Sing from the Womb, 7

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis is the seventh in a series of snippets from my memoir, Sing From the Womb: Leaving Fundamentalism in Search of Voice (formerly titled Writing Me Back to Mat(t)er).

Please let me know what resonates with you.

***

Hear Ye! Hear Ye! She tugs the tri-corn hat over her mop of red hair. Usually comfortable on stage, she is suddenly self-conscious and suffering. They had quickly amended the script to give her a part in the Christmas pageant, and as always, due to her height, that of a man. In the past, she had played Pharaoh and Prince Yohan and “The Old Man.” Now she’s Town Crier: Hear Me!

After being away from church and England for so long, she feels different, like she doesn’t belong. She knows they see her as different. She’s not quite the same as them now…

…she’s back in this meeting hall, as familiar as her own home. The mint green walls and wooden flooring, the dark kitchen and the damp, always cold, concrete floor lavatory with its pull-chain flush. But now walking out onto the stage in front of her church family is uncomfortable. Embarrassed to be here acting as if she still has a right to be on this stage—in this place—after leaving it to be part of another world. She feels unprepared and unsure of herself in her small but conspicuous role. Dressed as a man, demanding all to listen, in the church where she is merely a girl, who is growing into a stranger who isn’t quite sure where she belongs.

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