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Showing posts from June, 2012

A Serving Spoon in the Linen Drawer

Standing on the corner of Wells and Kinzie streets in Chicago, overwhelmed by the sounds of crashing elevated trains, honking cars, fire trucks, clicking heels, chatting people, engines and screaming traffic cops.Combine all those sounds with the smells of perfume, exhaust, acrid electrical stench from the trains and the occasional whiff of sewage.Add to this the blowing wind, the bump of an occasional shoulder, and a moment in a crowded elevator - all of these overloaded sensory “pings” are part of the delightful experience of the big city.Delightfully exhilarating for me that would likely prove an absolute horror for Bethany.
The frightful, echoing scream of a fire truck – a sound so strong you can smell it as well as hear and feel it, would drive her already hyper-sensitive tolerances to madness.Each single sensory experience would represent a different, sharp, kitchen utensil searing through her soul.
I could never bring her here.Could never get her to Navy Pier, likely won’t walk …

My Endless Personal Pronouns

She came up to me and explained how desperately she needed a vacation.Been working for weeks straight, late into the night and early in the morning.She explained how stressed she was and how it was affecting their relationship; they never had time to talk anymore.She sent me brochures to the hotel they were planning on visiting in the next couple of weeks.
He texted me and asked how to keep someone away from his family.Explained how stressful the harassment was and how it’s affecting his work, his home life and his ability to live without the thought of authorities rapping on the door.
She emailed me with the confession that she’s been destroying her life.Just needs to feel the pain and wonders if God could ever forgive her doing this to herself.I assured her that he’d love her no matter what she did.
He explained how she ended up in the hospital; the car she was using to try to run him over with eventually hit a tree in the front yard, totaling the car while deploying the airbag and bre…

Theraputic Gravel

The clouds to the east are piling up like so many layers of uncooked cauliflower and as I glance in the rear view mirror of the truck, I see a mirrored image; dust clouds billowing behind me to the west.  It’s a beautiful evening and the gravel road beneath me is a godsend.  Bethany sits next to me on the bench seat and grumbles every time I need to shift into third gear.  She hates third gear.  Not uncommon for her to give the big stick shift a good kick when it’s in third.  She loves fourth gear; this is when she rests her teeth on the shift knob and lets the vibration of the old transmission rattle her brain into serenity.
Tonight, on this rural road I have not only Bethany with me but also my wife and a poor in-dash-radio, one of them is aimlessly chattering at me, the other aimlessly chattering, the last one, screaming with delight at God-knows-what.  Add to this the delight of the crunching gravel; the rattles of an old truck and the open windows and you’re left with a blissful d…

Emotional Body-Armor; Kevlar for the Soul

Her hands are cold and sweaty, a surprising revelation given the tension in her muscles.  Her feet are taught and drawn upwards, her hands are held in an exaggerated fin, her face is lifeless and upsetting to me, visually.  Her eyes are rolled so far back into her head that she looks more like a demonic mannequin than a 16-year-old girl.
We try to calm her anger with a weighted blanket, a 30-pound item that in some ways serves as an emotional body-armor, Kevlar for the soul.  It makes no difference as she continues to beat the side of her head.  We hold her at bay for the better part of 3 hours, trying to assuage the blows, occasionally letting go of one appendage so we could mop up the drool from her chin.  “Where’s God in all this”? I can only wonder.  Well meaning friends offer us the consolation that “yes indeed, God is in your very hands at this moment”; an answer that makes me want to cut loose with the most wicked, venomous, sarcasm that I can muster.  I’m ready to linguisticall…