Every once in awhile, I think Jesus likes to remind me of something: I am not of this world, meaning I don’t fit in and have no intention of changing one thing about myself. I have never fit in, but today the point was driven home in a cruel and devastating way. It may be the enemy in attack mode, but I am a work in progress, and I am God’s work in progress.
I don’t want anyone to think I pity myself, as I find that a very undesirable character trait. Spend enough time with the narcissist population and trust me, you’ll feel the same way. However, I will say that I was pushed to my very limit this afternoon, resulting in a public display of rage and a headache at volume eleventy. The following story may sound shocking to you, but I have learned to expect the ludicrous, as apparently that is my cross to bear in this dimension.
I came here from the Philadelphia area, to Lancaster County-by all appearances the quaintest of the quaint. Loads of history, horse and buggies everywhere (I never tire of it) and a few of the finest restaurants around. Beautiful countryside, small town charm, the whole shebang.
There is something disturbing about these people. Not all, I have met some very lovely people and you know what? They are almost always from somewhere else. Living on the Main Line was different for me-I had many close friendships. I didn’t realize how very accepting these fine people were, until I entered the Twilight Zone that is this one horse town.
I don’t keep up with the Joneses. I keep to myself, unawares of what other folks are thinking. I go to the grocery store without makeup, usually with my stained hiking clothes. Not a touch of makeup. My long hair tied in a knot, lucky if my socks match to be frank. This isn’t to say that I don’t clean up pretty, but when I do? Vintage clothing, the more unique, the better. My mother was a fashion plate, but when it came to me? Let’s just say she liked to experiment.
I remember the first day of seventh grade, because mom made me wear velvet purple knickers, matching shirt and white lace up boots. The kids were vicious, the taunting and pointing went on all day. It didn’t bother me as I had become accustomed to children taunting me, as they did in elementary school-simply because I did not conform. I was my own person, never a follower of anyone else.
I am helping out a close friend, he is dying of cancer. For the second time in a week I was a hot mess in mucks. I entered the house to a very angry man. He told me he had just told his wife and son that he didn’t care what they thought, he wanted me to help him. The narrative goes back and forth between everything’s groovy to his wife hates my guts.
“Now what?,” I asked.
The other day while in the grocery store, making conversation, I told the cashier I was helping out with Scott. Apparently, she ran with this information (wow, scandalous I know) to Scott’s mother in law, who immediately phoned her daughter.
“She’s mad because her mother told her that you were in Dutch Way, bragging about how you’re taking care of me. I just screamed at her and told her I didn’t care that she thought you were crazy, I wanted you around, period.”
“Can you please go back to the ‘crazy’ part?,” I stammered.
“You know, your hair isn’t perfect, everyone thinks you’re crazy. Not many people in this town like you, who cares?”
I left the house enraged. Truly enraged. I drove to Dutch Way at eighty miles an hour, peeled into the parking lot, barely stopped the car before getting out. I stormed in and asked for Cindy, the cashier, who had left earlier. I then asked for the manager, and was directed toward the office. My friend Lu Anne stood there, looking at me with anticipation. I told her what happened. I was shaking and livid.
“I want her job. I want her job. She is FUCKED!!!,” I screamed.
I felt their eyes burning holes through my backside.
I drove home, hugged my pooch, cried in the shower.
Children of God need to realize that they will be persecuted, rejected and even shunned because the “worldly” don’t understand us, they despise us because we frighten them. They are broken people who’ve never truly known Christ in their heart.
I pity them.