She is insane. Literally.
I shall call her "Bess" here to protect her privacy. She is one of my client's that resides in the group home for seriously mentally ill adults that I work at. I usually do not write about clients, their lives are very private and not something I care to discuss with the world. But since this was about me and her unique view of me, I wanted to share it and her insanely insightful love advice.
Upon meeting Bess, she immediately began praying for me to find a husband. She has offered assorted advice such as, "Hey, hey pretend to let your car break down and let a man take you home but no sex! No sex on a first date."
And my all time favorite, "Pick up a gardener snake," she makes motion of doing so and throwing it over her shoulder as she smiles coyly, "and then say, 'Hey, look at me. I have a gardener snake.' I swear it will work."
There are days when Bess tells me, "Wow lady, you are one sexy woman. He'll come you just got to believe it. I asked God about it." That one was a bit embarrassing since we were standing in a long line at the Social Security office and she screamed it at the top of her lungs.
There are days she is bit quieter, a bit more lucid in the midst of her less lucid moments when the things she says astounds me.
"You know Joe, or Moe or is it Flo? Hey Mojo Lady. You have to believe it will happen." Then she claps frantically and insists I shout with her on the patio, "I believe! I believe! Come on lady shout it like you mean it!" and she will not stop until I do. "It's about believing, honey girl. You keep talking yourself out of believing there is someone out there looking just for you."
I am a bit stunned and now I am quieter too. I study this woman, this crazy lady covered with wrist bangles and broken neck chains, two blouses and one sock on upside down. Her face is worn and wrinkled but you can see the beauty she used to be. Bess begins praying and making odd hand gestures. "Tell her God, tell her that she is beautiful and lovely and has damn sexy legs."
I laugh out loud. Sometimes you just have to. Bess then looks like she is talking to someone not there, "I'm telling you, she said you need to try that internet thing again. Oh she knows you don't want to and you're scared of it but he's looking for you too."
I am surprised to know she has even heard of internet dating.
"You've gotta stop this stuff and put yourself out there." She cackles with a wild sparkle in her eyes. "You'll see. He'll look at you and you'll look at him and the stars will just be shining. And it will be the best thing you ever knew. Then you'll know I'm right." She kisses her hands and throws them up to the sky laughing. "I'm telling you the truth."
I don't really know what to say to all of that so I say, "Bess? Why are you so concerned with finding me a husband?"
"Ohhhhhh! You have been alone enough. It's time to find just one guy, not a whole bunch, just one. You'll see. Just wait. You will see." She then begins dancing to the music on the patio, an oddly hysterical type of chair dancing that she somehow uses her entire body creating unusual contortions as she sings "Is There Something I Should Know?" by Duran Duran. Her interest in me is forgotten.
I realize she is right. I need to believe. I need to put myself back out there. I have been alone a while, longer than I ever wanted. I am not quite sure about the husband thing but I am ready to share my life. I only need one, not a whole bunch. Out of the mouth of a crazy lady comes sanity. I need to take her advice.
Hmmm, I wonder how I can get a hold of a gardener snake…
Monika M. Basile