I'm getting smarter as I get older. But why did it take so long? I've had an eating disorder for as long as I can remember. Too much candy, junk food, and soda pop. Plus, I started drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes regularly at around fourteen. One thing I'm happy about is, I never used needles. My best girlfriend did. Now she's gone. She had a great time while it lasted but then her blood went bad.
At midlife, with the world around me in crisis, I feel a spiritual call to service. Which is ironic because previously I went through a major depression where I hated everyone, especially other women. In some ways, I still do. That's why I want to change things. I see humanity's potential going unfulfilled. And, no, I'm not the only one who thinks like this, of course not. I'm only one of many, a newcomer on the scene, just beginning to recognize spiritual vision in others.
Sister Hildegard Helen, she got me going at a political rally in Washington, DC. I fell in love with her at first sight: her smiling face and penetrating blue eyes, her shaven head and Buddhist nun attire. I watched from the audience as she warned an unreceptive crowd about the dangers of the present global economic direction, with increasing power and wealth in the hands of an elite few. I already knew the facts but, coming from her, they were impregnated with new meaning:
"Landless, unemployed masses are now being treated like terrorists if they protest. It's happening everywhere. In Africa, the Middle Eastern, Central Asia, South America. Even in countries like Spain, Greece, and Mexico. And, of course, in China, Russia, and Brazil. We will see it happening increasingly right here in the good old USA. Why do you think the president has been authorized to use military force domestically without going before congress? We must get ready for this."
When I had a chance to talk with her at a gathering afterward, I said:
"What do you mean, get ready? What can landless, unemployed masses do without the aid of their national governments which are effectively controlled by multinational corporations in conjunction with the world trade organization, the international monetary fund, and the world bank?"
She replied without hesitation:
"Build community and ride the storm together like Noah's Ark until it's over."
I cut my hair and shaved my head the next day. Then I went out and purchased a bolt of gray fabric, a course hemp and cotton blend, from which to fabricate my copycat attire.
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Some women would rather win America's Next Top Model than the Nobel Peace Prize. Some would rather lose their ability to read than their figures. But not in my stories, not if I have anything to say about it.