Sunday, April 27, 2014

What they don't tell you...

I watched a video that a blogger friend of mine posted on facebook recently.  And it really struck a nerve with me.
It does have some harsh language in it... the "F" bomb is dropped multiple times.  Try not to get caught up in that and instead try to take in the message.
Don't read more into it than is necessary.... just listen... with your heart.  And a tear... and a little bit of compassion for the young girls and boys growing up in this world.

This world is a crazy cruel place.

Especially for teenage girls and boys....  but even as we grow into adults... the pressure is sometimes just as overwhelming.

I remember as a young girl wanting so bad to "fit in".  I wanted to wear the right clothes, carry the right purse, wear just the right amount of make-up... ya know - just enough makeup to be cool but not too much as to be considered "easy". Because that's how you were judged.... on your LOOKS.  On what you brought to the table.  I cared.  I tried. I had some really great friends.

And then one day ... I didn't care anymore.

Sure I still wanted to dress in name brand (cause I'm high maintenance.... and some things never change! ha ha) But I didn't care if people liked me.  I didn't care if I found a note where someone that I thought was a friend called me a "snob".  I didn't care if someone that I thought the world of said I wasn't their BFF anymore.  I didn't care if no one liked me... because I had come to the realization that the only person I could rely on and trust was ME.
It wasn't because I didn't want to have friends........ it wasn't because I didn't want to trust anyone.  In my head, I think I just decided that no one was ever real.  Everyone had only been playing a part... the quarterback, the prom queen, the class "slut" (sadly this was also a part that was played), the cheerleader, the nerd... The stereotypes... all of the classifications.   And now there are even more!

Why couldn't we all just be friends fighting for the same purpose... all trying to better ourselves to make a future that we could look forward to.

I don't know.  I still don't know.  I never understood. I still don't understand!
 Jr High and High School just get to be so mean.  So heartless.
To the point that some fought back by rebelling, some fought by actually fighting and acting out, some fought by taking reputations to extremes... and sadly... some just gave up. 
For some, answers to the pressure came in the form of anorexia, bulimia, promiscuity, fighting, bullying.... Some hid behind dark walls and developed anxiety that may have never subsided.
The pain is endless
And sadly.... totally preventable
If only our world wasn't so cruel.

We want children to know the reality of life and the hardships of everything not being spoon fed to them, but then they are bombarded by the unfair judgement of peers.

And instead of PREPARING them for adulthood and showing them how to be a TEENAGER and come out as a strong independent young man or woman ... we are too busy condoning children having children and glorifying it on reality tv! Instead of protecting our children from UNNECESSARY harm... we are laying more harm on them!!! I see way too many 15 year old girls come in pregnant!!!  Babies having babies......
When did we STOP telling our babies that having SEX at 15 is ok??  When did it become ok for a high school student to bring her best friends in for her ultrasound because its fun and cool and they get out of school?!  WHY are kids thinking that SEX in high school is ok....
I'll tell you why...  PEER PRESSURE and the twisting of our world on what is ok and what is not....

((Sorry - got off on a little rant there!)

I don't know what the answer is.  I don't know how to prevent it or make it better....

But I can tell you this young boys and girls......

The pressure that you feel growing up to dress right and act according to a role, and be skinny and be pretty and be smart and have sex and have babies....  those pressures....... THEY DON'T MATTER!!!!!!!  They are twisted realities!

What we need to teach our young ones is to just be YOU.  Love YOU for YOU.  Don't let someone tell you who to be or how to look or what to say or what to stand for.
Love others with all your heart.
Never be cruel.
When someone is cruel to someone who can't or won't defend themselves, stand up FOR them.
Be strong.
Be healthy.
Eat right.
Make good friends that you can trust.  Make them friends because you trust them not because of a social status.

What the adults forget to tell you is that one day you will be an adult out in the real world and the people that judged you and the people that you fought so hard to impress, won't matter anymore.
I can promise you that.

don't let ANYONE make you feel like less of a person than you are.

And respectively .... on that same note.... as adults - let's learn to live by these same values.
Every day be nice.  Be healthy.  Judge less.  Praise more.
Take care of yourself and respect others... you never know what they have been through or what they are currently going through.

Stop being SO judgmental and just love one another.

And teach your children to act likewise!

That is all.

Here is the video
(and before you watch it - let me preface it by saying, yes she is openly a lesbian.  But before you judge - that is not what this blog is about and I'm not trying to open that war here... just LISTEN to her words.  Period)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

It's Just a Lousy Nickel!!

So the other day, I was sweeping my floor.  And I saw a nickel on the floor.  Which I proceeded to just sweep right into my dirt pile....  because it would be too much trouble for me to bend over and pick it up, right?!!  So I just continued to sweep it around the house with the dirt and eventually into the dust pan with the rest of the dirt.  It was afterall...... JUST a nickel.  5 centsFIVE.  That's it.  Not worth the time of me digging it out of the pile of dirt and dog hair that I just swept from my floor!!!

And then I thought .......... WAIT....... WHAT?!?!!!!!!!!!

What the crap is wrong with me??  
Have I really become that complacent in my life... where a nickel is not worth the effort it takes to pick it up?

I then thought back to a time... when Z was just a little boy... and we lived in a apartment complex that had a coke machine by the office.  I remember a time when we would literally go on scavenger hunts in the apartment and in the car to try to gather up just enough change so that we both might go down to the coke machine and buy a drink to enjoy for the evening.  I remember when cokes WEREN'T readily available in the refrigerator.  It was a time when I worked my tail off in order to pay the rent and keep my baby boys belly full.  Cokes were a treat.  And getting to go get one from the coke machine was like an adventure.  It was back in a time when we played games and talked... it was before he buried his head into video games and a cell phone and got too big to "hang out with mom" anymore.  It was back when we would take drives out in the country going nowhere just to get out of the apartment and enjoy the sunshine.  (that was back when we could afford to put gas in our cars!!).  

Back then, a simple NICKEL meant the difference  in having the Grape Nehi or not!  
To be honest, back then a nickel meant keeping the lights on or not.

I pray that I don't ever lose the value of "just a nickel"

And as my son grows up and slowly but surely steps into a world that will crush you in a minute..... I pray that he never forgets the value of "just a nickel" and that he holds near to his heart what that small little nickel means. And when life is busy beating him down..and it will....I hope he remembers that sometimes all you need is just a nickel, a Grape Nehi and a ride around the countryside.