I can't get away from my own need for introspection at this time of year. I try to ignore, bury and drink "great wine" to make the issues go away, but still I fail. At the end of every year, I want to evaluate me and my life. Whether it's a profit or loss statement, the reviews of my last book, or why I'm so perfectly imperfect, I'm looking for answers. Crap, turning that light inward makes me even more crazy. As if that's something new.
My very loved and wonderful therapist died several years ago and I'm still adjusting. I miss her deeply and after riding a roller coaster of a year, for obvious and not so obvious reasons, I thought of returning to the church. Easier said then done. Issues: don't like the new Pope, hate the birth control issue, can't bear that women can't be priests, and think that priests not marrying is a very perverse problem. But enough about them, this is about me.
With desperation mixed with childlike innocence, I thought of the Lord's Prayer, and how I should chant it daily and carry it in my heart. Live it, and a big plus; I can still repeat it without Post-Its. I've known several versions of this renowned prayer. The Presbyterian version was different than the Catholics (and for a time in our lives, when my Mother was pissed at her in-laws, we were re-baptized. Not to worry, we weren't confused ... much).
The Presbyterians gave my sisters and me a big 8x10 glossy photo of Jesus. Very nice, and certainly easier to frame than a crucifix. But I am Italian and let's get real, any excuse for a gold chain...
With great respect, I repeat the Lord's Prayer, and this is not a new version. I am so tired of trying to be politically correct, and I bet you can gather that I'm not! Just savor the words, even if you are not religious. If you're more spiritual than religious, insert Mother, Force, or Cosmic Creature where the word Father appears.
Our Father (pray to something) which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name
(worship your life). Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, in earth as it is in heaven
(think about giving someone else the perfect parking place). Give us this day our daily bread (donate some money to a food bank, now, and eat as many carbs as you like. Oprah, this includes you! You are an angel to so many, your weight really doesn't matter), and forgive us our debts (embrace my AMEX bill) as we forgive our debtors
(clients paying my invoices late). And lead us not into temptation (with a pop-up See's candy store on every corner) and deliver us from evil (stopped working for Sandra Lee years ago): For thine (think universal we) is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever (nice finish). Amen.
Wishing the planet and all it's inhabitants a joyous 2010. Carry peace in your heart -
or at least try. That means you too, Sarah Palin.
Denise Vivaldo is the author of The Entertaining Encyclopedia, Robert Rose Publishing.