Monday, May 6, 2013
3-2-13 RMB Obsession
Dear Rita Mae Brown,
Yesterday I began to read Starting from Scratch: A Different Kind of Writers’ Manual. I thought that reading the more recent memoir would have given me a more complete picture of you, but I found the first chapter of this book from 1988 intriguing.
It showcases an earlier version of Rita Mae Brown, one with fewer layers, but equal depth. I still don’t know why it is that I am so intrigued by you. It has something to do with your character, vision and life’s mission whether intentional or by destiny. We can all learn from one another, but we take certain individuals, those select ones that rise above the chatter, and examine them closely. We seek to find what made them great, what made them influence us to be better. That is part of this pull.
Another part is my own character. It may amuse you to know that the couple of close friends helping me develop these letters and the blog know you as my latest obsession. Some people live constantly obsessing about something; others never feel that fire within. Every five to ten years, something pulls me over that edge.
When it is a person, I feel their apprehension, but for some reason they put up with me. Every obsession I have ever had has resulted in something really good. I know this will be an awesome ride, so I’m all in.
Hopeful this may allay apprehension I’ll note a couple of past obsessions and their outcome… After sharing some insights with a friend, she asked me what I had done to develop my intuition. I didn’t know there was anything I could do, other than read everything I found on it. She said “You have got to meet Reverend Millie.”
Reverend Millie Landis’ Fraternal Spiritualist Church of the Kensington area in San Diego, became an obsession. After attending once, I was hooked. I went to Wednesday Night Forum, Sunday services and Thursday night Spiritual Development classes. The church is Christ based. I like that.
I found there people who understood me, people who spoke the same language, who saw or felt things as I do. What others would consider miracles are everyday occurrences there. Life has since taken my attention elsewhere. I rarely attend that church now, but am forever grateful to Reverend Millie for giving me something no one else ever could, a part of myself that was developed through her guidance and teaching.
Another obsession was a woman I met in my teens. She was twenty-four at the time. It was not a physical or sexual attraction. I just knew I had to be near her, slightly behind and to the right to be exact. She would turn around and I would be there, showing up at her work or home, at nearly any hour.
Having never been a talker, it was often a silent companionship. She is not a talker by nature either. One day when she gave me an odd look that said “Are you still here?” I told her I knew she would thank me someday. I didn’t know what drew me to her, but I knew one day she would literally say “thank you”. She gave me a “you’re really strange…whatever you say” kind of look.
About five years later my status was raised to best friend. I no longer felt the need to stand behind her. We became equals and hung out whenever our lives permitted. One day she said something, then remarked that she had not thought that way before meeting me. She went on about how I had changed her perspective on life, how she was a different person for having known me.
She seemed so serious, that I asked “Is this a good thing???”
Very emphatically she said “Yes, thank you!”
It clicked and I knew that was the moment I saw five years earlier. I smirked “Great, my work is done, I can move on now.” She was confused until I reminded her of the kid that told her she would thank me one day. Laughing, she said she did remember the conversation, including thinking that I was nuts at the time.
I met her thirty-three years ago. Thirty-one years ago I told her she would thank me one day. Twenty-six years ago she thanked me and two weeks ago she was the first person to read the first Dear Rita Mae Brown letter. She changed my life for the better as well.
My obsessions ALWAYS end with something good! This will be fun, I promise you.