Cheaper to keep her…Day 33

Cheaper to keep her, those are some painful words when in regards to having a marriage. It seems that phrase can be put in place of my past and current marriage. Regardless of how angry you are, these words should never be said because you should not be able to put a price tag on ones that you supposedly love.

It was pointed out to me that since my first marriage produced 7 children, my marriage longevity may have been attributed to the phrase, ‘It is cheaper to keep her’. I guess if one is concerned about the child support payments, then yes, it would be cheaper. And yes, it could still be applied to my current marriage that it is cheaper to keep her because she helps to pay the bills or run a business. But is that how you want to live your life?

Those words are painful to hear have been said about me.
My daugther was informed by her father that they will not be able to visit him this summer due to “you mom over charging me for all the court shit” (typo intentional). First, the child support is reviewing the child support case because one of the children are now 18 years old. There is NOTHING I am doing to charge him anything in court. In fact, if he is being charged any more, it is because the COURT found he has further fullfillment required since the case was not last reviewed for 6 years now. Nor have I seen any increased child support…in fact, the child support has been less since the state took over the transfer of funds. But the implication that it was my fault for his issues with Child Support Services should have not been addressed with her and then made me think about the “cheaper to keep her” statement.

If you have a relationship that is on the edge of breaking, stop and think about what you say because you never know if those are the words that will cut the deepest…in due time.

 

Parenting styles…Day 32

There are a lot of parenting styles and a lot more books, blogs, and articles trying to help support these different parenting styles. There are parents that believe in being overly involved and attend to every whim of the child or parents that believe in giving freedom to explore different ideas. Whatever your style of choice, I say just make a choice and do your best.

I believe what parenting comes to is either do or don’t. What do I mean? Well, I have learned by watching others that a parent becomes one that either is involved or a parent that just hangs around and watches as the child evolves without much input. Of course a good parent wants to be involved but does the other parent know that one is lacking in giving the proper level of interaction?

We are so absorbed into social medias and phone apps that parents lose themselves for hours when they should be checking on their children and being a proactive part of their lives. Furthermore, because some parents get snap shots of their lives with their children, they seem to give off the impression that they are active participants when really those snap shots were times they paid attention and that was only to themselves to make sure they looked good in the pic before posting it. Society and parents have become so self-absorbed that it is hurting the children and teaching the children they have to be extreme to get any attention.

So, what is my point? Whatever your parenting style, choose a style and be an active parent. You may find one thing does not work but with the plethora of information at our fingertips, we can always find more information to help choose another style. So check on your kids grades, if there is any problem, you will not know unless you check and most often the child is not going to willingly tell you there is a problem in Geometry that is beginning to become a hurtful grade. Know what you children are doing, if you know who, what, when, where, and why…they will be less likely to get into trouble or think twice before doing something else because the child knows you are interested in their life.

If you are a parent, be an active part of your child’s life because they grow up and move out to be adults and busy with their own lives and families. And I don’t know about you, but I want to be sure that my children have a solid relationship with me that they will not forget me when they move on. And because I have been and am as proactive parent that wants to be the supporting and loving mom, I hope they will want to continue to share their lives and families with me…in due time.

Lack of appetite…Day 31

I don’t know what it is right now but I go through phases where I have no appetite. I will go all day sipping on coffee, water or soda. I might grab a chip off my child’s plate and smile at him or her but when the day comes to an end, I don’t always eat a meal. I know this is bad, not only for my body and health but also a poor example to my children. 

I have explained to my children that while they need 3 meals a day and even snacks in between, it is because they are growing. As adults, we don’t need as much as a child because we are no longer growing upwards…rather, adults tend to grow outwards with age. Often the metabolism slows down with age and with that, less food is required for intake. Furthermore, as we age we also slow down, again, requiring less calorie intake. 

With all that said, when I have a lack of appetite, it is concerning to me. I am not a sedimentary person. When I am not up and doing a chore around the house, I am working a physically demanding job from Spring through Autumn. I expend a lot of calories doing my job and if I do not eat enough, my muscles feel it and I hate the shakey feeling. Because of my job demanding I eat, I often find myself struggling to think of something I may want. 

I often tell my children that if they crave a certain food, it is because the body will tell you what it needs with those cravings. But what when you don’t have any cravings like myself? The other day I remembered that I forgot to eat and with it being late with the kids just going to bed, I didn’t want to make anything or a mess in a kitchen where the dishwasher is already loaded and running. So I would not go to bed without having eaten that day, I ate a blueberry muffin…Ugh! It was a chore to just chew and get the muffin down! I wanted to throw it away after my first bite. But I ate it and then convinced myself to eat my common go to food…Triscuits and cheese. 

To make matter worse, my husband and I do not like the same foods. While he would prefer tamales and beens, I prefer a burger and fries. This makes for a struggle with making dinner for the family because when you blend two families with different tastes for food…dinners don’t always make everyone happy. It ends up being cheaper to buy sandwich making, Mac n cheese, frozen pizza, and other kid friendly foods for dinners. The other reason for not making full dinner meals every night is there will be leftovers from meal we have made and we can’t afford to waste food. So…Meals here for me isn’t my fondest time of day and I tend to avoid it. Hence, I have no appetite.

Until then, I guess I will stick to Triscuits and cheese with hopes my appetite will come back…In due time. 

Aging Dog…Day 30

When I met my husband 7 years ago, he had a pitbull named Junior. Junior was large, strong, very intimidating, playful, loved swimming, and was a huge teddy bear. I never had any problems with him being aggressive to me ever. I came into the marriage with a miniature dachshund, Lilly, and she rules over Junior. Junior has never done anything to ever hurt little Lilly. Lilly has even attacked him many of times over a toy or a bone but Junior ALWAYS lays down submissively to Lilly.

Fast forward to today, you would not see the 80 something pound dog you once saw before. Junior has aged over the years, as we all do. But dogs have a shorter life span and with the shorter life span, I get to watch Junior go down hill. Over the past couple years Junior has lost interest in eating and all the other things he use to do. He has gone from being the dog that wanted to snatch the ball and make you wrestle it from him to being a dog that can barely stand. There are days that I call him Bambi because he can barely keep his legs beneath him like a newborn with wobbly long legs. I call him Bambi so that I don’t feel the heartbreak.

Junior now weighs half as much as he use to and makes me look like I am a bad owner. I have gone through so many different ways to get him to gain weight but he can only eat so much in a day. Once I fed him so much that he vomited…so counter productive. I have tried Junior on soft dog food, I have changed his food to a higher quality food with a premium price, and I even feed him extra snacks. None of this has helped him to gain weight. My mother-in-law saw  him and instantly started feeding him as if I were not already trying to get him to eat more. Initially it hurt my feelings because I thought she believed that I was neglecting him. But she has learned that Junior actually eats more than I do and still looks very thin.

I have read so many vet discussions, articles, tips, and blogs about skinny dogs, causes and helping them put on weight. But today I read something else…aging dogs tend to lose their appetite when they get closer to dying and as long as he is getting up to socialize and eat occasionally, I should be happy that he is still doing well. But it has not stopped me from still feeding him several small meals throughout the day. Today he got up to greet me and wagged his tail really well…he hasn’t had the energy to do that for some time. It was encouraging and made me smile, praise and love him more!

But I also have to face reality. My mother-in-law reminded me that with Junior being about 18 years old, he has already outlived many dogs of his kind. So here is my thought…I will be there and get him to eat until he is ready to lay down the last time. I will love Junior and make him as happy and comfortable as I possibly can because that is how I would want to be treated. I want to be surrounded by those that I love and be happy when my days come to an end. As for Junior, he too will be loved until he lays down to rest…in due time.

Zum Bar…Day 29

This is not an advertisement. Since I have not been feeling well with a lingering headache, I thought I would touch on something that I enjoy when I am not feeling well.

Zum Bar Goat’s Milk Soap

I use to enjoy Bath and Body Works and don’t get me wrong, I hope that store never discontinues the Moonlight Path scent! But my mother-in-law recently introduced me to Zum Bar during a grocery trip. I immediately fell in love with the Lavender-Lemon & Patchouli bar! At first I reluctant because the soap costs $1.59 per oz at our local store but my mother-in-law said she would buy it because we all need a small splurge every now and then. I was so grateful for her buying me that first bar because I was even more captivated by it when I showered!!! The shower was filled with the scent and after the first time I showered with it, I walked around the rest of the day thinking that everything smelled really good…but then my daughter commented about every time I walk by, she could smell me and my Zum Bar. It made me smile.

So, even if I am not feeling well, I will focus on the positive and look forward to the shower…when I can squeeze in my turn after mommy chores…in due time.

Zum Bar Goat’s Milk Soap

Headache again…Day 28

I didn’t write yesterday because I was hurting with a really bad headache that made me want to vomit and lay down. The pain lasted all day and has lingered all day today. I don’t know it is seasonal allergies, the change of the weather, or something new that I have eaten. The only thing new that I have eaten is a pre-cooked microwave bacon and blueberry muffin. While I tend to not believe that it was not the muffin, I fear it may have been the bacon. But to linger into today and this evening as well?

If  it is seasonal allergies, then I am in a world of hurt soon because our work season is starting soon too.

To make matter worse, my husband and I have been arguing too. Arguing leads me to feel sick with the stress too. I have a lot to ponder about all that was said but it will have to wait for another day when I am feeling better…in due time.

Divorce…Day 27

Divorce…It was an action I swore I would never let happen. Marriage met till death due us part. My father was married 4 times! I asked about why  he married so many times and he told me that his wives left him or they were crazy…literally. His fourth wife was different because they didn’t have any children together. In fact, I think I was a big part of the reason why they divorced. He wasn’t happy anyways and maybe I just helped him make the decision to divorce. Regardless, my father never married again. He told me that I was the only female he needed in his life anymore. And I did take care of him for a long time…until he decided it was time to move back to Michigan and spend some time there with his other children. I knew what that meant…but maybe that is a story for some other time.

So my father had advice to give me on marriage. He didn’t give me advice on what to do but more of what NOT to do.
Never go to bed angry.
One would think that such simple words would be easy to live by but they are not.

I was married for 20 years before I succumbed to divorce and I am now on my second marriage for 4 years, together for 6 years. There are times that I fear that my current marriage will fail too and then I fixate on why I feel this way. I often come to conclusion that I do not follow my father’s rule…Never go to bed angry.

How do you never go to bed angry when at some point one stops talking just so the arguing will stop? And if you wake angry the next morning, are you wrong for bringing it back up or do you let it go truly resulting in it being bottled up and becoming a quick fuse?

I then turn to the Bible and verses.

EPHESIANS 4:26
(I will give a few different interpretations.)
KJ- “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down on your wrath,”
CJB- “Be angry, but don’t sin — don’t let the sun go down before you have dealt with the cause of your anger;”
Ok, so I get where my father told me to ‘Never to go to bed angry’.
I have yet to master.

Mark 10:12 – “And if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery”
Luke 16:18 – “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.”
Matthew 5:31-32 “It has been said, ‘Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.32 But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, makes her the victim of adultery, and anyone who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.”
Well, now I am confused. If the marriage is not faithful, is it okay for a divorce then? Am I and my current husband (on his 3rd marriage) living in sin? Does that make the marriage wrong? Or does it make it doomed to fail? I am left with more questions than what I started with and I never seem to find the answer.

So, the lesson today? Before you ever get married, be sure that person is the one that you can foresee being with you until you are both old. Before you get married be sure that is your best friend that will be a true partner and hold you up when you are down. Before you get married, remember you never want to get a divorce and the person is someone you will always find a ‘I love you’ for even when you are mad. But most of all, be sure before you get married that you both agree to “Never go to bed angry”. As for me…I’m still working on it and maybe one day I will master it…in due time.

Fake News…Day 26

I am not one to frequent Facebook but when I do, I find there are always news articles that give you a headline to make you believe one thing but when you research the article, you find that it was exaggerated or just really embellished to get more clicks. In fact, I remember before Facebook started being the thing, my mother would forward me supposed news articles that I would have to then tell her that were not true and were just a story that some details were changed and cycled through the years but were verified as being NOT true. Often one would find Snopes would be a site that would give the scoop on any bogus email chains.

Now news has changed with our advancement of technology. We get news within minutes of the event and often can find a live feed on Youtube. There are numerous alternate news sources that give you the scoop and the links to verify the information is true. But there is the problem, with more independent and alternative news sources popping up everyday, the old school mass media is on the decline. With that decline comes any news story to get the clicks or hits or views.

What is a person to do with all these sources and to find the Real news?

When I do post anything, I try not to post anything that is too political because I have family on both sides of the spectrum. I know that some of the things that I feel should be said would hurt their feelings so I don’t post. It doesn’t stop them from posting…but then I am not one that likes confrontation. However, during this past election, I did comment on some news articles to some family members telling them that they should check the facts of both sides before making a decision. While I thought that was sound advice, I was asked for articles. I posted articles from reputable news sources but I was then ignored. I guess the facts were not well received.

So what is the point? There really is such thing as “Fake News”. You need to put on your critical thinking hat and look at a story. What is really being said? Is there information left out to sway you? Journalists use to go after the real story because they knew the truth was more news worthy than some embellished details. While society has gone off the deep end always looking for the most insane off your rocker story, I believe there is a counter movement happening…we want the real news…we want facts to back up the story. Don’t be afraid to read beyond the bullet points of a news article. Read the full article and don’t be afraid to use the tools at your fingertips to verify because if you truly stop and look at the facts of the full spectrum, then you will know the Real News…in due time.

Bernie Sanders calls CNN Fake News and more

Conservatism is the New Counter Culture

Life.Church…Day 25

I have always been a spiritual or religious person. For a long time I followed the labels. I explored different religions. I even attended Catholic Mass and confession during military basic training. But for a long time, because I found the Christian churches I went to were not Godly people, I taught my children the balance of life. I taught them right from wrong and respect for others. I even taught them the doubts I had on religion. For teaching them my doubts, I deeply regrets.

I fear that teaching them my doubts and not raising them with the label of Christianity has hurt them. Or at least, I fear it may have led a few further from the path than I had hoped.

This past October my sister-in-law invited us to Life.Church for the baptism of her two children. I was totally excited! When I got to the church, it was not what I expected. It was loud with colorful spotlights dark and bright at the same time like a concert. It was not a church I have ever attended! But we sat and was there for family. To my surprise, I enjoyed the service! I enjoyed it so much that I looked forward to hearing the next Sunday service. To be honest though, after a couple of months we stopped going in person and started casting it on the TV at home. While I prefer the at home on TV experience, my husband prefers the in person experience.

Each week there is something in the service that speaks to the happenings of my life. (Today Pastor Craig talked about his wife being his best friend…something I have been talking about with my husband) And while I have listened and learned each week, my heart always pulls me back to my older children that I did not raise in a Christian home. I worry most about my eldest that seems to struggle with finding the right person to share his life with. And I fear that my other son that now lives with him will share in the like emotional detachment. Don’t get me wrong, my children are good people and adults. I love them and am very proud of each of them. I just worry that some may have fallen away from God’s path too far.

So, what is the point of the blog today besides the rambling of my shortcomings and finding the right service? My point is never give up finding the right service for you. If you are searching for Jesus and need some guidance, pray. Don’t give up. I am happy to have found Life.Church. And if you have wouldn’t mind, please pray for my older boys that they will come back to the path of love and light with Jesus…in due time.

I Want to Believe But…Part 1 On-Demand God

I Want to Believe But…Part 2 Killjoy God

I Want to Believe But…Part 3 Goosebump God

I Want to Believe But…Part 4 Heartless God

 

February 11th…Day 24

It has been 18 years since February 11th, 1999…the day my father passed away. I was 24 yrs old when my dad passed and I was pregnant with child number 6. I never got to tell him that I was having another baby. He was concerned for me when I told him when I was pregnant with number 5. I hadn’t the chance to call him and tell him yet. Instead of me making a phone call to him, my eldest sister that I barely knew called me to tell me that he may not make it through the night.

I was on a plane that night! I flew all night and being in the early stages of pregnancy exhaustion, that was not an easy task. I wasn’t known well to my older siblings since I was the product of my father’s 3rd marriage. And since they didn’t know me and I was young and alone, I ended up stuffed in a corner. I watched as others talked and took my father down memory lane in his barely conscious morphine induced stupor. I was angry that morphine was forced down his throat when he was just starting to come out of it. I never really got to let him know that I was there. And for that, I hold a lot of regret.

I should have spoke at his funeral. I should have talked about his life when he lived in Florida because all these relatives knew of my father was when he lived in Michigan. I regret not talking to him more about the Great Depression…my father was born in 1929. I remember him telling me of the radio being the center of stories in the evening. My father lived through so much history and I now feel that I am at an wiser age to appreciate his stories…he is gone.

I used to have a fear of the age 45 years old. I grew up with my father being very ill through my years alone with him. He told me that doctors were surprised that he lived past 45 years old! I remember a night he was having a hard time getting a breath and I couldn’t find his pills. I was so scared. I talked to him about it afterwards and he told me that God would not take him until he had a full life. My dad told me his full life was when he saw me married with a family and know that his baby would be taken care of.
Well, my Dad lived a full life…and while I wish my children would have gotten to know him, I know he lives on through me.

I am no longer afraid of turning 45 years old because I know that I will be here for my children, just as my father was here for me. And I hope that they will know my father and me without any regrets…in due time.