The Mechanism Behind Fetishism

Fetishes come in various forms. There is the lawyer who has a fetish for success and infinite possibilities achieved. There is the mom who has a fetish for discipline because of her desire to rear responsible and well-mannered children. There is the fashionista who has a fetish for healthy living through exercise and diet. There is the graduate student who has a fetish for finding romance at the turn of every corner. Each of these represents a longing within them that demands complete devotion to their fixation and each fixation has a spell of sorts on their desires. The lawyer may be driven by a fear of failure. The mom may be driven by the fear of her own mistakes. The fashionista may be driven by the fear of obesity. The student may be driven by the fear of loneliness. Behind each of these fetishes lies a fear through which our obsessions are manifested. I admire these four souls who have found drive to diminish the power of their fear and release its hold on them.

Twenty minutes into trying to figure out my own fetish, I decided to reverse the theory and look at my fears. The process worked. I fear not having a voice, being silenced, losing the ability to articulate my thoughts. My fetish is writing. I am continuously in composition from journal entries that reveal my deepest secrets to manuals for standard operations of procedures. It matters to me not what I have authored but that I simply have. It is through transcription that I reveal who I am and acknowledge that I am present and relative. You have encouraged this voice merely by reading this blog.

Typically, when we think of fetishes we picture sexual fetishism where sexual connotation is given to asexual entities. The most commonly recognized of these is the foot fetish. In walks Peter. Literally. I was sitting at my desk with my feet propped on the foot rest when he walked in without a word and removed my shoe before I could say “hold on” to whoever had me engaged in conversation. I ran him off and forbid him to return after a few coarse words. On another occasion, Peter returned to the scene of his initial violation; however this time he satisfied his pleasures via web images in the computer lab. And again, Peter returned, but to his enjoyment he was able to con the freshman coed to remove her shoe and achieve ultimate gratification.

Horror flashed across her face and then embarrassment as we laughed at her naivety in helping Peter show her where his ankle hurt. When I explained his fetish and that showing him her foot was equal to showing a typical teenage male her boobs, she was in disbelief. I imagine that she spent all evening on google trying to learn more about the concept that had not held space in her budding mind prior to this moment. I wondered when I first learned about such crazes and other more sinister perversions. Surely my inexperience decreased as my fears increased, until my own fetish captured my interests and seduced my hands with pen and paper.

I wonder what fear guided Peter to his fetish, or if an experience shaped his amusement. I will probably never know but in preparation, I am adopting a shoe fetish.

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Giving It Up

I am giving it up. Actually, I gave it up. Thursday in my office, from behind my desk, around 1:45pm, I gave it up. It was extremely hard but in the end it was just as good as if I had done it myself.

I don’t know where this need to control came from. Maybe it’s innate. Maybe it was birthed through fear. Maybe it is rooted in instances where I had none. Maybe it’s a reflection of abandonment issues that compliment adoption.

When the pounding in my head would not allow me to lead the presentation, I handed it over. Almost immediately, the headache ceased, either from the Excedrin Migraine I had popped twenty minutes before or from the relief in letting someone else take control. I was able to relax, a little, but the idea that my expectations would not be met in the delivery of the information lingered. Expectations breed disappointments, or so they say but lack of expectations do too.

Today and I learned that not only is it ok to delegate tasks but that often times, the candidate succeeds. And if they don’t, so what…assess the outcome, explore alternatives and move on. We are so determined to have control that we exhaust ourselves and provide a disservice to our subordinates by denying them the opportunity to shine.

So I gave it up and in giving it up I gained something…peace.

But there is another side to the control coin. Sometimes, we don’t give it up…we lose it. In these instances, there is no peace there is only pain. I can recall several occasions where I lost control and my words or actions had consequences that I was not prepared to accept.

From behind that same desk, on that same day, I lost control in a conversation with a friend. I allowed emotions derived from miscommunication and holding things in to consume me and made accusations that I truthfully didn’t believe.  In losing control, we unwillingly give power over ourselves to someone else. I’ve spent countless nights in torment over allowing someone else to take control of me and in those moments I replayed the event over and over trying to figure out  the how, when, why, where, what and who. There is no tranquility in losing control as there is in voluntarily giving it up.

Control is like money, power, sanity, love, freedom, and friendship in that I’d rather give it up than lose it any day.

Cheers Continued…And Why Cold Medicine Sales Skyrocketed

There is something symbolic in watching the rain fall on the first day of a new year. Like a morning shower washes away the debauchery from the night before or a car wash removes evidence of inclement weather, the pounding rain is cleansing the earth of a year passed.

I would love to confess, and engage your jealous streak, that I welcomed the New Year on a yacht off the coast of Miami. After dancing lights died and the sky was returned to black, I boarded a private plane and landed in Los Angeles just in time to toast in the New Year once more. Impossibility aside, I would love to flood your imagination with this tale….but I cannot.

Truthfully, I brought the New Year in as picture perfect as a Picasso, in the arms of my two sons. Adventurously, we made a last minute decision to head downtown amidst hundreds of people intoxicated with the spirit of excitement and well just spirits. We saw very few children and stares from grandmothers questioned my parental capabilities, but none of that mattered.

We ate funnel cakes, drank hot chocolate and tried on tons of illuminated glasses and silly hats. The boys gazed in at news anchor, Tisha Powell as she danced to a song only those in the WTVD 11 station could hear and received a wave from Fred Shropshire as he prepped to go on air. We counted over thirty sparkly gold dresses worn by women in their 20’s who either missed the weather report or ignored it in hope of attracting that one kiss. “You’re going to have pneumonia in the morning” one of my dates shouted from the rickshaw we ran down to avoid walking any further.

When the countdown began my sons wrapped their arms around my waste. Five. Four. Three. Two. One. Happy New Year!!

On the ride home, my inquisitive riders questioned why there was an acorn, to which I explained that Raleigh is called the City of Oaks. Then they questioned why the event was called First Night Raleigh when it was actually the last night and the first morning, to which I had nothing. When we all tucked into the community bed about an hour later, they marveled at how I am the best mommy in the world…adding, “but do you think Child Protective Services would get you for that?”

I can’t think of a better way to begin a year….

But since you don’t have to be 20 something to wear a sparkly gold dress, I may just adorn myself in one next year…in Miami.