When I was growing up and grown up, I learned and many learned in Christianity, that God in his infinite wisdom had decided to spend his attention and energy being a sort of slot machine for humans. I would say vending machine except it was far too irregular than that. Okay, how about that vending machine that never really worked unless you pushed the quarters hard enough to have them bounce off the back of the slot and then it worked only sometimes.
I was taught that prayer is that moment your quarter is put in and that time when you find out if the vending machine comes up with “yes” (Woo hoo!), “No” (Ahhhh, time lost!) or ‘Maybe’ (sort of seeing your candy stuck on the edge half off shelf). I think there was also something about building a relationship but seriously, as I asked my father one day, “How long am I supposed to talk to someone who never talks back.” I was told that the ‘Book’ is God talking back. “Do YOU hear God talking to you from the Book?” I asked.
“In a way.” I was told.
See! That is the irritating thing, it is never, “Yes, it talks to me at 6:30 on Sundays” but the cryptic, “God talks in the silent ways.”
However many and most Christians are not as elusive and basically the Good book is to make you GOOD so that when you ask, you get MORE from the vending machine than others (never good just to be....good). This makes very good sense to a child. And thus there are ‘health/wealth’ churches where if you are good, then God loves you, if God loves you then you are rich and healthy. Even though his son on earth was not nor were his followers – they were tortured! But I think ‘health/wealth’ sells better than ‘pain/agony/torture church’
Now at this point you are thinking, “Here we go about Beth’s crazy past.” But I believe that most people have spoken to their deity regarding something, and I am curious what? For example, not having much money, I have spoken at long and great lengths about the state of my computer (particularly when it doesn’t boot up); like, “Oh lord, just one more boot, to burn all our pictures, because you don’t want to make Linda cry?” Oddly I also have been known to pray during online gaming. I know they say Jesus is your wingman but his scores were always low and he was pretty bad since my prayers were more like, “Please don’t let a sniper get around behind me and shoot me in the head!”
Then there was ebay, and getting item X. And then of course, a life long goal was body image - so much body, so much image to work on. First it was breasts. “Come ON already!” (while I imagine other girls at 13 were like, “Can you make them SMALLER?”). Plus the, 'Why don't I look like those girls with perfect hair and body?" Now it is “Why can I not eat and always stay super thin and see all ribs?” That is almost healthy compared to all those years of “Make it thinner, I only need to lose 1 more Stone (14 pounds) and I will weigh what I did at 13!” (this is at 25, 28….and um last year, at 29). Seriously the whole, ‘Don’t let Linda notice by bad breath I haven’t eaten today, or yesterday or the day before.’ (oh yes, trying to get God to help me lie! That’s nice, and help me with an eating disorder!).
These days it is, “Why do you hate my hair so much God, I mean you have nice hair, why can’t I have nice hair?” And other health issues. But then I was brought up on it, so I do it a lot. I do it when the car won’t start, I do it mostly when the computer acts up. I pray that Linda sleeps well with no bad dreams. And I pray for the pain to end. Or to sleep, which often is the same.
I don’t know what other people do, what a wiccan might pray, or a buddhist when the computer goes on the glitch or is about to destroy a bunch of work.
My oddest prayer was one that I prayed over and over again from ages 8 to about 15 which wa:, telekinesis. “Oh Lord, please let me move things with my mind. And I won’t use them for evil...particularly on my brother, honest!” It was an obsession. I prayed, I stared at pencils for long times, I tried moving cars, lawn mowers, doors. I mean, if a little kid can do it in Poltergeist, right? Well no go then and no go now. But it was a long term constant prayer, and one of my odder ones.
Places I didn’t pray was before a test because I know how God likes irony (I’ve read the bible) so having my mind go blank BECAUSE I prayed is sort of a good chance. I also didn’t pray when I fenced or did competition, because it sort of seemed to defeat the purpose. I was there to test MY practice and MY skill against another person using my body and brain. Why should I cheat by getting a divinity involved?
And for the ‘so sweet you could gag’ moment, I stopped a lot of the 'I want it' praying after I got together with Linda. I figured that when She put the two of us together, God gave me all the gifts I needed to learn and grow. I sort of changed over the years so that to me, I want to do what is right because...it is right, not so I get more tries on the big slot machine. And I want to grow and become a better person. I want to learn about others, and care about them.
But I still promise to be kinder and nicer if my computer will just work for a little longer....
Plenty of ‘Don’t let Dad find out…’ growing up but only one, ‘Please don’t let them arrest me or tow that car….it’s borrowed!” But I should talk about that another day.
Cheryl is back and I guess the reason that this topic popped into my head is her. She came over for a day and we gave gifts and got gifts (nice gifts). She talked a bit about her trip and we did postcards. And she was so much in balanced and ahead of her illness, it was like a mirror to me. Here I was beyond burned out, and raving, and looping because 70 minutes of my plan had disappeared and she was just, “It’s okay, hold on, I’m going to have a pain pill.” And that made me realize that I was in pain, and maybe THAT was helping me not sound so rational. Plus of course the burned out thing. And I have to monitor myself on so many things that I have been letting some of them slide, and probably that isn’t helping my pain or my health. I wanted to be like Cheryl, calm, cool and ahead of the impairment, or at least dealing with it, instead of letting it run me (see, instead of hoping for a miracle, try getting organized, and relaxed). She’s my older sister and she’s SO cool! (I’m the one with the book and the look of awe in case you need help figuring out who is who).So, what did you ask for while hanging off a cliff, or what odd things have you asked the great unknown or the universe for? For me, like the need for this man all covered with tats to please pass out because he thinks I am coming back to his place and seems to have ‘impulse control’ issues. As a total random example.
Oh, though in pain last night, I am not taking any of the cannabis until I can create a routine of two hours for absorbing and have someone who knows me around to observe the affects and how much pain relief and relaxation and help in sleeping it produces. That way I can adjust the level of dosage, and then know how much to start with the spray. Also, it means I need to create a routine of doing relaxing things (GASP!) for 90 minutes each night before going to bed. I want to make sure I have a good base line, but also a good stable routine for it to be observed and used within. Because of the stigma of cannabis and because I am publicly blogging about it I want to set a positive standard showing the type of use my doctor and I talked about.
Cheryl has left, she had company coming and could not stay long but she did help me doing the stamping process and I wrote up and sent out 40 postcards, a few gifts and a card (in a short time, so I am a wee bit exhausted). That brings this month to just under 160, so I still have hopes for a 250 postcard month, which would be a good portion of the list. Woot. Is this me being in charge, or me just pushing till I drop? I can never tell. Either way, I also wrote a blog post about postcards (see I said I wanted to blog more), over at the postcard project so please feel free to drop in, it is quite short and has nice pictures.
So, out with the stories, is it when your camera doesn’t work, when you want the perfect shot, the perfect fish, the perfect parking spot. What is the oddest thing you have asked for? And no, still can’t get the pencils to move, but I can make my head throb really badly!
2 hours ago