From Melancholy Malarkey to Sacred Foolishness
In response to Coffee Challenge: This is my weekly newsletter
She was a very serious child. The kind of seriousness that children who grow up around too much booze and sexy talk take on. Taking on–this is all my fault. Taking on–somehow I deserve this. And taking care of baby sister.
Sometimes twelve-year-old grown-ups grow up to be thirty-eight-year-old teenagers. Making up for and making out with lost time.
Long story short, all that making up and making out got addictive.
Especially when she did it in hot salsa clubs with all eyes on her dancing arse. This, finally, was attention. The wrong kind, but at least it was attention. She got drunk on it.
And like many drunks, she landed on and hit her bottom. Gracefully, she got her sore butt into recovery. And found herself a Higher-Powered Spirituality.
There began the birth of her sacred self.
Once she started her life over, it was time to add some humor.
She found the funny in her oh so sad story when it was her turn to share. Sharing was healing. Working through the twelve steps is all about sharing. Sharing her story. First to herself–admitting this was real. She really did do these things.
Secondly to Higher Power. Admissions of powerlessness were the first signs of true power. Admitting it to another human being, someone who’d been there and done that brought Marilyn back into the human family she felt so estranged from.
Making amends is the hardest story of all.
And the most worth it.
It took a while, but she finally found the courage to sit with her husband and come clean about everything. She braced herself for his full-throttled wrath. As in, it’s about time you apologized for f-ing up my life!
Instead of wrath, she got grace.
He showed her a picture of himself at age nine, the lost little boy waiting on the steps for Mommy to come home. The lost little boy now healing thanks to his men’s group. With his forgiving heart blessing her, she could breathe freely again. And forgive herself.
Releasing her demons of guilt and shame meant she was free. Free to live, love, and most of all, laugh. She found the light moments in the retelling. And once she started looking for and finding those, she couldn’t not see them.
This was a gift from her dad who made people laugh.
Well, if he was a drunken fool, she would be the sacred fool. After all, foolishness was never the problem. The booze and the touching were. But not the legitimately funny.
Even when she laughed to keep from crying, it was healing laughter. As Norman Cousins discovered, laughter heals. It helped her heal from Hodgkin's Disease. Along with affirmations and radiation.
She could only tell her story so many times to so many people in person. But she could write and post online, reaching people she never heard of. Lo and behold, she found she was as funny on the page as she was at meetings. And not limited to her recovery story.
Her very first conscious attempt at comedy writing garnered almost four thoudand claps Validation felt good. She kept at it.
Her funny stories or stories about learning to be funny were as popular as her poignant recovery stories. In some cases more. One day, she came upon Alana Fairchild's Sacred Rebels Oracle cards and read about the Sacred Fool archetype. She wrote about that here:
Instant recognition. Sacred Fool, C’est Moi!
Well, that had to be a poem. Especially since it was April 1. April Fool’s Day. How could she pass that op up? She posted that for us here:
Now we mentioned Commedia earlier without stopping to explain it. Commedia is a form of theatrical comedy hailing from the Italian Renaissance. It’s infected and inflicted all the great physical comedians and actors ever since. Charlie Chaplin. Buster Keaton. The Marx Brothers.
Groucho was usually Il Capitan or Il Professor. Chico was Arlequino to a tee. Zeppo, the straight man, was the lover. And Marilyn’s favorite, Harpo, embodied the spirit of that country bumpkin, clueless Zanni.
So no surprise that when Marilyn undertook the study of Commedia, she’d be drawn to taking on the persona of Zanni. She shared her zany Znni story here:
This doesn’t mean she only writes humor. Like a true addict, she wants and does it all. So there’s some poetry, creative nonfiction, and many reflective pieces in her repertoire.
But most of them reflect her zany sense of humor even if it's buried in subtext and only leaks out at the corners. What do you expect from someone who lives at the corner of Humor Highway and Satire Street?
So now, she’s put this all together for you. Right here in Substack. She calls her newsletter Sacred Foolishness. Anyone with a funny bone in their body can see why. And join her in a silly little laughing dance. Olé!
Thanks for connecting to Sacred Foolishness!
Marilyn, AKA the Sacred Fool says,
Ciao for now!