I’m the hippie weirdo who lives in Utopia in my head – and I like it there.

What you cannot turn to good, you must at least make as little bad as you can.
— Thomas More, Utopia, Bk. 1. (1516)

How in the world does a Belle from the Deep South have such conflicting sense of self and being? How is it that my life is an oxymoronic collaboration of existing as either/or, neither/or and both/and simultaneously? Like seriously. How can I be just as at home in the country sitting on the porch with a bee-bop to cool the summer’s humidity as I am navigating the streets of New York City or London with my Timbs on or umbrella in tow? How is it that the ritualistic nature of the Southern Belle is deeply ingrained in me; yet, I reject many aspects of how the Belle is personified in the media (See Phaedra Parks’ book.)? How can I love the spirituality of Southern Baptist but cringe at that thought of some of its ‘can’t sit with us’ teachings? Geesh. Just a big ball of peaceful contradictions.

I am, indeed, a hippie weirdo who lives in Utopia in my head – and I like it there.

My Facebook feed keeps me abreast of all the goings on in the world, and the more I read the more I realize that we have issues. Collectively, we have issues. For example, last night I finally had the opportunity to watch the Real Housewives of Atlanta Reunion show and shook my head as the drama between Porsha Williams and Kenya Moore unfolded. While everyone talked about how Kenya deserved the hair pull, I viewed the exchange the example of what happens when life’s drama (divorce), a gifted antagonist, and media ratings intersect. That can be a dangerous collision. [Violence makes me uncomfortable] This morning, I read that Governor Nathan Deal will to sign a gun law that will allow licensed gun owners to have their weapons in more public places. So basically, we’re about to be Wild Wild West’n in public places?! Lawd, this Bama Peach is not ready. This shxt cannot be life. But it is. It IS life, and that is crazy as hell to me. And sometimes I just don’t get it.

In January, our home was invaded and my brand new 50+ inch HD-television was stolen. [Now how will I watch Alabama football in the fall? Ugh.] Luckily, no one was home but as a result of the invasion, we beefed up security. From one alarm system to two – complete with cameras – and our killer baby, Zeus. For a moment, it was quite unsettling for me. I don’t do alarms. I don’t do big ferocious dogs. I don’t do guns. But, it seems that the world we live in requires that we do all those things and we’ve come to understand that being on constant guard is peace. Now, how does that make sense? As contradictory as my experiences are as an Eclectic GRITS, even I understand that being in a constant state of fear does not equal peace? Or does it? For me, it does not.

I am, indeed, a hippie weirdo who lives in Utopia in my head – and I like it there.

I’ve always been told that I was ‘different’. When I was younger, I felt a little different and I got older, I realized that the way I thought about and processed situations might be slightly different from some others. I’m not easily angered. I don’t have [or believe in] haters or people being out to get me. I love exponentially – and that usually includes those who others might say are my enemies. I don’t like fighting – either physical or verbal. [But I’m sure I’d get down if I needed to] I take my relationships seriously – that includes my lovers and friends. If I refer to someone as my ‘Sis’, I literally mean that. I don’t cut people off because you’ve wronged me. If you need my help and I’m able to help, I will. Past experiences don’t always matter. I believe in big love [define that however you choose]. I do. Hearts are meant to embrace all the nurturing love they can endure; so why not love deeply? I’m always aware of my surroundings – always. However, I don’t believe that everyone who approaches me needs to be watched like a criminal. I like money. I love for my bills to be paid, but I money doesn’t buy my happiness. I love nature. My thumbs aren’t green, but I’d love to garden and grow my own food. I love the beach. I love watching people be comfortable with their bodies. I love incense and candles and cooking with fresh herbs. Oh, and I love vegetables. Like, I really LOVE vegetables. I could seriously live in a communal area where folks could just be. I believe in the goodness of people. In my head, a person being genuine evil is an anomaly. Evil actions exist but they are usually situational and contextual. Evil people? Not so much.

I’ve been told that I live in Utopia. But what’s wrong with that? My Utopia is a social justice haven where we eat; we’re educated (not schooled); we’re loving/loved; we’re nurturing/nurtured; we’re partnered/married; we’re clothed but not preoccupied with designers or fabrics; we’re spiritual; we’re empowered; we have shelter; we’re communal…family. We’re free. And to me, that IS peace.

So basically…

I am, indeed, a hippie weirdo who lives in Utopia in my head – and I like it there. Ya’ll should come visit me.

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