'cause if it's ever gonna get any better, it's gotta get worse for a day


A lot has been happening in my life in the last week. Well, I say a lot. I didn't have a baby or get married or sky dive or bake a souffle. Things that have happened in the last week:

- I turned 27
- I dumped my therapist
- I went to church
- I bought a salad bowl
- Oz got a tapeworm

As you might imagine, some of these events were weightier than others in terms of their impact on my life.

The Birthday: very fun.

Dumping My Therapist: Let's just say we were doing really well and then we had a session that went so terrifically bad that our relationship never recovered, and I had to end it. It's amazing how in both times before I've gone into my 'break-up' sessions with therapists, I kept worrying they would convince me to stay. But in both cases their attempts to continue our sessions made me more certain than EVER to get the hell out. I'm not sure when or if I'll go back to therapy.

Church: I visited a local church (I'm not including the name because I don't want this post to pop up on google if someone looks for stuff about the church) on Sunday. Their service starts at 10am, so that should tell you what a big deal it was for me to go. It's usually dusk before I wake up on the weekends. But in the past few months I've really wished I had a home church. A place to worship and serve. I've stayed away from church for a number of reasons over the last few years, and I finally felt like those reasons were slightly 'lifted', and I wanted to try again. Funnily enough, one of the impetuses for that has been listening to music by Tim Minchin, who happens to be an atheist.

His songs about religion and God are thought-provoking in their severe 'blasphemy', but freeing in that way too. When I hear religious songs or religious people speak I ask myself, "Do I believe that?" and the same with someone who doesn't have any religion. Tim doesn't believe there's a God. I don't believe that. He also doesn't believe that "just 'cause ideas are tenacious it means that they're worthy." I agree with him there.

On Sunday I worried if his influence and my long absence from serious church-going would result in something like a Douglas Denholm-type outcry: "Where is your God? Where is your God now?" Just kidding, I wasn't actually worried about that.

I'd been to a different local church with my mom and liked it, but I wanted to see what else was out there. The main thing that drew me to this Sunday's church was its building:


I have very real plans to take paparazzi photos of it whether I become a member or not. Once on the grounds you feel like you've been transported to a rural English parish. In fact, it makes me feel like I'm--dare I say it?--at St. Barnabas. It's modestly ornate in a rustic kind of way, reverent but warm.

But enough about the physical space! They have tissue packets in the pews (BRILLIANT), they sing hymns, North African and Middle Eastern drums were played during meditation moments, there wasn't a 'passing of the peace' (thank you, God), the offering was for an organization that gives Motherhood Kits to midwives in third world countries, and the sermon was a guest dramatic performance of the Book of Mark by people from a local theater (which was very good, though I would have made certain changes, like have everyone take a turn playing Jesus, instead of just one guy. Also I would have added music and made it Godspell--though that's technically based on the Gospel of Matthew).

All in all, I would definitely go back, and plan to. There are signs and messages everywhere proclaiming that they are "open and affirming" and the service was just the right amount of liturgy and intimacy. Now all I have to do is keep my expectations low and we should be alright.

Buying a Salad Bowl: I had a Macy's gift card from my mom for my birthday. I spent some of it on a friend, and then had some left over. Originally I was going to get a dress, but it was polyester-spandex blend, and even if I like the design, I really can't bring myself to buy clothes in that fabric, no matter how many brands seem to keep making them. Anyway, I especially ditched the dress after I happened upon the Home section. Everywhere housewares cried out to me, pots and beverage dispensers and compost buckets and mini-vacuums. But one of the first things I saw a salad bowl, and I couldn't get it out of my mind. I wanted it so badly, that I knew it was what I wanted forever. Some things you buy to get you through a few years or decades. But every now and then you get a feeling when you're shopping, and you think, people will come to my house after I die and will sell this item in an estate sale. Because I will own this and use it until I am in the ground (or spread over the waters of the San Juan Islands, as I would personally prefer. No, make that Freepons Park).

Do you want to see it?

There it is. Yes, it came with bowls. Which is partly why it was expensive. And though I loved it instantly, and, as we've discussed, for FOREVER, I felt like I shouldn't buy it. It was such a major home purchase, and so many people in my life right now have wedding registries or will have wedding registries or have had wedding registries, and this felt like something I should put on a registry, not buy by myself. I should have headed back over to the clearance section and bought those Martha Stewart bar tools and a waffle machine that makes animal shapes. I shouldn't be buying stuff like this salad bowl as a single person. Why, I will never need as much salad as this bowl can hold, for I am but one person! But for whatever reason, I didn't care. I may never find a man I want to be with for the rest of my life, but with God as my witness, I vow to be with this salad bowl until I die. So I took it up to the counter, full of pluck and sure enough...

Macy's Employee: "What a lovely salad bowl! Are you buying this off a friend's registry?"
Me: "No, it's for me."
Macy's Employee: "Good for you. I really like it! What a find!"
Me: "Yeah, I think so!"
Macy's Employee: "So was there a particular registry you saw it on, or...?"
Me: "Nope, I just saw it and I wanted it. For myself."
Macy's Employee: "That's so great! You're all set."
Me: "Thanks! I'm headed home to laugh alone with my salad!"

Ok, I didn't say the last line, but I swear to you that over the course of our interaction he mentioned a registry THREE times. I held firm. And took it home, and ate salad out of it. Standing at the counter watching TV, of course.

Oz's Tapeworm: I will spare you the details I did not spare my co-workers this morning, but it came to my attention yesterday afternoon that Oz had worms. And he is now on medication, and it should all be over with soon. But he spent the night in the bathroom (with all his necessities) and it was awful because he cried and I missed him. But worms are disgusting, so I regret nothing.


Chelsea Lee said...

this is what i need to tell you:
1. your blog makes me feel bipolar because it can make me cry, laugh, shout, and hide all in the same post and that my dear friend, is wonderful.
2. i dig your salad bowl and had a similar moment with a kitchen aid mixer.
3. i miss you more and more each day and we must be reunited soon or i will explode from despair
4. i am so glad to know that someone else shares a similar unhealthy attachment to their pet.

Maryann said...

1. Chelsea, your love of my blog gives me so much joy and confidence in my writing and my life. I love YOU!
2. ah yes, the kitchen aid mixer. A classic 'is this only for registries' item.
3. if the news I've heard from certain brothers-in-law is true, then maybe we will be very soon?
4. I find unhealthy attachment to a pet as a vital part of every person's growth.
5. Bonus: your comments are perfect.