Open Letter to Shonda Rhimes

Dear Shonda Rhimes,

You’re right.  You are a liar.  You can live in Vermont and make jam whenever you want.  You don’t need more money.  I know this because I live in New Hampshire making gingerbread houses and while I may be as rich or richer than you I doubt I have more money in the bank.  You will live in Vermont when you really want to live in Vermont.  Nothing will stop you.  I read your book.  You will say yes.

Year of Yes reminded me that we all invent our friends, and maybe everything else along the way too.  In 2003, I drew myself a new friend, Gg, and began writing for her.  I had a friend I loved, one I’ll call Randy.  Sadly, she inspired me to be my lowest self.  Randy reveled in my descent.  Nothing thrilled her more than to hear me curse. I only did so when things were painful.  Randy also wanted my things.  She would end up sleeping with my ex, coveting time with my kids, and preparing chocolate-covered bullshit as if I would swallow without noticing.  Who could blame her?  She’d seen me do it before.

When Randy banged him it came as no surprise. She would take him any time she could.  I didn’t know it then but I drew myself a new friend, Gg, because I needed one who would inspire me to rise up and away from all she represented.  I miss Randy now and then but I don’t miss hearing her make fun of others .  Maybe you miss Pam or Ken sometimes?

Gg is my Cristina Yang.  She made me braver.  She opened doors.  She laughs at the devil.  Gg is not famous!  I say this with delight because it’s like having the whole resort all to ourselves.

Our resort includes people like Amanda and Christine, rich women who astound me with their goodness.  They are talented and kind, a rare pairing.  The pool is surrounded with palm trees and people like Wendy, who I’ve known since I was 10 years old.  We grew up making tacos and playing tennis together.  We rarely speak, write, or communicate in any way other than thought.  Love without all the chatter and gossip.  I feel like I could tell these women anything but I won’t.  I simply don’t enjoy speaking that much, except with my husband and kids. I have no friends on Facebook.   I’ve never shared a single word with some of my closest friends:  Wayne, Martha, Byron, Deepak, Eckhart, Louise.   I may stop speaking English all together.

I love French but Spanish loves me and I’m finally mature enough to know which relationship is better.  My mom is fluent and my husband and I just returned from the Dominican Republic where it’s all thatched roofs and Big Ass Fans.  We had a magnificent time with wonderful people like Juan Carlos and Gabriel. Fantástico is my new favorite word.  I choose Spanish.

And, like you, the word diversity bugs me the way it’s used today.  I prefer using homogeny to describe the world I like.  Maybe I’ll get a bumper sticker:  HOMOGENY.  I’ll watch people egg my car and call me racist but I don’t mind if the world is all the same:  kind, loving, generous, forgiving, smart, efficient, patient, punctual, respectful, thoughtful, creative, funny, happy, prayerful, and bright.

So Shonda Rhimes, keep lying to all us liars out here.  We’ll keep tuning in.  Simply wearing our bodies around is sort of a fib isn’t it?  We can’t help ourselves.

Enjoy Vermont.

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