Thursday, April 30, 2009

Go Cho!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Saved Again

Last night, I was up late on this project and, having not slept the night before, felt like complete death. To make matters worse, God was seemingly MIA. I kept praying that He would say something. Anything. A peep. A holy whisper...

I checked the devotional on and it said something about being the pure bride of Christ. At this time, the last thing I wanted to hear was about being "pure." Pure has wrecked so many lives, just ask the ex-ex-gay survivors, or the rape victims who never got a fair trial because they had been "sluts" before the rape. It seemed that God was behind the whole messed up system. Injustice. Pain. His servants are horrible PR people, God bless us all. 

Of course, this little episode was projection of my hang ups of the highest order. So, I went outside and yelled a bit David style.


 Of course, none of this is His fault, especially the silence. "The pure in heart will see God" the bible says. A heart will see what it is and not what really is. My heart has been out for blood lately, and not pure in the least, not loving, not hungering or thirsting after "righteousness." It's starved.  

Then, I put my ipod on shuffle. The song that came on first was about "her putting her hand in mine." Please please please don't call me a heretic, but it sounded like Jesus. His essence. Only conceptualized as female. Or, if you'd rather, God as Sophia, the gentle, "feminine" side which nurtures and heals.

In this way, God affirmed me, again. As a woman. Or, more specifically, as a woman wounded by the "patriarchy", i.e, the family patriarch and alienated by gendered language. He affirmed me as a person with very specific experience and a lot of pain at a time when thinking of a "Heavenly Father" or "Heavenly Husband" or Boyfriend (Jesus is not a boyfriend!) would make me want to froth at the mouth and burn a bra-ible or something. 

And, answered a prayer. Why. Why is this so hard to remember? He does listen, and He is so incredibly responsive...

But, even more than that, the most important thing about this answer was that He affirmed Himself, gently and without condemnation reminded me "what manner of spirit" He is of.  I was able to sense His love in the midst of a total existential temper tantrum. His grace. HIS purity again. He was a perfectly loving God who chose to serve and die on earth at our hands to break down the walls. The walls my anger was building between us. Remembering this was a total attitude adjustment. He is so beautiful, behold the lamb of God!


Saturday, April 25, 2009

Rebel Yelling, etc..

college is what "you're supposed to do" even if you forgot why. straight, "well-adjusted" and "in control" are what "you're supposed to be" even if you're queer as a three dollar bill, and FINE (f***ed up, insecure, neurotic, and emotional).   

if you feel like you never chose anything you've done one way or another, one day you bust right out of all the boxes. school is been bad right now. i have no motivation, no vision, no self-control, and i'm really apathetic. relationships are also crawling along, the heart's door seemingly locked from the inside. 

the first step is admitting that i did this. my choices, allowing fear to be my "god" and not Love. now, the question is, what now? where does one go when she needs to fake her own death? 

there is good news. it seems, at the bottom, when you shoot yourself in the foot so long you're lame, when you're broken, bruised, and exhausted, you have to reexamine everything you thought you were. everything you thought you knew.

my name means "full of grace"/"seeker of truth." for so long, i've lived lies, in silence; lived for other people's opinions. there has been no fence on the lawn of my psychological space, no "do not disturb" sign on my heart. all my life, it seems, people traipsed on, trampled my garden. if sneakers were not sufficient, they brought tanks. it seemed, there was no protection, and no safety for the wounded heart. 

after a while, it was either give up hope of people knocking respectfully or build a fortress so no one could get in at all. it turns out, that one is a complete false dichotomy. there's a third option. build a fence so trespassers are kept at bay, but build a gate so those who should be able to get through, can. 

in the last two weeks, two people have broken into my dorm. both looking for the hermit who never opens the door, or picks up the phone, both well meaning. but, it cheesed me off. it's about more than doors or phones. 

if the door is closed, and no one answers, DO NOT COME IN! 

my anger was and, still is, about sovereignty. the first time, i was naked in bed. the next, i was scantily clad and unpresentable. it's about privacy, respect, and space. 

and, while it is true that i am also terrible with others space and time, it seems, i also have no idea what it means to have a balance and still have people in my life. 

there needs to be a balance. 

there will be no more knockless interlopers in my brain. i will not yield veto power to anyone outside of myself, in fidelity to my vision. in return, i will seek to respect others.

it's not over yet, thank God. it's a learning curve. even being at the bottom of the class. the only way to go is up.


Dazed and Confused...

Right now, I am trying not to give in to the urge to hurt myself. I have done a lot of stupid things lately, knowingly and yet, it didn't seem like any of it could have been avoided. Somehow, I ended up skipping classes again (sheer terror, not neglect) and then, in bed with someone (with a vagina). On Thursday, I was literally dry heaving before classes. The messed up part is that my motivation for being here is not about the future, it's being liked, accepted by people. So, freaking out gets compounded by projected self-hatred. Then, this sweet girl appears, a friend, and then, well, you know...

I can no longer trust my own judgment and I look at religion and feel so cynical about God, too. There are so many voices.  What happens when you can't even figure out who you are, what you need to do to get your act together, much less tackle questions of "ultimate concern"...

Who am I?  Why do I exist? Why am I here, alive, in VA, in college? And what-the-fuck-was I thinking this past week?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

A Barbaric Yawp!

It's been like 15 minutes. 

I don't know how to change the pattern, how to redirect the rumination into hope or health or happiness. I don't know how to stop trying to justify my existence. It feels like I'm dying, or a part of me is dying.

All I know is that it's going to be ok. Even after this moment, I am certain that hope is out there, that God is out there. That life can be trusted. That people can be trusted. It is no accident that one gets exactly what one needs when she needs it. It is no accident that people are kind. And that love exists.

It is no accident that sunrises are exquisite and that music is soothing and that food nourishes. And that strangers and friends reach out. And that forgiveness is possible. Given and received. And that this moment is only one of billions and that night gives in to morning and that the heart knows, it knows, what is true. What is healthy, good, and helpful. 

I have to have faith; Not only because it is necessary for survival, but also because it is true! 

It's true!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Productive Hissy Fitting at 2 am...

I've had it with the rhetoric, with the self-justification, the ego involvement, the guilt tripping, and being bullied into silence. 

*screams as loud as possible* 

Just writing those words feels better.

He's gone to bed now. 

I don't have to lie, here. I don't have to sit for an hour at a time, listening to the same stuff over and over. I don't have to smile, or "be nice", or swallow every word whole to gain acceptance. Tonight, mom and Lucas went to bed and left my dad and I here alone. Within two minutes we switched from discussing movies (movies! a subject we agree on! something fun and lighthearted!) to discussing "rights" and how the ERA is unconstitutional.  Or, no. WE did not switch topics. He made the unilateral decision to lecture me. For a seemingly endless amount of time. Before, the family was happy and laughing, we were playing scrabble one minute and then WHAM!

If his lecture one enough, he has to bolster his opinions  with a variation of "with God on our side" thing. I was like take the ERA, take the ban on prop 8, take the whole thing. Just leave God out of your ugly words. Don't tack on my God's approval to your hatred! As much as I believe that Jesus wanted justice on earth, I also know He was no more a liberal than a conservative. He's apolitical, the purple-party. 

Everything is about "rights" with my dad. If only this were hyperbole. Nearly everything, everything he talks about, is about his "rights". 

"Obama is taking them away", "the queers are taking them away", "the blacks are taking them away!"  And don't get him started on those uppity women demanding extra legislation. How dare we!!!

And people wonder why feminists are so "angry"? Oppression still exists. If it exists in the living room of the most patriotic, freedom loving American in the United States, we're all screwed... 

The irony is, that in his crusading, he robs me my right to independent thought, to the respect granted to another human being to be listened to and actually HEARD. 

But, of course, it's not about politics. It never was. 

It has always been an argument for worth and value. He believes that if I don't agree with him, he's failed as a dad. If I don't agree, then he is completely insignificant as a human being. And, "if my daddy doesn't care about how I feel, he implies (nonverbally of course) that I'm insignificant", too. 

I am a cracked mirror, a disobedient shadow. And that hurts to know that is effectively all I am to him. 

Maybe it's not "factual", but it feels true. It's all ego; his reaction to what he assumes is a communist loyalty, and mine to what I assume is male privilege and arrogance. 

We're both wrong, the truth somewhere between "us/them" or "me/him"; we're both boxing at the air. 

Even knowing all this, I'm angry.

I'm angry, because it is still unbearably hurtful to know all this ranting and raving political ideology is ultimitely more important to him than I am. People say "he loves you. he's just bad at showing it." He loves me. As much as he can. I believe he can't help the verbal diarrhea. You can't deny a drowning man oxygen. He desperately NEEDS to be right just like I desperately need to be heard, loved, and understood. 

In a weird way, I can empathize. Right now, I'm drowning too.  

I am the daughter he supposedly loves and would do anything for. I wish, instead of battling the communists or protecting the country or "walking through fire" for his family, he would just shut the fuck up and be my dad.  

This would be the time to ask WWSD (what would Seligman do? Positive psych). Would he march into the bedroom and try to talk or...

Dammit. And there God comes again (Ironic turn of phrase, there).  

I'm going to pray for him. 

Then, tomorrow, a cue from Jesus and positive psychology, I will inform him that we will no longer be discussing politics. At least not for the next twenty years. Or until he learns how to play fair. 

It's a "victim-y" word, but this is what you call re-victimization. The neural path down this dark road is well worn, a land mine of triggers. It has got to end. Now. Or I can't talk to him again. It's not worth it anymore. 

*takes a deep breath* 



In my positive psych class, we talk a lot about gratitude. It's always lurking in the back of my mind, even if I'm not practicing it actively. I'm having a down morning, so I think I'll make a list of things I'm grateful for and utilize the wealth. 

1. The ocean. It's beautiful to watch, so infinite.
2. My little cat. He's so soft and lovely.
3. The fact that the world is a pair of open arms. We're not alone. 
4. Spring!
5. That I was able to wake up early today. 

Monday, April 13, 2009

Seabird Lyrics 4 Survivors and Victims

I promise with my life, I will bite my tongue
And I won't say a word,
'til all the listening is done
And hold onto these memories,
the ones that drive you away

Sing 'til your heart hurts, then sing some more
Don't stop singing 'til we see the shore
Sing it loud and clear, I promise you
Someone will hear you sing

Sing it without the fear, 'cause I promise you
The whole world will hear you sing


Tonight, I discovered a family friend's children were molested.

By a family friend.

Whom they trusted.

Two little girls. 

It's flabbergasting because the parents LOVED those kids. They did all they could to keep them safe, to provide for and nurture them. It's totally crazy that someone could do this.

But, of course, people do it all the time.

I'm trying not to hate the world right now...

Please pray...

Saturday, April 11, 2009

On a Different Note...

than my last gajillion posts there will be nothing but gratitude for the good in life, and no more impassioned rants about social injustice. In this entry, anyway. (Tomorrow is a holiday. lulz.)  

It is a good day. The week was relatively good (however foggy). The sleep study was fun, the technician and I cracked some jokes.  And no crazy doctors thrill killed me (see the movie Pathology to get the reference. perhaps the creepiest movie I've ever seen). 

Happy Easter! 

I've been sleeping!!!!!! 

*hallelujah chorus*

And, before I thought I was just straight up crazy. Living even three or four days ago seemed like breathing through a bullet hole, if that makes any sense. But maybe this was just an attribution error (this may just be the best word ever!!!!!) and it was just sensory deprivation. "Circadian arrhythmia". No wonder my mind sounded like a wheel squeaking like it was gonna fall off, it probably was. 

There is a chance that sleep matters and that I'm not categorically defunct, or, "flat-out fucked" (thank you, Elizabeth Wurtzel). Hmm....

*let's think about this, shall we?*


Anyway, today, I volunteered to face paint for my church's Easter celebration for neighborhood kids. The "eggstravaganza" was a lot of fun. Paint got everywhere. And kids are too cute even sans paint. Yay! 

AND OMG!!!! 

I discovered The Inclusive Bible!!!

The Bible. Translated by Catholic clergy (of both sexes) into egalitarian, non-sexist, language. It might seem like heresy to call Jesus God's Only Begotten instead of the traditional "Only Begotten Son" but it is so helpful in more ways than one. 

Am I the only "good, Christian girl" who feels alienated from passages in the Bible which speak of "mankind"? Even if, in reality, it, unlike the constitution, actually means "humankind"? 

There's a verse in which Jesus calls God your "loving God" instead of "Heavenly Father" and I literally bawled. For joy. Because, as our lovely post modern philosophers point out, language is not fixed. And, certain words have accrued such cultural baggage they're not even what the original writer intended. When somebody says "father" to me, I hear "distant, scary yelling guy", but, you know, in the sky. By and by.

"Loving God". Well, that is somewhat easier to conceive. "Loving God", in that moment, meant both mother and father, friend and lover, savior and redeemer, rabbi, and this meager construct of language just ripped my intellectual sky in two. Just like the curtain in the temple.  
Reading this Bible, I glimpsed Jesus, not just His "Name." (Neither as a curse word or manipulative tool  to compel belief or conformity.) It was like He was there tangibly, inviting me into the sun, into loving and being loved. It was like drinking cool water after being in unbearably hot weather. Like looking through Jesus as window to God, to everything. The historical and cosmic Christ in one.

The words both included and transcended His presence. Near me? In me? 

It seems so ethereal. Speaking of spiritual experiences is nearly impossible. But, really, that moment was no doubt the meaning of Easter. God alive. God with us. (ok, that's Christmas. So what?)

Hallelujah. Since then, I've been ridiculously happy, at peace. 

And, as life is wont to do, these recent experiences got me thinking. In one of my classes, we're studying religion and spirituality. Religion was defined as seeking significance through a search for the sacred and, spirituality as the search for the sacred. I started thinking about "church" and the eggstravaganza. And how contrived it seems to sit in a building to commune with a being who is supposedly everywhere. Why didn't we go outside and look at the sky, sit in the breeze? 

But, then, I thought, if we are together, we are All together. A pot luck or kitschy celebration with Friends is infinitely better than being alone even watching a sunrise...(and sunrises are amazing!)

Yay panentheism! lol. 

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Throwing My Arms Around Morrissey

I was thisclose to having a nervous break down two minutes ago.

Then, I found this:

sure, he's old enough to be my father, and dances like he's drunk but somehow, he manages to be fricking adorable.


The original emo boy.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


So, the sleep doctor suspects my oversized tongue(?) is choking me at night, evinced by the swamp of drool on the pillow. This, in turn, disrupts the sleep cycle and this, in turn, contributes to my feeling like being run over a truck in the morning. Or afternoon. Really, any time. This explains why no amount of sleep has been refreshing for the last six years. Cripples, he said, in so many words, frequently have this problem.

He also said that I didn’t open my mouth wide enough. Of course, that could have had something to do with the wooden stick halfway down my throat. On Thursday, I get to sleep at the hospital, connected to wires and monitored by a camera.


Angel starts rousting me out of bed at 7:30 tomorrow; And, today, well, was the first step back to sanity. Today, I made it to every class. Objectively, it’s not a huge step but it feels so much better not to be drooling onto a pillow or hyperventilating in the hallway.

This morning, Fayne walked with me to my first class. And, then, later Joey appeared again. He showed me some of his art work (how cool was that? he’s really good, too). He inquired about the pinched, lemon expression, and I told him going to class was freaking me out. A next-to-complete stranger, he offered to walk me (ok, not so much a stranger anymore).

This was very cool. The morning I saw Fayne, I’d prayed for help. The anxiety was becoming too much. The fear was going too far and I allowed it to push me into a box the size of a cigarette package. Smaller. Monday was as far back as I could allow myself to recoil without springing in all directions, and, lo and behold, Fayne appeared and sent the e-mail to my professors that I feared sending. Today, I talked to all three of them. And will keep communication open (hear that, me?).

The coolest thing, though, was that I prayed that someone would walk with me. The length from the dorm to the batten center allows for too many u-turns. Bushes. Shrubbery. In the hours implicit in anxious minutes, there is too much room for retreat. It would be better God, I prayed, if the walk wasn’t so solitary. If there was yet another sign of the kindness in the world, of the reality of grace after all this terror.

When Joey said he’d walk with, I almost cried. Another one of those kairos situations.

Why is kindness always so surprising?

Oh well, let it be a surprise; it means it’ll always be this awesome.

Saturday, April 4, 2009


Today, I have a lot to say, and do not know where to begin.

So, it must start with this: Thank God for Jesus. A God who understands pain, injustice, betrayal, and abandonment. Thank God for a God with scars. Thank God that He's not a man (of course, maybe Ze is a better pronoun for this), or a woman and that Ze does not have a race or a political party. That Ze doesn't think like me, or you and that Ze thinks bigger than us...

That being said, my dad started a conversation about Rush Limbaugh and his summit for women which somehow ended up being about socialism. How special interest groups function under socialist ideologies and its all power grab 

(which, true enough, it IS about power. But not about taking power away from anyone but instead, evening it out. Somehow, pointing out inequality is sexist). Somehow, we ended up discussing Thomas Paine and the constitution. 

What is maddening as even as my dad claimed women were equal in society to men, he called feminists lesbians (where have we heard that before) and then, claimed that lesbians weren't REAL women. Then, he said that black people were the n word, and that gay men weren't real men either.

Then, he talked about how there discrimination no longer exists.

See, the thing is, special interest groups exist because of power. Or, lack thereof. Now that non white, non male folk have gained a voice, they're challenging the status quo, they get blasted. Or, get accused of reverse racism or sexism. 

When a woman is paid as much as a man, can negotiate as aggressively as she needs to and still get the job, when being "feminine" is not an onus, when the first thing people hear when they hear black person is the n word, when the world is still so entrenched in this colonialist, ethnocentrism, America is not free. America is not equal. 

My dad says we need to go back to the constitution, where God was in public life and our constitutional rights were upheld. 

For one, what about the rights of the indigenous Americans?

For another, the constitutional rights only applied to rich white guys.

For another, the the founding fathers weren't all Christians. Many were deists who espoused the ideals from the enlightenment era: rationalism, empiricism, etc...

God was added into "public life" in the forties and fifties as a way to "protect" America from communism. 

For another, Christianity as a system hasn't worked. And, in my opinion, as if the Way weren't hard enough, we married it to conservative politics that thought little of those marginalized by society. It's created more atheists than anything else, IMHO.

The point is, the system sucks. And always has. Don't get me wrong. I love my country. I just hate that we think we're Gods gift to civilization. 

Friday, April 3, 2009


Since this week and all the rage, I decided to begin a blog expressly dedicated to raising awareness of issues about equality from a Christian perspective. 

You can check it out at

More to follow later.