

Ever since then whenever I was on the verge of breaking up with a guy the thing that scared me most wasn’t so much losing the guy as it was the idea having to face the world alone again. I could never shake the feeling that the boys wouldn’t want to play with me, that I wouldn’t fit in with a new group of people or that I wouldn’t know how to play the singles game anymore. I’d retreat to the familiar to comfort myself. I’d do the things I used to do with my ex. And then time would pass, a little healing would begin. Maybe some creative burst of writing or a day just hanging with my best friend. Eventually I’d relax my jilted-lover-pessimism and start letting it be alright, even if it didn’t feel that way. Gradually I’d start having fun again, I’d get back to being myself. It might feel like was only treading water at first but after awhile I could just lay back and float along the current. And that's when it would happen. A crush, flirtation, infatuation, romance and, if I was lucky enough, love. It would be like the first day of preschool all over again. So I guess that for me, in a way, breaking up is kid stuff.