Facts About Life: 101

I  have not been on a lot but if you think your life is going bad, you need to remember that there is someone out there somewhere who is having a worse go of it than you are. We have to find our own solutions to these dilemmas we go through.

Right or wrong, life is about learning. Once you become unteachable–than you are going to find that you are not only a little fish in a huge pond, but you will find yourself standing alone, stuck at the starting line instead of moving forward in this race called life. You can learn much from anyone around you, but you have to be willing to adapt and accept some changes along the way. If you cannot do this, you will not get very far down the track…

Think about it the next time someone tries to show you something you could do differently. Offering solutions is not designed to hold you back, it’s to help you toward your goal in the end. Change is something anyone has to consider from time to time. In fact we should embrace it, and not fear it, but to learn to adapt to it. If it is something that absolutely cannot work, then we should work together to change THAT, face the problems head-on and not run away. Don’t be closed to the idea of it. You are only hurting yourself if you do. This is lesson 101 in “Facts About Life”.

 

So the question is, how far are you willing to go? This is a new year–a new beginning. Do not let yourself get trapped inside the “box” thinking. Thinking outside of the box will actually help you–not hurt you.  It all goes back to a question I posed a few years ago to a colleague: “What kind of leader do you want to be?”  A good leader is always “teachable and willing to learn”.

Yes, People Kill People But….

Look, I do not talk about this a lot. Yes, I DO support the right of EVERY law-abiding citizen to own a gun, but mental health in this country has to be addressed.  I’m not into all this gun grabbing crap a lot of people are trying to push for,  but I see nothing wrong with flagging people who have severe behavioral disorders from getting a gun. If people are arrested for domestic violence, robbery, assault, etc…they should automatically have their guns confiscated also until found not guilty–and if found guilty, they should not be returned to anyone in the household, but sold to cover costs incurred by the county and/or state.

I do not agree with the extreme left on this issue because they give off a perception that they do have a goal to take ALL guns away, or at least many of them do. However, these violent groups of people have to be dealt with.

I do not think it is that much to ask for. I’m not advocating limitations on all guns or gun sales, just to individuals who have such records.

Had such a system been in place in the 1970’s my stepmother might not have blown her brains out when I was almost 15. Was she mentally ill? Yes. We found out AFTER her death that she had been institutionalized. Her favorite thing to do when my dad was at work was to point that .22 that she killed herself with and put it to my temple as her method of “discipline” which was nothing more than terrorism in my home.

To this day, people, I can still feel the cold end of that gun at my temple. Sometimes I wake up dreaming about it. It was only after she died that I realized that this wasn’t just a surrealistic nightmare I lived in, but that she could have, at any moment, blown my brains out and anyone else’s in the house too.

Unless you lived through it, I know you can’t relate to it and more went on than that, which I will not discuss. Funny thing is I didn’t really realize what “normal” was until I got around “normal families” that sat at the table together and such after her death. I grew to pity her. Hopefully, she is at peace. I forgave her long ago, and despite the nightmares I have once in a while, I can still feel pity for her and understand that she could not help herself–but that the state failed to help her a long, long time ago.

I will say this much for those who have gone through something like this at the hands of a mentally ill relative or person close to your family. What helped me was to forgive her. Once I did that, the nightmares gradually happened less often, and became less intense. I actually stood over her grave about seven years ago and told her that I forgive her. Anyway, I hope that does help someone out there. I know forgiving her did help me.

Why We Should All Read the Writings of ANY Public Figure…

If you want to know what any public figure is about, read their writings. Read the books they wrote themselves. Those reveal the content of their character. If you have not read those, then don’t criticize those who have. To refuse to check out a person’s own words means that one is willing to remain willfully ignorant. They are willing to be used for that person’s gain. It doesn’t matter if that person is a political figure, entertainer or journalist. Those words that were put into print define them. It is those who choose to stay willfully blind who refuse to read them–or listen to them if they are available on audio. If they are upset with YOU for doing so, then it is because they don’t want to see the truth, but to live in their own Utopian delusion whatever that may be.

I have a nasty habit of calling writers on the carpet when they contradict themselves as well. We all should all be doing this if we are paying attention.

Yeah…I’ve Been Quiet…

I haven’t posted in a while but I have been spending a lot of time reflecting on how I want to spend the rest of my life.  I managed to succeed in my first major goal of 2014 and paid off my car.  My grandson is about to turn 2.  Quite frankly today, I feel a bit on the old side. My joints have been killing me all day. Someone bashed my car on the driver side rear. My son took liquid nails for some strange reason, and put the red part back on the car and the light still works, but it just pisses me off that I just paid it off and someone screwed it up even worse. I hope the insurance doesn’t total it. I really don’t want another bloody car payment.

I truly long to go back to the Austin area–or even the coast. Well…I keep saying “One day I will.” but  at least I met one goal so far this year.  I see a lot of people with much to celebrate, but am reminded that in that same celebration, the struggle to keep afloat will follow.

My next goal is to be out of debt in 5 years. I don’t know how I’ll do it, but I will.  I’m taking money from smaller debts and applying that to pay the next highest debt up. In other words, it’s a debt snowball. It does work. I also have to look at the idea that as I age, I may require care later on. Hopefully, I’ll not have to worry about it. I want to die in my sleep like my grandmother on Dad’s side did.

Yeah I know. It sounds depressing to be talking about this stuff but the fact of the matter is, I am not afraid of death or dying. I fear what I will leave behind, even though it doesn’t matter when one dies, something is always left unfinished. There is always a final “I love you” or something left unsaid.

That is why I tell my family I love them at the end of every conversation.  Between my anemia and other issues popping up as a result, I am making changes in my life.  First on my agenda is to get into a real place to live. I will not pay the rent in Midland and I will not part with my 15-year-old lab. I’ll live in my car first.

The rent is gouged to the point that it really pisses me off.  People are living in storage rooms. I had a customer tell me and another employee that there are areas in town that remind him of the movie “The Grapes of Wrath”. I never thought about it, but he’s right. Anyway, I look for more changes this year–big changes!

Missing Grannie…Especially at Easter…

Well, the family is all mixed up about tearing down my grandmother’s house.  I think it can be lived in, but nobody seems to want to take the time to give it some TLC.  I was quick to remind my son, who in his youthful haste said that it does need to be torn down, that it is hard to fathom that when so many little feet trotted across the white and gold linoleum floor of her living room over the decades–including mine and his.

My Grannie made us all go to church with her.  I didn’t like that stand, sit, stand, pray, sit, stand ritual–especially with long songs between stages.  The preaching did not bother me though.  The preacher we had would weave stories that kept us thinking and reflecting.  We did not get bored and fall asleep with him.  Grannie told stories about her youth also.  My sons were blessed to hear some of her stories also.  She told us all many stories of her childhood–and it is my youngest son, Kevin, who seems to have the memory of an elephant because he retells them once in a while–as does Brian and Eric.  Now my mother is sharing hers with us–along with Grannie’s so I guess you can say we have a rich oral history being handed down.

I can remember times when over 30 people would show up for Easter Sunday Dinner.  The smell of chocolate pies and her porcupine meatballs seemed to be luring the horde of relatives in from places unknown on that day of the year.  She served different types of food, and would often have worked on the meal since pre-dawn.  She would have a huge pan of meatballs, and later would have an even bigger pan of chicken and dressing.  I loved potato salad and deviled eggs…There was always homemade macaroni and cheese–until Kraft came out with a good, convenient alternative.  As usual, I could help get things and lick the bowl and/or the spoon!

Once the horde arrived, the adults ate in the dining room (in shifts–taking turns) while the kids were in the living room.  Grannie would often wait on everyone until the last person ate, and then she would sit down with her red, white and blue goblet full of iced tea and a plate.  Once she did that, everyone helped themselves, unless one of my aunts decided to do that to  keep traffic down in her tiny kitchen.

I remember when she painted the floor of the kitchen.  It is dark green with yellow.  Looking at it now, it is so hard to fathom how so many people could get through it to get to the dining room because it is tiny.   I remember sleeping through many a Texas thunderstorm on her bed.  The sound of the rain on the tin roof made it so relaxing to me.  There are times I wish that I could go back to those days–especially when my Grandpa Ainsworth was still among us.

Often I couldn’t reach the eggs hidden in trees higher than I could reach so he would lift me up to get them.  We would sit by the truck and eat a couple of eggs before the hunt was over and headed back to the house.   By four o’clock, people were eating again–if  not still napping!   All of us (the kids) rode in the back of the pickup truck.  There were no laws against it then, and depending on how the driver is behaving, you will not find a lot of policemen in that area saying much about it now because that might be the only vehicle a family of six owns in many places.  It is their sole mode of transportation and their work-truck 9 times out of 10.

Sometimes we’d stop at Mann’s Grocery to get a soda.  Then we’d get turned loose out in the yard, and sometimes we’d make ourselves sick eating so many mulberries or green plums off of the trees from my other grandmother’s house across the street.  Yes, some of the kids liked the green plums.  Not me…Now the grapes were another story.  I would really chow down on those–and ruin my supper every time, but Grannie didn’t say much because it was fruit and not the candy bars…Besides, after running off all that energy, we’d eat again in about an hour anyway.  My oldest brother would have dinner at Grannie’s–and then go across the street to my other grandmother’s house and eat again! Where the heck he put all that is beyond me to this day!

I found some pictures of myself from when I was little that I will share one day when I can scan them.  I was wearing dresses my mother and Grannie had made for me for school.   I often wonder what happened to that little girl in those pictures.  I also wonder if there are porcupine meatballs in Heaven…If there are, I’ll beat my brothers to her door when I get there~!

I miss her right now and no one will ever be able to fill her shoes or the void that her being gone has left in my life.  I cherish those memories.  Make sure you keep record of those for your families too–whatever your faith may be or whatever special days you have together.  You only have them once.  I hope you all had a blessed day and will have many more to follow.

When your gut usually tells you to, it’s usually best to do so…

Did you ever have that feeling that you should take an opportunity, although it sounded like something that might not be your cup of tea (as in what you KNOW you can do)?  I have several times.  I have recently accepted a position as an assistant manager trainee.  I can work my way into full management within a year–which is a great opportunity with benefits.  I can do that job, so that is not the issue.  I know I could easily get an overseas job once my TESOL course is complete.  No problem…However something tells me that this is where I need to be for now.  Sometimes what you view as a lesser opportunity gives you an opportunity to learn and to grow.  This job  is already doing this.  I am learning to enjoy being “myself” again. 

I love teaching.  I love working with students so maybe this is my de-briefing from sergeant mode! Being a corrections sergeant caused me to “lose” that part of myself that allowed me to be a little more trusting.  At times this is a good thing.  At others, I often wonder.  Everything is starting to turn green outside, and I am usually greeted by a blue sky, a decent temperature and a wonderful walk on my mountain. It is those times I spend up there that I feel most energized afterwards. 

However I have another sanctuary I go to.  Check this out…I felt an urge to go there earlier and do some more reading…

Sanctuary #2--the one I never shared before...

 

I like sitting on that rock that’s over the water too.   This is just a place where I can go to get in touch with that part of myself I thought was lost–but is just sleeping from time to  time.  It is a part of my being that has lain dormant for too long in the cell I stuck it in for its own protection.  There are springs that feed into the pond here and the lake that follows beyond the earlier shot. 

This spring flows underground before going into sanctuary #2...I think it's neat!

Some of my ancestors were Comanches who rode along trails in W. Texas.  They knew how to navigate the various lakes and streams in what most of the early settlers thought was desert land.  They would follow these trails and the water supply all the way to Northeast Texas.  The pictures I am sharing in this post were taken at Comanche Trail Park in Big Spring, TX.  Between this place and the mountain, I can always get some “me time” in.   I will go up to the mountain again when I get off of work tomorrow because I want to get a picture of that fox that is running around up there!  However, this picture will have to do as far as the company I had:

In my best "Al Pacino voice" I'm saying to myself: "Say hello to my little friends! And next time remember to bring them some freakin' food!" 😀

 

I love feeding the ducks…I just forgot the food today!  There is also another trail right across from this that leads down to another part of the spring which feeds the lake…When one stands in the middle where the spring flows across the trail, it looks like one is walking on water! 

This spot is really cool! I'm looking toward the lake here! It is on the other side of that trail where you see the tree on the right.

 

Well, I am about to head off for work again, but I’ll be in one of two places when I get off!  If not at that park above, I’ll be here:

Another mountain shot...

Anyway, have a great day!  I know I will!

My top 10 Villains (Actors and Actresses)–Updated with Pics

I know a lot of people won’t agree with my picks…I’ll give my honorable mentions at the end.  However, I tend to judge by an older standard anyway and these listed meet it.  These are actors that did not short change their fans in the parts I watched.  Some got stereotyped and others didn’t get the mention they deserved…Well, they get it here!  Besides, it gives me a breather from my novel    😀

10.  Shelley Winters  (A Patch of Blue)  In this one, she played a  HO  I WANTED to slap!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rAK4iYYcHg8

9.    Barbara Stanwyck    (Double Indemnity)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Z-JiVSVrpo&feature=related

8.    Dame Judith Anderson (Rebecca)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WxO68PacfxE&NR=1

7.    Glenn Close  (Fatal Attraction)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZHe3GYQp_8

6.    Al Pacino  (Scarface)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZRKGHB8GxQ

5.    Jack Nicholson  (The Shining)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D7JB68sLGY8

4.  Farah Fawcett (Small Sacrifices)   ***An actress that didn’t get the recognition I feel she deserved!  This actress played this bitch to the hilt!***

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2c2fAhYkqI&feature=related

3.   Ben Cross (Dark Shadows 1991)  Ben Cross as Barnabas!  And he was the best frigging  Barnabas too! The difference in this character and most “villains” is this character is not a villain by choice–but by necessity.  This character is probably the only villain I could have any empathy for because his plight is forced upon him.  However, the beast is not something he can always control. The man playing this character is, in my opinion,  the most  UNDERAPPRECIATED actor on the planet! My only regrets were that it ended after only 12 episodes–and Angelique didn’t get HER butt kicked!  If you watch these episodes,  Ben tempered that character  just enough to make him realistic to an audience that used to run home from kindergarten to watch the original Dark Shadows with Jonathan Frid! As much as I loved Frid as a child, this guy made that part his own. In doing so, the bar got raised too high for anyone who follows in my opinion.  Not even Johnny Depp could pull it off.  Sorry.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_zoTfRmm9o

I definitely wouldn’t want to be on his bad side after watching the clip in that link!

2.     Bette Davis (Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?)–*Just to note–when she played a bitch–she played it right!*

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TTtpDwrKaxo&playnext=1&list=PLE42FFF75FF785B0D

She should have received an Oscar for this one!

1.    Anthony Hopkins  (Silence of the Lambs) ***Need I say more here?!***

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMVqIISyp60&playnext=1&list=PL260A1CBFB75E6CF4

Honorable mentions:  Heath Ledger (The Dark Knight),  Faye Dunaway (Mommy Dearest),  Elizabeth Montgomery (Amos), Ricardo Montalban (The Wrath of Kahn) , Bruce Dern (Silent Running), Cherlize Theron (Monster), Powers Boothe (Guyana Tragedy:  The Story of Jim Jones), Patty McCormack (The Bad Seed) and Chuck Connors (Roots)

I know that a lot won’t agree with my list and that is fine…Like I said, these are my picks…I think every blogger should make a list of SOME sort.  There is a common thread I noticed between Ben Cross and Anthony Hopkins.  They have very intense eyes…That is one thing I notice when an actor plays a part–if the character is “in the eyes” and they can both pull that off without a hitch.   A lot of younger actors cannot pull that off today.

The Kid who WANTS to stay after school…

This is going to sound harsh, but when a kid wants to stay after school, volunteering to take trash for every teacher in the building, cleaning erasers (for those that still have blackboards), arranging books, etc…Let him or her do it–but make sure that if that kid is acting as if scared to go home–don’t drill the kid with a million and one questions.  Let your school counselor handle that or the principal because you do NOT want that monkey on your back.  You can make an anonymous phone call if you like, especially if the student seems to be afraid to go home, but whatever you do, let that kid have the sanctuary even if just for a half hour while you go to another room to do something else after you’ve locked down your computer or whatever.

If the kid starts hanging out with the maintenance people instead of going home, have the counselor or principal talk to the child.  Sometimes it is true that there is something going on at home that needs to be dealt with, and other times the kid has other stuff going on inside of his or her head that he or she may need help for, but is too afraid to tell Mom or Dad.

Why am I advising this?  I was such a child.  Back in the days I did that, my teachers were powerless except for two items:  Detention hall and tutoring.  If I couldn’t stay after of my volition; they KNEW I was acting up to get a  one hour detention hall.  I don’t know HOW they knew but they did.   My school was my sanctuary.  It was a refuge.  I would stay as late as 5 p.m. and a teacher always either gave me a ride to my grandmother’s house or followed to make sure I got there alright if I wanted to walk slowly. 

They always knew when I walked in with dark circles under my eyes that something wasn’t right at home.  If I fell asleep, they knew I had a very bad night, but I wouldn’t show the marks or even talk about the prison cell I called my home.  I never knew what to expect when I walked in.  Sometimes my stepmother, Judy, would be normal and lucid.  At other times, she would pick me up and throw me across the room.  One time she threw me into a wall, and another time into the kitchen counter for being late.  I never said a word about this–not even to my sister or my mother.

I would go into my room and stay there for the most part, being careful to try to avoid her.  One night a teacher called and told her I had to stay after school for extra tutoring because I was having trouble in math class.  Ten minutes later the science teacher called also.   They never knew it but I got a belt taken to me by her and told if my grades weren’t up to her standards in two weeks, I’d get worse.  My dad wasn’t home and she said if I told him or anyone else, she’d “take care of me real quick”.  Having been around her long enough to deal with her crap, I knew what she meant.  There were many times she pointed a gun at my head.  I never talked about it–even after she committed suicide  with that gun.

My response to her threat was to not bring my grades up.  I deliberately made sure of it.  That way I could be away from her for longer.  After that, she tried to say I was “retarded” and all kinds of crap to the point that she and my dad were fighting each other.  I’d go hide out on top of the garage roof until 1 or 2 in the morning to avoid the bull.  They day she shot herself was the day my dad kicked her out of the house.  I didn’t believe that she was dead when they pulled me out of class and broke the news to me either. 

There were many nights after the funeral I would have nightmares about her coming after me in zombie form–.22 in hand.  I woke up in cold sweats more than once.  I often slept with a butcher knife under my pillow and NOT a soul knew about that either. It was one thing to tolerate the bullies and the idiots I had to deal with day after day,  but when I had to go home to my own little piece of hell, that was another story.  I often would snap and just disengage from life.  My escape was through writing and through reading books.  I also watched old movies. If I really wanted to block out the world, I put on a set of headphones and rocked out full blast to whatever struck my fancy when–which could be anything from ABBA to ZZ TOP and all things in between depending on how old I was. 

One would think that after going through something like this that I would have ventured out and became more outgoing, but I didn’t.  I preferred to live in my cocoon that I built for myself.  I didn’t feel safe at school due to some bullying–but it got taken care of.  However, I still didn’t trust my peers. I rarely went out.  When I went to prom in my Junior year, some people were surprised.  When I showed up for the Senior prom, it shocked the school, I think.  I was even in my Senior play and did well in UIL journalism and such.  I made myself do all that–and take the class trip…I also made myself stay in Band my last 3 years of school.  It got me away from her.  Ironically,  I was still acting like this 18 months after she died.  I don’t know why to this day.  I did my occasional sneaking off to shop after I got paid or whatever–but I went alone.  I preferred it. 

The bottom line is I felt that maybe in her madness, she was correct when she said things like, “You can’t have friends” or “You aren’t pretty enough to be with anyone when you get older so you might as well join the Air Force”–and worse…I won’t repeat the horrible stuff she said.  Being that the bullies at school tended to get to me, I’m surprised I didn’t go off.  Then I got invited to a friend’s house for dinner one night about a year before her death.  My dad pissed her off and let me go.  This was different.  These people didn’t yell at each other or anything.  If someone dropped something, it was okay–they didn’t get hit.

About  six  years ago I totally freaked out because I accidentally broke an antique mixing bowl that belonged to my paternal grandmother when I dropped something on it–I didn’t drop the bowl itself.  My sister said, “It’s okay, Tina.  It’s just a bowl.”  “But it was Grannie‘s.” was what I said.  She just kept saying it was okay over and over.  She even came over and held me as I was crying at one point.  What she didn’t realize was that this triggered another memory I blocked out.  I got thrown across the kitchen and into a wall when I accidentally broke Judy’s favorite bowl while washing dishes. 

Anyway, years later I began to open up about it.  That was when I realized I wasn’t the “bad” kid or the “crazy nerd kid”.  Some of my favorite teachers told me point-blank that they knew something was wrong at home and they asked me how I was able to deal with it.  I shocked them.  I told them the first thing I had to do.  I had to forgive Judy.  I had come to the realization that she was mentally ill.  I finally understood the issues that were going on after talking at length with my sister about it.  The second thing I had to do was accept that I am not to blame for the actions she took.  I was a child. 

Now I want to give you some food for thought.  I was that kid that had caring teachers who took time for me when they didn’t have to.  I wanted to give back.  I still don’t think I can ever give back enough, but I can attest to this much–kids who were bullied back then often fantasized about making bullies “disappear” or wishing them “into the cornfield” and there isn’t a person alive that doesn’t know what that means.  Those of us who were bullied often wondered what it would have been like if we could be rid of the bullies for one day–or better yet–for life.  We actually talked about it.  Again I ask that same question from my bullying blogs, “What made it okay for a person to ever cross that line and actually act out on their fantasies?”

How many more Columbines will it take? Jonesboros? How many more suicides?  Can anyone answer that?  We’ve had more recent shootings also.  Even when you have caring teachers who do take time as mine did, why would the kids put them in the line of fire?  Has anyone ever asked these things?  I think we should.   Some of the ones who bullied me are totally different people today.  One would never know how cruel they were in high school, and they often choose not to remember the hurt they inflicted.  I have had classmates that I do not remember bullying me for the life of me contact me apologizing.  Maybe they were bystanders or something, but I honestly do not remember them bullying me and I told them so.  As far as I’m concerned, they’ve done nothing to me.

I will close with some questions:  Where does this bullying type of behavior begin?  Where do the kids learn it? At home? In the movies? WHAT?!  Have we really degraded our own society too much to the point that as parents we can’t fix this issue ourselves?  I would not mind getting the “right” answer for those questions, if they do exist. Is this going to be something we have to create penal codes for or should we just insert it into categories under the current penal code–such as assault, aggravated assault with a weapon, etc…?

Waiting for You & The Road I’ve Travelled

 

WAITING FOR YOU

I leapt from the top of the cliff, my wings beating more swiftly than the wind that gave me speed. I swooped down to see the grasslands below and then made a right turn and headed for the south. Instinctively I knew when it was time to leave my nest and go toward the sea, but I waited for you until I could wait no more.

As my brothers and sisters took flight, I stayed just a little way behind them, hoping to find you among them, as we crossed many mountains and rivers. You never came. I then swooped upward into the mist and rose high above it thinking that you played a game of hide and seek.

I began to grow tired as the bright glow I could see was now becoming shades of blues, purples and pinks. I knew I had to stop for the night. As stars began to appear, I took rest with my brothers and sisters. After many days we reached the shore of our new home. As the sun greeted me the next morning, we again began to jostle around and move about, continuing our existence. And I went on living, still waiting for you.

THE ROAD I’VE TRAVELLED

Another winding road–twisting in all directions
taking me with it at every turn like a rushing wind
and not giving me reprieve for one second–
Until I call on Calypso to take charge
So I can just take in the rain she gives
While standing still as that road keeps winding…

***Note: May not be reproduced without permission. To get permission, email me at bahpofficer@yahoo.com***

Westboro Baptist Church–Political Organizations Should NOT be Tax Exempt!

My son came home from the war in Afghanistan almost 2 years ago.  There was a  point during which I wondered if I would ever really have him back, because he is not the same young man who left home.  Then today, someone pointed  out to me that he is here–just buried inside somewhere.  I think she is right.  Over the past couple of years, he has composed and played music again.  He can sing also.  That is one thing that this war cannot take from him–his passion for music.

He also has a love for animals–which is one thing this war could not change.  Here is a link to an interview he did with GQ while he was in Afghanistan.  I was upset when I read it, not because of the war itself, but it was because I could see in his own words what the war was doing to him.

http://www.gq.com/news-politics/big-issues/200904/obama-afghanistan-iraq-war-troops

It may have been my intuition but there were times I couldn’t sleep at night wondering if my boy was safe.   When he came home, I realized that he had been discharged a bit early–not by much.  I found out why a month later.  He was hurt when an IED exploded–killing others, but he survived.  He didn’t let the hospital tell us either because he knew he was going to live.  He said, “I didn’t want them to worry you, Mom.”  Right…He knew I worried anyway, but he knew I would have told my employer to take a hike if I had to and I would have been on the next military hop to Germany.

Now that he is back, he has been diagnosed with PTSD  and depression, along with some physical issues from the blast.  He can play piano as beautifully as he did before he left and he can still compose and sing.  These are the only two things that really give him a sense of purpose at the moment.  I intend to get him the program he wants to laying out his music on his computer as soon as I can get it.  I do not voice my opinions or show a lot of what I feel around him, but there is not much I won’t do for that young man who could have lost his life doing his duty.

Then there are those detractors who will go and protest a dead soldier’s funeral, but they don’t have the guts to show up to protest at a VFW fundraiser.  Why?  They have no cojones.   I am referring to those cult followers of the Westboro Baptist Church–and I shouldn’t call them a church because they are a political organization.  I feel that they should be audited and their tax exempt status revoked.  If they are receiving donated funds that are supposed to be used for charitable purposes, they should have to prove what they are using it for.  I also think that they are a modern-day cult at its worst.

Political rallies (which is what these protests are) are not EDUCATIONAL either if that is what they want to try to claim.  There is a huge difference between education and indoctrination.  Their own words condemn them as much as their actions.  They are a political organization spreading hate speech about military service members (many of whom die daily to protect their rights to act like fools), Jews and homosexuals–among other things.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Westboro_Baptist_Church

While Wikipedia is a good place to start, I am going to put images here that should seal the deal for revoking their status.  If any other preacher that is actually with the Baptist Convention (which none of the denominations claim this bunch) were to do this, the Federal Government would have taken swift action, so why has this so-called church NOT been audited?  They call Barack Obama the anti-christ and say all kinds of stuff that put them in the same league as Jeremiah Wright.  Too many of these nuts and fanatics, which is what they are, are crossing lines that people would face jail time over under Bill Clinton–that is for sure!  A charge called “sedition” would cover it if treason wouldn’t. First, here is my favorite message to that group the WBC:

Appropriate for this bunch of fanatics...

 

I don’t know about the rest of you, but this does not sound Christian to me…Just listen to it.  Then get back to me. Click play at the top left of the page.  It’s nothing but hate speech and crap from that WBC group–and for  this “parody” (If you can call it that) I am quite surprised that Lady Gaga has not sued yet.  As I stated, to me it is hate speech…I am no fan of hers, and I often criticize some of her antics but this is so depraved that I would not blame her if she did sue.

http://meganphelpsroper.tumblr.com/post/653165655/ever-burn-wbc-parody-of-lady-gagas

And then the WBC will  put children into the mix.  Can they be charged for this type of crap?

I think it is a travesty that my son and others who survived, as well as  the many sons and daughters who did not, have either been wounded or killed defending the rights of those who constantly spread hate speech about them.  Groups like this are a shame to this country and should be scrutinized if they are tax exempt.  I deal daily with watching my son’s struggle.  I promise you not ONE of these detractors will ever do this to a live soldier or show up to protest a VA function either.  They only protest the dead because they can’t defend themselves.  That makes these fanatics nothing more than cowards.

In the meantime, I am thankful every day for my son’s presence.  I still hug him even though he doesn’t like that as much as he did before he left.  He knows that it is  a “mom thing”.  I have lunch or dinner with my boys when I can.  I will say this, they are grown men, but I would lay down my life for them in a heartbeat.  They know it too.  I just wish they didn’t have to deal with today’s crap.  I don’t think any parent wants their kid to deal with what is going on in today’s world.  We never would have thought this possible even 10 years ago.

I do have some bad news for the Westboro Baptist Church, though.  It does say in every bible I have read that “…Judgment begins with the house of God…” That tells me that groups like this will get theirs long before anyone they condemn will if that is the case.