I am going to be honest with you as I always am. I mean really would I lie to you? That face, those eyes? No I would not lie to you. I might stretch the truth and tell you “no really those white pants make you look thinner. What panty lines? Really you haven’t had your lip waxed? No I can’t tell you have a mustache” but I will not out and out lie to you. I have not always done a very good job of picking guys with which to be involved. I mean my bad sense of relationships goes way, way back in history. I believe that in my previous life I probably dated Attila the Hun and played Spin the Bottle with Adolf Hitler. Oh it’s not that I believe that I was someone famous in my last life, it’s just that I would loose my head over someone like Henry the Eighth.
Don’t believe me? Well go read about some of my dates in my story titled “My Worst Date or One of them” and “The Dating Game”. Oh but those are not even my worst stories. I have one right after the other like the Satan worshipping jeweler who drugged me and used me in his satanic ritual. Then there is the rodeo clown who left me standing in the middle of a cow pasture with no way home and this was long before cell phones existed. We could talk about the Robert Redford look-a-like used car salesman who asked me out but canceled and took my sister out instead. Do we even need to talk about the guy I dated for several months only to come home from work and find him in bed with my roommate or the man who turned out to be a pedophile?
I think you get the drift of my ability to choose inappropriate partners. Yet I continued on going after the men who prey on women like me, women who are pleasers. Women, who want to make things better for them, heal them, cure them and be loved and revered for it. That unfortunately is not what happens. I imagined in my mind that if I loved long enough, hard enough and endured enough abuse that I would turn these scourges of society around. I gave them my time, money, my belongings and my soul.
It was after one of these really horrific relationships had ended that I was enlightened. The skies opened, the light flicked on and it was all clear as to what was the origin of my demise. Oh don’t be all impressed thinking I was personally responsible for the epiphany. No I can not take credit for it at all. It was my dad, Trooper Bob, who imparted his wisdom upon me in a dry and matter of fact manner. This is the story of that event.
I sat lamenting my bad choices in men with my mother and father. Here I sat a forty-five year old woman with yet another train wreck of a relationship on my hands. I was at a loss as to what I had done to deserve what had happened. I was heartbroken and angry that this man had taken advantage not only of me but of my family. He lied, stole and stripped my family of my life for twelve years. He had separated me from my siblings and tried to do the same with my own child. I was finally seeing him in all his psychopathic dementedness. The facts were on the table and my heart and my trust had once again been laid bare.
Nurse Meme poured me a glass of wine and looked at me. “You look pale. Here drink this and for God’s sakes put on some lipstick. You look dead.” I took a sip and said “but Momma, I don’t understand how this could happen to me yet again. Why do I continue to get hooked up with these guys?” She shook her head and wiped the kitchen counter top and said “because you go where you’re looking you don’t look where you’re going. You have always been like that.” I started to argue when I heard my daddy clear his throat. I looked over at him as he sat his glass on the coaster. He reached over to my hand and patted it and then with all of his seventy-five years of wisdom he said “Gladys, your picker is broke. There ain’t two ways about it. You’ve got a broken picker.” I sat there for a moment doing the confused poodle look, shifting my head from one side to the other. I tried to decipher what he was saying. Then some where in the distance I heard trumpets blare and a choir of angels sing “YOUR PICKER’S BROKE”. I got goose bumps all over.
It clicked. What he was saying was that I didn’t need to pick any more partners. I picked the wrong type of men. The men who were broken and I was never going to be able to fix them, not me not any one. I chewed on that fact for a few minutes. I took a deep breath and realized he was absolutely right. The men to whom I had been attracted were damaged beyond repair. The men to whom I was drawn saw the weakness in me and pounced on it like a lion on an injured water buffalo.
Yes, I wasted most of my life on trying to make other people better, never once trying to improve on myself. I was so concerned about taking care of someone who really didn’t want to be healed. They were happy just the way they were and knew exactly how to get what they wanted from someone like me. My picker was definitely broke. Did I go out and buy a new picker? Where would you get one? Picker’s R Us? What aisle would you locate a new picker on at the local Wal-Mart? Do they have a special section in Bed Bath and Beyond for Pickers? I looked at my daddy and said “okay, so my picker’s broke. What do I do about it?” Trooper Bob looked at Nurse Meme who rolled her eyes and blew out a deep breath “you stop pickin” was his answer.
So that is exactly what I did. I stopped picking. It was when I stopped picking that my life changed. What about you? Is your picker broke?
Saturday at the Maul
15 hours ago