Tag Archives: family

May God have mercy on our souls.

Today, New York state passed a landmark law protecting unlimited preborn infanticide… or abortion, as it’s more commonly called. The bill, which goes under the euphemistic “Reproductive Health Act” effectively allows for abortion at any time for any reason, and removes abortion from the state criminal code.

It’s a sad, sad day in Mudville.

The law, aimed at protecting access to abortion in the event that Roe v Wade is overturned, is nauseating. I won’t go into it here, but you’re welcome to read the text of the bill HERE. Matt Walsh, professional teller of truths, also has a spot on op-ed, You Can’t Give A Lethal Injection to Criminals in New York but You Can Give It to Infants

At this point, the abortion issue has become a part of a larger problem. The world, and western nations in particular, have a cultural sickness. We live in a world that celebrates death and is nonchalant (at best) about life. Suicides, murders, and general tragedy dominate news media for days at a time. Positive stories involving children and families are seen as “fluff” and “feel good” rather than a goal. The traditional nuclear family is the exception, not the rule. Fatherless families, children born out of wedlock, siblings with multiple fathers or mothers, and rampant, no-fault divorce are the new normal.

Overturning abortion is a noble and lofty goal, but it will mean nothing if we cannot get to the root of the problem. We need to challenge ourselves to change our thinking, to see motherhood and fatherhood as joyful callings rather than heavy burdens. We need to recognize pregnancy as the miracle that it is, and not an inconvenience at best, or a disease at worst.

How can we do this? Support.

We need to nurture a culture in which a loving father is the norm. We need to get away from the Homer Simpson stereotype of fathers being lazy, stupid, and worthless. How many times on television and in movies do we see a father figure as the hero? How many young boys can watch television and say, “I want to be like him!” Instead, we get the bumbling idiots -loving fathers, perhaps, but idiots just the same. Homer Simpson, Phil Dunphy (Modern Family), Bob Belcher (Bob’s Burgers), Hal Wilkerson (Malcolm in the Middle) are just a few that come to mind.

As Chris Rock said, “A n**** will say some shit like, “I take care of my kids.” You’re supposed to, you dumb motherfucker! What are you talking about?” What kind of ignorant shit is that?”

Instead of devaluing fatherhood, we need to elevate it. Paternal leave. Nor referring to time spent with the kids as “babysitting” or “stuck with the kids”. No more commercials where Dad has no idea how to care for his own child and is desperate for Mommy to come home. Dads matter. One of the most beautiful illustrations of this concept can be seen in “soldiers come home” video compilations. If you can make it through those without crying, you should call your psychologist. Should socioeconomic proofs be more your thing, look up statistics involving absentee fathers, crime, poverty, and soaring abortion rates in the black community since the 1950s.

Motherhood deserves its own admiration. The Mommy-Wars need to stop. For mothers that choose to or must work outside the home to provide for their families, childcare needs not to be so prohibitively expensive, nor should it be the responsibility of the tax payer. Mothers who choose to be stay-at-home moms should likewise be supported in their choices.

The last giant issue is adoption. Did you know that adoption in the United States can run families tens of thousands of dollars? We often hear that adoption is the solution to abortion, but how can it be at that cost? How many couples are desperate to have children, but are unable to conceive and unable to adopt because of the outrageous financial burden? When an abortion costs around $300 and adoption $37,000, are we surprised when there are 638,169 abortions (2015) to the 135,000 adoptions? (Including the roughly 670,000 in foster care).

Bottom line: Before we can change the laws, we need to change our culture. Otherwise, what’s the point?

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Filed under abortion, culture, current events, family, health, humanity, pro-life

An Addendum on Yesterday’s Crazy

As of this writing, the #BoycottTarget petition has gathered 975,444 signatures.

Quite the statement.

Really want to make your voice heard? Make sure to start shopping at their competitors. Start with “Mom and Pop” businesses. Support your local shops. If you need to go big,: Hobby Lobby. WalMart. Aldi. Academy Sports. Cabela’s. Toy’s “R” Us. Bed, Bath, and Beyond. Dick’s Sporting Goods. Publix. Trader Joe’s. All businesses that have a reputation for being “family friendly”.

We cannot count on the “powers that be” to advocate for our safety. We need to do it ourselves. Put pressure on places like Target* by shopping elsewhere. Don’t enroll in universities before checking their policies thoroughly. Do your research. It’s election season. You have to be ready to back yourself up practically every time you post an unfavorable opinion (read: not something the MSM or the liberal left would agree with) on Facebook.

Gandhi-great-quote

*Target started jumping the shark a few years ago, after there was a massive leftist outcry following a donation by the company to a politician who did not support gay marriage. They’ve been “atoning” for this mistake ever since, with massively public displays of affection for the LBGTABCQMXYZ crowd, eliminating gender-specific sections in their children’s clothing and toy departments, and demanding that guns not be carried on their premises, despite a very legal right to do so by those holding concealed carry permits. (Massachusetts has an open carry law, though most people don’t take advantage of it because of the Chicken Little effect it would cause; would they prefer that right be exercised?) Anyway, Target is not the only company pushing this dangerous gender-neutral nonsense. Starbucks and Barnes and Noble have also joined up to shoot themselves in the foot. As of midnight on Friday morning (when I’m updating this, because my stupid radiatiors sound like they’re possessed) the #BoycottTarget petition has reached 1,002,916 signatures.

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Filed under culture, current events, education, humanity, men and women, politics, War on Women

Mended.

“One day, someone is going to hug you so tight that of your broken pieces fit back together.”
Part 3 of 3

Months were passing, and yet one day still loomed large on the calendar: that of my now very-cancelled wedding. I had very mixed feelings; mostly, I didn’t know what or how I should feel about it. Frankly, I was afraid to face it. How would I react? Would I be an emotional, teary mess? Angry? Nonplussed? Could I ignore the whole thing?

One of the things that drove me to write this whole messy story down is that when I was hovering at the brink, trying to decide whether to go through with the engagement or call it off, I couldn’t find any advice anywhere on the internet. Stories and blog postings fell into two camps: the “OMG he left me I’m ruined” camp and the “I hate men” camp. I was somewhere in the middle. Mostly, I was pretty much right back to where I was before I met Lenny, just… stronger. It wasn’t an external change, and a lot of times, it was hard to find internally, too. It was there, though. The past few days, I keep thinking about what Rafiki said in 1994’s The Lion King: “Oh yes, the past can hurt. But the way I see it, you can either run from it, or… learn from it.”

It’s been a learning experience, and I kept moving forward. A blessing in disguise came in the form of an old friend who’d invited me to dinner at the end of the summer – my first co-ed outing in months. Conversation flowed easy between us despite the years since we’d last met, and allowed me to form a framework of trust -again, that learning- that there’s still hope.

So when the Big Day arrived, I awoke… cautiously. Like one does when injured, and is slowly sending bits of consciousness down each nerve and limb as though checking for damage, and assessing the conditions. I can’t say that my mind, my emotional well-being was a blank slate. There was a certain amount of sadness there, for what was. A lot of bitterness for what should have been and wasn’t, and a great deal of trepidation for what was to come.

I have said before, and I will say it again, I’m sure. I am eternally blessed in my family and my friends. My parents have been a wonderful rock of strength throughout this whole thing, as have my siblings and their significant others, and my friends have been there, from coast to coast, when I truly needed them. I received a gorgeous bouquet of flowers from one of my “bridesmaids” on the other side of the country, and my phone blew up with texts all day. (If any of y’all are reading this, you know who you are. I love you all.)

Without getting into details, let’s just say that beyond what I ever would have dreamed in my wildest daydreams, my afternoon and evening made me believe that there might be a second chance for me. And that feeling grows each any every day.

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Edit 10/11/16 – It has recently come to my attention that on the day vows were to be exchanged, he contacted my best friend via text. Now, for reasons I am unwilling to disclose, she and I were not speaking at the time. I had blocked him from my phone and FB, but email was still (then) a valid means of communication as there were still wedding-related loose ends to tie up and I needed a way to get a hold of him if necessary. Long story short, he asked how I was doing, (“I don’t know, I’m not speaking to her.” and told my friend that he thought HE had “dodged a bullet of crazy”. God bless my friends. For all that we weren’t speaking, she reamed him out, telling him that *I* was the one who had dodged a “bandoliers” of crazy and if he was that curious as to how I was doing, the time to ask would have been when I was standing on his porch, not five months after the fact. 

I love my friends.

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Gathered

“You never realize how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.”
Part 2 of 3

I won’t say it was easy to just walk away, drop his stuff in a box, and act like the last two years of my life hadn’t happened. Every five minutes or so I was freaking out, thinking I had somehow lost my engagement ring. (I loved that ring. If it wasn’t completely improper, I admit I might have kept it.) I suppose I was even slightly vindictive spraying his shirt with the perfume he’d bought me before I packed it to be shipped. Everywhere I turned, I was somehow reminded of him: something he’d said, something we’d done together, even if it was just a TV show we’d liked to watch.

My family… God bless them. My mother, my grandmother, my bridal party – they made the hard calls for me, cancelling the church, the reception hall, the DJ, etc. I told my bridesmaids, of course, and they handled a great deal of the tiny details. Invitations hadn’t yet gone out, just Save-the-Dates, so we were saved the trouble of calling the whole guest list. Days passed by in a blur. I didn’t quite fall into a depression – I had this insane 3-month old kitten to care for, and she was (and is) quite the fuzzball of entertainment and hilarity.

Then… the distraction. The one thing that could have made the whole situation worse, did. A long-lasting, muscle-cramping, body-thrashing dystonic storm. I’ve talked briefly about dystonia in the past. If you haven’t read about it, I suggest going back and doing so here. I ended up out of work for six weeks, which may have been longer had summer vacation not rolled around. At any rate, it was two months before I could see the specialist, and a few more weeks until even more new meds started to allow for some physical, if not emotional relief.

I would have thought then that my heart could not be broken any further, but as usual, I was wrong. I re-shared an article on my Facebook about a woman who was raped and decided to keep the child. Even now, I don’t remember if she raised the baby or gave the child up for adoption, but right now, it doesn’t matter. Several of my friends, including one I thought was a sister to me, picked a fight over it and when I took it to private messages to tell them to knock it off and no fighting on my wall, I was called a “horrible” person, a “false friend”, a “fake Christian”, “judgmental” and so many more names. I can’t say I came out entirely clean from this episode – there were things I would have done differently, but she wouldn’t even talk to me. The entire argument was done over text messaging and Facebook.

Do yourselves a favor. If you ever wish to have a shred of integrity, no matter how angry you are, at least speak to the person and hear their voice. If it’s worth fighting over, it’s worth that much.

So in less than three months, not only had I lost my fiancée, I’d now lost my best friend, too. Cut off entirely.

I ran. Thank God for vacation, because I ran. I hitched a ride with a cousin and when she went to a concert, I visited a friend in the same area… 8 hours away from home. I turned 5 days of working at camp into 9. (Should have been 10, but a sinus infection got the better of me.) I followed that with a week at the beach, spending most of it in isolation, even though I shared a house with my family and was sleeping in the living room. Actually, I did a lot of that in the intervening months. Spent a lot of time alone. Writing. Thinking. How things used to be. How I could have changed them. What it would have been like if I had gone through with it. Am I truly better off now than I would have been. Lonely vs. angry – which is worse?

Camp was probably the best place that I could have been. For all that nature and I don’t get along… I first went to this Camp when I was a junior in high school, and went the following year as well. I returned five years ago to babysit the younger members of the families that founded it. It’s a God-camp, and it’s the only real judgement-free zone I’ve ever experienced. It’s a place of renewal, a place think, to pray, to let go. We always joke about the camp being within a bubble and how hard it is to leave, but it’s true. It wasn’t often that I had a few minutes to sit and talk without my charges (little boys are VERY active!) but during those two weeks, it seemed like the blinders I’d been wearing since February started to lift.

A few weeks later, in early September, I had the opportunity to sit down with one of the priests who had been at camp and who is also a dear friend. I explained what had happened – all the gory details about the broken engagement (he was supposed to marry us, so he was among the first to know the wedding was off, and he had even tried some premarital counseling when things started getting bad. Needless to say, Lenny wasn’t into it and just said what he knew I wanted to hear.) I told him what my friend had said and done.

And I told him that an old friend from long past had asked me to dinner.

“Blondie,” Father Joe said, “I have known you for how long now? Six years? Seven? I see you every summer with those kids – patient, loving; by the end of the week half of them are calling you “mom” too. Don’t ever accept being told that you are anything but gentle and kind. You have a heart of gold, and it’s to their detriment that they can’t see it. Pray for them. Now tell me about this man who asked you to dinner.”

gathered

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Stop! Don’t open. That door!

There’s a lot of lousy things going on in the world today. A laundry list of them. (Note to self, do laundry.) As I am very, very sick of turning on the TV and the radio and the interwebs and hearing about suicides, looting, race-baiting, rape, and the crucifixion of children, I’m going to my happy place.

Now is a good time to warn all of you that my happy place involves killing zombies. Lots and lots of zombies.

I discovered Resident Evil 2 when I was a sophomore in high school through a boyfriend, and in turn, I introduced it to my brothers. There isn’t a lot that a 16-year-old girl and two boys ages 13 and 10 can agree upon, but for the three of us, it was Resident Evil and the extremely unusual  and rather bloody crime fighting adventures of Chris, Jill, Claire, Leon, Ada, and the rest of the gang as they battled the evil Umbrella Corporation. Alright, maybe “crime fighting” is stretching things a bit, but Chris and Jill were RPD special ops, Leon was a cop, and the second game took place in a police station. Close enough.

I don’t know what it was about those games. We watched each other play like we might watch a movie – offering advice, shouting out warnings, and always ready with a clever insult when someone did something stupid, whether that be the character or the one controlling him. And oh, did we screw up. Or, better, tried to make each other screw up. Like the time I neglected to mention that licker that was going to burst through the two-way mirror, and I’m pretty sure the story about how I missed Birkin during the final battle with one of my precious rocket-launcher shots (you only get two) when I had the game set to “auto-aim” will be told at my funeral.

Then again, so too will we recall my brother frantically pointing at the gate and stammering “Use the bent-pin-door-opener-thingie!”

“The lock pick?”

“Yeah, the lock pick.”

Ah, the good old days. Today, it’s rare to get my brothers and me in the same room for more than five minutes at a time; our lives pull us in so many different directions. I’ll always look back with fondness though at the appreciation for a perfect headshot, the achievement of shaving a few seconds off a record time, the beating of the extra game with ‘Hunk” or “Tofu” (yes, that’s exactly what it sounds like. You race through the game as a giant block of tofu.)

Or when someone is in desperate need of a smile, you just look at them and say, “You were almost a Jill sandwich.”

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Thursday Night Funnies*

*Subject to change (literally) as soon as I think of something more witty. There aren’t a lot of synonyms for “joke” or “humor” that begin with “th” or “n”, oddly enough.

 

Anyway, in honor of my dear old Dad, who, as I previously mentioned was Head Bedtime Story Teller, and often times shied away from the likes of the Little Golden Books and Dr. Seuss in honor of E. A. Poe and Sherlock Holmes; I present the joke that has, on more than one occasion, been rated the funniest joke of modern times:

Sherlock and Dr. Watson Go Camping

Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson decided to take a camping trip. After dinner, a bottle of wine, and some conversation, they settle in to sleep.

Some hours later, Holmes awoke and nudged his faithful friend. “Watson, look up at the sky and tell me what you see.”

Watson replied, “I see millions of stars.”

“And what does that tell you?” asked Holmes.

“Well, astronomically, it tells me there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets. Astrologically, I observe that Saturn is in Leo. Horologically, I deduce that the time is approximately a quarter past three. Theologically, I can see that God is all-powerful and we are small and insignificant. Meteorologically, the skies are clear and it will be a beautiful day tomorrow.” He paused. “What does it tell you, Holmes?”

Holmes sighed. “Watson, you idiot. Somebody stole our tent.”

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