Two Cent's in your Mail

Friday, December 31, 2010

Out with the old...

So, it's the end of 2010, and now we enter 2011 with high hopes, and anticipation for a new beginning. It's amazing how everyone looks towards this one day. How the simple setting and rising of the sun within a 24 hour period can give the world so much hope, so much promise. Why only on one day?

For many of my friends, it has been a really rough year. Too many up's and down's to mention. I don't know exactly why karma has decided to give us all a good kick in the gut like she has, but we have all weathered the storm, and held strong. Some of us have had a few more storms than others, but still, we are here. This definitely could be called the "year of lessons". For Carl and I, it has been the year of  "True Colors", or finding out the people who really care, and those who are full of shit. No other way to put it really. So many who were in our life just really didn't deserve the spot they had. Sometimes, you just have to make some changes, and we did. Hard decisions come with the realization that when the shit hits the fan, who really is going to be there for you? It was a rude awakening for my handsome man, and it was horrible watching him go through it all. A small experiment was conducted. He posted a small comment one day...just to see what reaction he would get from family and friends. After a few hours, he posted it again. Then the next day, again. Only 3 people responded. Two, were my long time friends. One, a friend we have mutually. That's it. Was awful. Gut wrenching. Family hadn't even made one small effort to even say one word. Sometimes, silence hurts more than anything.

So, like I have said, we are moving forward into this year with hopeful hearts, and eyes wide open. We know what lies ahead for our future, and we know who really matters most. Those who support and love us for all that we are, will know that we return the love and support they share. Those that don't, probably won't hear from us anymore. Time can be short, and there is no reason to waste it. People go around saying that you are "supposed to love family" or that you "have to do this" or "have to do that". Um, no, we don't. We only have to do what we want. This is our life. Everyone should live their life as they choose. Don't live to make others happy. That is their own responsibility. No one is guaranteed tomorrow. Why take chances? So, this is me standing on the island, with my finger waving proudly in the air...to all of you who have talked behind our back. To those who don't agree with our wedding plans. To those who don't agree with how we live. To those who don't agree with the fact that we don't practice any religion. To those who think you are better than us. To those who thought we wouldn't last because you don't know a damn thing about either of us...but walk around like you know it all....guess what? Finger in your face. :-) 2011 is the year that Mr. and Mrs. Danielson will be married, and moving on. Peace out. <3

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Old Woman, Wise Woman, Powerful Woman: The Beauty of Aging

 One day, surfing across the web in no particularly linear or rational way (I guess that's what surfing is), I came across this quote from Rush Limbaugh: "Will this country want to actually watch a woman get older before their eyes on a daily basis?"
He said that in 2008, referring to Hillary Clinton. With a masterful stroke of the mouth, he attempted to disempower this woman by using one of the patriarchy's greatest weapons, the deeply held belief that age makes women ugly, worthless and powerless.
I remember hearing it then, and it made my blood boil. When I saw it again, I wondered about it. About Rush. About men. About women. About being a woman and growing old. About why watching a woman grow old scares the hell out of people. His statement is still a powerful window into how women who are growing older are perceived in our culture.
I am reminded of my mother as she grew frail towards her death. She showed such dignity. Even when she could hardly stand up, she wanted her hair combed, her lipstick on. She didn't want anyone, including her children, to see her use the commode. She walked towards her death with grace.
I thought of Robbie Kaye and the amazing work she is doing with women and aging at Beauty of Wisdom. Robbie takes photographs of women getting their hair done -- beautiful, proud women.
I wonder about how Rush felt watching his mother grow old, how he feels watching the women in his life that he loves growing older. How do we feel when we fear the crone out there, and in here, while we are in relationship with our mothers, grandmothers, aunts, great-aunts and wise old women friends? While we are in relationship with ourselves and our own aging bodies?
And (this is a big "and") somewhere a part of me is fully capable of saying something just as hurtful. If I push that away in him, I push it away in myself. I've grown up ingesting this patriarchal pabulum every day of my life. I've adopted the fears and beliefs and admonitions of a culture steeped in ageism, sexism, racism and any other "ism" that has been the foundation of this patriarchal thought-structure. It takes a deepening awareness and an opening consciousness to begin to see what I project onto others, how I push others away, how I say stupid things because of my own conditioning.
The structure of patriarchy is insidious. It causes men to oppress all women, because, as Allan G. Johnson points out in "Gender Knot: Unraveling Our Patriarchal Legacy," it is "linked to a cultural devaluing of femaleness itself." It causes men to oppress even the women in their own lives that they dearly love, for you can't uphold a structure of beliefs, acting within that structure everyday, and somehow not inflict that pain on some women and not others.
Johnson writes:
One of the deepest reasons for denying the reality of women's oppression is that we don't want to admit that a real basis for conflict exists between men and women. We don't want to admit it because, unlike other groups involved in social oppression, such as white and blacks, female and males really need each other, if only as parents and children. [Emphasis mine]
Think about it: men and women are inextricably linked. We can't not engage with each other. If we were no longer engaged, life wouldn't continue. That's what makes it so hard to look at patriarchy and the oppression of the feminine. And yet, we need the reemergence of the feminine to heal ourselves and to heal the earth. We need the nurturing, nourishing, wise and instinctual, wildly creative and fiercely unconditionally loving feminine to heal ourselves from our ways of destruction and domination. We need this reemergence in women, and we need it in men. We need to find balance within ourselves, the balance between the masculine and feminine.
The old woman was once revered, when people revered the Great Mother, when they saw the beauty of birth, death and rebirth, the power of transformation. Now, we sit around and pretend we don't get old and don't die. We feel the shift happening, and we dig our heels in and pretend we can't be touched.
As I've aged, I've felt invisibility creep in. The older I get, the more invisible I become, in a culture where youth and external beauty reign. All the while, I've become more beautiful to myself, because I am embracing and honoring the wisdom that my life experiences have brought, and the kindness, compassion and tenderness that grief and loss have engendered. It takes a certain amount of awareness and effort to keep coming back to what is real, what is true. It isn't easy at all. Yet, there comes a time when no other way is palatable. I can feel the energy of the crone. I feel her power. I feel her fierce love.
It's not that I don't have moments of grief and sadness around aging. Some of those moments come when I get caught up in the never-ending bombardment of the advertising blitz. I notice my body growing a little stiffer, I am aware of the years passing, and I know death is always a breath away. But so is life. Life is always a breath away.


Women's power in the patriarchy is youth, physical beauty, a sexy, toned body, the ability to become more like a man than a woman, so how we act and what we do will move us up the ladder of what this culture deems is successful.
But in an entirely different way, we women are powerful beings, especially as we age. Not powerful in the patriarchal paradigm, but powerful in the sense that we are more authentic, more real, more truthful and more beautiful. And powerful as the crone, the wise woman, the woman who embodies crone energy. The crone is the woman who no longer sees herself only in relation to others, but as a woman unto herself, a woman who stands alone in the center of her own beingness, in the center of her own truth, and from this center relates to the people in her life from what is real for her.
The patriarchy fears the crone. She is truthful, she is powerfully creative, she is intuitive and instinctual, and she loves fiercely. The patriarchy does everything it can to deny this, even to denigrate this and the women who embody it, because old women are wise women are powerful women. They have gifts to share, gifts that this world desperately needs.


What if we could be with ourselves in such a way that we no longer projected our deepest fears onto an entire portion of the earth's population, a group of people that has gifts to share with the world right now, gifts of wisdom, grace and beauty?
What if we could be with ourselves in such a way that we no longer projected our deepest fears onto each other, woman to man, man to woman?
Being with ourselves is the first step.
Being with the misogynistic and misandrist thoughts that ramble around our own minds and consciousness, and questioning whether they are true, whether we know them to be 100-percent fact.
Being with our hardened hearts, with the walls we've built around them that allow us to engage in such a way where we are just as complicit in this fear and rejection of the wise old woman, and wondering if our hearts really feel this way.
Being with ourselves, with the feelings we don't want to feel, the feelings we numb ourselves to, day in and day out.
Being with.
Being with the beginning of something, a beginning of a world where we honor and respect each other as men and women.
As Kate Chopin reminds us, "the beginning of things, of a world especially, is necessarily vague, tangled, chaotic, and exceedingly disturbing."
A world where patriarchy is a distant memory begins with the chaotic, the vague, with the tangled mess of people willing to engage differently, even when we don't yet know how to do it or what it might look like.
It may feel exceedingly disturbing, but then don't the happenings in our world right now disturb you greatly?


Julie Daley

Julie Daley

Posted: December 21, 2010 09:03 AM

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

It's raining

...in more ways than one.

How peculiar. It has been pouring for days now, outside, and for months now inside my brain. This overwhelming feeling of anxiety and worry has begun to consume me. Not to say that I have not been happy, or excited, because there have been wonderful moments as well. There has just been this lurking, nagging thing back there...waiting. I don't know what it is, but its there, and it is quietly falling now, just like the rain is at this very moment.

Sometimes, I have these thoughts, and these fears, that things are going to change, and that something isn't quite right, and I hate when I get like that. Someone will tell me to knock it off, or say not to be paranoid. I often feel like maybe I have something inside of me, like another sense, or ability to tell when change is coming. I have had dreams that have made me sit up in the middle of the night, and I feel a sense of worry. I will not understand it at that moment, but later, the familiar sense of, "oh, that's what it meant" kicks in. I try to talk myself out of certain worries, because I know I can cause unnecessary panic, or stress, but the cloud just doesn't leave until the rain falls, because the weight of it is just too heavy.

I really think that this year, is a year of drastic change. It seems that the previous months and constant problems are all just leading into this big set up for a good cleansing. Some things, and people for that matter, just really needed to go away. It was all feeling fake, false, pretending to be something that just wasn't. I couldn't do it anymore. Trying to please everyone was just a pain in the ass. No one was going around trying to return the favor. I have always had this feeling that being selfish was such a horrible trait, yet it seems to work remarkably well for so many. Just seems like less work.

Bottom line, I have tried really hard to be a good person, and to do the right thing. People have really, and truly let me down lately, and been so damn hurtful and cruel, and it has resulted in me having almost uncontrollable anger and resentment, and I really don't care to be that kind of person. I am pissed off entirely too much because I am sick of everyone's bullshit. I really just need to learn to not care, just as they do. It can't be that hard, since so many are so good at it. Gonna give it a shot.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

In the grand scheme of it all...Betty is calling our name.

It really is a beautiful, beautiful dream. I think of it daily. All the time. It goes over and over in my mind, like a well thought out screen play, that I have written with great care. I listen to the music, I can see every single step. I know exactly how I hope it will all play out. I know exactly how he wishes for the day to be for us both. The most beautiful dress is hanging in our closet, and all I keep thinking is...am I ever going to be able to wear it? Is this really going to happen?

It's not because we don't want to do it...it all comes down to money. Pure and simple. The all mighty dollar is controlling this entire event, and the pressure for me to earn more and more, to acquire the $8500.00 for the venue, flowers, tuxes, pay the photographer, and by the time we are done, we are gonna be over $12,000.00, and that's before we have saved one single dime for a honeymoon. What the fuck.

I am going to be absolutely crushed beyond belief, because what Carl and I want most is to have this ceremony, performed by my Aunt, that is rich in tradition and heritage, that will be emotional, and loving, and absolutely beautiful and heartfelt. it will be original, and unlike any other, and completely US, but we would have to go into almost complete and serious debt to do that, and I am terrified. I really don't know what to do....

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Kings and Pawns...and all of those in between.

I was blessed to have the three most gorgeous children on the planet. Yep...I said it. Fate, dealt me a shitty hand however, and circumstances, and my evil family as well, brought about some crazy Monday night movie shit that well, I just don't have the energy to type out. Let's just say, it's not fair...none of it was fair, and in the end, my kids were the one who suffered. Long story short, going back and forth in court became exhausting. My file was about 7 to 8 inches high, and growing constantly. I got sick of going...drained, tired, and worn out. Going up to my daughters school to get a copy of her records one day, I was told that I wasn't allowed to have them, because I wasn't her mother. The devil had been in, and put another woman's name down as her mother. That was just one of the many slaps in the face that I had over the years. My children have been through things that they didn't deserve. Sometimes, my own parents helped the devil...something that can never be forgiven, no matter how much it is explained in any way.

Moving on to the present, I have done every single thing that I can to move on and simply put that all in the past. Dwelling on it serves no purpose, and really, I am a much stronger person for it all anyway. I always did what I thought was best for my children, and I never took the low road. Even though there were times when I could have really been an evil bitch, I didn't attempt to be so, because I wanted to keep my integrity in tact. I wanted to know that I could hold my head up high. I knew that someday, the truth would all come out, and my children would make decisions for themselves. That was my only concern.

What really gets on my ever last fucking nerve is how some of these idiots go around and still want to brag and take credit for my kids accomplishments. I can't stand this. It has always been my thinking that a persons accomplishments are their own. No one deserves bragging rights but the person who achieved the goal. Just because you fucked (sorry for being so blunt) their father for a year does not mean that you have any credit for anything. Just because you laid your sorry ass up in the house that the devil lived in, does not mean that you can take credit for them being good people, or going on to make good decisions, or leading decent lives. Those, are their own. They do that because they want to. Take a look at your own kids. Yeah...you don't want too. 3 kids, 3 different dads...one son on crack....one son who is in and out of jail....the list goes on. Adios...get the hell away from my children. The reason they are the great and solid individuals that they are...is because they don't want to BE LIKE ANY OF YOU.

Examples come in all shapes and sizes, and it's amazing to me how some choose to believe that they are the great ones. LMAO. Your not. If you were, your kids would be on the same track as mine. My kids are doing great because they had someone talking to them telling them to use their own mind. Someone was telling them that their childhood is a fraction of their life, and that one day, they will get out in this big ole world and take control and be able to do what they want. Set goals...don't be like all of this. Get out there and be BETTER. The job of a parent is to want MORE for their children. To want them to be better, smarter, faster, to achieve higher than we could have ever imagined for ourselves. If not, then we are selfish and stupid, and don't deserve to have them.

My kids are great because they had entirely too many examples of how NOT to be. Lessons learned. I am proud of them because they took notes, and they listened. Their accomplishments are all their own. They are not because of me, or their father or anyone else. They are because of their own drive and ability to overcome....make no mistake bitches...it's not because of you either. So fuck off, and go on Maury, and hope that envelope helps you find out the baby daddy of your granbaby soon. :-)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

And Good shall be called Evil, Lukela's excellent thoughts on the Mormon conference.

Besides meeting Carl, I have one other very important factor that came about from my job at Cheesecake Factory. I had the extraordinary experience and will forever be grateful for meeting my wonderful friend Lukela. One, he was extremely supportive, and encouraging when it came to giving me advice about Carl. Lukela was right there telling me to stop being so silly, and give Carl a chance. If he hadn't done that...I might have missed out on the love of my life. Two, Lukela is an exceptional human being, with courage and strength, and and a love of life that inspires everyone who knows him. He is not afraid to take the world on...to be himself, to be out there, false eyelashes and all. I adore him. I can't ever look at a picture of him with out a smile in my heart or without admiration and love. The piece below is written by him, and I am so proud. As a Gay, Hawaiian, transsexual Mormon, Lukela is absolutely fascinating, as well as almost a walking hypocrisy. LOL. He stayed true to his religion as long as he could, until one day...the hurt this must have caused him. I can only imagine. I love him dearly. This piece also shows how smart he is. I wish everyone could open their eyes...to see the real world. To pull back the curtain and see the little angry man. One day...one day...

 

And Good shall be called Evil...Thoughts on a General conference, for those who think in Generalities.

by Lukela LeGrand on Thursday, October 7, 2010 at 1:33pm
YEsterday I watched a talk given by Boyd.K Packer at the last Mormon General Conference. In this "TALK" (read off a teleprompter) He snarkishly calls out not only people who "SYMPATHIZE" with a gay person, but people who vote for equal rights. He condemns homosexuality at a socially sensitive time and encourages ignorance with the beguiling tongue of a 97 year old serpent, wait 94 year old. THEN labels the speech with LOVE and wraps the whole thing up in the name of JESUS CHRIST!.
  Now, my GHANDI answer to all of this is "listen, this guy hasn't seen god, this guy doesnt strike me as a homosexual, so why would I listen to a thing he has to say about GOD, or whats more, Gods view on Homosexuality. And I forgive his comments and ignorance" my UN- GHANDI answer is "someone EVIL is posing as someone GOOD".
       If I were to come up to you, say, a stranger in a grocery store and yell at the top of my lungs "I KNOW YOU ! I SAW YOU I saw you murder a small child! QUICK QUICK CALL THE POLICE!" I actually wouldnt look too crazy. I garauntee YOU would though, especially as you scream "I didnt, I dont even know this guy! what CHILD!?!? HELP HELP!!!!!HELP!" while the police tuck your little head into a crown victoria.
     Now, I wouldnt do that of course, I have a conscience. But egotistical, sociopathic power hungry men who actually believe they talk to GOD for all men? THEY DONT have a conscience, and they will throw out lies for thier own purpose. PERIOD. With no recoil or remorse. And they know the bigger the lie they sugar coat the more it will frustrate those who know better, and this they do so others will think the enlightened are crazy, the beautiful are ugly- "THE GOOD EVIL"
         Socrates taught a young student (was it Socrates? I dont know for sure) that indeed because the student was willing to admit that he did not know much, that he was the wisest in the land. I'm not good at Math, but if you are, try and count how many "I' knows" you can hear in a mormon General Conference. And about the craziest things.
        Hate, FEAR and ignorance are not small. Emotionally and in metaphor they are very big. They can be hidden though in big pretty Temples and even bigger prettier bodies of people. For if everyone took a pebble piece, we could hide the Himalayas.
I will forever oppose a religion that supports men killing each other for ancient reasons and preaches that two men loving out of love is a sin. I will oppose any religion that thinks they know what God wants for all man while asking man for his money. Like god would need such a thing to bring to pass a purpose. Question it all.
     I do not know much, and to a reader, a writer is worth only what he knows. But I have seen the great Mormon OZ, behind his curtain he is small and angry. Because of his fear you can tell his disciples for they are full of fear too. Do not listen to him. Tin man, you've a heart, Lion you've the nerve, scarecrow you've a brain and my Dear Dorothy's? you can find your way home without him. I love you, I am you. Now go be careful, wise and happy!

Our babies, our hearts.

Dexter just hopped up and drank almost half a cup of Carl's coffee. LOL. Now he is running around, playing with his monkey without a care in the world. What a smile that brings to my face. It is amazing to me how much joy these little ones bring to our lives. When we got Willow, the change was apparent almost immediately. Carl's stress level dropped suddenly. I had hoped for this, but was pleasantly surprised at how quickly he fell in love with her. She adores him, and bonded with him almost instantly. The second he comes home and walks through that door, his face is just beaming to see her. Her little tail is going a hundred miles an hour, and no matter how awful the day has been, it all just dissapears as soon as your face is covered in millions of puppy kisses. We got Dexter when he was only 2 weeks old, and just like that, became new parents. LOL. Sleepless nights, bottle feedings, yes, bottle feedings, and endless worrying while we were both at work. Wondering if he was warm enough, if he would be okay until one of us rushed home to feed him some more. He grew and just became such a character. He is so full of personality, and I don't think that I have ever loved any of my animals as much as I love these two little amazing creatures. Now we anxiously await the arrival of their puppies with such anticipation. Carl sits with his hands on Willows tummy, feeling every little movement, and kick. These little ones will be so spoiled. I just don't know how we will be able to part with them. I only am sure that who ever is so fortunate to be able to have one of them join their family, will one day understand.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Taking out the trash, and my own advice...

I have a friend that is always posting that she has too many friend who upset her, and use her and genuinely hurt her feelings. I always say to her, "take out the trash, it stinks". I realized, I need to do this myself.

Sometimes, people are just draining. They don't always mean to be, but they just take too much energy. It's not that I don't care about some of them, I just simply don't have the time or the energy to spend on them anymore. I find it very exhausting, and a waste of time really, to continue to carry on with it.

Take for instance, certain individuals who feel it is acceptable to be rude, condescending, and unapologetic for their behavior. Nah...not having it. I don't care who you are. Hiding behind your addiction of religion isn't gonna excuse your behavior either. Don't be rude to my husband and think I am going to let you get away with it. Out you go...maybe you should take a nice long look in the mirror, and I mean long look in that mirror. One that really gives you some perspective. Not one in church either. A reality mirror. One that shows you true colors. One that shows you that you can't go around spouting off at the mouth and expect people to understand what the hell you are saying if you are speaking in your own little world terms. Not even going to continue with this...You should have been a grown up and called him on his birthday...I won't ever forget that.

I don't understand the friends that only need you when they need something...and then all of a sudden, they need you so desperately. The "omg, what would we do without out our awesome friends" people. Haven't heard from you since the last time we saved your ass. Now you need us to come comfort you again. Where were you when you knew we needed a shoulder? Oh yeah..out getting drunk...yeah..in the dumpster you go.

For the immature, still out clubbing, talking smack idiots...NEXT...

LOL...yeah, I know..I am ranting..I'm sleepy, and my hubby is at work.

I am just kind of tired. It seems that lots of really good people are getting shit on lately, and the people who run around skimming the system, and have piss poor morals are just skipping through life like the rest of us have the problems. Um, what the hell? My Aunt is talented, brilliant, and should not be looking for work. She should be retired, and writing a novel for the hell of it and relaxing. It pisses me off. Our dear friend Mimi should not be stressing overseas and wondering what to do...and I know your reading this Mimi..but you know what I am talking about...Carl works his ass off everyday, while being passed over for a promotion that he deserved while a lazy ass got said promotion, and calls in twice a week sometimes...what the hell? People are out there having kids that they can't feed...and asking for hand outs to feed them. Others are moping around wondering how to pay their bills, but won't get off their ass to get a job, they just go move in with their parents and search for more sympathy online on facebook. Yeah, I could name names, but most of you know who I am talking about...but what difference does it make. Nobody is perfect, and I don't claim to be either. I only know that I work my ass off, I make no excuses, and I don't expect anyone to give me a free ride either. I am a loyal friend, and even more loyal when you are my fam bam, and let me tell you...the trash has to go...because I am so tired of the stench. It is time for clean air. I need to breathe, so that I can be positive and happy for the coming months. There is a wedding coming...and I need to be ready. :-)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

I've come to realize

This was a note from a Facebook post, and I thought I would post it here, because every now and then, I just may come to realize something new, and add to it. :-) It could happen...


1. I've come to realize that some day my kids will truly understand what I sacrificed, and why I made the decisions that I did when they were younger.

2. I've come to realize that my life is coming full circle. People who were very important to me when I was younger, have recently returned in my life.

3. I've come to realize that I will never be fully comfortable with my appearance.

4. I've come to realize that the hard times were just lessons so that I would know how to appreciate what really matters in life.

5. I've come to realize that I will never be a "girlie girl" and that's fine by me.

6. I've come to realize that people really are ignorant. By this I mean, most people really are content going through life not knowing, or caring, how to think for themselves.

7. I've come to realize that even though I was worried about my son Daryal for a little bit there, he really is going to do great, and he has grown into a very strong, caring, and compassionate man.

8. I've come to realize that I am jealous of my son Mark's ability to just let things roll off his back, and not worry. He deals with pressure and stress so well.....I wonder where he got that from, and how can I get it?

9. I've come to realize that I will never have the love and acceptance of my father....my mother went to her grave without closure, and he will do the same, and there is nothing I can do about it.

10. I've come to realize, after recently being reunited with her, how much I have missed having Sally around in my life. She is always laughing, always up for anything, always so brave and outgoing. I really love her....

11. I've come to realize that maybe as much as I thought I didn't matter, maybe I did make and impact on some people somewhere along the way....

12. I've come to realize that I am extremely fortunate to have had some very strong female family members who knew my mother was insane, and tried their best to fill the gaps in my life that all of that caused. I am eternally grateful...

13. I've come to realize that ignorance really is bliss in some situations.....

14. I've come to realize that patron, and vodka, and beer, and no food leads to memory loss, broken toes, and admitting you love someone when it was the last thing you wanted him to know....

15. I've come to realize that sometimes, there are reason why you didn't wind up with the person you long for over the years, and that maybe those reasons are really good ones. Not always a happy ending....and I wish I had never reunited with him, because the good memories from high school are better than the reality that is his life today.

16. I've come to realize that the day is quickly approaching when my daughter will have to face some very hard facts about her father, and I don't know if I am emotionally strong enough to get her through the pain that all of that is going to cause her.

17. I've come to realize that I won't ever be rich....but my life has more value because of the people I love, and the ones who have come to be my true family....

18. I've come to realize that my grandma Webster really was a genius in many ways....and I miss her every single day....

19. I've come to realize that I was born too soon.....:-)

20. I've come to realize that time and days can go by, but my brother Scott and I will always have that strong connection and love that no insanity from our family can destroy....

21. I've come to realize that I am NOT my mother....

22. I've come to realize that music just isn't any good right now....seriously...what happend?

23. I've come to realize that I have missed NOTHING by having no interest what so ever in reality shows, MTV retarded shows, Big Brother, or soap operas....I'm just sayin....

24. I've come to realize that it really bothers other much more than me that I was in an abusive marriage. I am the one who went through it, and anyone who has ever asked me about it always seems to get so upset....it's over, it' done....I'm still standing...it's all good. :-)

25. I've come to realize that avoiding him was silly....

26. I've come to realize that the people who matter, and are supposed to be in your life, will be. All the others come and go...and that's okay. I don't need to be the social butterfly to feel good about my life.

27. I've come to realize that I wish I had pursued my singing more when I was younger.

28. I've come to realize that most people just don't talk to their kids anymore. They sit at tables at restaurants, and the kids are staring at portable DVD players, or their Ipods, or they are texting....seriously people....you need to invest time and interest in your children.

29. I've come to understand that some people really do deserve a good smack....lol

30. I've come to realize that everyone has an addiction of some kind. Religion, drugs, alcohol, gambling, bad relationships.....and some substitute one for the other. All of them can be beaten....all of them take over your life, and stop you from thinking for yourself, from making your own choices.....

31. I've come to realize that even though we never expected any kind of relationship to develop, it all just progressed on its own like it was meant to be.....and that's kind of nice. :-)

32. I've come to realize that I can't protect my kids from everything, but I am damn well gonna try...

33. I've come to realize that he really is the love of my life.

34. I've come to realize that if I die tomorrow, I will probably be remembered for my cooking...and that's gonna make me smile...lol

35. I've come to realize I will NEVER enjoy sushi...I just don't get it....

36. I've come to realize that my 3 children are my greatest achievement, and I couldn't wish for anything more than our Wednesday nights, just eating, laughing and watching movies. It may not seem like much to most people, but it makes my life complete.

Gone, never to return...

They say that the state of Missouri should be called Misery, and since I lived there, I understand why. I am very obsessed with England, and even though I am a history buff, I believe that the true reason that I am drawn to the country is because it is the place where some sense of happiness managed to slip through that very thick wall of dysfunction, before the dark ages. The dark ages being Missouri.

My family went through quite a bit of trauma in that state. Not that the state is to blame of course, but you can't help but hold on to it when you look back on your life history. You tend to relate one to the other. I really have no desire to return to Missouri, and even though I loved camping as a kid, I just can't bring myself to do that either. Allow me to explain.

Our base was boring, and being that we lived near the glorious town of Knob Noster, population 1185, you can imagine, there wasn't very much to do. Hence, we invented things. The summer before my junior year, a tent was put up behind the house of the Harris family. Now, innocent as this sounds, some things occurred in that tent that haunt me to this day. See, we became quite skilled, our little group of about 6, of sneaking out of our houses at night, during the summer, and running to the base pool, to swim. Now, I know what everyone is thinking, but no. No skinny dipping was going on. We simply jumped the fence, and swam around for a little bit, then would jump the fence again, go to the tent behind the Harris house, hang out for a little bit, and all go home before sunrise. Seemed harmless enough, but we thought we were so cool.

I was really shy, and quiet that year, and having just broken up with my first love, going through an awkward time of confusion. He was the only guy who had ever really shown interest in me, and he was extremely popular. We broke up, and I felt very lost. All of a sudden, my phone started to ring on the weekends, and I didn't quite know how to handle this attention. Then, Jerry Casey. Now, I actually liked Jerry. He lived about 4 houses up from us, and was always really nice to me. He had been going out with another girl for a long time, but they too had broken up recently, and all of a sudded my surprise, started winking at me on the school bus, saying hi to me in the halls. Geez....now what? Sounds harmless and silly now, but for an awkward, skinny 16 year old...OMG.

July 1st, 3 days before my 17th birthday, and I am outside of my house, talking with some friends. Jerry Casey comes walking down the street, and wants to talk to me alone. He asks if he can come talk to me at my bedroom window later, and if I am going to sneak out tonight to go swimming. It's a decision that I have regretted my entire life. Big sigh...huge sigh...deep breath.....

Later that night, I hear a tap on my window. I eagerly jump out the window, and there is Jerry, and one of his friends Don Hammons. They also have a bottle of Bacardi 151. Yeah, I don't drink, and especially at that time....well...anyway. We go sit out by the curb, harmless enough, talking, and start sipping straight out of the bottle. Having absolutely NO idea what I am doing, I drink away...I think this is just great.

I wake up. My arms are being held down and I don't even know if I can move them. My head is spinning, and I don't really understand why I can't hear very clearly, but I know right away what is happening. I look up to see that it is Don holding my arms. Jerry is telling me it's okay...but no, it's not okay. He asks if it hurts, but I just feel so sick to my stomach. I tell him to let me go, let me up, I am going to be sick. He tells me no, I am not. Everything goes black.

Wake up again...I am stumbling, and I know someone is holding me up, but I have no idea who. My stomach is turning, and I start throwing up. I feel something running down my leg, but I am so sick to my stomach, I don't even care. I know we are by the creek, because I am kneeling in the water. I try to flush my face, but someone is saying, "just get her home, just get her home". They keep walking me, towards my house, which is up a very large hill. I fall, stumble, and throw up again. I hear my brother Franks voice. He must be talking from the window well in the basement. He is telling them to shut up or they will wake up my parents. I go black again.

I wake up in Shonda's bed. I have no idea how I got there. I don't remember walking there, I don't remember much at all. I feel so sick, I go to the bathroom. My legs hurt, and I feel something that I haven't felt before. An aching, and soreness that isn't normal. After I use the bathroom, I notice that I am bleeding, but I am not having my period. I look down, and I have bruises on both sides of my inner thighs. I have bruises on my knee caps. Scrapes and scratches on my legs. I look at my wrists, and they look the same. I get to the mirror, and look at my face. I stared at myself for maybe 30 minutes. This was how it happened? This was my first time? This was what really took place? My life was shit. I threw up again. I think in the span of the next 3 days, I must have been sick to my stomach a hundred times. I couldn't shower enough. I felt like every single person who looked at me....KNEW. I couldn't tell my parents. What? Are you kidding? My father would beat me. My mother would call me a whore. Where could I go? What could I do? I was damaged now. My life would be forever scarred because I was not a virgin, and not only was I not a virgin, but I had been used, like garbage. That's it. I was garbage.

This has haunted me for so long, and I have never been able to write it down. There are only 2 people I have spoken to about it, and Shonda is the only one who knows it took place. Jerry Casey's girlfriend bullied me for months afterwards, trying to beat me up, tormenting me, telling all kinds of lies, confronting me at school, because she thought I had relentlessly searched out and cheated with him. I withdrew. I turned in, and never recovered. I became timid, scared, damaged, disgusted with myself. It's something that I still struggle with to this very day.

Things in life happen and you do your best to go on. I know that I have not been through the worst, but sometimes, I really wonder what I did in a past life to deserve some of the shit hands that I have been dealt. It's hasn't been an easy ride, that's for sure. I am still trying though. I am....I don't want to give up.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Redemption, and running out of Tootsie Rolls

I was sitting on our couch, and reading the Huffington Post. I love some of the articles, and despise some of the comments left on said articles, and this is why I enjoy reading it. LOL. I find that reading both gives me a perspective on people, and also and insight on the world. It also makes me appreciate my soon to be husband with such a heart swelling pride. I look at him, and remember the man he was when I met him, and see the man he is today, and look to the man he is evolving into, and realize, damn, I really got it right this time, didn't I?

See, relationships are hard enough, let alone having everyone else put their two cents into it and try to influence you, or bully you into doing what they want. I was eating my Tootsie Rolls, one of my favorite candies, and reached for another one, when I came across a funny situation. At the very moment I reached, and realized I had run out of said Tootise Rolls, I read, "relationship status: engaged to- Christine Dickie". Hmmm. Now this was hiliarious to me. Why? Because I was reading the relationship status of my recently widowed father. I guess most wouldn't discribe this situation as "hilarious", but to me, oh, it was. I immediately thought, "redemption".

For so long, I knew my father was not happy in his marriage to my mother, and I always said, I would never stay married if that was how it was going to be. They stayed married because that's what they were supposed to do. He cheated, they beat the hell out of each other, and for what? Geez, just end it, and move on. I always said, if mom went first, Dad would move on, and move on he did. He didn't waste much time. Everyone always thought they knew him so well. I guess I knew him better than I thought. Now, my dad is gonna find out quickly what it's like on my side of the fence, cause the "troops" are turning, and they are pissed. Oh, my brother is hearing the ink dissapearing on the will, and the thought of another woman moving in on Dad's measly belongings before him is making his blood boil. Name calling, spitting and out right disgust is in the air already, and I am sure my Dad is thinking, "what the fuck". But this is how it really is when you have the audacity the nerve, to live your own life, to move on and try to be happy. Oh hell no.

So, yeah, I feel like in some small way I have some sense of redemption, because I have been right about one small thing. I ran out of my beloved Tootsie Rolls, but found a small amount of truth. I can live with that.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

A very piviotal moment...

It had been a very long 10 years, and not very good ones. It started off good. No man ever starts off hitting you. If they did, of course, you wouldn't stay. No, they reel you in. They smile, they charm. They pay attention. They hunt you down. They search out that specific girl who has insecurities. They look for those little signs so that they know how to gain control. You don't even notice it happening. At first, it seems cute, even charming. He pays so much attention to you. He must really care. He always wants to be with you. Little do you know...until it's too late.

My too late came after 3 children, and many incidents that were just too embarrassing to discuss, and also baffling. After seeing the abuse that my own mother took from my father, I really didn't understand how she could turn her back and not help me. I was trapped. He controlled the bank account, the cars were in his name. He picked up my pay checks. He would go to work and take the phone. He would time me when I was in the shower. He demanded receipts from the grocery store, and God help me if I dropped any change. Once, at a stop light at Bruce and Lake Mead, a man in the car next to us did a double take. It was natural at that time, seeing a black man with a white girl. I was immediately quizzed, "who the hell is that?" "I don't know" I replied. "Your lying...You fucked him." and WHAM! right across my face. This was my life.

I realized one day, after waking up with my 5 year old son Daryal next to me, after being punched in the face, again, that I didn't want my kids growing up with this shit. I didn't care if I lived in a truck. I just wanted him to go away. I really couldn't take it anymore. I tried to hide some money, to save a little for an attorney. About a month later, he found it. It was hidden under the headboard of the bed, and I came home to the eruption that was unlike anything I had ever dealt with before. He was standing in the hallway, in the dark. I walked in the front door, and he literally rushed me like a fullback in a football game. I was thrown to the ground, and then tossed across the room into the wall. I don't remember much more, other than I somehow managed to get out the front door, and proceeded to run down the street. I ran, and ran. We lived 3 blocks from the police department. I went inside, and immediately asked for the oldest, white cop they had on duty at the time. The reason? Most of the cops on the North Las Vegas Police Dept at the time, were his friends. Yay. One of the officers began taking a report from me, then took pictures of me. I didn't even realize how badly I was injured. I had a ruptured ear drum, fracture cheek bone, two black eyes, cut lip, bruises everywhere, and a broken rib. They went to the house, and arrested him. Finally.

Over the course of the next few hours, his mother, my mother, and my father, all called me and said, "Bail him out." WHAT? Then, the best of all. My OWN MOTHER....came to my front door. I answered, looking the way I did, with my children around me. I asked her what she wanted. I didn't let her in. She looked me right in my eye. She said, "Penny, don't be stupid. You need to bail him out now." I just kept looking at her like I really couldn't believe this was happening. I firmly said, "No". Then, just as calmly, and clearly as she had every said anything to me, ever, she said, "It's better to learn to get hit in your face than to cut your income in half." to which I replied, "Fuck you".

I had never cussed at my mother before. A week later, a constable showed up at my front door, and me, and my children were evicted from the house. My parents owned the house. Lovely....we lived in a Uhaul for 4 days, until my friend Melvin found out, and was furious. He gave me money to get an apartment, and helped us out.

I have never understood, to this day, why my parents did not try to help me. I don't understand why they thought it would be better to stay. I would be dead. I wouldn't have made it 6 more months. He had already caused me to loose a child. I was 6 months into the pregnancy. A girl. I was traumatized from that...my health was deteriorating. My emotional state was fragile. I kept asking myself, what in the HELL had I done to deserve this? What had I possibly done to them for them to turn their backs and let me be treated like that?

It's a very harsh world. It's a very rough thing to realize that sometimes, you are alone. Yet it's also a good thing too, at times, to realize that your stronger than you thought. You look back, and you think, Jesus...I lived through that? Wow...So, I talk about it, and I don't let it hurt me anymore, because it's done. It's over. I am stronger now, because of what happened. I know how to appreciate a good man, because I lived with the very worst man. Everything that happens really does happen to teach you. You really can take any situation, and learn from it, evolve from it. I know, that I won't ever allow myself to return to that life....but then again, I have love now. :-)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Beginning...

Sigh...okay.

I was born in Las Vegas, Nevada. My parents were married October 5th, 1963, and I came July 4th, 1964. Damn near 9 months to the day. I was a girl, much to the dismay of my mother, and hence the beginning of the disappointment that I obviously was to them both. My father was sent to Thailand when I was about 2, and my mother was then pregnant with my brother Frank. This was a turning point for me. When Frank was born, my mother was thrilled. She had her son, and then turned me over to my Grandmother and Aunt Leigh, stating that she couldn't deal with me. My Grandmother lived in Tempe, Arizona, and my Aunt was in high school at the time. I remember waiting for her to come home from school anxiously. I also remember the trees in the back yard, with grapefruit and lemons, running around the house with their dog Bo, my Aunt putting my hair in curlers, drinking out of the pineapple shaped cups, being picked up by my neck until I turned blue by my mother for knocking over her chocolates, then running and hiding in the closet for hours. Yeah...good times. My mother would tell the story to my kids later at holidays, laughing. Great story! Most mothers tell stories like that..how they had to take tranquillizers to be around their daughters. Great.

Most of my childhood, I knew, understood with much clarity, that I was not wanted, and was looked down upon by my parents. They had their own issues, and I always felt like I was simply in their way. They couldn't wait for me to be old enough to get out. My brothers were looked upon with great anticipation, to be something wonderful. They would swell with pride when they spoke of them. Me? I was just to grow up, find some schmuck to marry me...and if I was to redeem myself, maybe have sons.

December, 1979. It was about 11pm. I was sleeping in my room. It was freezing outside. Missouri winters are miserable, and our life there was not much better. The house was quiet, and all of a sudden, I hear the kitchen door open, the slam with such a force, I was sure the window had broken. Not two minutes later, I hear the door open and slam again, and THE fight began. It wasn't the first, but it was the famous one. Dishes began flying, and I know this because I heard them breaking. The screaming was so intense, my heart was pounding. My parents were yelling so loudly, I was sure the entire Base could hear every word. Apparently, my mother was pissed that my father was not home from work yet, and had gone down to the officers club, where he worked as a bartender, (second job) to see why. She saw our camper there in the parking lot, opened the door, and yeah, there was my father having sex with one of the cocktail waitresses. The fight continued, and now they came running down the hall. My mother ran into their bedroom, which was across from mine, and slammed the door. My door was shut. My father couldn't get in. He kicked in my door, backed up, kicked in their door...I got out of bed, and then watched, scared to death, as he grabbed my mother, threw her to the floor, and proceeded to punch her repeatedly in the face. He only stopped when he heard me screaming to "fucking stop!" and turned around to see me standing there. I ran to the kitchen, my mother running after me. I tried to get out the door, and she grabbed me, getting blood all over me. I asked her to let me go. She screamed at me to stay. I told her that they both were crazy...and I ran. I banged on my boyfriends door, across the street. His father answered, seeing me covered in blood. He asked if it was mine, I said no. He said, "go downstairs". This was where my boyfriends room was. I went downstairs, and laid on the couch, and cried. Moments later, the window was glowing with flashing lights, as just about every single cop car on base was parked in front of our house. The next day, my mother sat with sun glasses on in our living room. I came out of my room, and she said to me, "I came out of the shower, and slipped on some baby powder." WHAT THE FUCK? I saw it all with my own two eyes!! This was the beginning of my insane parents insisting that I am a liar. This was the beginning of me knowing the difference between "relatives" and FAMILY.

It happened. It wasn't the first time...it wasn't the last. Nobody is perfect. My father was not a "Prince" and my mother damn sure wasn't a "Princess". Life is not a fairytale. My ability to realize this, has helped me to survive. Please understand, I don't tell this because I am looking for sympathy either. No fucking way. I tell it because there are so many people out there who go around pretending like their life is perfect, and they can't be honest. They are so worried that they have to be, or need to appear, perfect to be accepted. Nobody has a perfect home life. Nobody...there is a little dysfunctional in us all. :-)

More to come.. 

I needed a venue to vent

So, some of my friends have this blog venue, and I have read their stuff, and they have some really good stuff. I usually don't have too much to vent about...until recently. It seems there is just so much crap going on, and I have been overly stressed, and worried, and well...I need a venue. I need a space to let it all out. I am going to try this, and see if it works.

I tried posting small thoughts on Facebook, and well, anyone who has a Facebook knows, you just can't do that. People are too fucking sensitive, and they get their panties all in a wad. All hell breaks loose and before you know it, deleting begins, phone calls are being made, and you start looking for the bourbon in the kitchen cabinet and thinking, "when in the hell did I turn into my parents?" I really, really don't want to turn into my parents.

I am going to start by posting some stuff that has really bothered me for years, and get that shit off my chest...and then go from there. For some of my friends, you may or may not know some of it, and I will apologize in advance if I upset you. For others, well, it may just help you to understand why I am the way I am. Lets see if this blog thing is cheaper than therapy. :-)