Thursday, December 11, 2008

Catharsis and Christmas Past

On Saturday, I'll be taking my LAST Test. Calling the Liberal Arts and Science Test the LAST test may be accurate because it describes the topics covered, but in every other way it's a complete misnomer because I have to take two more tests. I'm sorry to say I forgot I was supposed to take these tests last year. I finished the MSEd and put the requirements for NY State certification right out of my mind. When I did remember, I was usually broke and the dang tests cost $88 each to take which is a lot of money to a preschool teacher - especially one whose ex-husband is always late and short with the child support.

The good news is that it looks like I'll pass thanks to Velvet's expert tutoring in mathematics. The bad news is that while he was explaining simplification of algebraic equations to me last night and I was spazzing because no matter how I looked at it, six equalled six despite the zeros and decimal points, Velvet looked me in the eye and asked, "Are you high?"

Of course I wasn't for a number of reasons - not the least of which is that I promised my mother last year that I wouldn't get high around Velvet. I haven't been getting high much lately because I tend to get very sad and cry and cry and cry. Naturally, I have already made a tear jerking CD to enhance moments like these. Judy Collins singing, "Suzanne," Peter Gabriel singing, "Here comes the Flood," and "Red Rain." Things like that.

It's cathartic in a way that supports my belief that these days, I'm better off getting high and feeling my feelings than taking Depakote to coat them. God knows that the Depakote was entirely necessary for all those years since the feelings were so overwhelming they got in my way every time I turned around. Now I need to experience the emotion and reflect upon it in order to quit thinking I'm bad all the time. It's a drag when you've only thought you had a right to exist on the planet for a few years, and even then the proof that you exist and are good belongs to someone else. Specifically, in my life, that old belief manifests itself as needing a boyfriend, or my mother's approval, to feel good enough about myself so I think it's okay for me to be alive. No wonder I needed catharsis.

Maybe it's time for me to read Paul Tillich. I never did before because I knew there was no way I would feel accepted unless God Herself showed up to tell me so. I certainly wouldn't believe it just because I read a book my mother's been trying to get me to read since I was a teenager. I suppose that all goes back to ways of thinking established in early childhood as a result of the twisted environment into which I was born.

Yesterday at therapy I said I felt like being breech when I was born was my own fault. Bad behavior from someone inherently bad. No wonder I need a catharsis.

As it happens, my therapist says my entire emotional gestalt is not fucked up since I have a great relationship with Velvet. We were talking today about my resilient spirit. According to my psychiatrist, Dr. Nir, if it weren't for my joie de vivre I'd have killed myself in High School. Very likely. In any case, it's nice to know I'm not entirely fucked up. But these days, I'm still feeling sad a lot.

I'm not going to think about that right now today because Velvet and I are going to New Orleans soon to look at a University there. I'd say which one, but what if someone from the admissions office is googling the school name, finds a blog written by an old broad who occasionally smokes weed and holds it against Velvet? It seems far fetched, but stranger things have happened.

Louisiana takes a liberal view on marijuana if the 2006 incident wherein a state trouper discovered a pound of weed and some mushrooms on Willie Nelson's bus is any indication. Nevertheless, marijuana is still illegal - which is a crying shame. As long as drinking wine is legal, smoking weed should be legal too. And as long as you can vote and go into the military at 18 years old, you should be able to drink a beer, for crying out loud.

My sister and her family, my dad and my brother's wife are all meeting us in New Orleans because Why the Hell Not? It's a good time, after all. Mom would go to except for there's no kennel space for the dog. There could be a spot at the kennel, but unless it's in one of the Executive Suites with a TV and three play periods per day, Mom would never put her dog there.
Fortunately, my nephews are both old enough now to appreciate the gift of green, folding American dollars above any kind of Stuff, so the gift giving is dramatically simplified. Not many packages under the tree, but that spectacle was only important to my grandmother in Beaumont, whom I never liked anyway.

She was possessed by the idea of a pile of presents under the tree that was so big it took up half the living room. Unless the receiver had the opportunity to highlight items in the Sears Catalog for Meemee to buy, the gifts tended to come from the dime store or garage sales. One year she gave my mother a blouse with ring around the collar. The same year I got a royal blue polyester double knit pants suit that had been hemmed twice on one leg and not at all on the other. She got confused in the wrapping process, too, so that once my little brother got our cousin's Growing Up Skipper. That was the Skipper where you turned her arm and she grew little tits.

During the late 1960's, my little family was driving home in the station wagon with a load of crap so large that it blocked my dad's view out the back window. We jettisoned most of it without regret. That year, the loot included a plastic badminton set from the Walgreens. You never know, though. Someone might have been thrilled to find a pile of cheap toys on a picnic table at a roadside park in the middle of NoFuckinWhere, East Texas.


Gail said...

Hi Trish-

Your shrink is so right. Your wonderful relationship with Velvet is proof, definite proof that you are amazing too and not all that messed up. (Sometimes I feel weird dropping the "F" bomb in a comment)......
Also, great image of the gifts and the picnic table.......I love the stories of your life. Fascinating.


PENolan said...

You must save the F word for special occasions ;)

Kimberly M. Wetherell said...

OMG - I've never seen the "Gorwing Up Skipper" doll! That is the most effing hilarious thing I've ever seen!

I totally want one!

See you tomorrow night, right???

dissed said...

She GROWS TITS?! That's as good as the old Jimmy Carter-in-a-towel doll. It grows a big ol' peanut. My mother owns one of those.

Good luck on the certification exams. I would hate to test on math again.

PENolan said...

That's what happens when Jimmy lusts in his heart . . .

Comrade Kevin said...

I hope your daughter picks the best college for her. I wasn't well enough at the time to go to the school for which I was best fit---I had to stay close to my doctors.

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