Let The River Run Like Wild

Starting off with a little bitch fest-when I began my blog two years ago, I wanted it to be unique, to help others and to set myself free from the chains that bind.  I have always loved music-and I had a song for so many events in my life, so the next step was easy.  I began using music videos to start off each writing.  Now everyone is doing it and it yanks my chain.

There.  I feel better.

I thought we had found a church, the little chapel in the strip mall, where my in-laws worship.  We live along the Bible belt in Amish country-there are no lack of churches.  Yet my man and me have a dilemma:  every church we attend falls apart after three or four years.  Is it us?  No, not at all.  After putting things in perspective, I realized that when you are growing in your faith?  Well, the more you know the more critically you think about what you do and do not want in your worship haven.  That’s right:  church and fellowship is so intimate, so important-it matters who you surround yourselves with.

We left Hosanna, our last church, because I began to see the forest through the trees.  Lovely people, truly lovely men and women-it’s just that I lost the Holy Spirit connection somewhere along the way, and for me-well, that is everything.  Our pastor was a very kind man, but hesitant to step on any toes whilst preaching.  The worship became more about keeping congregants than preaching the Word.  Personal opinion, of course.  I miss my friends, my beloveds-and that point was driven home yesterday:  after testing the waters that are the congregants themselves.

I bought a gorgeous, Tiffany blue, vintage hat on Saturday.  I collect them, adore them, and wear them on occasion to church-as is my wont.  A few weeks in to attending a new place of worship, I wear a hat-to see how it goes over.  I insist on being accepted for who I am, not what others want me to be.  As we walked in the door, Dwain’s parents were greeting.  Dressed in matching pink outfits (I kid you not, they do it all the time) they handed us the bulleting and we took a seat.  My favorite, favorite Christian rock band of all time is Damascus Road-the very same praise team who sang at our first church.  That band ruined me for life-there is simply no comparison to Miles’ voice and inherent joy that is evident when he praises God.  

This band was visiting the Bridge of Hope church, and I almost peed myself when I saw my friend, the leader of the band, smiling at me from the back corner of the building.

“This is going to be awesome!!!,” I said to my husband.  He smiled and kissed my cheek, clearly thrilled to see me smiling once again-it had been awhile.

Have you ever seen the commercial about the movie in which a family is torn apart because of the way their father praises Jesus in church?  He runs around the church, hands up in the air, thrilling to the beat of his own drum.

“Mommy, why can’t we have a normal daddy?,” the son asks.  I fall into fits of hysterical laughter each and every time I see it-because that is me.  I don’t run around, but I dance and flail my arms, not caring a hoot about anything but worshipping my Lord and Savior.

“Dad, you best move over a seat-when the band starts Sara is going to need room to move.”

So we danced and sang and hooted and hollered.  It was even better than I had imagined-so amazing to see people actually happy while performing and worshipping-not like they swallowed a rather unpleasant surprise, not like they want to end it all immediately after said service.  For crying out loud that disappoints and irritates me to no end.  If you aren’t excited, and on fire for God?  It will show in your performance.

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My weapon of choice.

Simply stated:  many people gawked, a few gave me the hairy eyeball.  It was as if I were carrying a poster that said, MURDER FOR HIRE, I kid you not.

And so it was this morning, when I had to stop at the Monster In Law’s house to pick up some shoes, that I was shot out of the proverbial cannon in response to the MIL’s comment:

“I like the outfit you were wearing yesterday, but I have to say I don’t fancy the hats.”

Well smack my ass and call me Judy.

Thus ended the going-to-church-with-the-MIL experiment.

People, my dear friends, suck the big one.

 

 

I’ll Not Be a Gentleman

Yesterday was Mother’s Day, and I pray you all had a great one-mine started out precariously, and it proved that no good deed goes unpunished.  Indeed.

In a moment of weakness, compassion and dumbassery-I asked my MIL if she would like us to join her on Mother’s Day-at her church.  Actually, my husband brought the notion up last Sunday-and I told him I’d pray on it-only to find that he had been joking.  JOKING.  Unfortunately, it was too late.  My heart got the better of me, and I set plans for 9:30 a.m.  We would be meeting in the strip mall that held her place of worship (Dwain and I called it The Cult) thirty minutes prior to the service.

Dumbassery at its finest.11156399_828561477221503_5855406605992417646_n

Anyhooser, Dwain was none too pleased with the news, but I held my ground.

“What could POSSIBLY go wrong?  We’ll be in church, sort of,” I stammered.

You have to understand a few things before I go on.  My MIL is a narcissist with possible Sociopathic tendencies.  She can scream at volume eleventy hundred with the best of them, and at one point in fact-she locked herself in the bathroom on my husband’s 35th birthday because his WIFE was taking him out to eat.  The histrionics were impressive, but I’m no longer intimidated.  Things have become manageable between us, as I take no shit and she knows this-she knows better than to mess with the likes of this girl.   Everything turned around the day I stood up to her-any attempts to bring me under her control have failed-and with my new strength I laugh in the face of danger, daily.

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So the cult, I mean church fills up to maximum capacity.  I have to admit, between the praise music and the guest (a Christian comedian who had us in hysterics) my husband and I were truly enjoying ourselves.  We sat there for two hours, no major faux pas-I did spill my Kombucha on a stranger, but nothing major-patiently awaiting the blessing.

From the corner of my eye, I see the veneer on her face.  It has cracked, and the pieces are falling all over the place.  She was even drinking her water in an angry fashion, which made me pee myself a little, but thankfully I was wearing a carefree panty liner.

What’s wrong with my mother?

“I don’t know, why don’t you ask her?,” I reply.

Dwain, still mildly petrified of his mother, shook his head in definitive protest.

Before I could even ask, the tirade began.

Well, I’m not even going to clap for him.  (The comedian)  I wanted my pastor to be here (he was on vacation) and the real praise team (he was on vacation) to be here. And…”

I quit listening.  A seething rage began from the depths of my being:  I held it in, but I could feel the monster within, pushing and prodding at my insides-he wanted out, and in the worst way.

I stand outside in the semi-hurricane and wait for my husband to pick me up-which he does every Sunday.  The wind is blowing people’s umbrellas inside out, I think I hear a woman scream, where the HARRY is my husband?  I re-entered the church four times before I finally stormed out and to the truck.  I open the door…

“What the FUCK?????????????????????”

I scream these words at volume coxswain, and sit my ass in the seat.

“I was on the phone with your son.  Sorry.  And by the way, there may be people in upstate New York who didn’t hear you.”

“DRIVE,” the monster says.

“Just fucking DRIVE.”

ByeByeHillaryBlood

 

 

 

Tightrope

I live out in the country, way out: but that doesn’t mean I have no neighbors. I think Jesus made it perfectly clear, but I am not the one to judge. I have issues, too. Just recently? I was doing a bit of ruminating about my sin, and I came to the horrifying conclusion that all of my friends are “beautiful” people. I am actually a bit surprised at my prejudice, as I assumed that I had a big heart, for all people. I do, however it seems to me it’s a whole lot easier to love attractive people. I am deeply shamed by this, and will work on it ASAP.

About five years ago, I found myself embedded in a screaming match with my neighbor, Jeanne. I stopped walking my dog around our neighborhood after this incident, and I have her to thank. Jeanne and her family had recently moved to our tiny burb, and I never would have known if not for her dog, Cujo; who promptly scared the life force out of my golden retriever. After calling for immediate restraint, I heard this:

“Oh, for crying out loud, it’s just a German Shepherd,” came her response, loud and clear. You don’t know me, or how I get when people get in my face. I am a Gemini, through and through. I am simultaneously the nicest and meanest person you will ever meet-just depends on what you’re dishing out on that particular day.

Years later, I am standing with Jeanne.  Who, indeed, proved to be a horse’s ass.  But this particular day, back in February, she caught me while hunting sheds, in the field below her farm.  We took up talking and I told her I was going through a bout of Lyme.  She, in turn, told me to come up to the house, to hear about Essential Oils!!!  I must have been gravely ill, because I actually went, thinking that she was trying to help me.  What. On. Earth. Was I thinking?

Anyway, the neighbor who lives in between myself and Jeanne, is a 90 year old, Pennsylvania Dutch, busy body extraordinaire.  She knows all of the gossip in the neighborhood.  We don’t get involved, ever.  So, I haven’t been close to Ruth in years, as I knew she wasn’t fond of me.  How did I know this?  I have it on good authority, it came from the horse’s mouth. Apparently, Ruth said this to my in laws:

“You can say a lot of things about Michele, but she sure does take good care of her animals.”

So, there’s that.  And a whole bunch of other stuff I have already flushed down the commode.

Here’s the thang:  we cannot wrap ourselves up in others’ perceptions of us.  Ninety percent of the time?  They are going on gossip, unearned reputations-not the Holy Spirit or the love of Jesus in their hearts.

So, I would like to wrap this up by saying this to anyone and everyone who delights in being in my bizness:

You people are the human version of menstrual cramps.

Tears Dry On Their Own

 

I don’t understand, why do I stress the man? When there are  much greater things at hand?                                                                                 -Amy Winehouse

 

I had a bad hair day, and as I lick my wounds, I will do what I am wont to do when grief, of any kind, beckons. I turn to my writing, and process best I can.  I spent my former life running from anything “feeling.” As a result I suffer a backlog of grief.  I have worked through so much, the glory going to Jesus, who has shadowed my life, since childhood.  And of course, it was the Prince of Peace I turned to-after a hike and shower did nothing to shake the chill of a sadness I could not name.

I hadn’t felt this dull malaise in a long time.  The full moon always takes a toll on my psyche-I suffer a bizarre change of attitude at this time of the month, and it just happens to coincide with my period.  No, it’s not pretty-trust me!  I don’t relish having the temperament of Medusa on crack, but hey-who am I to question?

animal avian beauty bird
Pexels.com

I think we all have our codependency days.  Days when you’d be happy if your monster in law called you-just so you know you aren’t invisible.  This morning I checked my blog stats, and although I’m a big girl with a medium-thick skin?  Well, let’s just say I awoke to no texts, Facebook notifications, phone calls or fuck-yous.  As the morning went on, I had the unpleasant task of having to pick something up at my in laws home, conveniently located directly across the street.  Insert hair pulling here.

I spotted my monster, standing out on her front porch.  I told the dog to stay, and yelled my intentions, hoping she would hear me, so I wouldn’t have to knock on the door and go through the whole, sordid pretense.

OMG, WE HAVEN’T SEEN YOU IN WEEKS, LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT MY MOST RECENT PURCHASE, THIS DISH CLOTH-CLEARLY THE MOST SUPERIOR DISH CLOTH THIS SIDE OF THE PACOS, AND LOOK!  IT MATCHES MY COFFEE POT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Nah.  I’ll pass.

But something really weird happened.  She. ran. from. me.  I knew this to be true, because I have the moves of a full out ninja when it comes to avoiding my in laws.  I know all the tricks.  As I walked down the road, she walked faster.  I approached the front door, and knocked.

No answer.

She reappeared after I had returned to my home, picking weeds in a garden that is frozen solid.

Now, on good hair days this would not have phased me.  However, as the possibility of my invisibility grew, I was actually offended.

Later in the day, I phoned a girl friend to see if she’d be going to aerobics class.  She never returned my call.

These ridiculous nonissues prevailed the entire day.  I got good and quiet with God.

“What’s wrong with me, Abba?  Where is this over sensitivity coming from?  Where’s my self esteem?  Remind me of who I am in You.”

Tears dripped down my cheeks.  I knew this feeling only too well, although I hadn’t felt it in some time.  I have found myself in the midst of pain and confusion, as I wonder aloud why I had allowed it to happen.

My best friend is a narcissist.  I have known this for months, since the day she spat venom at 45 mph, into my voicemail.  Called me a liar, told me she’d tell the girls in class what I said about my in laws.  None of it made sense, but then again-I never listened to the entire voicemail.  After this incident, she begged me to forgive her-and that’s when I made my fatal mistake.

monster illustration
Pexels.com

I couldn’t put my finger on the sense of loss, anxiety and sense of impending doom.  I began tearing at my skin, stymied by my own inertia.  Recently, she was giving me the silent treatment-a well known, passive aggressive technique of the Jezebel.  They gaslight you into thinking it is you who’s the psychopath.  Narcissistic Injury-feel free to do your research in that department, if God forbid, you too are suffering.

I listened to the entire voicemail.

My skin crawled as I heard the vitriolic rage.

The moral of the story?  Go with your gut, especially if you have been the victim of Narcissistic Abuse.  There are resources online to help you understand the disease, the symptoms of CPTSD, and begin to heal the codependency that brought you to this place of utter despair.

Kill Jezebel.

 

 

She’s Got No Heart

 

Fear is here to stay, love is here for a visit. –  Elvis Costello

Oh my GAWD I am going to freak the fuck out!  Clearly, my mother in law has not read and agreed to my Zero Tolerance for Bullshit of Any Kind policy.  Hormonal as it is, (yes, I am 57 years old and I still menstruate. There, I said it) I was in no freaking mood for this voicemail:

Hello, it’s your ((passive aggressive, narcissist)) mother in law.  We need to get shopping for the flowers for our anniversary party (DON’T GET ME STARTED-HER ANNIVERSARY WAS IN DECEMBER)  I’m going to have to find someone else to do the arrangements, I suppose. Love you.  (Seriously????  REALLY????)  Serenity now.

My husband tried to give them an anniversary party back in December, but it snowed and the restaurant closed-leaving him with 30 pounds of cake and a shit load of calls to make.  Now, oh I fear I may spontaneously combust-the unmitigated gall!  Air bitch slap.  Three months ago, she asked that I do the floral arrangements for her tables (yes, she rented out a fire hall-for all 7 of her friends.)  I promptly agreed.  She took me to her armoire, which was full of depression glass, porcelain vases and country crocks.  I had everything I needed, and knew I would still have flowers in my garden come October.

“These are perfect, and I’ll have flowers.  No need to go shopping,” I smiled.

But NO!!!  Why God?  Haven’t I suffered enough?  What fresh hell awaits?

It’s a bluegrass shindig.  I was a florist, and I know that her stock of containers were perfect for a bluegrass event.  I told her what I thought I would do.  I picked both of my wedding gowns within five minutes of opening the shop door.  I am not long on patience, it’s one of my imperfections, among many-needless to say, I hoped we could agree, and quickly.

“Oh, maybe we should do silk flowers, and I think we should buy blue, uniform vases…now wait, we can go to the dollar store and……yada, yada, yada, well, we’ll get right on this.

Jesus, Mary and Joseph. 

I tell her in September, we’ll go whenever you want.  The date came and she couldn’t go.  That was two, count em, two days ago.  She has done this stupid shit for 27 years, and I won’t go through one more hair pulling event.  That’s my hair that would be pulled out by the end of this train wreck.

I scream at my husband, let me at her, what the?, who does she think she’s screwing with……..scream, cry, belch.  No, he says, just call her.

Frustrated to the point of rage, I ring her up.  Straight to voicemail.

Hey Dolly, why don’t you just go ahead and find someone else.  Love you!”  🙂

Tightrope

I live out in the country, way out: but that doesn’t mean I have no neighbors. I think Jesus made it perfectly clear, but I am not the one to judge. I have issues, too. Just recently? I was doing a bit of ruminating about my sin, and I came to the horrifying conclusion that all of my friends are “beautiful” people. I am actually a bit surprised at my prejudice, as I assumed that I had a big heart, for all people. I do, however it seems to me it’s a whole lot easier to love attractive people. I am deeply shamed by this, and will work on it ASAP.

About five years ago, I found myself embedded in a screaming match with my neighbor, Jeanne. I stopped walking my dog around our neighborhood after this incident, and I have her to thank. Jeanne and her family had recently moved to our tiny burb, and I never would have known if not for her dog, Cujo; who promptly scared the life force out of my golden retriever. After calling for immediate restraint, I heard this:

“Oh, for crying out loud, it’s just a German Shepherd,” came her response, loud and clear. You don’t know me, or how I get when people get in my face. I am a Gemini, through and through. I am simultaneously the nicest and meanest person you will ever meet-just depends on what you’re dishing out on that particular day.

Years later, I am standing with Jeanne.  Who, indeed, proved to be a horse’s ass.  But this particular day, back in February, she caught me while hunting sheds, in the field below her farm.  We took up talking and I told her I was going through a bout of Lyme.  She, in turn, told me to come up to the house, to hear about Essential Oils!!!  I must have been gravely ill, because I actually went, thinking that she was trying to help me.  What. On. Earth. Was I thinking?

Anyway, the neighbor who lives in between myself and Jeanne, is a 90 year old, Pennsylvania Dutch, busy body extraordinaire.  She knows all of the gossip in the neighborhood.  We don’t get involved, ever.  So, I haven’t been close to Ruth in years, as I knew she wasn’t fond of me.  How did I know this?  I have it on good authority, it came from the horse’s mouth. Apparently, Ruth said this to my in laws:

“You can say a lot of things about Michele, but she sure does take good care of her animals.”

So, there’s that.  And a whole bunch of other stuff I have already flushed down the commode.

Here’s the thang:  we cannot wrap ourselves up in others’ perceptions of us.  Ninety percent of the time?  They are going on gossip, unearned reputations-not the Holy Spirit or the love of Jesus in their hearts.

So, I would like to wrap this up by saying this to anyone and everyone who delights in being in my bizness:

You people are the human version of menstrual cramps.

 

And Go Our Separate Ways…

What if you woke up one day and every person, place and memory turned out to be an illusion? What if all that you knew to be true was pulled out from beneath you, and turning to Jesus was your only means of comfort? Would you give up, or would you fight with everything in you to resurrect your life and any and all hope left?

GodInsideYou

When did things change? Or better yet, when did you d ecide that your life was just that, yours? That you had every right in the world to have your own opinion, your own faith, your own convictions…even if the comments from the peanut gallery were set up to rob you of all self esteem, authenticity, and strength.

addiction adult capsule capsules
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

If you were this girl? You would turn to pills and alcohol to numb the pain and blur the lines. And I did this for years and years: too sensitive to live life on life’s terms, too strong to end it (and I did attempt that twice-that is twice that I can recall) and surrounded on all sides by people who claimed to care for you. You knew better, of course. It began as a trickle of doubt, turned into raging river of certainty, and by the time God brought you through to the other side? You knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that these sheeple wanted nothing more than to bring you down, and kick you while you lay there bleeding.

As we face another holiday, I am more determined than ever to turn the page. I will be having Christmas at my home, rather than trotting down the road to monster in lawville. Thanksgiving, an unmitigated disaster, brought the point home and hard: take your life back, stand up and for once and for all stop punishing yourself! You tried to love them, but they brought you nothing but pain and regret. You simply cannot fix stupid, and when you see stupid-run for your very lives.

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Don’t worry about what people think. Don’t waste a second listening to what people think. Hold your head up, walk the straight and narrow road that leads to the Heavenlies, and while you’re at it? Kick some ass along the way.