Sunday, February 20, 2011


I love Taize. I hadn't been "before." An acquaintance of mine encouraged me to go, just a few months after. For awhile, it was so powerful for me. Back then, I had no self-consciousness, didn't have the energy to notice or care about the effect my presence had on others. Not like I was wailing loudly, certainly, but I cried as I needed to. However. My acquaintance was also one of the organizers of the weekly meditation, and she kept making it a point to bring these intense poems to the meditation. Intense as in often having drowning imagery. I found it a bit obnoxious. Enough! Yes I know you "get" me (or think you do)! Stop it please! But I was too irritated, and self-conscious, and did I mention - irritated, to tell her directly. So - I stopped going.

I also started to be more conscious of my presence, and therefore, I bite my lip a lot more, dissociate a lot more. I don't like this change. It means I am no longer comfortable at churches or meditations, because I cry, and I know I cry, and I know people see me cry. And then they ask me things, or they give me "meaningful looks," which makes me want to slap them, or just makes me never want to go to public things that will likely make me cry. I only want to go to things where there is a lovely cocoon of silence and space. That would be great.

Anyway. There is a second Taize in town now, which is pretty incredible in its own right, as this is a small town. I went tonight. It is so pretty. Even feeling self-conscious, it is so pretty. I would make such a great nun, if there were a tradition I believed. I can feel it when I am there. Leaving the meditation, I noticed the pastor of the church. I recognized the pastor. I had just been thinking of him a few days ago. He was my supervisor way back in my very first social services job. Many, many years ago. I left to go to grad school, and he left because his partner had just died. So I was stunned to see him there. I said his name. He said, "yes?" I said his full name. He said, "um, yes?" I told him who I am and how I know him. He remembered. That was awesome. He asked what I am doing now.

I wouldn't answer that question directly for most people. For most people who don't already know, I sidestep and move away as quickly as I can. For people who do already know, I tend to say "doing the best I can," sidestep, and move away quickly. To my old supervisor, I said, "I am recovering, or trying to; my partner died recently." He nodded. "You remember that my partner died while I was at (the place where we worked)."  We talked a bit. It was comfortable and nice.

Anyway, again. I don't know why I'm sharing this. In fact, I was saying to him how so many people who don't know me, who were not close to me "before," suddenly became so very interested in me. How for a private person, the attention is, was and still is, too much. And yet, here I am, out in relative public. It is really weird. Mostly, I meant to say - Taize is really beautiful, everybody. If you have a Taize gathering near you, check it out. I also just meant to say - how neat is it that I ran into someone I very much respected when I was a young whippersnapper.

And, as soon as I got in the car, I went to call Matt and tell him.



  1. "...I know I cry, and I know people see me cry. And then they ask me things, or they give me "meaningful looks," which makes me want to slap them, "

    Yep. I hate it when they can't just see that tears need to be shed an it doesn't mean anything more than that you are feeling sad at that moment. No armchair analysis necessary.

    "so many people who don't know me, who were not close to me "before," suddenly became so very interested in me. "
    ...and what is WITH that?
    I've never had so many people interested in me before and I am a confirmed introvert and I hate that people I barely know are suddenly so interested....

    Never heard of Taize ... might have to read up on it. Glad it gave you some positivity and that you met up with your old boss.

  2. I know - and then people are hurt and offended that I don't want them near me and close to me, that I am "rebuffing" their advances, their "well-intentioned" advances. And that there is clearly something wrong with me that I am not "letting people in." SO bizarre.

    I am very thankful that my therapist - a former colleague of mine, too - is a confirmed introvert. She is perfectly horrified, right on cue, when I share certain things people have said or done, boundaries crossed, ignored, or "corrected." Last week, I thanked her for being one of the few who really gets it. I said I feel like we should wear signs that say "introverts unite." Oh. Except we wouldn't. Wear the signs OR unite. Hee.