"Did you see who had the NERVE to sit next to me in church?" I pseudo-whispered to a friend at the coffee maker after mass. My friend looked at me, pretending not to know what I was talking about. As if. "You know. Remember? I can't stand her."
Flashback to a little event that I like to refer to as O Holy Clusterfuck, otherwise known as the Annual Children's Program. I won't go into the logistics of the now defunct ritual (praise be) other than to say that it was, a-hem, somewhat chaotic. And also needless to say, my daughter pleaded with every fiber of her being to be included. Every. Single. Year.
This particular year, she was playing a violin solo at OHC (aka ACP) before the actual mass began. Several children with varying levels of musical ability were playing solos in a half-hour *presentation* before mass, a mass that is always full to capacity with overflow seating in folding chairs ringing the perimeter of the church and spillover folks standing in the hallway outside of the church. The way that OHC (aka ACP) worked was, mass starts at 5 p.m. The Program begins at 4:30. The children in the Program had to arrive by something ridiculous like 3:30. As a result, all seating for the 5 p.m. mass was completely filled to capacity by 4 p.m. Oh, and this all took place on Christmas Eve, the one night of the year when everyone that has not been to church in a calendar year comes to church, and those who come to church every weekend point and stare and mock and judge. But I digress....
My child, wearing angel wings and a Christmas dress, was standing at the front of the church playing her violin solo. I was sitting in a near-front pew, videotaping her. And this woman walks in, stands directly in front of me and my videocamera, and does not sit down. Just stands there, looking around.
I choked down my roar of hey lady, down in front! and instead said, excuse me, I'm trying to videotape my daughter. To which the woman responds by ignoring me completely and talking to her husband in her *outside voice* about how ridiculously crowded the mass is. Meanwhile, my daughter finished her solo, took a bow, and left the altar, and I not only didn't get it on video, but barely got to see it.
Needless to say, I memorized this woman's face and vowed my vengeance, wherein vengeance = being totally passive-aggressive and snubbing her at every occasion. Heh. Also, no need to comment on my unchurchly like behavior. I know.
Back to present. I am standing at the coffee maker with my friend, who is pretending not to know what I am talking about. As if.
"You know. Remember? I can't stand her. The one who stood in front of me at the Christmas Program and wouldn't sit down? Totally rude? Remember?"
And my friend looked at me and said, "Seriously? That was, like, five years ago. Let it go."
I drove home thinking about the last time my now 11-1/2-year-old preteen wore angel wings, and I'd say five years sounds pretty accurate. Seriously? Am I that fucked up, that I have been harboring a grudge against someone whose name I do not know for five years? Oy.
So in the spirit of embracing the message at church today, which I could barely focus on because I was so busy being mad at this woman sitting next to me, and , hence, in the spirit of preserving my mental health, I am letting go.
Poof. Gone. Goodbye. I am done. I am letting go.
Dear obnoxious lady, I forgive you. You're welcome.*
*I actually wrote "you're welcome, bitch," and then realized that might be contrary to the spirit of letting go. So I deleted it. Because I am letting go. Like a grown up, albeit in baby steps.