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Painted Ladies – STarting Over, 10/5/04

10/5/04

Sinae is taking Jennifer out to breakfast. Jennifer is being snotty about public transportation, She thinks there are germs and also crazy people who might kill you. Sinae is having none of it. Jen narrates that she admires Sinae because she doesn’t think she herself would be able to figure it all out.

Kim’s daughters are coming for a visit. She’s been gone three weeks and this is the longest she’s been without seeing them. They’re planning to go shopping on Melrose so she calls Iyanla to ask for permission to wear nice clothes and makeup, just to go out to a fancy restaurant for dinner. They bargain a little and it is decided that Kim can wear a little makeup, her watch and wedding ring, but just to dinner. Iyanla narrates that Kim will look for any excuse just to wear her mask, and that something doesn’t feel right about the phone call. She’s pretty sure Kim is up to something. As soon as Kim gets off the phone she runs around telling everyone that Iyanla gave her permission to put all her stuff on. She’s going to dress to the 9′s and put on enough make up to look like a hooker. There is a close-up of her putting on makeup and it’s like applying a salve. Her eyes are closed and it’s like a healing balm that she is caressing onto her burning face.

Rhonda meets with Sommer and want to talk about people-pleasing. Sommer has a tendency to put others’ needs above her own and in the S.O. house, it isn’t working. Sommer is unsure where to draw the line between being a nice person and a people-pleaser. Her assignment will be to dress like June Cleaver and wear a ton of makeup, and insist on doing everything for everyone, while talking in a sugary-sweet voice all day.

Jennifer and Sinae are in a restaurant and Jen is please that Sinae has asked her to read the menu to her.

Rhonda is putting on Sommer’s makeup, reprogramming her to be the ultimate Stepford Wife.

Kim is having a reunion with her Louis Vuitton bag. Iyanla calls her to ask what “a little bit” of makeup and jewelry looks like to Kim. She wants to know what Kim’s intention is. Kim tells her she wants to see if it feels differently to herself and also she wants to wear her wedding ring and know what time it is. Iyanla is still not convinced and Kim tells her she did not feel different during her 7 days without makeup. Iyanla tells her the makeup keeps her from dealing with the ugliness she feels inside. Kim is so high on glycerine & gold by now, she just goes along with it and sits there looking painted and contented.

Rhonda is briefing Sommer. She tells her not to take no for an answer, and also she must dust continuously. She has to make sure everyone keeps eating and drinking and stays happy.

Jen and Sinae discuss Sommer and don’t understand why she was hurt in the loft when the group told her she was two-faced. Jen says she does not trust her.

Rhonda narrates that she wants Sommer to get sick of people pleasing. She makes her appearance and Josie calls her “Suzy Homemaker”. Kim calls her a “hooker gone Beaver Cleaver”. They laugh at her sugary voice and Kim is the first to guess that she is supposed to be a Stepford Wife. Towanda reacts with “Oh Sommer, I’m so sorry.”

Jen & Sinae are climbing a hilly street and wondering where Kim is. When they get into the van they notice she is dressed and she asks them how it looks. Jen tells her she likes her better “without”.

Sommer is waiting on Josie and Chloe. “You’ve lost it”, Josie says, and Sommer replies, “Perhaps, if that makes you happy”. Kim, who is still there through the magic of editing, decides to make hay and asks Sommer to clean the guest bedroom for her daughters. We see Towanda scowling.

Dr. Stan meets with Towanda. She’s struggling with trust. She doesn’t tell people how she feels when she’s attacked. She just withdraws. Dr. Stan asks her what she SHOULD do and Towanda says she should ask people to listen so she can tell them she really feels. They agree she could change her whole life if she could start reacting that way.

Sommer narrates she is having trouble with her assignment. We see her serving lunch and Kim says she’s a stalker gone mad. She’s quite annoyed. (Hey, don’t look a gift horse in the mouth, Tammy Faye.) Kim has herself convinced that this is how Sommer really is and she can’t be trusted. Jen narrates that it’s the same Sommer, only in different clothes. In group they all pile up on Sommer as if she WANTED to act like that, and she sits with a forced smile while they have at her. Sommer narrates she thinks it’s Kim who’s really 2-faced. Rhonda has all the women discuss their preferred defense mechanisms. They all say they just want to retreat when attacked. Kim says she starts out people-pleasing like Sommer, then when it gets too much she blows her stack and people are left wondering what happened. Towanda reiterates that she does not tell people the truth because she does not want to hurt anyone. Sommer is ordered to continue her assignment, and then the plasma screen comes on with a photo of Kim’s two daughters. Kim tells the group that when they are around she pretends to be happier than she is. Rhonda says she is lying to her children and Kim says she is planning to be human while they are here instead of Supermom. The next plasma picture comes up and it’s a new step earned by SInae – accepting blindness. Rhonda dismisses the group. She tells Kim to have a great day with her kids and “be true, be true, be true”.

Later, Kim asks Sommer if she can get her clothes and makeup back for the rest of her stay. Then Kim’s daughters arrive and this is clearly a family who spends A LOT of money on cosmetics.

Iyanla is meeting with Towanda and observes that twice, Towanda has told her she does not trust her. “Trust is a decision you make,” Iyanla tells her. Towanda says she doesn’t trust her mother either, and can’t express feelings to her. “I didn’t come looking for you”, Iyanla reminds her, and wants to know how present Towanda has been to the work they are doing. Iyanla tells Townada she’s dishonest about it, gives herself excuses, blames and she projects. Iyanla tells her she is no longer willing to put her heart and soul into “standing in the gap” between Towanda’s reality and the rest of the world. She wants Towanda to tell her what to do, she will do it and it will be Towanda’s responsibility. Towanda narrates that now she feels punished for being honest.

We cut to Sommer dusting.

Iyanla arrives to see Kim and is horrified at what “a little bit” of makeup turned into. “Wait til you see her tomorrow,” she tells Kim’s daughters. “She’ll be her real self.” She narrates, “It’s not nice to fool your Life Coach.” Kim had told Josie she had permission to wear whatever she wanted, and Josie intones “You’re going to lose everything tomorrow. You won’t even be able to look at it.” (These pearls, from a person who I was quite sure was developmentally disabled not six months ago!) Kim’s daughters observe it was probably hiking with the purse that got Kim stripped of her doo-dads. Kim protests, “It’s not like I snuck and did this and didn’t tell her.”

Towanda is on the phone with her husband and he is backing Iyanla. Towanda narrates that if Andre thinks it, it must be true.

Jen and Josie are discussing Kim. Jen thinks she will be in the house the longest because she has so much work to do, and Josie thinks Kim will be first to go because she is resisting.

We see Kim and her daughters shopping. They’re in a vintage clothing store and Kim is trying to wrap her mid around the idea of used clothes. She doesn’t get it.

We go back and forth between Jen with Josie and Kim with her kids. they observe that Kim’s daughters have just as much gunk on as she does, because that’s what they learned from their mother. They don’t understand the assignment either but they think it might be about money.

Sommer is exhausted from people-pleasing. Rhonda says that sometimes we have to exaggerate something to really see what we’re doing. She wonders what Sommer will do instead, but doesn’t make any suggestions.

Towanda calls Iyanla to announce she had an epiphany. It’s not Iyanla she doesn’t trust; it’s herself. Towanda narrates she’s the only one in the house who hasn’t cried yet and “I don’t trust me in knowing I can take myself to a place where I don’t want to show any weakness.”

Rhonda is helping take the makeup off Sommer, who asks if this is like removing the “bad Sommer”. Rhonda assures her she’s not a bad person, she just has no skills. Sommer narrates that she’s hurt that she was used today even though she let them do it, and sorry she wasted so much time.

Josie is talking to Towanda about Kim. (Really loud, and Chloe is good at ignoring the yelling. My baby would have been scared witless if I had yelled like that all the time. ) Josie tells Towanda she’s seen what happens to people who don’t do their assignments. She predicts Kim won’t be around for long.

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