I hate the word “blessed.” I spent over two years in Virginia Beach where retail clerks, heedless of the possibility of my beliefs would wish me a “Blessed day” after taking my credit card in pure violation of several Biblical restrictions. <I wait while you research obscure Biblical passages to justify your addiction to the plastic.>
Ugh. I mean, just like conservatives don’t want to see me schmecking my theoretical boyfriend in public, I have no issue with the clerk’s devout faith, but does s/he need to wave it in my face all the time?
Then there’s the Pagans. Don’t get me wrong. I’m one. The multiplicity of my faith encompasses Wicca, Taoism, Hinduism blah, blah, blah. I read tarot cards and won’t touch Ouija Boards because I know they work .The only reason I don’t consider myself a witch is I don’t have the chutzpah or patience to learn true spell casting. But if I hear one more well meaning but clueless “Blessed Be” I’m going to hex someone for the hell of it.
The thing is… the biggest reason I hate the word is it applies so accurately to my life, and all those posers who use it have no fucking clue what they mean. They don’t understand what it truly means to be blessed. To have the utmost sincere belief that someone out there, whoever that might be, holds an umbrella over his head and throws down a safety net every time he jumps off the metaphorical cliff into the abyss.
I’ve made that leap into the unknown more than once. The kind of leap where I sold everything, jumped in my car or most recently onto a plane) and left everything behind based on a sign (define that how you will) that I needed to do so. Terrifying? Yes.
Deadly? Not so far.
The first time I did this, I was living in Appleton, Wisconsin, and my life had flipped upside down. Also, I’d visited Florida in the winter and realized I needed to live someplace without snow, somewhere I could plant a palm tree or a cactus in my back yard. I’d had my first experiences since childhood with the supernatural, and I sat on the floor with my back against my bed.
I closed my eyes.
Where? Where do I go? Where should I be?
And I felt pulled. A strange line drawing me forward and to the right… I raised a hand and pointed to make sure I knew exactly what I meant. What the hell? I wanted a voice saying, “Go to South Beach Miami… the men are hot and they like to get naked.”
No. I got a pull. Well, fine. I dug out a compass and a map. (This was pre GPS and internet.) What direction was that?
Texas. As soon as the map was laid out, and I drew the line, I knew the pull was to Austin, Texas.
Seriously? Texas? Nothing in my experience ever would have led me to Texas.
But I went. And it worked. It was the best decision I’ve ever made, and it led to the formation of one of the most important friendships/family memberships of my life. I can never overstate the importance of the guy who was a new friend who moved to Texas with me, and is a huge part of the man I am today.
I can never understate how much the whole thing could have sucked.
My first day in Austin, Texas, I returned to the campsite where we’d pitched a tent on a fire ant mound because that’s all we had, Ryan was working on his resume on the computer on a picnic table plugged into the outlet under a tree.
I’d already had a job offer and found an apartment.
If you haven’t lived in Austin, TX, you might not realize what a miracle that was during the height of the dot.com boom when no one could find an apartment anywhere in the city.
Someone, somewhere, had my back.
That’s blessed. Suck it.