And It Has Started

“Regardless of how bullying is manifested — either verbal assaults or strategic moves to render the target unproductive and unsuccessful — it is the aggressor’s desire to control the target that motivates action.” ~ Gary Namie, Workplace Bullying: Escalated Incivility, Ivy Business Journal, November/December 2003 (emphasis mine)

Photo by Markus Winkler on Pexels.com

And so it has begun . . .

the process to undermine and take down successful, staunch, Republicans who openly supported Trump. As noted in the quote above, from 2003 no less, the desire to control is not new. It’s been around for centuries – the Romans, Alexander the Great, Adolph Hitler and many others who had a desire to rule the world.

Faithful America (God bless their pointed heads) claims to be “the nations largest online community of Christians organizing for social justice.” They have recently circulated a petition signed by a mere 16,000 people stating:

“As long as Samaritan’s Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association stand by Franklin Graham, it must be said that these once-vaunted organizations have forgotten their original Christian missions, abandoned the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and are complicit in the spread of dishonest, discredited election conspiracy theories and the deadly, unpatriotic, white-nationalist terrorism at the U.S. Capitol incited by those lies,” the petition launched by Faithful America says.

Over 16,000 Christians Want Franklin Graham Fired for ‘Helping Incite’ Capitol Riot (msn.com)

PREVIOUSLY, this same organization asked for Franklin Graham’s removal as CEO of Samaritan’s Purse simply because he prayed at the Republican National Convention last year in August. And God forbid he should post anything on Facebook with which this organization doesn’t agree!! They aren’t organizing for social justice, they just don’t like Republicans who supported Trump.

I would also point out that

Of the 167 million Christians in the US as reported in 10/2019 by Pewforum.org, Faithful America, again . . the nation’s largest online community of Christians organizing for social justice is actually pretty minute. A mere 16,000 of 167 million Christians signed this petition. Let me do the math for you. 16,000 of 167 million is only

0.00958% of Christians in the United States.

I’ve said it previously and I’ll repeat it here; words are power and where those words are placed and how much press time they receive can have widespread influence.

Steven Cohen, Tennessee Representative (D) is concerned that a majority of the National Guard responsible for securing Joe Biden during his inauguration might not be Democrat voters — that the majority of the National Guard currently deployed to the Capitol at this time “might be” those who did NOT vote for Biden and therefore are armed and may not be suitable for guarding the President Elect. (Army veteran calls out Dem lawmaker for ‘ridiculous’ remark about troops posing threat to Biden (msn.com)) As was pointed out in this video, these members of the National Guard have outside jobs and dropped everything to respond to the Capitol as they were ordered, regardless of their political preference . . . but for some, that’s not good enough. If you are not a Democrat voter, you are now not qualified to serve or at least protect the President Elect? C’mon . . . this isn’t about safety? This is an out-and-out slam against those who may not have voted Democrat. He just doesn’t like Republicans who might have supported Trump.

I do find it interesting that Rep. Cohen stated that perhaps 25% of those in the National Guard voted for Biden, while probably 75% of those in the National Guard voted for Trump. The National Guard is made up of citizens from across the country. If these numbers are representative of the percentages of voters who participated in the last election, explain to me again how Joe Biden won?

Conservative reporter, Tucker Carlson, is being called out and ridiculed for his monologue on Fox News and his sarcastic outrage for the “Inusrrection” at the Capitol on Jan. 6. His outrage is that a riot that resulted in 5 deaths (two of which occurred due to medical conditions and happened near the Capitol during the riot) is being compared to 9/11 in which terrorists attacked the Twin Towers in NYC and the Pentagon using hijacked airplanes, killing 2,996 people. This report Tucker Carlson Thinks Everybody’s Too Upset About Trump Supporters Invading the Capitol (Video) (msn.com) can’t even get the number of deaths at the Capitol correct, now elevating it to 7 deaths. See how that works? Keep reporting your outrage at someone else’s outrage, ridiculing their reaction and padding the numbers and then repeating it and tweaking the information and the numbers and soon it becomes like the old “telephone game” — you tell that person and she tells the next person and he tells the next person and by the end of the line the entire story has been embellished and nowhere near resembles the original statements. The information isn’t correct, the subject is being ridiculed and played up as someone who is facetious, snarky and unempathetic to the plight of those at the Capitol. This isn’t reporting, this is a group of people (the press) who don’t like Republicans who supported Trump.

I’m sure Sean Hannity of Fox News will be next for his monologue in which he stated:

“Establishment Republicans have no backbone, no principle, no courage, no vision. . . Too many politicians in D.C. are just far to willing to go along, get along, and protect the swamp, and that is why conservatives like myself are tired of these empty promises and your rehearsed speeches and never getting anything done.”

Hannity Calls for McConnell to Be Replaced as GOP Senate Leader (msn.com)

Censorship has begun, in full force . . . welcome to the next Regime.

Cleansing

“Trump will be an ex-president in 13 days. The fact is that getting rid of Trump is the easy part. Cleansing the movement he commands is going to be something else.” ~Rick Klein, ABC News political director, Tweet, Jan 7,2021 (now deleted) but placed on ABC’s homepage.

Do you spot something interesting in this photo? Look closely. Out of all the people photographed performing the now infamous “Nazi salute”, one man is standing, arms crossed, refusing to comply. Oh my gosh! A rebel! In 2021, he would no doubt be tagged as a “deplorable” or better yet, a Trump supporter.

There stands a man with convictions. And he paid for them dearly . . . with his life. He refused to capitulate. Love for his family was of more value than his own life. Our country was formed on the basis of such values. Many men forfeited their lives, their families, their livelihoods, businesses, fortunes and reputations to make America what it has been . . . up to this point.

The quote I’ve posted above, came not from 1930’s Germany, but from 2021 following the “insurrection” at the US Capitol. Insurrection? A small group of protesters (without guns) and admittedly infiltrated by members of Antifa, breached the Capitol doors. Or did they? Video shows Capitol police moving the gates and waving protesters past. Additional footage from cellphones of those “breaching” the doors, show Capitol police standing by silently as they enter.

August Landmesser, the brave gentleman shown in the photo above, stood on his principles and refused to continue supporting the Nazi party of which he’d been a member. The Nazi salute was a mandatory act for German citizens to show loyalty to the Nazi party. Mr. Landmesser’s refusal to do so was outright defiance. Two years after joining the Nazi party in 1931, August met and fell in love with Irma Eckler, a Jewish woman and proposed in 1935. After word of his engagement got out, he was expelled from the Nazi party. Attempting to procure a marriage license was in vain as the Nuremburg Laws forbid marriage to Jews. This photo was taken in 1936 and a year later, August attempted to flee with Irma and their daughter to Denmark but was detained and charged with “dishonoring the race” under those same Nuremburg Laws. He was acquitted after a year and instructed to forego any relationship with Irma. Being a man of principles and integrity, he refused and was arrested again and spent the next three years in a concentration camp. Irma herself, now pregnant, was sent first to an all-women’s concentration camp where she gave birth to their second daughter and then to an extermination camp where she was killed. Following his time at the concentration camp, August was pressed into wartime service and was later reported missing, assumed dead in Croatia. (The tragically powerful story behind the lone German who refused to give Hitler the Nazi salute | The Independent | The Independent)

Imagine, growing up and believing that your country espouses and supports freedom: freedom of religious belief, freedom to work and prosper, freedom in the pursuit of happiness (including marriage), freedom to align with a particular political party, and freedom of expression. Now imagine:

  • Suddenly your social media feeds are censored, blocked or removed because you do not support the popular political party.
  • For months, a virus with a 99.4% survival rate, has resulted in forced business closures, social distancing, mask mandates, lockdowns, limits on family gatherings, forced abandonment of older family members in nursing homes with no physical contact, and cessation of religious services. ALL in the name of health . . . for a virus with a 99.4% survival rate?
  • Governors of states, such as Florida and South Dakota, who refuse to follow strict mandates pushed forward in other states such as California and New York, are ridiculed, put down and censured. All the while their states continue to flourish – even with Florida and New York having the approximate same number of citizens. Matter of fact, South Dakota’s increasing tax revenues gave them a budget surplus. How many other states can claim that during forced lockdowns?
  • For four years, “peaceful” (insert snark here) protests resulting in riots, murders, looting of businesses, takeovers of portions of cities (Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington come to mind), attempts to overthrow federal buildings — are not only condoned but encouraged by leaders in the Democratic party.

What comes next? You tell me.

If you’re reading this . . . please . . .

Don’t go along mindlessly with the flow. Be an August Landmesser in a sea of sheeple. Stand on YOUR principles.

Unapologetic

“I’m unapologetic not because I’m strong-willed or overconfident, I’m unapologetic because this is it; this is my life. There is nothing I can do, no one I can please. I am a person with a strong sense of being, that is all.” ~ Jean Seberg

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

It’s time. Time to stand up for what is right. Time to no longer sit down quietly, and let others decide the course of events that will affect me, affect my family and generations to come. Time to let go of popular things that many people cannot fathom living without.

Facebook – gone, deleted.

Instagram – gone, deleted.

Censorship – done with it.

Factcheckers – literally uneducated quacks who strike down anything that doesn’t fit with the current narrative – can kiss my ass.

Yes,I voted for Trump. But he’s not the be all and end all. While he did a great number of good things for the US, he was also human; he had his foibles. While I identify with the Republican party, the party and it’s representatives are also not the be all and end all. Many of the elected Republican senators and representatives have turned tail in the face of adversity. Instead of standing for the Republic that was the United States of America, they have allowed themselves to be cowed, or bought, or frightened of losing their positions of power or economic comfort.

Sanctions are rolling in:

Democrats calling for sanctions against and removal from office of Republican representatives and senators who dared to follow the Electoral Count Act of 1887 and call into question the electoral votes. Something Democrats have done previously in 2001, 2005, and 2017. Did Republicans call for their removal from office? Of course not, because historically Republicans follow the law.

“In 2001, House Democrats challenged the certification of electoral votes for then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush, a Republican, but the objection failed because no senator agreed to sign the written objection. “The objection is in writing, and I do not care that it is not signed by a member of the Senate,” Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., said during the 2001 joint session of Congress.”

Since 2001, Democrats Objected 3 Times to Electoral College Certification (dailysignal.com)

Even during Trump’s inaugration in 2017, riots and looting ensued. Democrats were notoriously quiet.

“Six police officers were injured and 217 protesters arrested Friday after a morning of peaceful protests and coordinated disruptions of Donald Trump’s inauguration gave way to ugly clashes in downtown Washington. . . . Bursts of chaos erupted on 12th and K Streets as black-clad “antifascist” protesters smashed storefronts and bus stops, hammered out the windows of a limousine and eventually launched rocks at a phalanx of police lined up in an eastbound crosswalk. . . . Anti-Trump protests also broke out Friday in U.S. cities, including New York, Seattle, Dallas, Chicago, and Portland, Oregon. Authorities in Seattle say one person was in critical condition at a hospital with a gunshot wound.”

Acting DC Police Chief Peter Newsham told CNN, “We have been pointing out all along that this is a very isolated incident, and by and large, everything is going peacefully. . . “

Inauguration protests: Police injured, more than 200 arrested (cnn.com)

Reading the above quote, what is reported is far from peaceful. If you Google “peaceful defined” this is what returns: 1. free from disturbance; tranquil. 2. not involving war or violence. How anyone can read the quote above from CNN and find it free from disturbance, tranquil and not involving violence is sadly hilarious, because in reality you cannot describe the above scene and call it peaceful. Nor is having these incidents spread across several cities, “isolated.”

Now with the election of 2020 confirmed, Democrats control the House and the Senate with a Democrat president and vice-president. Following the last four years of vitriol and undisguised hatred against President Trump, against the working class who supported him, and virtually anyone who speaks or has spoken in his defense – I am fearful. Rioting and looting has been encouraged and supported by the Democrat leaders:

“No peace, no sleep! No peace, no sleep! . . . If you see anybody from that cabinet (Trump’s) in a restaurant, in a dpeartment store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd and you push back on them . . . ” ~ Maxine Waters, D-Ca, 2018 (encouraging harassment of Trump supporters)

“You know there needs to be unrest in the streets for as long as there’s unrest in our lives.” ~ Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) (apparently this only applies to Democrats protesting and rioting)

“I just don’t even know why there aren’t uprisings all over the country. . . ” ~ Spkr. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)

Viral Video Shows Leading Democrats Promoting ‘Uprisings,’ ‘Unrest,’ Harassment | The Daily Wire

What are my fears for the future? History has a tendency to repeat itself. Let’s look back at 1930’s Germany, shall we?

In 1928, the Nazi party only received 2.5% of the votes in Germany’s parliament. By 1930, the Nazi party received 18.3% of the vote, expanding their seats in German Parliament from 12 to 107. Move forward two years, and in 1932 the Nazi party received 37% of the votes. Hitler was made chancellor by the German President and it just snowballed from there – parliamentary members were evicted from their seats (sound familiar?). From there, the German President passed the “Enabling Act” which allowed Hitler as Chancellor to “deviate from the constitution as necessary.” From there labor unions and political parties were banned and censorship went into high gear.

This is all historical fact – not a conspiracy theory, not a fairy tale. You can find it here or here.

Words hold power, and as such must be used carefully. Truth is expressed by words, but so are lies. Words heard often enough but not researched for factuality will often become passed along as gospel truth. Repetition has long been used as a form of brainwashing in concentration camps, cults, and now increasingly through our mainstream media. Don’t believe me?

colloquial term, it is more generally applied to any technique designed to manipulate human thought or action against the desire, will, or knowledge of the individual. By controlling the physical and social environment, an attempt is made to destroy loyalties to any unfavourable groups or individuals, to demonstrate to the individual that his attitudes and patterns of thinking are incorrect and must be changed, and to develop loyalty and unquestioning obedience to the ruling party.

Brainwashing | Britannica

I chose to removed my Facebook page and Instagram accounts because I choose not to be subject to the censorship that abounds through those channels. I meticulously check and double-check the news that I read from reputable and multiple non-US sources against what is reported stateside.

I am angry. I am furious. I am unarguably unapologetic because my life matters, not to those in power, but to me and my family. My stance will not be popular, I will be labeled such things as “conspiracy theorist” or “overreactive” or “lunatic” even, but I promise this . . . I will not back down.

Welcome 2021

“The book is called opportunity and it’s first chapter is New Year’s Day.” ~ Edith Lovejoy Pierce

Photo by Oleg Zaicev on Pexels.com

Talking about resolutions with a friend, I stated that I tend not to make New Year’s resolutions. When I decide to do something, I just set the goal and do it . . . no need to wait for an auspicious, timely milestone marker. Another friend posted a photo that consisted of a quote which I will insert here:

“If you’re serious about changing your life, you’ll find a way. If you’re not, you’ll find an excuse.” ~ Source Unknown

After hearing excuses for so long, you just KNOW that some people have no intention of changing. They lack motivation, or drive, or intention, or cajones, or . . . whatever. If you listen, they will have every excuse in the book — usually ones that can be negated with logic or a short reality check. Those are the kind of folks that drive me to the brink of irritation to where I’m biting my tongue and slowly backing away from spending time with them. It’s one thing to be content with who and where you are, and say so. It’s another to feel as if you have to profess change to compete or compare when the obvious lack of follow-thru is more suspicious than mysterious ballots appearing in the presidential election.

For years I’ve felt that I owed explanations for what I do. Guess what? I don’t.

My only competition is myself. Whether it’s running, exercise, cooking, learning, reading, working or sleeping; I no longer compare myself to others. Oh . . . I’ll listen and learn from their experiences, but if I’m not interested . . . I’m not interested.

If I’m mad . . . I’ll be mad without an apology. I can make my feelings known tactfully and with discretion but make no mistake . . . I will no longer hide it. After reading the article on Unapolgetic Women here . . . I have come to a decision:

I will no longer apologize for being who I am, for thinking my thoughts, for having my strengths and my weaknesses. The year of 2021 will be the year of the terrifying, unapologetic me.

I don’t think my experience is a unique one. Women—mothers, especially—are told all the time, subtly and overtly, that we must change, adapt and bend who we are to make other people more comfortable. That somehow a watered-down version of ourselves is the one we should present to the world.” ~ Diana Spalding

This was never truer for me than when I was offered my dream job which required me to move to another state. A job for which I had trained and worked and studied and suffered . . . but yet, the exact day the written job offer came, I was asked to keep quiet about it because it (the prospect of my required move) was upsetting people. The message clearly was that everyone else’s feelings mattered more than mine — their discomfort was of more concern than my need to be happy and excited and celebrate my accomplishment.

Guess what ladies? If you don’t toot your own horn, no one else will either.

It’s been so ingrained in me, so distilled and pressed into my subconscience to be quiet and unassuming, it is difficult for me to promote myself. That will be my biggest goal this coming year.

Stay tuned for the adventures that are sure to come. . . .

US Election Concerns

“What kills a skunk is the publicity it gives itself.” ~ Abraham Lincoln

Photo by Element5 Digital on Pexels.com

I don’t claim to know everything, in fact I’d rather not. But I do take some pride in being smarter than the average bear. And it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to point out inconsistencies in the last US Presidential election that warrant further investigation:

  • Several swing states that suddenly stopped counting ballots when the Republican candidate was ahead and then when reconvening the count, amazingly showed the Democrat candidate had jumped ahead by more than a few votes.
  • Video footage of suitcases of ballots being pulled out from underneath a table where they appear to have been hidden after ballot counting had been shut down for what was reported to be a “water leak” (and was in actuality a singular clogged toilet) and yet . . . those ballots were removed from underneath a table and counted while counting was stopped (and captured on recorded security camera footage)? Yeah . . . that’s not hinky!
  • Sworn testimony of US postal workers, ballot counters, and registered voters ranging from mail in ballots that were not creased or having appeared to have actually been mailed in, to being forced to mark ballots with a Sharpie marker (which renders them un-readable by the machine and leads to adjudication by a person who decides what the voter actually “meant”), to voters receiving mail-in ballots which they never requested, not to mention numbers of deceased people voting from the grave.
  • Independent audits of the Dominican voting machines which shows how votes can easily be flipped, and shows a 68% rate of error in tabulating votes leading (again) to adjudication.

Yet the Democratic party, courts, judges, Senators and Representatives are shoving these questionable results down our throats. I, for one, hate having anything shoved down my throat without logical explanation. It has a tendency to piss me off, for lack of a better turn of word.

Why? One of my first words and one that drove my mother crazy. I have difficulty accepting anything illogical in blind faith. Especially, when there is an opportunity to provide explanation.

Why not let the courts hear the evidence? If there is no wrong-doing, it will come out in the end.

Why not examine the Dominican voting machines? If there are exaggerated claims of error, it will come out in the end.

Why not allow the testimony of witnesses to be heard? If they are lying, it will come out in the end.

When I am under attack, yet sure of my position, I welcome any and all investigation into the facts. If accusations are false, they will be found out. If I am wrong, I am willing to admit it, but I will not lie down and accept questionable bullshit that is compounded by an unwillingness and downright denial of examination.

My anger is not solely directed at this last Presidential election – it is a fear for the future of my country. If this election has been manipulated and is fraudulent, why continue the voting process at all. What is the point of having a farce of voters going to the polls if manipulation is not only allowed but encouraged. When the people are no longer allowed to elect their leaders, we have not a democracy but a dictatorship.

God help us all.

COVID Concerns

“Those who will not reason, are bigots, those who cannot, are fools, and those who dare not, are slaves.” ~ Lord Byron

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Earlier this year, I wrote a post on my concerns re: the Coronavirus — here. I will quote myself in case you don’t choose to read the entire thing.

“Consider this . . .

many people get the flu, some people will die from the flu. Now replace the word “flu” with “coronavirus.”

many people will get coronavirus, some people will die from the coronavirus.

Did you see that? many and some. Many and SOME. Not many and all.

This excellent article from Johns Hopkins here, compares COVID-19 with influenza. The concern with COVID-19 is that it is a new strain for which people have not built up an immunity. Statistically, unless you are extremely young with little immunity, or older with existing health issues that decrease immunity, the risk of dying is low”.”

Yes, the deaths are horrific – I don’t dispute that. Having to be intubated and be on the ventilator, turned by staff, apart from family, multiple IV’s and drips, monitors beeping, failed resuscitative measures – it’s not pretty. As a nurse, I have watched my patients struggle to breathe, seen the panicked look in their eyes as they fight to pull air into their lungs that are filled with fluid and infection. They know . . . they’ve heard stories and rightfully so, they are afraid. My own adopted daughter was on the ventilator for 11 days.

HOWEVER . . . there are a greater number of people that have COVID-19 that are not hospitalized, that are able to quarantine at home. These are the patients we don’t hear about in the news, the ones who have been affected and felt like absolute shit, but pulled through. These are the numbers the media doesn’t discuss — the greater numbers of people with COVID who did not require hospitalization or mechanical ventilation.

My greatest concern with COVID is not the virus itself. It is the blind faith that the common man is putting into the media reports. Faith in the rhetoric spewed by non-scientifically trained politicians. Faith in a lone scientist, Dr. Fauci, who has practically garnered sainthood but yet has waffled on his stance throughout the pandemic. Studies from the CDC, undertaken by epidemiologists and scientists, have disproven the “facts” touted by the media. Facts that are inflated, overblown, over-dramatized and then the actual CDC guidelines are pooh-poohed as unreliable data.

My concern is for a nation of people who have been dumbed down over the years and not taught logic in schools for so long that they blindly believe and follow the masses. These are the same people that believe “Grey’s Anatomy” is a true-to-life medical documentary versus entertainment. People who follow stars of the entertainment industry. Folks!! Hollywood stars are ACTORS – they are paid to act a certain way to convince you of the sincerity of their role in a production. These actors are so skilled in their trade, or looks, that they command great amounts of money — that doesn’t make them any smarter or have any more viable and accurate information than the common person who works as a laborer, or a healthcare worker, or the barista at the coffee shop on the corner.

My concern is for the demise of a country that I see circling the drain of liberty.

Patina of life

“When I look in the mirror, I try not to see myself becoming wrinkled with age. Instead, I try to envision myself as acquiring a beautiful patina which only appears with time.” ~ Unknown

Photo by Emma Bauso on Pexels.com

I believe we can safely assume that I have an innate fondness for old things. Furniture, clothing, homes, my recycled sari skirts are just a few examples. An acquaintance recently made a comment specifically about the skirts and the words struck a chord in me.

” . . . one has definitely been well used. I like that. A patina of another woman’s life.” ~ Andrea Jones

Apparently the words resonated with several women due to the comments she received. For the last few days, I’ve been pondering those words. My father lived in an older section of Independence, Missouri when I was a teen. Driving to his house on the rare occasion, we would pass thru historical sections with old houses (which were already intensely fascinating to me by this age). I can remember my step-mother and I discussing the history that may have occurred in those homes and “if only the walls could talk.”

As I wear my skirts, I wonder what occasions they’ve seen – joyous, mundane, or painful. I wonder about the women that wore them prior to myself – what they were like, their age, their experiences, whether they had young children that played in the folds, or whether they were older with children grown.

It’s the same with the houses – I walk thru on the original hardwood floors, contemplating who walked here in years past. Who touched the wooden railings, perhaps carried sleeping children up the stairs to put them to bed? What scenes have played out behind the original windows with their cotton candy glass panes?

Antique furniture raises even more questions. I wonder where it was purchased and by whom? Whether it has traveled far from it’s origination? Was it a gift? Who else lovingly ran their hands over the surfaces? What did they see when they looked in the mirrors?

I firmly blame such movies as “Somewhere in Time” or “The Love Letter” or even “Bridges of Madison County” for my fascination with how lives will affect other lives throughout time. It doesn’t have to be a life of infamy, just the routine life of an Iowa housewife whose family learned new things about her after she passed. I wonder what my children will learn about me, for they don’t know everything. I only hope they can take joy in some of the things they learn.

Checking In With God

“I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way.” ~ Carl Sandburg

Photo by Mathias P.R. Reding on Pexels.com

It is customary in most jobs to have a performance review or a progress report done annually. This allows goals to be set, and allows both the employee and the employer or supervisor to monitor progress towards the goals. Pretty simple concept.

Often in my walk of faith, I check in with God for a progress report. Usually done in quiet, this gives me a chance to see if I’m doing well, if there are things I need to change, new ideas that may or not may be in alignment with His plan, etc. It’s not a scheduled event, just something that occurs when I feel a certain heaviness or restlessness.

This time, the tete-a-tete occurred in the quiet stillness of a misty night while sitting alone in the hot tub. As I glanced around at the silhouettes of bare trees against the grey sky, I first marveled at the seasons and how each feeds into the next. (Cue the “Circle of Life” from The Lion King, here if you choose.) This segued into the idea of the seasons of our lives – infancy, childhood, teen years, young adult, mature adult (give or take), older adult, even wiser and older adults. We start out taking in infancy as we rely on others to meet our every need, but (hopefully) as we get on in years, we are giving more than we take, guiding and mentoring those who are younger.

My next thoughts were, ‘Am I doing enough?‘ Being an overachiever with OCD and a propensity for perfectionism, I’m very concerned with no doing ‘enough.’ Who gets to arbitrarily determine what ‘enough’ is, I’m not sure.

To what standards am I holding myself? There are many. Proverbs 31 describes a great role model for women. Titus 2:3-5 gives instruction for older women. From a young age, I’ve been an avid reader of biographies of strong women: Corrie ten Boom, Amelia Earhart, Gladys Aylward, Jessie Benton Fremont, Louisa May Alcott, Wilma Rudolph, Florence Nightingale, Lillian Trasher and Joanna Gaines. Most assuredly I am not perfect, nor do I aim to be. I have made more than my fair share of mistakes and will own my part in them willingly.

As recent upheavals and life events have started to settle down, my next question is, “What’s next?” Life is never dull; it isn’t to be viewed as an observer but a full-fledged participant. While I don’t exactly know what’s next, I know that I am more than likely already on my way to the next set of adventures.

Being Thankful

Ever have those times where you are so simply and perfectly happy, that you try to hold the moment in your head and your heart as if it were a photograph? Memories that can be pulled out, dusted off and reviewed when things are painful or difficult are important?

While I hate medical diagnoses, I think sometimes that’s what it takes to make us truly appreciate the life that goes on around us. When you realize that our time is finite . . . . I guess what I’m thinking is that some of the things we THINK are the most important are really not that important, and the things we take for granted are some of the MOST important.

Take for instance — weddings. People spend thousands of dollars on the reception, the honeymoon, flowers, the dress. Months are devoted to planning the venue, the wedding party and the menu. Is it the ceremony that is so important, or is the years that follow — making memories as a couple? There is usually photographic evidence of the ceremony as well as the license and of course the rings. But those moments that are precious — stepping into the first home, celebrations of personal milestones, arguments and make-ups, or just moments of pure happiness — those are the things that are really important.

Graduations are just as bad — ceremonies, photos, diplomas, parties. Not that the accomplishment isn’t important. The work is generally difficult and time-consuming. The certificate and/or honors are well-deserved. Of greater importance is the aftermath — doing something with what was learned. What is the point of obtaining greater knowledge if we accept the diploma and then stop?

The holidays in our household aren’t always traditional. Sometimes we are with family, others we aren’t – it may just be me, or me and one of the kids, or all of us in one place. Regardless, it is a time to make memories. Some of my best memories of Thanksgiving are the years that we were invited to go to our pastor’s house. They had this huge, beautiful old Victorian farmhouse (maybe that’s when I fell in love with old houses). It was one of the few times that I can recall being in a crowd of people and not feeling as if I were drowning or as if I were an alien out of place among strangers. Thinking about it more in depth right now, I think it was the house that played the main character in my memories more than the people or even the food.

I don’t know when my finite time clock of life will run out, but I sure as hell know that when I go, it will be with a head chock full of memories that make me smile.

Subdued

“Stay low key. Not everyone needs to know everything about you.” ~ Unknown

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I’ve been rather quiet lately. Not that I have nothing to say, there is plenty . . . there are just no words to say it. No one with whom I particularly need to share it.

I’m not mad, not sad, not unhappy. Just busy. I have a lot on my mind; there are many year-end things that need to be done. The holidays are coming up quickly. I have many things occurring that require my attention and time.

Once again, because my personal life is private, I have no need to delve into the particulars of all the things weighing on my mind. There is probably no one single person that is aware of everything going on in my life at this time. There are several who know many and different things, but no one who knows all. That is as it should be. There is no one that needs to know everything about me.

With the barrage of reality television shows, and programs that have tell-all guests, it seems people believe you should spill your guts and air all your thoughts, grievances, or disturbances.

Yes, I share a lot of what I think in this forum.

Yes, I have point blank aired disturbances that affect my family and attracted the interest of the FBI (due to the naming of my minor daughter and the crossing of state lines). This is an arena that I know the offender monitors and was the only available venue I had of reaching her.

However . . .

I reserve the right to take time away when I have things that arise that I must tend to personally. I have jobs that require meetings, and educational outreach as well as the daily business of living.

I also reserve the right to monitor and address my health. I detest drama. My daughter once told her husband, “You know . . . if my Mom had two weeks to live, she wouldn’t tell anyone until just a few days before the two weeks was up and then it would be very nonchalant . . . ‘hey, not to bother you, but if you’re not busy next Thursday we’re going to have my funeral. No pressure. Not a big deal. If you’re busy, I understand.” And she’s exactly correct!!**

When I am busy thinking or overwhelmed with events, I turn inward. Much like my zodiac sign, the crab, I tend to become quiet and introspective. Focused on what needs to be done or the goals that need to be reached, I spend less time on things that don’t relate to those goals. It may be a few days, it may be a few weeks.

I’ve had three people in the last few days ask if I’m upset with them. I’ve talked to each one of them daily. For the love of the Christ child and all the saints, I haven’t felt well and I have multiple things going on that require my attention — I don’t have time to be mad at anyone. Not to mention, if I’m upset with someone, they will know it in no uncertain terms.

** Amendment ** — I usually write my posts and schedule them to be published the next day. This gives me time to rethink and add or subtract from what I’ve written. After thinking about my daughter’s comment – she is right but not because I’m hiding anything. Because I can straight up tell people something without excessive emotion, they are disbelieving, or they aren’t listening or they think I’m joking. Just because I’m not all weepy and dramatic or non-stop talking about something doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. Being subdued is just an effort to conserve energy. It was pointed out to me that I have a very logical and analytical mind (it happens with Asperger’s). There are things I’ve been dealing with for 10 years, some for 6 years, some for even longer . . . it is what it is. My MO isn’t to be emotional about events or occurrences, it is to take it in, spin it around and over and up and down in my mind, assess the pros and cons of the situation and figure out a plan of action. If talking about the problem or situation isn’t going to help it or will just create emotional angst . . . I’m out. I’ll be over here dealing with my shit. Call it subdued, assume I’m angry . . . whatever.