Met up (electronically) with my best friend from eighth grade today. Haven't seen her, pretty much since, I think. Thought of her often. Mostly the thing that I remember, was in eighth grade PE class. Locker room. I couldn't find my shoe. And I swore. Deliberately–I remember consciously choosing to say that word–I hadn't sworn before, and "all my friends did" in my mind, anyway. And the look on her face was enough to cure me. Her and a few other girls. I was so ashamed. They just froze, then kind of teased me about it, but that initial look said it all. I have thought of that many times. I swore at my little sister once, too. I was sixteen. I remember that one because it was horrible. The blackest, thickest darkness welling up beneath my ribs, jammed up between my collarbones, but powerful, that anger. And I deliberately chose that word, too.
But anyway. Fourteen years go by and that's not a choice I had to make again. I knew how it made me feel. Now that I'm thirty . . . how old am I? 2008-1976=32 Thirty two, yes. Now that I'm thirty-two, I'm starting to think these words, and I don't know why. Why now? Because I'm stressed? I've been stressed before. Because I'm old? Getting senile? Marty's honorable grandfather became quite a potty mouth in his last days. Maybe my brain has just heard these words so many times, and there is this mental threshold at thirty-something that breaks, and the fabric of your brain can no longer screen them out.
I remember a few years ago, my mother swore at Lowe's–in the kitchen section. I remember it clearly, because although I have heard her rant and rave many, many times, I have never heard her actually swear. She snagged a nail, or stubbed her toe maybe, something simple, and out comes this word. I'm not talking vocabulary of the biblical variety here. I just kind of pretended not to notice, although she was absolutely mortified, and knew that I had. You know me, just change the subject. Suddenly I notice something fascinating about this stovetop, what do you think this is for, Mom?
Is that where I'm headed? AM I LOSING MY MIND?????
Sigh. But thanks, Christie, for giving me that look in the locker room. I had a good few years of unpolluted thought, anyway.
Maybe . . . you know one of the bishopric talked on Fast Sunday about how we need to structure our spiritual lives like dominoes. So that every spiritual experience is close enough to the one before it that there are no gaps that will interupt the grand scheme of things–you want them one right after another, all through your days, weeks, years. Maybe it isn't that there is a mental threshold that's been breached–maybe my dominoes are just too far apart. Maybe I should be reading my conference Ensign right now instead of checking my email, you know?