Friday, March 02, 2007
Purim (and dirty little secrets)!!!!!
This weekend is Purim, one of the big celebration holidays on the Jewish calendar. The best part of the holiday is that you are supposed to drink until you can’t tell the difference between the good guy of the story (Mordechai) and the bad guy (Haman).

Seriously, proscribed drunkenness!!!

Anyway, it’s a long story and it can all be read here but I’m going to give you my take on Purim as it relates to me right now.

There are two women in the Purim story. One is Vashti and the other is Esther. For the story to work, we must get rid of Vashti in the beginning so that Esther can become queen and the heroine of the story. Therefore, Vashti needs to be the villain but really, she isn’t. She decides that she doesn’t want to parade around for the king’s drunken buddies in nothing but her tiara and so, off with her head.


Then to Esther. Esther becomes the queen, but she has many secrets.

Many, many secrets.

Secrets which could have her killed. She frets over this. She fasts (because that’s what they did in the olden days when they had a decision to make – apparently) and she finally decides that to save herself and to save the Jewish people, she will have to put her life at risk, and tell her secrets to the king.

I lived a lot of my life with big secrets and a lot of shame. I was protecting myself at the time, but over time, it caused me to curl up in a ball and not get out of bed for a year, not to mention the crying and the driving into brick walls.


As I started getting better, I started telling certain, trusted people my secrets. I risked a lot to do this. They might have rejected me. They might have said something stupid – and some did. But ultimately, getting those secrets off my chest (and stomach and thighs and heart) has been such an incredibly healing process.

Secrets suck. Even the really shameful ones that make you feel like a bad person inside.

We all want to look unblemished. Some of us (ME!) want to look/seem perfect but that just is a big ol' lie and makes everyone wonder what you're hiding (don't drink, don't smoke, what do ya do?) and the cracks in your veneer that will eventually come out seem all that more glaring.

I'm a mess. Glad to share it with ya. And in the end, Esther tells her secret, saves herself, the Jewish people and gets the bad guy (Haman) hung on the gallows.

The End.

The moral of this story is that when you share a terrible secret that has been burdening your soul and making you eat a loaf of bread and a dozen tortillas a day and you get it off your chest it becomes less and less shameful. It weighs less and becomes easier to manage. Perhaps someone will say, "I'm so sorry, I didn't know." or "That happened to me, too." And you realize that you're not the only one with a terrible secret.

Have a hamentaschen for me!!!!

Labels: , ,

Stumble It!


Blogger Merna said...

Nice post, Faith!

Blogger Susan said...

They always say confession is good for the soul. Me, I grew up Catholic. I'm still not big on the whole confess to the priest thing, but I do understand the reason behind it. So many things I'm worried about become smaller once I've said them.

Blogger WineGrrl said...

The story of Purim is riveting.

Blogger Laurie Ann said...

Is that pastry supposed to look like a Uterus?

Blogger Elizabeth McClung said...

nice post - I too find it suspecious when someone seems to have no "bad habits" at all - also, if you actual drove into a brick wall, how was it, because I have had a lot of fantasies about that over the years - I bet it isn't as good as they show in movies, right?

I always thought the point of the story was be nice to the administrators so they will look out for you in a confusing system which can get you killed at any time.

Blogger Ellen Bloom said...

Laurie Ann!!! The hamentaschen pastry is supposed to look like a 3-cornered hat...the kind that King Hamen's soldiers wore.

We call Purim the Jewish Mardi Gras. There is much screaming, yelling, drinking and carryin' on. Mazel tov, y'all!

Blogger dizzy von damn! said...

and see i thought the hamentashen looked like a big vagina.

purim was always my favorite.

Blogger MonkeyGurrrrrl said...

Hee-hee. I thought the pasty looked like the "mound of venus", if ya get my meaning {{wink-wink; nudge-nudge}}

And I'm all for drinking until you can't tell the difference between the good guys and the bad guys. Its the waking up the next morning that I hate!

Oh, and Susan - also a recovering catholic. Never liked the confessional thing b/c I always felt the confessor was human too and therefore, what is the point? He would judge me! Now I think the confessor has worse sins of his own to confess. And it amuses me.

Blogger Frank said...

Another amazing post Faith!

The part about "Hey, that happened to me," is why I continue to come out on my campus, both as a gay man (Yah, I know, you wouldn't know unless I told y'all...) and so many other things. I grew up poor and on welfare. I grew up with a stepfather who was in and out of prison. It's amazing to see the relief wash over my students' faces when they hear an adult identify with some of the things they've gone through.

Thank you.

Blogger Lynn said...

Hey, I just found your blog through your Crazy Aunt, and I have to say, good post. Very good post. Keep up the good* work!

* OK, so I haven't had my coffee yet this morning and I can't think of any alternatives to the word good. You may substitute better words as you see fit.

Post a Comment

<< Home