Sinead O'Connor first crossed my radar when I was a teenager in the late eighties.
I loved her haunting voice, especially in the song Nothing Compares 2 U.
When I became a stripper, her songs were my favorites to strip to even though strip club customers preferred heavy metal songs.
I've listened to her throughout the years, but lost touch with her story until about a year ago when I saw a photo of her with a caption that said something like, "Who did this lady used to be?"
I studied the photo of a middle-aged woman with a bad haircut and a moo-moo type dress bewildered. When I clicked through and saw the answer, I was astonished.
What happened to the bald, edgy singer I knew back when?
And then it hit me. Oh. She grew up. Just like me.
Maybe she had mellowed a bit. She didn't need to be cutting-edge anymore. Much like I felt. Okay with just kind of settling into the background of a normal everyday life.
Then I saw the stories of her a few months ago with her wild married, not-married, maybe married craziness.
Hmm, this seemed more like the edgy woman I remembered.
But then the next time I saw her in the headlines, it was with a deep depression and possible suicide attempt.
I was following O'Connor's ups and downs as if I knew her. Her swinging moods, her depression resonating with me as I've struggled with these same issues my entire life.
From the news reports it seemed like she was getting the help she needed. I imagined I would not see her in the news for awhile.
And then this morning I see the headline: Sinead O'Connor Wants Playboy Shoot.
My first reaction was - what?!
Why would Sinead O'Connor - this strong, spirited, deeply troubled, edgy feminist woman who stands up for what she believes in--want to strip down for Playboy?
Isn't she the woman who ripped a photograph of the Pope in half?
Can she be saying she supports the ideals of Playboy and what it stands for?
And how old is she anyway?
But here were O'Connor's words saying: "A Playboy shoot is on my bucket list. And I like the idea of doing some interview in weird sex gear, talking about something really serious. The economy! You can talk about serious issues while you're b**lock naked, on all fours, in your dog collar!"
And she made me stop and think about something in a whole new way.
As an ex-stripper and nude model that is now a mother living the normal life, I definitely know I have my hang-ups.
I'm totally pro-stripper and nudity for women if it's what feels good for them, but I've been decidedly, that was me in the past. Not now. I am no longer a woman who does that kind of thing.
And while I still feel that way, hearing Sinead O'Connor claim posing for Playboy is on her bucket list has got my head boggling in a whole new way.
Maybe I don't need to be as afraid of my body as I think I am sometimes. I don't need to hide it under mom-jeans and loose t-shirts.
I mean, I don't have to strip down all the way either because I really don't feel the need to anymore, but maybe I don't have to be so unsexy as I've convinced myself I need to be as a mother.
Maybe it's actually okay to not split myself in two anymore. I can be a mother. I can be sexy.
And I can stop being so afraid of the judgments the world will make of me no matter what I do. Even if I come across as a little unpredictable and out-there sometimes.
Thank you, Ms. O'Connor, for sharing your bucket list with the world and not caring what people think.