Friday, March 15, 2013

OMG. I'm Sheldon.

Dear John,
 
My friends were right. I'm Sheldon. With slightly better social skills and no fear of germs. But other than that, I'm Sheldon. A new Big Bang Theory was on last night. I watched it at 8:00 pm, and Sheldon's behavior seemed so obvious and normal that it took me 24 hours to realize that most people aren't like that.
 
What happened was that Howard and Bernice had a closet that they kept throwing junk into to get it out of sight, and they got aggravated enough with Sheldon to ask him to organize it. Well, that's a bit like throwing Br'er Rabbit in the brier patch. Sheldon had so much fun doing it that he didn't want to go home, and he did a wonderful job. And it took me a whole day to realize that the point was to showcase Sheldon's eccentricity (while providing a Deus ex Machina to deal with the letter from Howard's father. But that's another story). I envied him the opportunity and admired the result. There is no other conclusion - I am Sheldon.
 
I don't know if you actually enjoyed that side of me, or just enjoyed the results. But you liked things neat, tidy, and organized. It seems a little strange now that the first thing I got up and did, as soon as my head injury and broken collarbone allowed, was pull everything out of the linen closet and reorganize it. It needed to be done, but it was just so much FUN! Now I realize that it wasn't particularly normal.
 
Sometimes looking at Sheldon is as alarming as the first time I saw The Glass Menagerie. I had no psychological or counseling background - I was only 15 - but I instantly saw in Laura the person that I so easily could have become. I had a healthier home and plenty of stubbornness. But Laura is inside me. And so is Sheldon. And fear is what rules the three of us. Sheldon is afraid of germs; I'm afraid of not being loved, Laura is afraid of failure - and everything else. We have two ways to try to control our fear: running away, or gaining power over things through knowledge. Neither removes the threat - they just stave off disaster for the moment. As you commented once: With me, the wolf is always at the door.
 
Thank you for loving me in spite of my being Sheldon, and for sheltering me, making me feel safe, and trying to understand me. And I miss having you to talk to when I'm scared, because you did understand me so well. And I miss having the prop of your unconditional love.
 
Prop me up now with your prayers, and give me your wisdom any way you can. And laugh with me at myself. There are plenty of opportunities for that!
 
Love you so very much,
Joan.

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