"What does it profit a man, to amass wealth but lose his soul?"
"It will be a cold winter and thousands of homeless remain each night without food and shelter, regardless of why they are out there, help if you can. Many families will not have massive expensive dinners or Christmas gift openings this holiday, not because they wouldn't like to but because they can't. I challenge everyone out there to do something remarkable for someone else this year, not because you must but only if you can. There is no greater gift then bringing joy to someone like a light in the darkness."
This is my son’s status update on Facebook. The day before he posted this, my 22 year old man-child called me and said “Momma, let’s do something for a stranger…it’s been on my mind a lot lately, can we?” I was all over it and the brainstorming began. There was not one ounce of anything even remotely negative that I could grab from doing this. I began rallying the troops. A friend jumped on board without hesitation. A bag lunch prepared for the homeless downtown was on the agenda. One little hiccup in the road....very quickly I was reminded that most of those homeless people don’t need to be homeless, most of them are drinkers and addicts and why would people waste their time? I honestly don’t know why I’m surprised by this attitude and sadly I had already started to prepare a rebuttle in my mind for just this kind of moment. After all it seems that there are far more jaded and cynical people in the world than hopeful, undaunted souls and sooooooo nonetheless…I had something to say.
We cry for babies that people throw away as if they are trash, yet stomp our feet in hatred when two gay men take an orphaned child as their own.
We question why we feel so alone in the world, but gossip about our own families.
We preach kindness and manners to our children but stab each other in the backs daily with our words and actions.
We shout at the top of our lungs that we’re Christians and then judge how far away someone stands from God and even worse, we stand in a superior position of insisting that their God is not as awesome as our God.
We convey over and over that love is the greatest gift that a person can possess, and then cast our eyes down on people who love the same sex.
We feel free to express our own creativity in whatever way we choose but assume that someone else must be troubled if they take their creativity too far by our standards.
We say we are thankful that we have people to do all the menial jobs we don’t have time for, but then whisper behind our hand “What a sad life, I mean he’s just a janitor.”
We drill into our sons that they are to be tough and strong and rigid and that boys don't cry and then wonder why men are disconnected and unable to be sensitive towards their wives.
We raise our daughters to think that they are to be treated like a princess, that they are owed that, and then wonder why they grow up with a sense of entitlement.
We waste time we can’t recover whispering behind someone’s back about how dysfunctional their marriage is and watch as our own marriages dissolve.
We say that the homeless situation is out of control but protest having “those” people in our neighborhoods.
We whine about wanting change in the world....but find every excuse as to why change will never happen...
I will admit, I was a little sad when it was conveyed to me, that there isn’t any point in doing this. It’s not like it’s going to change their life. They are going to keep doing what they are doing and this is possibly true. But here’s the honest truth...my truth that is..:) I’m not doing it for them so much as I’m doing it for myself. How selfish is that to admit? See I figure if I spend an afternoon downtown, I’ll be reminded of how much I have. I’ll be reminded of how warm my house is, albeit small, when I go inside after being out in the cold for a few hours. I’ll be reminded that I don’t ever have to hear my stomach growl, nor do I ever have to look into my kid’s eyes while they cry for food. When I crawl into bed beside the one who loves me through all the valleys, I’ll be reminded that I am never left to face the darkness alone. When I wake up on Christmas morning, I’ll be reminded that I truly want for nothing and when I go into work to do the job that some people classify as “just administrative tasks” I’ll be thankful that I can pay my own way through life. So yeah, I’m all about this lil trip downtown with my boy. If there happens to be one person who takes a buck from their own cup and throws it in someone else’s, well now….that’s just a bonus.
I refuse to reach a place where I become jaded like the rest. Gosh...life is hard enough, it plays the cruelest of jokes on you and forces you to make a choice, stand up over and over again after each punch or stay down and quit. The thing is, I can’t quit. I’m busy raising humans. I’m raising boys that will be men one day, dads one day and husbands one day. I’m raising a girl to be a mother and wife one day. I’m busy reminding them that kindness matters, give more than you take, you are no better or no worse than anyone else, holding onto anger makes you bitter, don’t let yourself get walked on and don’t trample on anyone else to get further ahead…. and this is your one life….make it count…..give it everything you’ve got and when you’ve got nothing left to give….dig deeper and find a little more.
So yeah….what my boy said….gosh I’m proud of that man. Over the top proud that he shares my attitude that it is not my job to judge why someone is where they are. At the end of the day sure as heck I’m gonna go ahead and give out sandwiches and bottles of water and I’m totally fine with being selfish in this case.
“You can’t save the world…but you can choose to give whatever you can, where ever you can, as often as you can.”
Thursday, February 13, 2014
I'm going to rant a little. I hate ranting. Honestly I've sat on this for well over a week now. Trying to decide whether to ignore it, or say something, or direct this at specific people. My blog won. If there is one thing that my therapist taught me, it's that it's okay for me to hear my own voice above everyone else's. Any of the people who are involved in my life know that the last 3 years have been the hardest part of my life so far. I have battled internal demons that screamed at me throughout my life...convincing me that I was nothing more than trash, I have wrestled with the thoughts of getting in my car and driving away and I have lived off and on in the darkest place of self loathing, convincing myself that my marriage fell apart because I was not enough...or too much maybe.....because I was too fat, too emotional, too submissive, too passive, too sensitive, too domestic, too naive....that I was not worth him staying. I lived in a place of taking all of his incredibly selfish and destructive choices out of the equation and blamed myself. I watched every little bit of who I was fall away with the end of my marriage and for about 600 days I worried that I would never find her again. This loss was for me, was the closest thing to experiencing the death of a close family member....and I knew that for healing to come I had to grieve the loss of that. Therapy got me through that....obviously no one can save you but yourself but she helped me look at all things. I was able to own the parts that were mine to own and let everything else fall. I was able to give forgiveness to the person I trusted more than anyone. I was able to examine the parts of myself that needed growth and also praise the parts that made up a pretty awesome girl. Does this mean I'm completely over it?? Hell to the No! Some days are hard. It isn't about him though...it's about me now. The damage still lingers...I don't trust easily now, I assume you are a douche and I expect disappointment. How horrible is that?? The amount of days that I have cried to bestie and said things like "No one is going to be able to deal with what I bring now...I'm too much work." I knew I would be okay but I was scared for a long time that a life of being alone might be my life. Who would be willing to love this broken girl? This girl whose emotions feel too big for her heart to handle. This girl who was fragile in ways that never existed before and who would want to take all that on? So imagine my disappointment and sadness when I got this in my Facebook Inbox.
Your life seems to be moving in a positive direction but I question whether or not the necessity for your boyfriend to be so improper and inappropriate on your wall sets the best example. Mara is young. I'm sure the end of your marriage is hard for her. Does she need to see another man who isn't her dad post comments about her mother? Doesn't this set the tone for the men she will date? You are a wonderful woman who has gone through something incredibly difficult but posts like this lead others to an impression of you that simply isn't true.
I'm going to stop there....because it makes me more angry every time I read it. For information purposes 4 people have chosen to send me messages in an attempt to parent me via Facebook. This is my response. I'm gonna cry while I write it...I can already feel it...damn it!! This rant is going to be composed and processed I hope....but also serve as a gentle reminder that I don't really need people to mother me.
For the most part I've come to understand that we never ever really master life. It is a constant balance of throwing all the balls in the air and hoping you catch the ones that are important in the moment and dodging the others so as to avoid black eyes. For as much as I have healed and gained confidence some days just aren't good. I feel bad for my people on those days....especially my man person. The man has the endurance of an athlete....he has seen this girl cry more that one poor fella should have to endure in 10 short months and still he has never reacted in a way that was anything other than supportive. I'm sooooo beyond thankful for him. He has become a friend to me....my best friend really. There isn't anything I am too scared to tell him. He has risen to meet the challenges of loving someone who just doesn't trust easily. He has hugged me when no other hug on the planet would do. He has watched me cry and never stepped away. He has given me hope....three years ago hope seemed non existent in my world but he has opened my mind again to the idea of forever with someone. For the first time ever in my entire life....my days spent with someone feel too short. Him and I spend a crazy insane amount of time together and yet I never get sick of the time with him and sometimes feel a little sting in my heart in knowing that forever with him, just isn't long enough. Where a handful of others walked away because I was too sensitive or too girly or too passive he has stayed. Where others would say they were scared that my sweet personality covered up a raging bitch ready to explode....he saw a sweet personality and stayed. He has been more honest than a person would normally be, even if a sting came with that honesty but somehow in that place of being truthful, I've grown to trust him. Every day when I wake up beside him, there is the most sincerest gratitude inside me that I get to have one more day with him. He is the one who is standing where others didn't want to stand, he is the one blocking me from the cruelest elements in the world, making me laugh, listening to me rant, sitting quietly with me while I cry buckets. He's choosing me....when he could have someone not so tarnished by the brutality of other human beings...he never...like not even one time, has told me that I'm over reacting or that I'm gonna wreck this if I don't stop being scared. He just listens and loves me anyways. He loves me despite all the things that make me feel incredibly weak. Every fear of being unlovable because I'm a little fragile now...he has calmed that in me...frick...I'm lucky......and this is the thing....him and I might fall to shit one day....and I'll still be thankful for right now...and if the worst he dishes out is making posts about my rack or penis warmers on Facebook...well I'll surely be grateful because I have been to a place that was a thousand times worse. At the end of the day what he gives me, what he pours into our relationship day in and day out, far out weighs his colorful humor on Facebook. I'm a grownup and I have one mother. She trusts my judgement and she would never ever judge someone based on things people post and seriously...even though she's my mother....she doesn't parent me. I guess it's funny to me that people feel as though they have the right to weigh in on my life when the very same people had nothing to say at all when I was living in my walk in closet feeling as though I was completely breaking.
While you're busy policing Facebook...maybe you should say a word or two to the person who posted about how she is secretly happy when her friends gain weight instead of blowing smoke up her ass about how awesome she is for being honest, essentially empowering her to be an ass of a human being. How can it be that in the moments when life is falling apart, the people who claim to be there for you are too busy and yet when your life feels the best it has felt....like ever maybe....that these same people so quickly judge your choices.....that is amazing to me. But then again, if there's one thing I've learned, it's that people are quick to pick apart other people's lives when they don't want to work on their own issues.
If it bothers you to read my wall, don't read it...remove me from Facebook....but don't be the boss of me. Don't tell me what to do, and don't ever use my children as leverage to make your point. Don't question my parenting, my morals or my choices when you have next to nothing to do with my life. Life is fucking hard enough without people picking apart the best things in your life. The only thing that you prove to be clear is that it doesn't matter what kind of person you are or how you live your life....someone will always find the flaws in that....
P.S. Don't ask me who this is about....if you think it's about you....you're probably right.
Happy Thursday all a ya'll!
at 6:42 AM