Not only am I a cry baby, I am also a recovering drama queen. I'm proud to say that it's been a long time since I got all wrapped up in the drama.
At the mid-march retreat while gathering images for my vision board I came across a dead drama queen. She looked like a doll or a hand puppet. Her gown was Dorothy Gale ruby red; her head dress looked like two or three candy canes twisted together and lying flat underneath her was either a pair of gossamer-like wings (I like to believe that only happy, pretty things like fairies and dragonflies and angels get wings) or a lace-y Elizabethan collar - we'll go with the collar because Elizabeth I was a tough, kinda scary broad. The words drama queen were printed next to her tiny corpse. I tucked little DQ into my journal and brought her home with me. I didn't put her on my vision board - you put stuff you want there - I eventually glued her into the front of my journal and added words in red glitter pen so that the caption reads the drama queen in me is DEAD! She hangs out next to a photocopy of Mary Oliver's poem The Fawn and a Shunryu Suzuki quote "Zen is not some kind of excitement, but concentration on our usual everyday routine." I was all patting myself on the back when I pasted her in there - look at me, I'm not a drama queen anymore...
Cut to March 25, 2007. It's late Sunday morning. I've just gotten out of the shower and have headed into my bedroom to get dressed for work. Guess what I find? The floor covered with ugly little ant-looking winged bugs. Before I have time to figure out if they are friends or foes they start to swarm. They climb around on my bed - they walk on my dog who is sitting on the bed - they land on me and I f r e a k out. Under normal circumstances I take insects outside and set them free. These are not normal circumstances. My house is being invaded and I feel like the main character in some stupid horror flick. I jump up and down while flailing my arms about. I convince Annie to come with me and we flee the bedroom. I've worked hard on being cool-headed in stressful situations but that's flown out the window and I start to cry - I want my mommy. So I call her. It's no surprise that she immediately knows something is wrong but she can't help because she's on her way out. I call my grandmother - she'll know what to do - it's her house after all - she's not home from church yet. I call Dad at work. He and I determine that I've got termites. He tells me that I can suck those boogers up in the Hoover. So I do, bazillions of 'em and I don't feel all that guilty about it - that comes later. I grab my cell phone and start making calls to insure that the library will be open on time - I leave a message for my boss, track down a student employee, and ask the campus po-po to meet him and unlock the door. By this time the evil ones are making their way into other parts of the house. I chase them down and one by one I hoover them to death.
No matter how hard I work (and that shower that I'd just taken, yeah well, about that) they keep coming. Seeing them climbing on my bed is disgusting so I decide that my bed has to come out of there now - there is no waiting for someone to come over and help. So in my adrenaline-driven hysteria I wrestle not only the double pillowtop mattress but also the springs into the living room where I end up sleeping for the next several weeks until the termite nightmare is over.
I did get a post-lunch call back from my grandmother and by the time she came over there weren't many termites left. The first exterminator who came the very next morning couldn't do the job because of the way the 1970s addition to the house was built and the second guy took like 2 weeks to get the job done. (Thanks small town living!) In the interim I had several more swarms to deal with. One, which was witnessed by my grandmother, forced us to put thick towels and blankets over all the windows in the living room. That was not fun, but at least it proved to my grandmother that I wasn't completely nuts. Living with totally blacked out windows for a week was a bit saddening.
So what I'm telling you about my drama queen is that she's not morally, ethically, spiritually, physically, positively, absolutely, undeniably and reliably dead she's only mostly dead. And that, I think I can live with.