Category: Ponder

Shiny Exteriors, Emotional Interiors

Back when I used to sell sex toys for a living… Wait, let me back up a little bit. I grew up in small town Louisiana. I was a cheerleader and in the band; my mom was a teacher at my high school, and the school was small enough that I knew everyone. I guess I was “popular” but I never felt like it. I never really felt like I fit in with any group. And as I’ve gotten older, that hasn’t really changed much. This fall, my oldest son started middle school and his middle school counselors talk...

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The Pain of Religion

‘I grew up in a strict Southern Baptist home.’ This is the canned answer I give for my complete ignorance of anything secular before the year 2000. My world was incredibly small, consisting exclusively of Christian music, television and books. Guilt was an enormous part of what kept me locked into Christianity. I’d say it was a healthy 60%, the other 40% being a tangled mess of fear and obligation. God was watching not only my every action, but could see into the deepest recesses of my mind, could see the thoughts that I’d never imagine sharing with other...

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The World’s Best Liar

One of my favorite songs, “The Hills” by The Weeknd, came on while I was cruising down PCH. I belted it out as best I could (some parts I just made up) when a line in the chorus made me pause: “When I’m f*cked up that’s the real me.” That’s not true for me. After a few cocktails, I become every one else except me. I become the world’s best liar. As a kid, I’d heard, “In vino veritas,” or in non-Latin, “With wine comes truth.” I panicked, imagining myself a CIA agent being tortured by the Russians with...

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A Rose, By Any Other Name, Must Be A Woman

My husband and I were good friends for more than a year before we started dating. After that, it felt right very quickly – we were talking marriage only a few months later and got engaged after only eight months. It didn’t feel fast. I had dated a guy for almost five years before I met Tim, and I had never been sure. This time I was. One of our first conversations on the subject of marriage, weirdly, was about last names. I had grown up like most boy crazy teen girls, doodling my name with my crush’s last...

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The Price of Comfort

You’re unhappy in your marriage. Or not unhappy, perhaps. Maybe just unsettled. You’ve been in it for a long time, and you’re finding yourself twisting about in boredom and apathy and sometimes near-hatred. You’re increasingly frustrated at the tiny things and daydream about how blissful it would be to just be *alone.* To not have to be painfully polite to somebody or consider their feelings in every goddamn decision you make. Or to simply have the ability to sit in silence for more than 10 minutes – no one questioning, demanding, requesting. Just quiet. Marriage is arguably the hardest...

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