I write Women’s Corner for myself. I’m a sojourner, a temporary resident recovering from a bad church upbringing both as a child growing up and betrayals as an adult believer. I’m overwhelmed with gratitude that I get to write about the questions that most interest me, searching for a faith that makes my heart find stillness in the midst of war. This column is a process of exploration and investigation of things I think about and worry about. Things that break my heart.
Alice in the Wonderland – Down the Rabbit Hole: Exploring the new and the Unknown
Someone emailed, “Don’t you think you should bring down your writing to an 8th grade reading level?” I replied, “Why?” She replied, “So many don’t comprehend your writing, especially those who really need to read your column.” This kind of thinking is a sign of codependence. We are so busy looking at others and their issues and not take time to look at ourselves. (I have an 87 year old reader who reads with a dictionary at hand).
Another person lashed out, “You’re so busy analyzing the whole world but you and your kids are so messed up and poor…” Ahhh… a Mad Hatter, rude with his provocative, cruel jokes at tea parties. Always nervous and frightened like a little boy when called by the Queen.
Writing is an adventure for me like Alice in the Wonderland. When I was in the eighth grade, I drank the cool aide and became heartless, so out of touch with reality. Life became external only where efficiency and performance are everything. Like Alice I followed the White Rabbit’s command blindly and ran into the cottage she didn’t know where. She found a liquid and drank it and grew so big she filled the house. When the group saw her they were afraid of her, so they threw a wheelbarrow full of pebbles at her face. The pebbles turned to cakes. When she ate the cakes, she began to shrink back to normal size – small.
Growing up comes with unpredictable events and uncontrollable change. Stones or pebbles become cakes that makes us grow whole, and be more normal – be real. But the story doesn’t end there… she runs into the woods… for more adventure or whatever.
I read a commentary on Alice… “We all start out as children, but we come out of the Wonderland now prepared to be an adult. Alice has learned that to be an adult is to honor rules, but not blindly. That there must be rules for a game to mean something, but the rules must be interpreted with a sense of justice and mercy, or they are as meaningless as no rules at all. So why shouldn’t I steal? To maintain a good mental health.
Alice has learned that to be old, or big, is not necessarily to be an Adult. Sometimes, like the Queen, aging leads to a second childhood filled with either the madness of the Hatter or the Sad Nostalgia of the Mock Turtle. [/restrict]