Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Utah Savage is Bad in a Group

I believe almost every little thing is political. And in group therapy with a bunch of other people my age in Utah I am a badass.

I do not fit into a group here because I am the only atheist in any given group in Utah. And it really does inform my world view. I am probably the only person in any group of ten my age in Utah who knows what Prop 8 is, and I am certainly the only one in any given group who is pissed off about it. Because of my age and my mental illness, I am put in a group of other older people, and at least 75% of them are Mormon and they are in favor of Prop 8, once it's been explained to them. This just pisses me off more, so when someone asks me why does this effect me, I say, "Let's say, for instance, that I'm gay, and I'm in love with my partner, and she lives in California, and we want to get married. Why is it okay for the Mormon Church to pump $500 million into passing a constitutional amendment in California that says I can't marry the person I love, because I'm gay? Why does my being gay make me less a citizen then anyone else?" And I'm ready to take the room on in a theoretical argument about civil rights. They are baffled about my anger. They do not get it at all. I haven't completely lied, but I have misled them. I have shocked the old folks into near silence. I'm not really very nice. I just hate most people. I'm ready for a debate and we don't have time for that, and it's not our purpose here. And I know it. So yes, I am a badass.

There were two lovely black women in the group, and I liked them immediately. How racist is that. Surprise, surprise. Of course I would like them. I assume, and correctly, that they will be looking forward to the Inauguration of President Obama. So at least for as long as it takes to establish what I'm looking forward too, we have a bond, and it sets us apart from the rest of the group a bit for a few seconds at least, and I feel I have found the only two other people in the room who get me just a little tiny bit. But like most people, these women are big believers that Christ is their savior and redeemer and when push comes to shove, prayer is the answer. Yawn.

The group "leader" tries to sum things up for this group trying to cope with all kinds of loss and alienation by saying, "Well, as you all know, man is the only creature on this earth who needs others..." and I call bullshit. I say, "We are not the creatures with the biggest brains, nor are we the only animals on the planet with a sophisticated social and family structure." And then it gets a little bit interesting for a minute as one of the black women says "Yeah.. "

I'm a rebel with too many causes. Oh where to begin. The group leader looks at his watch and says, "Well we have to wrap this up..."

I know that the real reason I got sent to group was because I called the office one day last week in tears. I couldn't stop crying. I was sad, real sad. But now I feel pretty perky and smart like the badass I know I am at heart. Oh my. My bad. Naughty, Naughty.

Okay "F", I'll call soon and make an appointment for a one on one. In the meantime you can read how I'm doing on a daily basis if you have the stomach for it.

PS I know the reason I'm sad is more about my associations with Xmas because of my family "dynamic", than it does with Prop 8. I'm not that damn dumb. I also know I'm not that smart either, or I'd be nicer.

Thank You Baby Jesus

My mother was always the center of attention, even at Christmas, which she hated.

She was a stunning good looker, vivid and dark. But her eyes were an icy, striking, pale blue, and her hair (when she was younger) was almost black. She had a widow's peak, full lips, the broad high cheekbones of her Native American ancestry, and yet, the cold blue eyes of General Custer. And in much that same way she was at war within her own twisted internal world. She was born on December 23rd in 1921. She was a young child at the height of the Great Depression. It was a time when her family was trying to get away from the Oklahoma Indian Territories, and a past that shamed her and made her hate her family. She was scarred by the experience. Add to that the fact that the 25th of December belonged to the baby Jesus, well it always pissed her off. And woe to the "loved one" who didn't make more of Maggy's birthday than that of that damned baby's. And she made no secret of hating her mother and father. So much for the ten commandments. Oh yes, she did take the Lord's name in vane. Um hum.

For a woman who claimed to have no maternal instinct, she married a man with three sons in tow, which never made any sense to me, her only biological child. But when I was born it was immediately apparent to her that she had no maternal instinct. And that I was merely an attention suck. Babies are like that. Time, energy, attention. They are so needy. And talk about cry-baby. That was always the last thing she said to me as she left me sobbing. To say that my life as her only child was traumatic is mere understatement. That she left no visible evidence of my injury was shear art.

It has been pointed out to me recently that I would not be the person I am today were it not for her. Had she given me to my Aunt and Uncle Savage, I'd have been a very different woman. I might have been Pickles, or someone like her, for all we know. Cheerleader, Prom Queen, married to a Texas banker's son and popping out babies, then collecting grand babies, and normal as all get out. If a Pickles-like woman is normal. A good, God fearing Baptist woman, racist to my core, homophobic, probably fat, no doubt blonde, by now. A good upstanding cracker, like my Aunts. No offense meant to any good God fearing cracker women.

That she died on the baby Jesus' birthday is also art. She upstaged him once again, and for the first time in my life she gave me a really good gift. A gift I had been praying for for decades by then. It was the only time she ever give me what I wanted, what I asked for. Thank you Maggy. And thank you Santa, and Baby Jesus.

So why am I always sad this time of year?