In addition to a documented sensitivity to wheat gluten, which, I, in my more peevish moments classify as "no big deal", especially when all I freakin' want is a chocolate chip cookie, I believe that I have a chronic allergy to the word "no".
As a corollary to this issue, I likewise have a fundamental allergy to people who exclusively use the word itself. Given the fact that I find this word inadmissible in my own use of the English language (in addition to a few others), I simply have a hard time swallowing it when someone pulls out the "N" word on me. It incites an immediate bristling effect, which causes me to violently dislike the person responsible for putting the word into the Universe. Especially my universe. My universe is delicate, and it must be treated nicely. When I think of foolish people foolishly saying no to me, I suddenly have images of Patrick Swayze coming to my rescue and saying, "No one puts Namaste in the corner". (And then we dance and mouth the words of bad 80's music to each other. It is very romantic.)
Or something like that.
But yes, the no thing gets me. It gets me bad. Several weeks ago, I had a meeting with a financial aid worker person who refused to allow me to borrow more money for my impending scholastic endeavors abroad. It was a wonderful back-and-forth, which caused me to cry, worry and stress out. In my utter frustration, I was left with little choice but to wonder if maybe I have lost my touch with the people? Maybe the PhD is ruining my soul and I am giving off the kind of energy that makes people shut their door to me? Maybe, just maybe, this is a sign from the Universe that I am a revolting, horrible person not worthy of borrowing money so that I can pay it back for all eternity...
Or maybe this is all in my head and I just talked with the wrong guy who's universe issues have absolutely nothing to do with me.
Undefeated (ok, destitute, really), I put on two coats of mascara (per my mother's recommendation) and marched my little self back up the evil, winding staircase to the floor of the Fin Aid office today, where I chatted with a student worker with a nose ring and requested to speak with someone new. The nose ring girl (who I liked immediately) winked at me and told me that she would "hook me up", which was a clear sign that the Universe might possibly be conspiring in my favor. I was then led back through cubicle land to the working world space of nice woman with a well-balanced personality. She allowed me to click with her as good people do. I told her about my 'sitch (but didn't mention that I will be high-assing all over the world) and she said, "Sure, this would not be a problem at all. Fax me your educational research budget and we'll get this done today."
Amen, sister. Amen. I could have jumped up and kissed her.
So even if I haven't lost my touch with reality, I would just like to say that you never know when you have an opportunity to help someone by just doing your job well. This woman has effectively changed my life. I am going to send her flowers with the subsidized federal loan money that she doles out to me this week. Who cares if I'll be paying 6% interest on lillies for the next 30 years.
Obviously the loan thing is an issue for me, but at the end of all of this, no one will able to take my brain back. I won't be able to unlearn Arabic or Hebrew or give back the awesome time I will have with friends, floating on the Dead Sea and not worrying so much about how I will eat from day to day. When you shout your intentions to the Universe, someone is clearly listening, even if your intentions happen to be relatively expensive by design.