Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Sometimes I really love living here!

Did I mention that I met this beautiful woman last week? No? How incredibly remiss of me!!

I was walking down Broadway and she was looking for a store--so being the person people usually stop to ask directions of anyway, I volunteered to come to her aid. She was absolutely lovely--warm, friendly, humble, and quite as gorgeous and engaging in person as she is on TV. It was fun talking to her.

Think I might make a habit of taking walks at lunch!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Feeling Trapped

Woke up this morning and decided I would take a vacation from all things currently causing me agita—the violence in the Middle East, the upheaval in the Episcopal church, the betrayal of my old church, the fact that I’m going to die alone (couldn't find the Drama Queen smiley face!)…
(and it’s not even a full moon nor am I pmsing—be afraid, be very afraid).

But then I found myself writing a response to an article that a friend had posted on her forum and realized that heartbreak held in is worse than heartbreak released, so here I am “releasing.” I wrote:

“Beware all religions that exist to support agendas devoid of love, respect, humility, and grace.

Makes me think of a book I read yesterday where an older lesbian couple were gunned down in their own yard by a hate-filled neighbor and the defense was that he finally lost control because he couldn't take living beside this perverted affront to his Christian sensibilities.

I am so incredibly tired of listening to people's excuses for their ignorance and hate, and I am sickened beyond words that it's justified by calling themselves Christians.

I have to wonder if I'm going to spend the rest of my life apologizing and explaining that that is NOT what Christianity is really about. It's as bad as the non stop barrage of gay stereo types that seem to continually fly about unchallenged. Maybe that's why I'm so depressed right now. I feel so caught in the middle. I'm surrounded by Christians who desperately need to be challenged on what they think they know about what the Bible says about homosexuality, and I live in a world where people are coming more and more to associate my faith with a narrow exclusivity whose sole purpose seems to be to practice a hate and prejudice inspired oppression.

I seem to spend so much of my time wishing or actually trying to get people to let go of their preconceived ideas and consider something different. Something not defined by arrogance and ignorance and judgment and hate.”

I’ve been told: Let it go. Don’t take things personally. Trust God.
All amazingly great advice. So what’s stopping me? I’m an idiot savant in empathy and intuition; I can’t avoid my own life; and if God wills, I will be ordained an Episcopal priest sometime in the next 5 years. (Didn’t know that didja?!) OK, so it’s clear—gotta grow up, let go, trust in God, mature in faith, and develop a deep abiding confidence and peace that “all shall be well, all shall be well, all manner of things shall be well.”
And I thought seminary was gonna be hard!

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Tagged by Tropopause

Hey kewl! I’ve never been tagged before-guess that makes me a tag virgin! Thanks Ms. T. for the deflowering!

When did you first start blogging and why?
June 18, 2006 ‘cause little miss Bent Fabric created a blog for me and told me to write. She’s cute but bossy! Do I always do what people tell me to do—rarely, so I guess deep down inside I did want to give it a try. Also, been reading everyone else’s blogs for a long time and always felt like a dork when I’d leave a comment with just my name—I mean who is this “Zanne” person anyway?

What don't you talk about? Anything considered a no-no in your book?
Good question and I have no idea yet. Am still trying to figure out what I want to write about by just writing.
I’m pretty transparent in person and I certainly want to be the same here but I want to be respectful of others’ privacy. Will just have to see how that plays out as I go on…

Are you and your blogging persona the same person?
I have a persona?!! Again, I have no idea…I mean does the fact that my avatar is Edna Mode mean I’m hiding or just have a silly sense of humour? I would answer, both! I’m transparent and private at the same time, so if that makes me a paradox in person and in cyberspace then I guess that makes me the same person, right? Could I possibly be over thinking this?

How do you use blogging to build friendships?
I think communication builds friendships and blogging is just one kind. Anytime you show up, listen to another, and offer to be seen yourself, there’s the potential for connection. I’ve met some wonderful people and am very grateful for that.

How would you describe your writing style?
Schizophrenic? Ah, the moody winds blow where they will…I laugh, I cry, I can be loquacious and am frequently afflicted with rampant alliteration. I guess the best way to sum up my writing style is: always honest with a dash of inconsistency and humour thrown in for good measure.

Thank you for coming and playing “Tag You’re It”! I now tag Bent Fabric (‘cause she needs to get writing again and ‘cause I’m feeling the need for revenge! muahaha!)

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Home, War, Heartbreak aka Silencing the Gnats ;)

Ok the little thought gnats are buzzing around so loudly it’s deafening inside my wee little head, so let’s let a few out and see what kind of peace can be achieved.

Just got back from a long weekend with my family in northern Ontario—Canada, that is. My Mom lives in a beautiful home on a lake where the sun shines in my bedroom window to wish me good morning, and then sets on the other side of the house across the bay, so I can bid the day adieu from the porch. It’s really breathtakingly beautiful and I love being there. I also love being with my family. Are we perfect? Hardly, but I am who I am because of them. I’ve lived apart from them for over 18 years and sometimes I think I forget who I am—going home grounds me and I am so grateful to have them. Grateful that they put up with me and keep loving me no matter what.

I celebrated my birthday while there and the rest of the time I spent watching CNN. I have this need to understand things, so I sat and listened. I heard the reporters, the leaders of Lebanon and Israel, the military strategists, the Middle East experts, and the families that are waiting to find out if their loved ones will get out. Then I heard my own heart and mind that told me, “that didn’t make sense; he’s lying; they don’t care about the civilians; they’ve got to stop; those poor people; God help us all.” Last night on BBC News a reporter spoke to a man who lived in a neighborhood where the houses had been decimated. He knew the people that were buried but there’s no question of rescuing them or retrieving the bodies. There are no fork lifts or people to dig through the rubble and the one UN envoy that was on the way to help got bombed. Can you imagine if that happened to us? If our world collapsed and there was no one to help. Actually, I guess it did happen to us—many of us—it was called Katrina. We do know what it is to be powerless and hopeless. So how should we respond? How do we respond? Just askin’…

OK, and the last thing is one more notch for my grief belt. Before leaving for Canada I was contacted by my old rector. He’d been interviewed for an article in The NY Times and the reporter wanted to speak to me for an opposing point of view. (I’d left the church because of its stance on homosexuality). Obviously, it was a fairly amicable parting for us to still be friends and in touch. We just simply agreed to disagree. Anyway, I declined the interview. I just read the article and my old church has decided to leave the Episcopal church and join the Anglican Network (the conservative alternative that disagrees with the movements going on in the Episcopal church).

You know what? I’ve been gentle and open and honest but I need to say outloud:
“M. you’re making a mistake. You’re not really open to hearing things you don’t agree with even though you think you are. How is it that no one has loved you enough to point out to you that the things coming out of your mouth are wrong and hypocritical? Was I supposed to be that person? Did I fail you because I didn’t fight harder to be heard? I know you’re wrong because I’ve been you. I’ve taken the high road for what I believed in my youth and much much later have realized that I had a lot of growing up to do. Perhaps it will change you the way it changed me. You were quoted as saying, “…unity, but at what cost?” I would say to you, “Your integrity, but at what cost?” Do you really in your heart of hearts think that God feels the way you do or is asking you to make this decision? You’ve always been a humble man, one of the reasons I loved you, but is that mutually exclusive with wisdom? Can you really not even consider that your beliefs are very much influenced by your culture, upbringing and personal temperament? Are you so absolutely sure of being right that you won’t even consider other voices that could perhaps help, teach, and correct your misperceptions? Or is it simply more important to you to be right? Truthfully my friend, if I were your spiritual director I’d ask you to consider whether God values more your trust in the dark then your bravado in the half-light. Maybe I’m the only one for whom the question even makes any sense… God go with you my brother.”

This concludes today’s ranting and raving. I’m sure the post is too long but the gnats are quiet. Peace at last. Exhale.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Happy Birthday to me!!

(how self-involved was that!! )

In lieu of all the things I could be ranting and raving about--is it a full moon by any chance?--I've decided to stay in the birthday mode for this day.

Uh, because it's my birthday.

So, here I am!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Commercial Time

I'd just like to draw your attention to the widget (that's apparently what it's called, for all the other techno tards like me out there) on my sidebar. The pledge is to see the movie "An Inconvenient Truth" when it opens. Well of course it's already opened, but I put it up because if you haven't seen it, I want to STRONGLY urge that you run, not walk to your nearest theatre.

Everyone must see this. Global warming is a crisis that will require a response from us all. And it isn't something that can wait. Please do see it and tell everyone you know to see it too.

That completes my commercial plug, but I'm not promising that it won't come up again!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Monday's Meditation

Saw this pinned up outside the chapel of my favorite convent (yes, I frequent convents—well actually just one)

Above all, trust in the slow work of God,
we are, quite naturally,
impatient in everything to reach the end
without delay.
We should like to skip
the intermediate stages.
We are impatient of being
on the way to something unknown,
something new.
And yet it is the law of all progress
that it is made by passing through
some stages of instability—
and that it may take a very long time.

And so I think it is with you.
Your ideas mature gradually—
let them grown,
let them shape themselves,
without undue haste.
Don’t try to force them on,
as though you could be today
what time (that is to say, grace and
circumstances acting
on your own good will)
will make you tomorrow.

Only God could say what this new spirit
gradually forming within you will be.
Give our Lord the benefit of believing
that his hand is leading you,
and accept the anxiety of
feeling yourself in suspense and incomplete.

--Teilhard de Chardin

Saturday, July 08, 2006

TMI Time

OK, time to vent. Once a month, or sometimes twice depending on the full moon and my cycle, my closeted “Empath” escapes her confinement. She’s been sitting in darkness for several weeks, suffocating on the pain and injustice that fills her vision. This morning she woke up gasping for air and light and hope and with the need to cry aloud.

There is a cloud and buzzing around within it are many elements—each sufficient agony unto itself and yet not to be taken alone but rather in connection to every other existing element which comprises the whole. There is all the disillusionment, disappointment, and pain around General Convention’s B033 resolution; there is the pain that is being expressed everywhere about NY’s ban on same sex marriage.

I read about it on blogs. I saw it last night on TV while watching “In The Life.” I see it in my own life as I grapple with the grief of losing my church family and friends because they hold their self-affirmed righteousness in higher regard than Christ’s mandate to love. I have set a goal for myself to learn to really listen to those who disagree and even hate me. I desire to become the kind of person who can remain calm in the midst of heated discussion and can return a loving and compassionate word to one that is angry, condemning, and hate filled. (Good luck with that!) I will need much practice and infinite grace.

I watched “In The Life” last night and listened to the voices that oppose gay rights. They did it with such smug self-satisfied certainty that I could feel my stomach turn and my blood boil. I kept thinking, “I should turn it off. This is not good for me.” But I couldn’t turn it off. I watched with the same magnetic horror that kept me glued to the TV after 9/11.

Melodramatic, you think? Not in the least. If anything it is an understatement of how I would describe the depth of my feelings. People, my people, are proclaiming hate and are smearing God’s name. I am embarrassed, even ashamed, to be called by the same name as these “christians.”

I read this morning on someone’s blog that their partner no longer wears their grandmother’s heirloom cross because they feel so betrayed by the agenda of prejudice and injustice of these “christian conservatives” that rejoice in another’s oppression. I wanted to scream, rend my garments, and pour ashes upon my head. When I read on another blog about the response of a militant conservative church in Dallas to the events of General Convention, I had the same reaction and thought I would be sick—literally. Someone I deeply loved goes to that church and my depth of horror that that person could go along with and even justify such a violation of Christ’s love feels like something akin to rape.

This is the language my heart employs to express its distress—words of violence and destruction. I will not copy the arrogance of my brothers and sisters by proclaiming certainties, but I will say that my heart suspects that God is weeping.

The voices of hatred, misunderstanding, injustice, and oppression are very loud right now. But I’m hearing other voices out there, too. Voices filled with love, compassion, long-suffering, and faith that are proclaiming hope and calling us to courage. My highest hope is that I will be one of them.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled program.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Fabulous Fifth Avenue with the Family

The above title was taken from the patter of a very funny and authentic NYC bus tour operator. Yes, this weekend I was on a red double decker bus touring the city—not once, but twice!

In fact, I did quite a few things I don’t usually do, like: going to a Broadway show (we saw Wicked and it was FANTASTIC!), cruising NY harbor (harbour for the Canadians out there), barbeque at Tavern on the Green, and eating at Juniors (nope, I didn’t have room for the cheese cake after the monster pastrami sandwich—but what a sandwich it was!!)

Yep, I was a total tourist and I had a ball! And said frivolity was all in honor of my miraculous mother’s 80th birthday! Woo hoo! She looks GREAT!! I’ll post a picture when I get one. It was seriously wonderful to have my mom, sister, brother-in-law, and adopted brother here in the city.

Note to self: dwell on your blessings 'cause there’s a ton of them!

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