Some days you just have to scream and let it all out, an actual full-on crazy person scream. Let me explain this statement a little better, but to do that we are going to have to dust off the time machine, climb in and turn the dial back to the years of 1995 – 2004. That period of nine years was probably the most stressful time of my life. It was the height of Single Mom Gina; I had an ex-husband, two ex-husbands actually, telling me I was a bad mother, threatening to take my kids away from me and kicking me to the street, causing me and my chickens to be homeless for a hot minute. When I look back at that time in my life, I am surprised we all came out of it alive. I can credit a large part of our survival to the stress scream (well that and a few angels that looked out for us and gave a temporary roof over our heads).
So let me explain the process of the stress scream, it’s really simple actually; the three of us would climb in my car, roll up the windows and shut the doors. Then we would just scream. The key to this process is to make sure you scream as loud as you could, it, of course, took a few times for my kids to realize it was ok and it wasn’t some sick mom trick ending in a month-long grounding. Once everyone was on board, you could find us, me in the front seat and my babies in the back and we would scream so loud and long my throat would hurt for hours afterward. Through trial and error, I learned that the best place to do this was driving down Route 80 where people couldn’t hear us. We did it one time in a parking lot, and people stared, like really stared. I could tell by the look on some of those faces they weren’t sure if they should call the cops. Let me paint a picture of the scene for you; 2 small children in the backseat of a car are screaming at the top of their lungs with their mom screaming with tears streaming down her face. It was a scary sight. Thankfully, no one ever called the cops, and eventually the stress scream therapy faded into the past, well that is until earlier this week.
I had been struggling with my writing this week and the lack of words in my head. I was sitting in a crowded coffee shop when my girlfriend, who reads tarot cards, asked if I was available to talk or text. I’m always open for texting and told her to text away. She wanted to “throw some tarot cards for me,” and I love when she gets moved to do that for me, but I also am very nervous, some days you aren’t ready to hear whatever the spirt has to tell you. She told me a few things that moved me, like, “how is the universe going to give you what you want if you don’t say it out loud” or “be specific when you tell the universe what you want.” I didn’t have the heart to tell my friend that is part of the problem; I don’t KNOW what I want.
But this is the one thing that my friend told me that had me throwing allergy caution to the wind, climbing in my car and driving to the place that inspires me the most – the cemetery. This is a direct quote from my friend, the quote that brought back the stress scream 15 years later, “You are too full of amazing things and touching so many lives with this. You can heal others. Why do you think you are here after all?” Those words scared me that day and still scare me. If it’s true, it’s too much responsibility for me and after she said that I watched all the words fly right out of my head. Not onto the page like they should, but into the wind. So I screamed. I stood at the top of the cemetery looking at the Nashville skyline, took a deep breath full of pollen and screamed as loud as I could. I had forgotten how freeing that whole exercise was and how calm you feel after. I looked around at all the people who have been trying for centuries to literally Rest In Peace and promptly looked at the grave of George W. Smith and his wife, who have been resting peacefully since 1897. I stood in front of Mr. Smith and apologized.
I don’t know if I help anyone and really people should talk to someone who has a pile of student loans saying they are qualified to answer life questions. I’m happy to share my experiences, the tools that got single mom Gina through it all albeit barely, but through, but I’m no expert, I can just scream really loud, and I know that helped my kids and me.
As I climbed back into my car and drove out of the cemetery (yes I was checking my rearview mirror to make sure the cemetery police weren’t following me because I was after all disturbing those resting in the peace). I felt better, I felt the words coming back, slowly, and I felt a smile creep to my face and realized some days you just need to scream it out.