Monday, May 21, 2012

The Red Dress Playlist: "Witchy Woman"

A while back, I started a self-improvement project, inspired by Jenny Lawson, the GreatBloggess. To read about the origin of my project, look here. For the short version, each week I will set out to conquer something that is holding me back from being the person I want to be. A relationship, a memory, a fear. . .anything that makes me less than I am. I will attack each challenge wearing my red dress as a cape for inspiration and as a symbol of the superheroes we all are inside. My goal is to undertake the daunting task of taking one crazy, neurotic, and mentally unstable woman and molding her into a productive member of our crazy, neurotic, and mentally unstable society.

I am a cynic, by and large.  I rarely take anything at face value, have a somewhat "OK, prove it!" type of assholery about me, and am the first to go all Snopes-dot-com and call bullshit when something seems too weird to be true.  However, after witnessing such bizarre phenomena as double rainbows, Indonesian tsunamis and the success of Taylor Swift it has come to my attention that yes, there are perhaps things in our universe that cannot be explained by science or logic.  

Seriously, WTF!?!?

Therefore, my red dress challenge this week was to think outside the box; to embrace something I have always found to border  on the ridiculous.  So I swallowed my pride, opened my mind, and went to see a psychic.

The psychic I found was located in the back of a New Age bookstore about a mile from my hotel.*

*I'm travelling for work this week and am currently in a town that has the grand distinction of being the "Topless Espresso Cart Capital of the World".  Huzzah!

I was expecting a Madama Zolga kind of character, like Anne Bancroft in "Love Potion #9" and instead was faced with a crop-top wearing chain smoker with hair that was jacked to Jesus like Ellen Barkin in "Drop Dead Gorgeous".*

*I have the cinematic aesthetics of a dime-store hooker.

My psychic, Sharon, told me that she "became" psychic seventeen years ago after being unconscious for three days following a horrifically botched surgery.  She claimed that a spirit guide presented himself to here in her altered state and taught her the power of harnessing spiritual energy.  I suggested it may simply have been the result of a shit ton of pharmaceutical grade pain killers, but Sharon was adamant.  She placed her hand over mine and stared deeply into my eyes for several long moments.*

*Which were moments of sheer physical torture to me as I enjoy being touched and stared at about as much as an agoraphobe with Asperger Syndrome.

"I sense the color green has significance for you." she nodded sagely.

"  Well, I guess so."  I racked my brain frantically, "I mean, I like green, but..."

"It's a man!"  she suddenly cried, "His NAME is Green!  And he will have great significance in your life!"

"Huh, OK.  Green. . .holy shit, my gynocologist is Dr. Green!  No offense but based on how long it's been since anyone has been spelunking in my Cave of Mystery I'm pretty sure things have grown closed down there.  Doc Green won't have much to work with."

Sharon tilted her head and regarded me quietly.  "You like cheese".

Wait...what?  Did I seriously pay this woman $15 to wax eloquent on my love for all things Gorgonzola?  You don't have to be Dionne Warwick's psychic friend to know that I like cheese; just look at the size of my ass! So, just to test her abilities I replied "I'm allergic to dairy".*

*I'm not really; but I am intensely allergic to bullshit.  Too bad they don't make an Epi-pen for that.

Not to be deterred, Sharon countered "You may be allergic but your spirit still hungers for it.  It is a carry over from your past life."

Seeing as how I was such an ardent admirer of cheese products I could only infer that she had just implied that in a past life I was either a mouse or French, either one of which filled me with white-hot rage.  Then, just as I was about to stand and excuse myself before Sharon's spirit guide went all Patrick Swayze on her ass she softly grabbed my hand.  "It isn't your fault" she said.  "He forgives you."

I paused quizzically.  "Who forgives me?"

Sharon smiled softly.  "Your son.  He wouldn't have survived and neither would his brothers.  He died so that they could live.  It was meant to be; he's safe now."

I stood frozen to the spot.  Because what Sharon didn't know, what she COULDN'T have known is that when I became pregnant after years of fertility treatments, we discovered we were carrying triplets.  At around ten weeks the doctor noticed that while Baby A (my son M) was developing normally, Baby B (my son J) and Baby C (the baby I called Will) were struggling.  Baby C's heart rate was erratic and he was constricting Baby B's umbilical cord to where he was slowly starving to death.  The doctors had said that Baby C would never survive past twelve weeks and that if we didn't do a selective reduction then all three babies would die.  After an agonizing period of crying, fighting, and praying for a miracle, we made the decision to try to save the babies we could.  Even after Baby Will was taken from us, I was still on bedrest for weeks and my sons M and J were born at 27 weeks, weighing only 3 lbs. and 1 lb. 9 oz. respectively.

"How can he forgive me?" I whispered through my tears.  "I can never forgive myself."

Sharon smiled gently, patting my hand. "Because it was God's will.  HE was God's will."

God's will.  He was.  He was God's Will and I will love him until the day I die.  

So, do I now believe in psychics? It's hard to say, but I am definitely more amenable to the idea.  I do believe in spirituality.  I do believe that some people are just more consciously aware than others.  And I do believe that when our loved ones leave this earth they are never truly gone.  I see my grandfather whenever I hear violin music, I see my grandmothers when I smell honeysuckle or taste an apple fresh from the tree, and I see my son Will every time I look into the eyes of my beautiful children and know the sacrifice he made for their survival.  Love never dies.



Cindy said...

oh Jen, I have goosebumps...and tears, lots of tears. What a beautiful story. WOW! I mean, how do you explain that one? holy crap, there aren't any words...

Jillian said...

Oh Honey. I hope you find a little bit of peace, knowing that ALL of your babies, forever, are with you. That is why spirits still touch us occasionally-- to remind us that love is never lost and that we are a part of a bigger love story than we can ever imagine.

Jen said...

CINDY - I have been trying and trying to rationalize and explain how she could have known what she did. As a research scientist I crave rational solutions but there just isn't one here. It simply is what it is.

JILLIAN - I think about him every day and wonder what he's be like. I hope to God we'll be together again some day.

Bexstar said...

Shitbags that's intense. And bloody sad. Big mad sloppy loves to you. You are such a frigging superhero Jen & I love you harder than a the statue of davids little freak dick. Shine on my friend xx

Andrea said...

I was teetering on the edge of going to a medium with my mother (psychic frreaks me out too much, as the future scares me enough with what I concoct). This might've just sealed the deal for me. What a difficult decision and I hope this brought some some little bit of peace.

Jen said...

BEX- I love you too. So much. We all have our shit but living through it is what makes us powerful bitches.

ANDREA- Go for it! You have nothing to lose. :)

Anonymous said...

Tears and hugs. My bestie has what we call spidey sense. I believe some people are more receptive to what's floating around than others. Sounds like you've found someone who had that talent. Thx for sharing
Xo Claire

Jana said...

My heart breaks for the decision that you had to make early on for your boys.
I remember when my husband and I (for jokes) went to see a palm reader and when I asked her how many babies we would have she told him that my husband would have two and I would have three. She looked me right in the eye and said that my first daughter would be waiting to meet her sisters someday. It broke my heart, but it felt so good to know that she was safe and loved and that I would see her again someday.
How wonderful that by stepping out of your comfort zone you found a measure of peace.

Killer Cupcake said...

I'm so glad you went. I am a huge believer in the "occult" and occasionally will do tarot readings for people, who have actually come to me sometimes years later and told me that my reading was spot on.

It's hard to believe something that we don't feel ourselves, but I'm glad your experience was positive and offered you peace.

Much love to you, mama.

Jen said...

CLAIRE - Thank you. I am still reeling from it.

JANA - We'll both be with our babies again someday, ofthat I'm sure. xoxo

DANI - I'm still not surewhat I believe, but I'm certainly more open to otherworldly possibilities.

Tainted Fibers said...

Man. That's some heavy stuff. I am scared to go to psychic. But I believe that some people do have a gift. I think that was a gift to you and I hope it gave you some peace. Way more to you than meets the eye girlie. Way more.I think you are awesome.

Kelly said...

Oh, friend. What an uplifting punch in the gut (if that makes sense). I think I've never gone because I don't know that I can handle whatever it is they'll tell me. What I do know is that you have a very special guardian angel watching over you and the boys. He's taking care to watch his brothers grow up, and to watch his mom evolve into a strong, independent, hilarious, fierce woman. I love you, sistah. I hope your heart is lighter now. <3

Jen said...

FIBERS- I think you're pretty awesome too, my dear. I may never forgive myself for the choice I made, but if my son can forgive me, it gives me hope.

KELLY- The doctors told me that it would be a miracle if M and J survived and that they'd likely be severely brain damaged. Today they are bright, happy, healthy, crazy little nine year olds. Their brother has been looking after them since the day they were born. ;)

Anonymous said...

When you wrote what she said, it literally gave me chills. I was holding my breath waiting to see how you reacted to what she told you, as I realized who she was talking about. I am right now writing this with tears streaming down my face. HUGE HUGS TO YOU, GIRL. I love you. You are one of the strongest women I have ever met and I know that your son is watching over you and your boys.

The hubs and I went to a psychic when we started dating just for kicks. She told us that we would not be together for very long. That was 16 years ago. I'm not a believer. But I'm glad she gave you something that you could believe in and hope it even gave you some peace. Maybe there are some true visionaries out there, after all.

Johi Kokjohn-Wagner said...

I have no words for this othet than I'm so sorry and I love you. I have goosebumps.

Jen said...

MISTY & JOHI - I love you both so much my Sister Wives. Thank you for never judging me and always being there. Xoxo

Jennifer Clark said...

Oh, Jen! What an awful decision to have to make.... A friend in my multiple group had to make the same call and even after her healthy twins were born, she was still so torn up. She knew she had done what was best, but still.

I truly admire the strength you have.

Pish Posh said...

Oh wow. First I am so sorry for your loss and grief. You never forget losing a child, not ever.

How did you just go from hilarious to heartbreaking. Boom.

Maybe, whatever and however she did it, she opened up a place in you that you've been grieving but hiding (to survive) and this was cathartic to you? I sure hope so. You saved your children's lives and you were faced with a choice no mother should have to make. But you had to, and you did the right thing.

Safe travels!! Hugs!! I mean that more sincerely than it sounds. I've lost a child too. Just when I think we can't have more in common...

WeezaFish said...

I'm with you on the fence there but wow Jen, what an amazing experience to have met that lady. So moved by your post and the painful decision you had to make back then, tears and goosebumps indeed.

Anonymous said...

Damn you and your ability to make me cry. I wanted to hate the psychic with you!
You'd be surprised how easy it is for someone to forgive us sometimes, but we don't find it so easy to forgive ourselves. At least, I have to believe that. I say that because, to an extent, I can relate to your story. I wonder about my little one often.

Jen said...

JENN- Even when you know it's the "right" decision, a piece of your heart still dies. ((HUGS)) to you and your friend.

PISH POSH - We are the same person, aren't we? :) I love how this whole blogging world brings us all together.

WEEZA - Thank you! Your comments always make my heart smile.

NELLIE - I believe that all of our lost children are together and when it is time we will be with them to watch them live and grow.

AC said...

Wow... I have goosebumps.

Anonymous said...

huge. lump. stuck. in. throat. Seriuosly, I can't swallow right now.

Rachael said...

Way to make me cry. I couldn't imagine having to make a decision like that. I"m not sure about psychics, but I believe in something, not necessarily sure what. You have two beautiful boys and another to watch over them always. Hugs to you.

Jen said...

AC, ANON., & my Tassie friend RACHAEL- It was the worst decision Ive ever had to make. I just pray that God can forgive me.

Leauxra said...

Things like this are the reason I am not a complete disbeliever.

I lived in New Orleans, where "psychics" and "voodooiens" and card readers and palm readers were a dime a dozen (or $12 for 8 minutes anyway), and I think for the most part they just make shit up that applies to everyone... But sometimes a gem sneaks through, like a message was sent. Like the time I told my best friend in the third grade that her dog was dead four hours before anyone found him.

It's not magic, it's just science we haven't explained yet.

Jaclyn said...

I also lost a baby boy after IVF, so this was emotional for me to read. I hope hearing that he was safe brought you some peace.

I always struggle with the idea of "God's will"... I usually respond with something along the lines of "fuck God, I'd like my baby back". The fact that you had to sacrifice one son to save the others is heartbreaking, but I don't know... maybe God does have some sort of plan?

Jen said...

LEAUXRA - Some people are just more perceptive than oters. My son hasthe most amazingly accute hearing and my sister can read people's emotions like nothing I've ever seen. Some follksjust seem to have been born with "the shine".

JACLYN- I feel the same way. Why wouldGod want to kill an innocent child? But sometimes you have to see the big picture, I guess. I still struggle with 100% blind faith, however.

chemgirljaime said...

my sister went to see a psychic awhile back about our mum.. and she said some amazing things that she couldn't have known ... sometimes people just have a gift.

Jen said...

JAIME - I never used to think so, Jaime. Now I just don't know.

Anonymous said...

I've always considered myself a skeptic, but your story may have just changed my mind.


And what a difficult decision to make. I believe you'll be with him one day.

RemarkableMonkey said...

Beautiful. And beautifully written. (Spooky... but beautiful.)

Anonymous said...

I just hopped over here after seeing you and Pish Posh mention my post. I got chills from reading this.

The post you read is the first of several I've been meaning to put into words. There is still some story to tell. There is still some story to live.

And after reading your post . . . maybe there's plenty of story I don't even know about.

Jen said...

THOUGHTSY- believing I'll hold him one day is what keeps me sane. I miss him so much.

MONKEY- there is so much out there we may never understand. Sometimes l we have is blind faith.

STACEY- thank you for sharing your story. I know that our children are safe and we will be reunited one day. Xoxo