I dined al fresco last night with a dear friend.
We went to my favorite old French restaurant and sat outside.
We had the mussels and pomme frites, the Vouvray in an ice bucket on the table.
Two lettuce salads, one with beets, one with cucumbers and fennel.
We shared two desserts.
We had another glass of wine at the end so we could stay longer.
Twenty-five years or more we've known each other.
I am so grateful for these few long relationships now.
Talking to someone who knows all the stories, all the backstory, all the truths between the lines, all the lies that have been told.
I do of course love to meet new people and tell new stories too, just as much.
But when there's someone there who has born witness, you are held accountable simply by their presence.
For me, I am often caught lying to myself about being bad instead of lying to myself about being good.
I'm caught telling a story of my past failures and faults that isn't real.
I blame myself, and I see myself in a position of power, a false sense that I could have saved every situation.
I think that my past is a result of my sins.
A person who knows me well and has been around for much of my story will often point out to me that I was sometimes simply a victim of some situations or people.
Victim isn't the best word, and actually victim is not a word that was used last night.
But the idea that others have taken advantage of me, or that I have been told the wrong things about myself, this idea is unnerving.
I went to a fortune teller this past winter, before the Virus hit, before we saw it coming even, and the fortune teller told me I had to protect myself more.
She said that "people tend to walk all over you".
I hated that.
It made me feel like crying and giving up.
I like being the master of my destiny.
I like feeling like it's all on my shoulders, like I'm the one to save the day.
In my film writing class this Spring a fellow writer commented that my grown up Sidney character has a "Savior Complex".
Get over yourself Courtney.
You're just one person in an ocean of a bazzzilllion people and whether the dining room table has a pile of mail sitting on it or not doesn't matter.
Nothing matters very much, maybe, except leaving some kind of legacy that points a way toward kindness and justice and love.
If I can give up on all my other crap and just focus on creating small songs and stories, poems, essays, whatever, that help illuminate the path to the Holy Spirit then I will have lived well.
My transgressions and the transgressions of those who have hurt me will be worth all the pain they caused.
I recommit today again to writing.
Write it, conjure it, bring it to the surface for those who cannot see what I have inside.
Maybe some of my inside brought out into the light will be of help to others.
The Holy Spirit will be conjured up and the people will glimpse freedom.
My ongoing thanks and gratitude to old friends and new who give me hope.