Better Late than Never?

Unless I’m deathly ill, or I’m playing nurse to other people in the house, I try not to miss my regular posts. Unfortunately, sometimes that does happen. But I try really hard. Today was one of those days were my to-do list was too much. However, I wanted to get something up because I’m a big fan of sticking to routines, almost annoyingly so. Routines are something that I can find comforting, which is why I try my hardest to stick to as rigid of a routine as I possibly can. Maybe it’s superstition or maybe it’s a necessary by-product of working from home, where you are your own boss and taskmaster so you need to be on the ball. Whatever the case is, I have a routine that I often stick to as close to the minutes as possible. When I said “rigid”, I meant it.

My youngest son has been “not being the best version of himself”. That’s the new way that us parents say “he has been an absolute nightmare, send help in the form of wine, coffee, or both”. I almost wish that I could say that it was only at school that he’s been struggling, but it’s not. He’s been worse as I was hoping he was starting to settle down. His teacher emailed me, discussing his struggles in class. Fortunately, his struggles don’t involve bullying or otherwise not being kind. His issues are the usual with him: he’s overly anxious, struggles to focus, and sit still. These aren’t new struggles with him. But I’m with the teacher: something has snapped within him and he’s worse than he’s ever been.

He’s my baby. My special little boy. My little love. I feel bad about how much I have to take deep breaths before trying to calmly talk him down. His big thing right now: tornadoes. Anytime he sees clouds, he goes off about tornadoes and how our house is going to explode. I know he has anxiety. I know that I’m trying my best to hide my own anxiety to the point where he doesn’t learn how deep it goes but also showing him that I have ways of addressing my anxiety in healthy ways. Like through my writing, knitting, or exercise. His anxiety is something that I had hoped he would have grown from, that it was just a phase. I’m starting to think that this is something we’re going to have to work on in the long run.

To solve these issues I’ve decided to go back to the “Georgie Basics”, as I call them. I bought a new calendar and chart to help get him onto a stricter routine. I’m going to figure out some activity, maybe art related, to get him to work out some of those issues in his mind. Something that requires him to sit down and focus, but that he won’t care he’s sitting down and focusing on it because he’s enjoying it so much. I’m going to get him to start doing “Mommy and Georgie” yoga. I’m going to try everything, because he’s my boy and that’s what I need to do.

Dealing with children who have these types of struggles isn’t easy. It’s easy to backseat parent when you don’t have the same struggles. It’s easy to judge someone for not giving their kid medications for their anxiety and focusing issues. It’s even easier to judge them for giving them medication for their anxiety and focusing issues. But until you are there, on the front lines of these battles, leave it to those who live the struggle. I’m sure they don’t want to hear how your perfect kid never had this issue, but they read in this place that medications kill kids. (Not really, but you know exactly what I’m talking about here.) For the rest of us, keep your head up. We’ll get through this together.

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It Isn’t About a Law; It’s What the Law Stands For

When I first read about the now-infamous Georgia law, I thought it was an Onion article. To be fair, most news these days I end up thinking is really just an Onion article. In this case, it wasn’t. While I had a hard time finding what the law actually said without running into articles from both sides of the aisle, the general consensus seems to be the law is ridiculous. (If that part about the miscarriage is true, thanks to law makers for making innocent women feel more invaded after such a traumatic loss. Good on you, guys.)

But what I realize is that people shouldn’t be upset with this law. This law was purposely meant to be ridiculous. They want it to be challenged in the Supreme Court. Why? Because then, they could start their crusade to overturn Roe v Wade. Because now they have the potential to do this with a conservative judge majority. Because maybe next they should find other ways to control what people do with their lives. Perhaps ban people from having sex at all unless they want to be forced to have children. Maybe ban birth control, because we don’t think people should have that either.

You can’t go on a crusade about Sharia Law in other countries or worried about it coming here when you are trying to enact a Christian version in America. Where does the line get drawn? I’m not pro-abortion. When I was a scared, pregnant teenager I never even considered having an abortion. Why? Because it wasn’t something that I felt right doing. Just because I personally don’t agree with it, that doesn’t mean I don’t think there are certain circumstances where I would do it. If I had a child that was 100% going to die right away or have a miserable 2 hours of life where it suffers, I would absolutely get one. It would be the hardest decision of my life, but I can with a clear conscience say that I would never want my baby to suffer needlessly. I’m not pro-abortion. No one is pro-abortion. People are pro-choice. I don’t think it’s any of my business what another person does with their body. Their abortion doesn’t affect my life.

I don’t like the idea of a woman being able to lose control of their own body. It feels like a violation. It feels like you’re okaying someone to violate them and they can’t do anything about it. How many women died because of back alley abortions before abortion became legal? How come it’s all about giving birth to babies, but after that it’s good luck to them? Isn’t it more fiscally responsible to allow women to get this procedure instead of paying for children to stay in foster care forever because they aren’t a “desirable enough baby” or for the entitlements that the parents will need to support it? But go on, talk about life and liberty and all of that.

The law isn’t the scary thing. The fact that this law is purposely made to be awful so that they can force the courts to revisit Roe v Wade is the scary thing. What’s scary is what downward spiral is going to happen. What’s next? You have to leave religion out of making laws. There’s a reason why there’s a separation of church and state. What about banning other religions? Or atheists? Or forcing religion to be taught in public schools? Or overturning gay marriage? This is an attack on civil liberties. This is a scary turn for women, especially those who have been victimized and will have to face that for the rest of their lives. Go on. Let’s let a woman get assaulted, force her to have that child, go through the purpose of a trial that will only lead to the rapist going free because he wasn’t poor or dark enough to go to jail, only to have him turn around and get custodial rights to that child. Don’t believe in abortion? Don’t get one. It’s really that simple. Let’s go back to those draconian days where women are property that people can do whatever they want with. Or… let’s put up a fight.

The Thing About People Who Do Illegal Things

Every time that I see something about a school shooting, my heart breaks. I think of my children and hope that I never have to feel that pain. There’s a serious problem, and the biggest problem is that everyone seems to think they have an answer but no one really wants to work together to solve this serious issue. I assure, this post is not going to go into a direction that many people want.

I don’t disagree that there needs to be better background checks to ensure that people who suffer from mental illness shouldn’t just be handed guns. That seems to make sense to me. If you are just using it for home protection or hunting, waiting an extra day to make sure everything is find shouldn’t be a big issue. Unless, of course, you have something to hide. But I’m certainly not naive enough to believe that this is going to cure the problem. Why? Because it isn’t legal gun owners that cause a majority of these problems: it’s the criminals.

I have this silly long-held belief that criminals, by their nature, are going to do bad things. Silly things like laws don’t stop them; that’s why they are criminals. There are laws against rape, but yet there is still a disgustingly high incidences of this horrific crime. Laws don’t deter criminals. But what a gun law like the one I mentioned does accomplish is that a criminal will have to work a bit harder to access the guns that they want.

Bad people are going to do bad things. Gun control laws won’t prevent shootings or violence. Walls won’t prevent people from coming over illegally. People are going to figure out how to do the things that they want to do. If there is a wall blocking them, they’ll just go around the wall. Whether this means coming by boat or digging tunnels underneath. If criminals want guns, they are going to find a local dealer to meet that need. Just like people do with drugs.

That doesn’t mean that there isn’t anything that can be done about it. Preventative measures can be an amazing thing. Making mental health treatments more accessible, especially to these kids that think their only option is to shoot up a school. Pay more attention to what you can do to help those struggling in poverty so that they aren’t forced into a life of crime because that’s their only real option. Give people the opportunity to change their life. These are some things that can potentially have a massive impact on our country.

I’m sick thinking about all of these school shootings. How many could have been prevented if the kids felt powerful enough to admit they are struggling? We need to do better. And instead of bickering about solutions and not doing anything, how about we do something?

When You Become the Most Hated Person in Your Neighborhood

A while back, I discussed my disdain for the local politics. I live on a horseshoe-ish based street, right on the bend of it. When I bought this house, about 4 or 5 years ago, I loved the lawn. I loved the fact it stayed in my oldest son’s school district. I liked the fact that the elementary school was right behind my house, an elementary school that was known for its special needs program. A school my son, who I’ve been very open about his struggles, could really thrive at. (He has done very well, because of the amazing teachers at this school.)

The downside was the parking on the street. The street, a narrow, curved street, that had cars parked on both sides. This didn’t really become annoying until the first 2 tractor trailers ended up on my lawn, tearing up my grass. Then my son’s bus struggled to make it up the street several times, especially during the winter when this already narrow street was made even narrower by plowed snow. Then I started noticing that firetrucks and ambulances, which frequent my neighborhood on a near daily basis, were struggling to make it around my street.

I became concerned about this for a few reasons. One, on the other side of me are two senior neighbors who have been exceptionally kind to my family. In recent times, ambulances have been very common on that side of the street, and an ambulance struggling to make it up the street could take costly time to get to them. Then, I thought of my own family. What if my son’s appendix burst and we needed to rush him to the hospital? Those are precious minutes that you can’t dwindle away.

After writing the letter, it did finally reach someone who cared enough to check this issue out. They came out with a city engineer, and very very quickly determined that my concerns were valid enough to act on. I didn’t care that they were parked on the street; I cared that this blocked up the street and posed a safety hazard. It wasn’t safe. So I did what a responsible citizen should do: fix it. With the help of my brother, of course, who was very helpful in getting my concerned letter noticed.

The downside? The people who parked on the street now hate me. They feel this is racism and unfair. They are outraged that they didn’t get a chance to fight for their right to not park in their parking, opting for the street instead. How inconsiderate of them to make this type of law without asking the citizens first? There should have been a public hearing so that they could find this harmful law.

My conscience is clear. The fact that ambulances and firetrucks can make it down my street easier is worth being the most hated person in my neighborhood. The fact that kids can have an easier time using the sidewalk to get to the school or their bus stops that are at the school, makes it worth it. The fact that the neighbors who want to walk to the church behind my house can do so now, is worth it. It was for the greater good. My goal is not to be liked. I don’t really care who likes me. My goal is to have a positive impact on the community.

Who Doesn’t Love a Good Spoiler?

No one. No one loves a good spoiler. At least when it effects them.

For instance, when the videos of the guy yelling at people waiting in line for the “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” went viral. Were the people in line rightfully angry at the yells of “Snape kills Dumbledore”? Oh yeah. Did it make for hilarity for those people who may not have been very interested in Harry Potter? Yes.

Social media has made spoiling movies and television shows a bit of a sport for the trolls and those who tend to not think before typing words out on their social media accounts. (Which, I suppose, is a good majority of people on social media.) They don’t care about the effect that those words have on other people. If they did, bullying wouldn’t be a thing. It’s awful that you have to avoid the outside world until you see a movie or a popular television show because there’s always that 1 guy.

Was I upset that someone yelled “Snape killed Dumbledore” before I had read the book? No. I actually found it hilarious. I’m a hypocrite like that. Now if someone read the “Winds of Winter” before me and spoiled it, I would probably hunt them down and make them suffer things that they have only dreamed about in nightmares. I’m vindictive like that.

The moral of the story? Don’t be that guy. I know your life may be so sad and pathetic that the only joy that you get is from upsetting the masses, but don’t do it. If you need that much attention in your life, I recommend getting a puppy. They give you so much attention that you can’t even go to the bathroom in peace. Plus, they don’t talk. So you can spoil movies for them and they won’t care. In fact, you can just spend your time venting whatever troll impulses that you have on them. Because they will love you anyways.

Unlike people. People won’t love you anyways if you spoil things for them.

The Fear of Facts

I think that we are born with a fear of facts, especially facts that we don’t want to see or don’t agree with. For instance, you don’t want to check your grade on a paper for school because you’re afraid of what you will see. There’s a good chance that you’ll see exactly what you want, but what if you don’t? Ignorance is bliss and that seems to be a motto that we were born into. But why do we have such a fear of facts?

For instance, the president described late term abortions as “putting babies into blankets to await their execution”. That’s not an abortion; that’s infanticide. I’m not debating the morality of abortion or whether or not it should be legal; I’m debating that this is a blatant lie for the sole purpose of fear mongering. I’m saying that there is an alarming amount of people that have now taken this blatant, exaggeration to turn it into a cause without questioning how logical that statement even is. That argument is just as ridiculous as the idea that a cop is just waiting to shoot someone without an excuse. Does it happen? Maybe, but that would be a very rare exception to the general population.

Elizabeth Warren is no more Native American than most of the Caucasian population. That’s a fact. Did she contort this fact? Evidence seems to say that she did, so that she could get some benefits from it. I’m an equal opportunity fact-police. Her group of followers is okay with that lie; refusing to acknowledge it. This further proves the point that a politician’s base doesn’t care about facts. They just hop on a bandwagon and follow blindly. I don’t follow blindly, unless it’s the smell of a Moe’s Wrong Doug stack with extra cheese. I will follow that blindly anywhere. Why is their queso so good?

Facts are different from opinion. Facts are different from exaggerations that only serve a purpose to further an agenda. I like facts. Facts make me feel nice and cozy inside. When my now husband convinced me that we should actually get married and not stay engaged forever, he gave me facts. Having 1 health insurance would be cheaper, plus he had great dental insurance. He didn’t pull at my heart strings to tell me about everlasting love. He gave me evidence of factual reasons why being married was more beneficial to us. Facts. They matter people.

Today, let’s do an exercise of not just believing everything someone tells us. Maybe today, instead of just trusting your favorite politician or pundit, you take the time to take in some actual facts about a topic. Educate yourself. They want you to just follow blindly because that’s how they get control of the masses in every dystopian novel out there. Let’s not make the real world the next “Farenheit 451”. Let’s have a revolution; a rebellion against misinformation from both parties.

Some Miscellaneous Ranting

Every now and again I have some random thoughts, that separately won’t make enough of a blog post. Today is one of those days. From politics to my own writing life, here are today’s random rantings.

Politics

Alright, so I can’t be the only one tired of all of this right? I keep seeing memes about how people need to be held to the same standard, but at the same time keep talking about things like “witch hunts” and “snowflakes”. Let’s talk about fair for a moment. Think about this: What if President Obama didn’t release his tax returns? Wouldn’t the right think that was suspicious? What if a terrorist-linked company pulled the same thing Russia did to get Obama elected? Wouldn’t the right want to investigate that? Because I would be really concerned in both of those situations. I thought that Hilary should have been investigated more closely to see if she compromised security or sold favors to foreign governments/organizations. Maybe I’m just crazy. Or, maybe I’m one of the few that actually thinks that everyone should be held accountable for the same things.

If you sexually harass or assault another person, you should be held to the fullest extend of the law no matter your race, economic status, or political affiliation. The same applies if you commit any crime. There are some shady areas where I would make exceptions. Like if you walk into a room to see someone assaulting your child and you beat the crap out of that person, I would find that very reasonable. But please, don’t start talking about double standards if you also accept double standards. I think that only guilty people hide things and when you are at the level of being a president, you allow the door to be opened to this extra level of scrutiny.

What’s Next for My Goals

After gaining acceptance to a short story anthology, I’ve been working hard towards other goals. I have started to figure out a setup for a podcast, but I’m still undecided on the details, such as what to talk about or how often I should do it. I’m thinking once a month, but the topic is still uncertain to me. I have some ideas for new books, including a new children’s book, which I have started to write up. Also, that comic is coming along slowly as I’m trying to get my bearings on doing this. It’s a bit of a struggle shaking out my artist rust, but I have faith in myself. Until then, freelancing and streaming to get myself out there is on the table. I have also come up with the concept for my next NaNoWriMo attempt, also a horror novel. This one I feel more comfortable with, so I’m very much looking forward to it.

That is it. Those are my short rants for today. I’m very much open to suggestions for podcasts if there is something that you would find interesting to hear about.