Life has a funny way of taking you down paths you never imagined you would tread down.
My life in the last 5 years has been more meaningful than the first twenty-seven years were.
I’ve experienced more and learned more about myself and this crazy journey than I could
ever fathom. Still, today I am surprised and occasionally shocked by the doors opened to me
that I pass through. Some doors I’ve closed and locked away.I believe that some doors aren’t
meant to remain open, they serve a purpose at some point in your life but once the lesson
is learned they should be closed. I’ve closed several due to hurtful things, things I don’t
wish to relive.By closing off those doors I have closed off a few relationships, those that were
harmful and did not cause growth in my life. Doors can be a funny thing, they all are unique in
some way. I’ve encountered some doors that have taken me sometime to enter and others were so easy to stride through. Life is exciting and right now I feel like I am on a game show, choosing my prizes behind the door. I don’t want to stop playing and I hope to always find the excitement from new opportunities as they present themselves to me. Life really is a blast when you live it carefree and uninhibited,
The first thing we know once we arrive in this world is love, we feel it through the nurturing of our parents, and our family. We are doted on, most of us, snuggled, and adored. There is no better feeling than being loved. Being the object of someone’s affections warms us to our core, and when this action is reciprocated an even more glorious and beautiful thing happens. All throughout our lives we strive toward our goals, on this journey we meet those who are like minded, and create bonds. When we are children our pure innocence is shown by who we love and are friends with. A child reared in a loving home, radiates love for others. However, we do not all have that honor of being taught to love, regardless of skin, gender, culture, religion or orientation. Those children either break the pattern, or they continue on the path set before them by their family. Even today, in 2015, prejudice and hate are taught and programmed in the home. How terribly sad that the purity of a helpless child is taken advantage of to continue the ignorant agenda of hate. We hear it on the evening news, the seemingly incessant reports of bullying, and crimes against those who aren’t “mainstream”.
WHAT ARE WE DOING TO OURSELVES?!
This is our world we are living in, our children, and grandchildren will live in. Is it not easier to teach acceptance and love than instill hate? I, for one, am tired of reading and hearing and seeing bigotry disguised in religion and in personal conviction. It is hard to understand some choices that are made by others, that, I comprehend, we are all individuals, we like different things. Nonetheless, we can not like something a person chooses and still have respect for the person, As we age,the action of love seems to become harder for some. There are rules, and standards we must meet to be given the affection of another. We are categorized and set apart from one another regarding our race, religion,culture,size,likes,dislikes,…..the list goes on. Why does it become so hard to love people regardless of their background and the insignificant details? My eyes have been opened to so much in the last few years, things in the past I would turn a blind eye to, literally make me sick. I have reevaluated myself and I truly feel I am a better person for it. I am responsible for young lives now, I have been entrusted with raising, teaching, and molding them into loving and giving members of society. If I fail to teach them love, I fail them, as well as myself. My children will not hear derogatory remarks spoken from my lips, that is my goal. To raise a loving and accepting human being, to raise a humanitarian. They will learn from me that it is important to leave this world better than you found it, to touch someone’s life, and to be part of the solution, not the problem.
Through my life changes I have met more people than I have known in my first 25 years of my life, love has opened doorways, and avenues to my soul. It has taught me, patience(although that is a work in progress), tolerance, and pure happiness. Love has cost me relationships, and has caused some pain, but it has been a positive experience. The things and people I lost through my transformation were those that I in fact did not need in my life. I count myself richly blessed by change, had it not happened, I do not know where I would be. People have helped me understand my flaws, they have taught what not to be in life, and have loved me when I did not love myself. I have more friends than ever, from all walks of life, backgrounds, and abroad. My mind has been opened to the real meaning of life and love.
My only hope for this world is that our society can shun bigotry once and for all, and we can all become what we have claimed to be, EQUAL. The foot soldiers of the past and present deserve the right to be heard. This world has come quite a long way, but the journey ahead is still exceptionally arduous. If we begin now in our homes, our children and grandchildren may see a tolerant and solicitous world. There are many concerns and questions some have as to how this will impact their lives. Understandably so. My answer is, if we focus on making our children forbearing and benevolent people, what harm could possibly come from that?
Throughout my life I’ve held a variety of jobs; receptionist, cashier, retail store manager, funeral director and embalmer, nurse, and now Mom. Without a doubt being a Mother is the hardest job I have ever done. While employed I never bore the responsibility that a Mom has, I am essentially responsible for my children’s lives as well as what they will grow to be like. That is quite frightening, especially when you take into account that I as an adult never could find a “job” that fit me, or one that I could see myself doing for the majority of my life. No job has ever been as rewarding as being my daughters Mother, each of them are so different and yet they are so much alike. The pressure I feel to “do” my motherly duties is immense, I’m not talking about being a perfect Mom, or being a Stepford Mom. I am concerned with molding them and helping the bloom into the person they should be and were designed to be. So much of society forces a look, or attitude on young people, mainstream media plasters the “right” look on magazines, television,and the internet. It should come as no surprise that the statistics for people seeking mental health physicians and professionals is so high. Our youth as a majority is having an enormous identity crisis, young adolescence are consumed with social media and their outward appearance, they are consumed with society and their peers perception of them. Teen and adolescent suicide is out of control, bullying is at the forefront of causes for adolescent and teen suicide. As parents we should be concerned, we have to have an open door relationship with our children, we need to lower the pressures put on them at home and delve into their life a little more. Home, essentially is our safe place, it is where we seek refuge. However, not all homes are like that for youth, sadly some homes are the root of the problem.
Looking beyond home life there is school, and social activities…..school can be a wonderful place to learn and grow, but for some it is Hell. Bullying and peer pressure have always been a part of school and social environments, due to technology we are more aware and more in tune to what goes on in our kids lives. Technology can be used for the good but it also is used for online attacks and cyber bullying, which has ruined a lot of lives and caused many issues for families. How do we as parents keep track of what is happening in our kids lives without being that meddling overprotective parent all kids dread? That is a hard question, where is the line between being concerned about your children’s life and being controlling and causing further problems. My oldest daughter and I have weekly conversations about what is going on in her life, she is pre-adolescent I am beginning to see a small glimpse of the moodiness and “fun” to come. I can read her like a book, her mannerism and outward appearance changes drastically when things are not going well for her. Recently, she was crushed when someone called her “ugly”, at this age the value of her peers opinions of her outweigh mine. Of course I see her as absolutely beautiful, I see her as a whole, not just the surface. She is my free spirited child, my comedienne, she wants to make everyone feel good, she’s an athlete, she also is insecure, she feels she isn’t smart enough, or fast enough, or pretty enough. I can only reassure her and build her up, hopefully one day she will see just how incredible she is. My other two daughters are not yet in this whirlwind of feelings and insecurities. My five year old is everyone’s friend, loves everyone and thinks everyone is just the best. She is so compassionate, and quirky, she’s truly unique and so very sweet.My toddler, also known as my “leg ornament”, is unsure about new people, but I can already catch glimpses of her, she tells us we are “bootiful”, and fixes our hair. She is caring and so precious. Every mother sees her children in a positive light, they want the absolute best for them and take it personally should things not work out for them. When my kids hurt, I hurt, they are an extension of me.
I do not want the World to harden my girls.I don’t want it to devour them either. As a parent, I can selfishly say I would be thrilled if my children excelled in life and became doctors, lawyers and made tons of money, lived lavishly and were successful. Realistically speaking, that probably won’t be the case for all three of my girls, and that is ok. I want them first and foremost to be happy, that is most important. They may have to penny pinch and budget, they may not hold high paying jobs, the majority of us don’t. My dreams for them aren’t their dreams, as much as I may want to I can not push them to do or finish the things I couldn’t or haven’t. Their life is not mine to live. At this point in our lives my main goal is to help them see themselves for what they are, these three incredibly beautiful and magnificent creatures! I love them with every ounce of my being and nothing can change that, no decision they make, mistake they make. They are an extension of me and my husband. This world is making great strides toward change, some not welcomed by all, but when I read the paper, or watch the news I see some good things happening, and I see something’s that sadden me. Religious freedom is not being granted to all in this world, in the Middle East we are seeing an increase in brutality towards those who choose not to follow extremist.In Africa there is extremist who are killing and leaving nothing but destruction behind. There are tragedies everywhere we turn, injustice has become a normalcy , people truly fear for their lives. Thankfully, we live in a civil country, although we see our share of injustice and bigotry here as well. Turn on your local news station. You will see homeless veterans in the streets, bans and unjust laws forced on people based solely on their personal life choices. I realize this is a sensitive subject, especially in my area of the country, but it is a problem, and it needs to be addressed. My children will likely see some things change for the better in their life time, that is my hope at least. I am doing my job to raise them to be respectful, loving and constructive members of society. I am building a solid foundation for them, as they grow it is their job to continue building upon what we have taught them. My hope for each of them is that they start their lives with a foundation built of trust, honesty, compassion, love, and the desire to make this place better in some way. That is all I can ask of them.
What does it feel like to experience Anxiety Disorder? Perhaps you’ve felt anxious before, but imagine feeling that way everyday. Some may not realize they suffer from anxiety, only that they are extremely uncomfortable about some situations. I’ve experienced Anxiety Disorder and Depression for 5 years now. This is my description of what follows after panic ensues.
Try to imagine, if you will that your head is in a tunnel, the sounds around you roaring in a jumbled hum, sometimes even a screeching ringing noise. Your vision is fuzzy, and you are seeing multiples of everything. Your hands and lips tingle, your heart races, beating so hard your chest seems as if it’s tightening with each pulse. Your breathing turns into shallow panting, you may feel like you can’t get a good breath. Your stomach churns, nausea builds. You cannot remain still, your muscles feel as if they will leap from your skin, you wring your hands, tap your feet, bounce your leg. Nothing helps, you try to tell yourself to calm down, but even that magnifies the anxiety. You begin to hyperventilate, maybe even vomit or pass out in extreme cases.
This is how I feel in large crowds, in uncertain situations, in heavy traffic, in chaos…….I cannot stop it, no matter how badly I want to. It is Hell. It is my life.
I have changed in the last two years, I’ve done a complete 360 degree shift. Some things I have discovered about myself I don’t fully understand, some I don’t particularly like, but nonetheless I’m proud because for once I am closing in on being “me”. That is hard for some people, it’s difficult for them to grasp just how you can be one way for so long and then after time be completely different. My eyes were opened, not because I wanted them to be but because life happened to me. My Dad died, depression set in, I lost my way in life, I looked to people for help, the wrong people, and I got further off track. I wanted out of life, I searched for answers, I became a good person, did all the things I thought I should, but still I felt hopeless. I finally made a decision to get help and to discuss my anxiety and depression with someone, that changed my life. Slowly I began peeling back the layers of brick I had built around myself. It left me raw and completely different. Now I find myself loving more people, different people, for themselves. I don’t focus so much on things I used to think were important, instead I try to see what is inside someone rather than their outward appearance. I’ve met some amazing people because of that change, I’ve been able to help some people, and that in turn has helped me tremendously. I think as people we believe there is “A WAY” to do life, there really is no one way, each persons path is different, that is what makes it so special. Living in the South it is quite obvious that people tend to lean on the conservative side as answers to some issues. In turn assumptions are made and feelings are hurt and walls are built separating the “right people” and the “wrong people”. There are other options to life and addressing these issues, we as individuals can learn to respect one another. It’s that simple, I don’t have to believe the way you believe, I don’t have to live the way you live, but I can still be your friend, I can still extend my hand in love towards you. We choose to build these walls, simply because we are afraid of what we do not understand…..we think things are wrong but refuse to research and learn about them. We separate ourselves from “those ” people because we want to protect our children, what about teach our children?! What a better life lesson than teaching and showing your child that although we are different, although we don’t always agree, we can love one another? My children love people, they don’t see color, they don’t see a persons choices, they don’t see the outward appearance, they see their heart. We live in a society that is obsessed with putting an end to the bullying trend circulating through schools, but adults are some of the worse bullies. They attack people on social media for not agreeing with them on topics, or for their beliefs. Standing behind a belief and bashing someone for choosing no to agree with you is not okay, not only does it make you look like a fool it doesn’t accomplish anything. Everyone is entitled to an opinion, however we can express ourselves in a kind and tasteful manner. Lashing out and attacking someone is not the answer. I always feel as if I write about the same topics in a roundabout way, maybe those issues aren’t resolved for me yet. Although it could be that I just feel so strongly about them.
Mother Earth, rescue me.
Father Time, wait for me.
My feet are slow, and
my mind is weak.
Mother Earth, hold me
close to your bosom green,
lush, and unending.
Father Time, why must
the clock keep ticking?
Mother Earth, why are you fading?
Father Time, when does this hate
and aimlessness stop?
My soul grows weary,
and it longs for peace.
Peace, where have you gone?
Why do mothers hate their
children, and brothers kill their
Have we forgotten how to love
I long for peace, for happy days,
for sunshine, and drops of rain.
Mother Earth, how long will my
tiresome body remain this way?
Renew me, heal me, make
Father Time, slow your hands
so that I can learn what it is
I am doing here, what is my role?
Please, tell me I’m not the ONLY person who feels as though they need to remove themselves from society from time to time. I’m an empath so other people’s pain and hurt makes me hurt. Others injustice makes me angry. I want to help people fight their battles but they aren’t my battles to fight. I love people, I suppose from time to time, I do get disheartened by the nastiness of some folks. I rarely watch the news stations due to such sad and depressing stories, I see and hear enough without inviting more sadness in. Call it over sensitive, maybe that’s it. I feel it’s both a blessing and a curse to love people, I invest too much and usually lose out, which leaves me in this position I’m in at the moment. Peace is a rarity, I realize that now that I’m older. I treasure the few moments of peace and calm I’m allowed, I wish there was more.
Life really is this grand thing when you let it be. I am in love with photos, which is pretty ironic because I’m horrible at remembering to take them. I do enjoy looking thru them and remembering when they were captured. I suppose it isn’t that I love the picture, but love the people in the pictures. Some of my favorite photos were taken when I was young, life was so amazing as a child.
I believed I could conquer the world, I had such high hopes for life. The world was so enormous and absolutely astonishing to me. My cousins , my first best friends and I would stay at my Nanny and Granddaddy’s and play, especially during the summer…. We weren’t allowed to hang out inside all day if the weather was permitting. We swam in the pond, played ball in the yard, hid from one another, ran ourselves ragged from one another playing capture the flag, and we explored the woods on my grandparents farm. In the fall when the leaves covered the ground my Nanny would rake them
into massive piles and we would burrow inside the piles hiding from one another, after we played she would burn them…..to this day that is still one of my favorite smells, burning leaves. During school days we would get off the bus at the cattle gap, about 1/8 of a mile from my grandparents house and we would run down the road, my Nanny would have supper ready once we arrived, sometimes you could smell it up the road, on my favorite days I would smell spaghetti, or chili wafting through the air. Her giant Airedale Ike would be sprawled on the carport waiting for a chin scratch before we went inside.
Most of my days as a young child were spent at my grandparents, my mother worked, and my grandparents home was the hub for all of us grandchildren.
My fondest memories are from those days, sitting on my Nanny’s porch swing, or laying on the swing with my head in her lap. She would hum songs, mostly tunes she made up as she went along, singing,” hum da de dum” and such. She taught us how to play “go fish ” and read to us out of her “Mother Goose Nursery Rhyme ” book . If we fought we had to kiss and make up, or she would separate us into different rooms in the house, boredom surely would make us behave. I remember looking up at my Nanny , and thinking she was just the grandest thing in the world, this five foot , two inch tall, round woman was just larger than life, and as I grew taller than her I began looking down at this shrinking, five foot tall, white haired woman with the same admiration. She is like a mother to me, her arms are always open and she always offers a helping hand. She will be eighty years old in just three weeks, age has changed her abilities to do the physical things she once did, but she still loves me like she always has and hugs me tight, welcoming me to come in with a simple “Hey, Rae!”, with my Granddaddy following behind with, “Hey, Ladybug!”. She and my grandfather have been married sixty-two years, they raised five children,and loved many grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Not all of us see eye to eye all of the time, but we all have similar beginnings, and have similar memories. Our days climbing the giant pecan tree in the front yard, running down to the creek and sitting on the island in the middle of it and splashing in the pond during to dog days of summer…… Life was so simple then, I wish I could go back. But, I’m thankful for the memories I have.
After almost a 3 week process of sectioning(thanks Libby), and dreading done primarily by myself I am finished!!! Of course there is still the maintaining of my locs left but I’m done with the initial process. 🙂 I’m pumped!!! Because of my impatience I never expected to actually finish, and I’m so proud I did.
On to my next goal……. Running.