I don't like it when men use my bathroom. They can use Velvet's bathroom all they want, but not mine. Women can use my bathroom, and even dig through the drawers for supplies if necessary. The floor plan of my apartment clearly designates my bathroom as the guest bathroom since it's in the hall. Years ago I moved Velvet into the master bedroom, so his bathroom is not for casual guests like people at miscellaneous pot lucks and parties. Or Buzz Kill, of course, but Buzz Kill apparently doesn't know that since he seems to use my bathroom every time he's over here. I've never told him it bothers me, though, so he must not know what I'm thinking. He can't read my mind. People can only know what you're thinking if you tell them.
It may be that one of the things I'm supposed to learn from The Preacher is how to communicate my thoughts and feelings like normal humans. When I'm discussing society, Jesus or politics, I don't have a problem sharing my thoughts and feelings. Naturally I am as respectful as I can possibly be even when I'm not exactly sober. However, if I have to communicate something of a personal nature, I typically choke on it and spazz. The feeling whirls around in my consciousness as if it were in a rotor ride at the county fair. One of those rides that spins around until the bottom drops out.
I actually like the spinning part, and at first I like it when the bottom drops out and the force of the spinning keeps you safely stuck to the wall. It's like that on other rides, too. Fun at first but then it goes on a bit too long and you just want off. The need to get off the carnival ride is pretty much how I need to feel before I am propelled to say something about my feelings. When it's clear that the only way anything will be different is for me to say something, then I will take a deep breath and say it. The trouble then becomes communicating in a way that doesn't disturb the peace.
In my classroom full of very young children, I frequently tell kids that they can say anything they need to say without being rude. You simply have to choose words that don't hurt anybody else's feelings. Of course, other people can be tricky because they get touchy and offended sometimes for reasons no one will ever understand. The Preacher isn't like that, however. He takes things in stride.
The Preacher has hung out with a bunch of families in the hospital - and with people who are fixing to die. Emotions run high in those situations so you can stumble into many poorly executed conversations. Who uses my bathroom is not a life or death matter, but it's still a big deal to me since it involves my personal space. I don't like it when Velvet's male friends use my bathroom either especially since they often dribble when they pee.
Although the Preacher shows no signs of dribbling when he pees, but I'm still having issues around personal space. I suspect that intimacy has something to do with it. I'm not prepared for intimacy on that level at the moment, and I have to remember that it's okay. In fact, it's more than okay. It's my assertive right, and I don't have to spazz about it.
Now that I've spent a couple of days with The Preacher, I'm beginning to see that I don't have to spazz about anything. He's a respectful sort of fellow and a very good listener, but that's one of the qualities I first noticed about him. He's not the sort of person who listens to me with half an ear while he's thinking of what he's going to say next. He cares about the answers.
I will say, however, that he manages to bring the dang Bible or Jesus Himself into almost any conversation. I keep reminding him that there are other books and that one day, somebody might go through Harry Potter and number all the passages. People number the lines in Shakespeare's plays, and King Arthur makes a pretty good story too. But even the best stories can wear a person out, after a while.
There's no denying that the Bible has had an impact on society - but like everything else humans have created, The Bible is a human construct. The Preacher isn't all literal about the Bible or he'd have never gotten through the front door of Menopausal Stoners World Headquarters. Nevertheless, there are other books and stories in this world. Again, one would hope a Preacher loved reading the Bible and that he could find endless ways of applying it to our daily lives - and I respect that he's excited about the Bible and Jesus and stuff.
I don't know, though, maybe we all retreat into our personal enthusiasms when faced with daunting challenges, and he is finding me a challenge. I seem to have developed a team of invisible body guards surrounding me.
For myself, I believe the body guards are a good thing - for the time being anyway. I like the idea of having a real friend much more than the idea of another member of Triciaholics Anonymous hanging around. A few years ago, when I was actively computer dating after my divorce, a man told me he was going to have to join a chapter of Triciaholics Anonymous. It was a clever, all together flattering line - but it didn't get him into my pants especially since I suspected one of the reasons he was so slick was because he was married even though he declared he was fully separated. Lots of fully separated folks stay married their entire lives.
The Preacher is not a bit slick. He's thoughtful and kind. Patient, too. He would probably say that's on account of Jesus, but I believe he was like that long before he got started reading the Bible in the original Greek.
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