I recently listened to a few women speak for, for a few minutes each, about anything they wanted. Yeah, I actually listened much to the disbelief of my wife when I told her. I did listen. But listening and hearing are not always the same thing. Especially when there is a conversation taking place. This was one way so I could both listen and hear! So I tried.
By nature, I tend to like to talk about, most un-humbly, some "insignificant to others" achievement I have done or about something I have great interest in such as beer and the craftsmanship of making it. I don't really think I boast about my achievement. These are all things others have done before and will do after. But for me, the are significant and I have fun telling of my adventures.
These women were, mostly, different. They wanted me to share in their pain. I should ride an emotional roller coaster as they pour their hearts and tears out in their stories. I am not being taking on an adventure of spirit and exploration, they were bringing me into their torment and pain. The pain of a husband dying that was moments before full of life and exuberance. They walked through the eyes of their children experiences as they grow older, without their father. This is not how I think and I do not understand the need to share my tears and most painful experiences over and over... with others. I don't understand it.
Another spoke of the fleeting moments she would spend with her cancer stricken child. Terminal. Fatal. The time was both slow and fast. Too fast. There was not enough time for her. There was not enough she could do to make the time - better. She walked us through to the end without telling us it was the end or the end passed. We just knew it. She told this story before. Maybe hundreds of times I sensed, mostly to herself. She spent countless hours reliving those too-few moments she had had. She smacked us in the head with sad statistics about the amount of research into pediatric cancer. We learned of her new found passion to help prevent another, any other family from experiencing the same pain.
One woman spoke of being a porn star. Well, feeling like one. Well, being told by he mom that the only possible reason, of all the infinite possibilities, that she MUST be a porn star. This woman did the unthinkable to a properly conservative woman might do. She had permanent laser hair removal on her naturally hairy legs. I imagined her in a small part of my world that included hiking and outdoors. Her furry legs were evidence of her spending weeks backpacking some hundreds of miles. But in reality, she said that it was her genetics. Of course her mother was not appalled by simply clear cutting the forest along the lower extremities, she came to the conclusion that her cherished little girl was a porn star because she had that 70's porn bush smoothed and polished leaving a light but manageable fuzzy area. When asked if anyone else in the room hadn't shaved our legs in 7 years, only myself and maybe one woman in the room raised our hands,. Funny guy I am. Well, I did get a few laughs from behind me so, I still think I am.
Somewhere between heartfelt stories of pain, loss and Sasquatch come clean was a woman who spoke of her coming to understand who and what Lee Beedo was. Well, her Lee Beedo. Which she sometimes confused with some skin condition like Lichen. She was both amusing and personal as she described her fears about this Lee Beedo. I could relate more to her than most of the others because I have not lost a child and can't fathom how that is. I didn't lose my wife and manscaping never came up in conversations with my parents.
My wife and I have different Lee Beedos. We don't talk about it much. We've been around long enough to figure it out. Plus, it is awkward. maybe not as awkward as standing in a room full of women and a couple hard to see, sparsely populated, males. But awkward nonetheless. I would not say we have struggled with this. Well, I guess I don't really know the extent my wife struggles because unsaid things are unknowns only left to the imagination. Lee Beedo is personal to each of us and personal between us as couples. I want to say unique too but while it is unique to us as a couple, we fall into very typical categories. Because, we are not particularly different .
I think we both secretly wish the other would be more like the other. If she were more like me, then we would be satisfying my Lee Beedo needs. She imagines a life where my Lee Beedo meshed with hers and we had blissful Lee Beedo congruity. But those are wishes, one of us is usually left desiring some intimate time and the other wants to sleep. Two random, circles moving in space and time that periodically overlap and our Lee Beedos mesh into one libido. Then we nod off a few moments later. At least one of us does.
On stage, this woman spoke of her eventual understanding that normal is simply her normal. I think I heard her saying the difference between love and sex. They are not the same and sometimes it is an expression of the same thing and sometimes it is not. But a different Lee Beedo doesn't mean the love is different, just the compelling desire to get hot and sweaty and maybe a little rug rash. Though I never heard her say that exactly, that is how I was translating it.
She also talked of a predictable cycle where she knew she would be feeling the machine go into high speed. This is foreign to me but as I thought about it, I wondered if I have a cycle too. I don't have the same changes happen to me monthly but I am pretty sure I do have a cycle though I am not always sure if it is a reactive cycle to my wife's changes or if I have one all to myself. So, she left me with some homework though I don't really think I will be a good student.
What all these women left me with is their ability to share their intimate, personal details. I hope they touched someone else in that room. I hope those who have something in common with the speakers experience can better cope with their personal challenges or maybe a personal enlightenment.
As I left, I felt a bit as though I was intruding into a sanctuary where women could be themselves, alone with other women who could understand them. I don't think most men possess the ability to understand how women really feel and see the world. I might have shared a bit of the woman consciousness. There are a lot of corners to fit into my round little world.
Joe a.k.a "Jomebrew" - July 27, 2014
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