Posted by: bandaidchild | August 1, 2010

The Porcelain Express.

In Finding Nemo, the blowfish realizes that “all portals lead to the ocean,” including the one they dub the “porcelain express”, which is why the gang want to get Nemo down the toilet so he can get back home.

Well, my phone doesn’t belong in the EAC (East-Australian Current). It belongs in my pocket. But where did it go without my permission? Down the porcelain express.

I was about to eat a short stack of delectable cinnamon and apple pancakes, but needed to utilize the facilities first because my bladder is embarrassingly small.  So, I do mah bid’ness, pull up my shorts, reach over to tap the handle, and my phone slips out of my pocket, and the next thing I know it is getting sucked down the drain. I stood there, cocking my head for a few moments, to try and ascertain what just occurred.

It’s kinda like that scene in Tommy Boy where the deer rips apart Richard’s brand new car, and all the two can do once the deer climbs on out and scuttles away is breathe, stare, and say…..”that…. was…. AWESOME!…. I mean, sorry about your car; that really sucks…”

Now in terms of financial difference, I get that a car is a slightly larger investment. But if it comes down to attachment, I was feeling pretty naked when I came back to the table after telling my friend what had just happened.

It’s been approximately twenty four hours since my phone was waterlogged and now lives among the rats.

There was no point in telling that, other than to help my transition through the grieving process.

Now, I don’t want anybody to think I take grief lightly. It’s merely that I am trying to laugh at myself and my circumstances more. A wise man told me several times that if I wanted an emotionally healthy life, I’d need to learn to laugh at myself. Some days are easier than others.

Actually, I feel like I’m in the midst of some grieving for real. A family friend passed away yesterday to suicide, and I haven’t been able to stop thinking about her family since I found out. She was my banker in Wisconsin. She was always incredibly patient with me, notarized a ton of stuff for South Africa, and sat with me and my parents as I signed a POD on my bank account in case I didn’t come back from South Africa alive. There are questions circling around in my head like vultures, waiting for answers that will never surface for one reason or another.

I guess this is the first person I’ve ever known who has attempted and succeeded and I am left wondering. Wandering.

In college, I used Post-it notes to remind me to do assignments (or to think about thinking about doing assignments), hold quotes, encouragement, and reminders of truth. One I re-wrote every semester on a yellow post-it was this:

“what crimes have you committed, demanding such penance, that couldn’t wait for five more minutes?”

(Caedmon’s Call- Center Aisle)

Maybe I wrote it in yellow because I knew the color would stick out more. Maybe I wrote it every year for the last two years of college because I forgot so often. Maybe somewhere in me, I knew I needed to cut myself a little slack, but the part I listened to more often drowned out Truth.

Maybe she needed to hear that. Maybe if she would have thought about what it was that warranted such punishment, that couldn’t wait for another five minutes to be sorted through, maybe she wouldn’t have done what she did.

I am really really trying to take five minutes to deduce what it is I feel is punishable that I try to control control control, and show myself Grace.

I just finished a book my therapist gave me about seven months ago. It wasn’t Little Women, just thick in terms of emotional density. This book painstakingly took me through things I didn’t really want to think about, but found it therapeutic to do so. As long as I thought of the workbook as homework, it was easier to shift past certain topics. Part of the work book is grieving over the loss of parts of your childhood.

Everybody has parts of their childhood that aren’t filled with hot summer days and lemonade stands, and this book taught me that it was OK to actually mourn over missing some things as a kid. So I’ve been doing that a little bit this week, too.

I am getting ready to change a lot of things about myself through confession and accountability and oral determination to die to myself. This change of clothing is really terrifying. But I think it’s about time I change my clothes. They’re getting old and stinky.

A bath never hurt anybody, right?



  1. I’m really sorry to read about the loss of your friend’s life – and for the questions it leaves lingering.

    That Caedmon’s song pacts a powerful punch to my heart.

    shame about phone…

  2. Thanks, Amy.

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