September 11, 2013

Not Just Remembering 9/11 Remembering our Nation As A Whole

September 11, 2001, my daughter comes running into my bedroom, “MOM! The news said a plane hit one of the big sky scrapers in New York!”  I sort of just rolled over and said…”oh, that’s messed up.    I kind of just rolled over and went back into a slight Doze.    I’m not sure how long it was but she came back into my room “Mom another plain just crashed into the other sky scraper.  The news things it’s an attack on America!”  
 I jumped up and went to the T.V watching the towers burn. "Hmm…” 

 I didn’t really say too much after that.  What was there to say?
This should have been a frightening experience.  Was I in shock?  Was I numb?  Was I de sensitized? I don’t know what I was.  But I know what I wasn't.

wasn't too shocked. I was a little worried at how shocked and surprised I wasn't   I got dressed and went to work but there was very little work goin on.  I can remember with each phone call it was so little about business but more bout how we, as Americans need to pull together and unify.  That whole work week was more of a reassurance that hey, I may be across the country from you, but I’m here I share the same pain and sorrow and let’s love and respect our   country and support our countrymen.
For week, we as Americans, begin to see things differently. Tolerated violence less in hour homes, hour neighborhoods’ and even in our entertainment.  Do you remember there were certain scenes cut out of Movies and T.V shows because it was too close to the situation of  9/11?  I can remember saying to some of my friends… “I think it’s funny that we as Americans were ok with TV. And Movies that showed war and terrorism in other countries, but since it’s happened on this soil we’re suddenly cautious and sensitive to it?  
It’s the same Production but different stage. In reality it shouldn't be the stage that matters it should be the production itself.

One of the first things that came to my mind during 9/11 and the weeks after was… WHY IS EVERYONE SO SHOCKED AND SURPRISED?    As I watched the T.V as the events unfolded I remember a time years ago where my mother gathered me and my sister together each week and we read the book of Revelations. I’m not sure why she felt compelled to do it. I thought it was odd at the time. 
 Being the artistic child in the family when I read things they would play out in my mind very animated and full of color and drama! So for me, it was like a page out Revelations being scene on TV.   And then I thought… THE WORLD AIN'T SEEN NOTHING YET! This is going to be tame compared to what else is to come in our lifetime.  I don’t recall being fearful.  I grew up in Michigan. The state of Michigan has the highest concentration of Muslims out side of Muslim countries. Detroit has the country's largest concentration of Arabs (mostly Lebanese, Iraqis, Palestinians, and Yemenis), a legacy of the days when Henry Ford employed Lebanese laborers. They were my co-workers, school mates and friends.  I remember in the days after on the new they showed where 3 business men were asked to leave a flight because the other passengers weren't comfortable with them being on it.

  How sad it was to have such “justified” paranoia toward the stereotype.

  I experience PTSD Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  Now those in the Military will recognize it and most people will recognize is as the term “SHELL SHOCK.”  
It comes from traumas that we encounter. When we don’t deal with the trauma properly, any situation that shows up in our lives resembling that trauma will cause the mind and body to think the trauma is happening all over again causing you to go into an irrational Fight or Flight mode. The tricky thing is that anything can trigger this reaction: A smell, a phrase, a song on the radio, a T.V Show or movie,  the way someone looks or acts, an article of clothing….   If you don’t know the proper steps to take when the triggers happen then your reactions can be more damaging to you and those around you. I haven't even mentioned the PHYSICAL effects it has, headache, nausea, blurred vision... 


I have come to determine that our Nation suffers from PTSD Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and we suffer on all levels: Religiously, Politically, Financially, Racially Civilly and Socially.
We Are A Wounded Nation.
We are a wounded nation and it effects us all on a personal level. How do you heal a nation? It begins on a personal level. It begins with our own issues. It begins with us recognizing our own truth and owning it.  It begins when we decide to live in our truth or change it because we don’t like it and then doing the work to create a better truth. We will never begin to truly live our lives as long as we expect others to do the work to repair it.
 My generation will either be the generation that makes it better or makes it worse and begins with something as simple as teaching our children and grandchildren within the home. We are a nation who doesn't mind lying down and doing what it takes to bring children into the world. But somewhere along the way we've stopped parenting and teaching them. 

We've put them in front of TVs, Computers and iPads and allowed for those things to take our place in their education.
 I can remember being in Kindergarten, knowing my ABC’s and how to count to 50 and knowing how to spell my name and yes…. Reading. Small simple books. I address my teachers and my parent’s friends as Mrs., Miss or Mister, not by their first name, because we were not contemporaries. We were taught to look people in the face when we spoke to them and speak loudly and clearly and with confidence. These were some of the things that would make us successful in life.

 The home is our first school of learning: table manners, common courtesies how to get along. If two or more of us wanted to watch different shows at the same time there was no 2nd or 3rd TV we had to learn how to compromise and negotiate with each other. Sometimes the negotiation was to digress and give in.  Other times it was to strike a deal and go after what was worth it to you. All skills you need to learn to have a successful life. We had to pick our battles. If I get mad and hit my brother, how will he retaliate, will I be strong enough to deal with it? Will whatever happens after be worth the shot I took?  We had to think things through and live with consequences and be accountable for our actions. If we stole something we were marched right back into the store and had to confess what we did to the people we did it to.   There’s very little accountability for choices these days.  Bad behavior and disrespect is excused because it’s funny or because it’s done in truth or because it’s none of our business.  As a child even if we were brutally honest as children are we were schooled on the appropriateness, attitude and disrespect we presented that truth.  We learned when truth should be brutally honest, when it should set you free, and when it came with gentle correction and strong love.  

 Lack of these things add to the PTSD of our Nation.
Failing to take advantage of our education and knowing the importance of it adds to the PTSD of Nation. For some of it, it was our only way out of breaking a cycle of poverty and negative environment. School is where we learned to be part of a team, cheering and encouraging other and being a part of a group (instead of a gang) that set goals and accomplished them.  Almost most every kid was in cub scouts, boy scouts, Brownies or Campfire girls.  Boy and girls clubs flourished with positive activities for community and person growth. Weekends were spent at the YMCA or the Rec Centers with friends and we played basket ball, Volleyball, Softball, Baseball, hockey and learned to swim. And when it was nice outside we rode bikes and skate boards, made jumps and forts and go-carts or played baseball in the vacant fields.  Our Asses were healthier and smaller because we moved them and didn't need them for a cushion all night and day.
Things were rarely just given to us frivolously. We had to earn money through cutting grass, raking leaves, shoveling snow, helping the neighbor do chores if we wanted a new bike, roller blades, skateboards, action figures, radios or walkie talkies. Feel free to replace that with Scooters, cars, clothes, cell phones, ipods/pad or xbox’s.
We weren't afraid to Say Grace or reference scriptures or any other book that might lay some kind of moral foundation. It was cool to hang out with parents and grandparents and they knew our friends and their family members for a couple of Generations.
 People weren't  offended when you corrected their children for doing the wrong thing. As a matter of fact they called you and thanked you for setting them straight and looking out for them in the absence of their parent. And the parents had the courage to be embarrassed by the actions of the offending child and reinforced that correction.   We lived in the village and tolerate the village fool and the village idiot because even they have a value, even if it was to be an example of what not to do and how to be better.  
It was ok for our sons to play with girls and our daughters to play with boys because they were appropriate, we taught them how to be.
 We didn’t separated them until the age of 16 and then expect them to automatically know how to deal with each other. We grew them up together, watched them fight as kids and learn how to settle it without parents getting too involved to the rescue. We sent them on activities together with our families and their families so if they could date at the right age they had a foundation of friendship and familiarity. They curiosity of each other didn’t get the best of them and carry them away to unknown and pent up curiosity.
We are in a day and age of exceptions. Everyone man woman and child I know and their situation is the exception to some kind of rule making us all JUST AS SPECIAL AND IMPORTANT as everyone else. The agenda of some is to push the exception to be the rule.  Putting the needs of the one above the needs of the most or not accepting that which is “just as good as” the rule.

We’ve turned into a nation of selfish untrusting control freaks. We want power and control over people and thing but aren’t willing to do the work to accomplish those things. We tell folks what we want and expect everyone else to do the work to accomplish it.  And become upset when they don’t do it right or how we want it done. Not recognizing it just may not be what they want.
We've come from a nation of loving Shirley Temple to Loving Honey Boo Boo.
 From loving the Mickey Mouse Club to Loving the Bad Girl’s Club and from watching the Honey Moon game to watching the Bachelor and Bachelorette.  In a diverse nation it takes all kinds to strengthen and weaken it.
 Our country is wounded, our pride is wounded and we are becoming weaker each year, not recognizing that the strength of the Nation is dependent on the strength of the home and family.  It thrives off the working man doing the manual labor to make things happen, more than the man up in the office on the phone. It thrives on the teachers who educate our kids, the police and firefighter who put the lives on the line each time they go into work, not the pro athlete, the actress or the rap artists making a million and using it for multiple cars, houses and jewelry.
 It thrives on the Mothers and Fathers who support each other and their children, not the playa’s and the baby mama’s  who can’t afford to live by themselves, let alone take care of someone they’ve brought into the world. In the Animal world, A baby penguin will die if both parents don't work together.

        We’ve jump to become offended first instead of allowing common sense, or even the Holy Spirit of God to discern if offense was intended.  We fight and disagree trying to see eye to eye instead of understanding that it’s more important to see heart to heart. 
 The state of the Nation is in some way no better or worse off then the state of our homes and family.  We’ve lost focus.  It is us who heals and strengthens the Nations. The Nation doesn’t heal and strengthen us.

   Let us take this opportunity to look back at 9/11 and remember and in that remembrance let us remember how we used to be as a country and Let us also take this opportunity to begin to heal our Nation on a more personal level. We can’t control our Government or our neighbors. But we can go back into our homes as parents and families and begin to heal within the safety of it’s walls, How knows maybe the generation behind us will become the generations that brings it all back together.  God Bless you. God Bless the USA.

June 29, 2013

NOW I Know Why The World is Round.... We Keep Going In Circles

I've come to the conclusion that the world goes round and figuratively, because we push it round and round.  I'm probably going to say a buncha stuff that people don't wanna here. Feel free to exit stage right at any moment, it truly won't hurt my feelings.

 This week in our nation has truly made me recognize, we haven't come as far as we thought regarding how to be good countrymen, citizens and neighbors. This week has been an incredibly eye opening and it feels, to me, as if we are taking steps backwards instead of forward while going in circles at the same time.

 I tell you one thing... I WANT OFF THIS CRAZY RIDE!!!

Just like in school, if we don't learn the needed things to move on with life, we keep repeating the same mistakes and it turns into a vicious cycle and eventually you learn  and progress or get dizzy and quit trying learning to be blissful in the ignorance.  Is our nation to the point of being blissful in the ignorance?
3d people- human character going in circles  3d render illustration Stock Photo - 14767501

 3 items of note have come to the forefront of the news.

Texas abortion Laws
Trayvon Martin Murder Case
Paula Deen, fallen from grace.

Sen. Wendy Davis of Texas attempted to stage a filibuster to block the vote on new Texas abortion law. The new law would ban abortions after 20 weeks and effectively close most abortion clinics in Texas by requiring tighter medical standards for the facilities.   I see at least two things minimally wrong with this. First let me state the I am wholeheartedly 100% PRO LIFE. I usually don't refer to my political preferences here but feel the need today.  I fully understand a women's right to want to abort a child because it's her body and her business. And I understand the desire to abort in cases medical necessity or rape or torture.  However it's our bodies not minding it's own business that gets us  pregnant.
  Anytime we women make the decision to have sex we know the risk of getting pregnant, even if we use birth control. Carelessness is not a justification for selfishness and selfishness is not a justification of carelessness. Neither are grounds to kill the potential of human life.  Yeah I said kill. If it's living regardless if it's inside or outside of your body (which in my mind is a technicality) it's murder.  Consider this freaky imagination I have.... if children could be conceived and incubated outside of the body would it not be murder to terminate it's life, regardless of the life's origins?  In my eyes, yup, it sure is.  So many families want and can't have children, why is adoption not a stronger option? Is it ego? Shame? Embarrassment of whats done in the dark coming to light?  some say it's not wanting to mess up their body. You'd think that there would be that kind of care taken in the beginning to protect the body if you didn't want to mess it up. 
   Again I fully Understand the desire when tragedy such as rape, incest or any other trauma may be concerned . There are medical measures to insure one doesn't get pregnant, give those a try. In the mean time expect it can happen when ever you lie down for sex.  This is a Fetus at 20 weeks old. It breaths. It moves. Being inside a sac of fluid inside another body doesn't make it less alive or less human. 

 The next thing i see wrong is....If you're the type to get an abortion... wouldn't you want to have it done in a facility with tighter medical standards? Seriously who wants to go to a substandard medical facility to have a procedure done? The tighter the better and healthier. I'm not sure what the problem is of raising health facilities to a tighter medical standards. It would scare me more that most places offering abortions would have to "step it up" to meet that standard and they should. Hopefully with that higher standard  their would be less chance of complications in the procedure and treatment.  It's almost as if those seeking to get abortions would rather go through some back door in an ally and have it taken care of as if it were a dirty little secret. Oh wait.... I guess in reality for some, it is like that.  Perhaps we should fight to have better education on how to not get pregnant. Or at least take responsibility for our actions for those who behave so selfishly..and then take it out on an innocent life by discarding that life.

I've been watching some of the Trayvon Martin hearing. 

Its been painful to watch the start witness take the stand. It's been painful to hear her speak and see her attitude knowing that it has confirmed what parts of the country believe about all black people: uneducated, mad as hell and justified in racial speech.

What some people aren't putting into perspective:  She is a young adult that's put under so much pressure right now. While this defense attorney is smirking and displaying her lack of articulation  experience and attitude about the situation, all while she is face to face with the man who killed her childhood/boyfriend. It doesn't appear she was properly prepped for court or her case and almost as if they picked her up from the local hang out spot and took her to court unprepared. 

I couldn't do it.  However the most painful thing, to me is the lack of support and overwhelming criticism of her by the black community, the very community who should be surrounding her lifting her up and carrying this burden with her.   

But we did the same thing with Olympic Gold Medalist Gabby Douglas didn't we:

 The child was out of the country winning gold medals under enormous pressure and competition...and all black folks did was talk about how badly her hair was did.   

This girl!.... Yeah... THIS GIRL RIGHT HERE... Who can do this move..

And and the move below:
can wear her hair however she want. Yeeuuh.. Im pretty sure she was working all day...and  all year while we sat on our butts hoping she would do her best no matter what she looked like.

 Only to pull this kind of Crap:.

 To which Little Sister Gabby Said: "I AM NOT MY HAIR!!"  Amen to that. But what you truly are is a Two time Gold medal Olympian. And I hope one day you get the chance to slap all the haters with that gold!


...and hear me good:

 WE CAN'T EXPECT WHITE PEOPLE TO RESPECT US  IF WE DON'T EVEN RESPECT OURSELVES!. We can't expect them to live to a higher standard of respect when we aren't even willing to step up to that higher standard either.  It will NEVER happen if we don't get there ourselves. When we show the world we don't like each other, why should they have a reason to like us?   All things begin within. 

 Non black people already see us as having a double standard racially assuming "we can say  what we want about other races but nobody better not EVUH, EVUH say anything about a black person.  Don't even Say the word black when mentioning my name."

 We cant even discuss racial matters without someone assuming the race card is being played in a victimizing way. If I hear ONE MORE TIME..."Why is it ok for Rappers to Say Nigga in their songs but white people cant say it...AT ALL?"
 The Lead witness in the trial didn't feel the word "Creepy Ass Cracker" was a racially motivated phrase or slur. I feel she's brought up in a place t where this kind of speech is so common and tolerated that the ignorance of it all is lost on her.  
 Point number 1:  America, not all black people Appreciate Rappers singing it or other black folks saying it.  When i hear young people say it I let them know HEY... if you say it then white folks thinks it's ok to day it.  And it's not ok for them OR you to be throwing it around. 

Point Number 2; If my mama calls me chubbs cuz I was a chubby baby... I know it comes from a place of endearment. She's cared for me, she know my struggle, she loves me on conditionally and I hear it from  the place it was intended.  Same with the rest of the family.    Outside of the family, if you call me chubby, it's going to be a problem. I don't know you, you don't know me. you don't know my struggle and I don't know your intention or the place from which if comes.  There's a difference in "the family" using an endearment and a stranger just Seeing a difference and throwing it out there. 

Point Number 3.Although some words are the same they have distinct meanings.  I know it's an oxymoron and probably didn't make let me try to explain with a few examples
  Naked:: you don't have clothes on.  
  Nekkid: you don't have clothes on and you're up to something. 
Gay: Happy
Gay: Same sex orientation.
Gay: Lame or stale.
Bitch: Hey girlfriend!
Bitch: Female Dog
Bitch: Evil woman i just cant stand.
Negro: Uh oh, black man in trouble with a family member usually wife, mama or grandmama
Nigga: My Brotha!
Nigger: Ignorant under class/privileged black person needing to put in their under classed place or hung like back in the day.. (racial slur. themz fightin words)
Fag: Cigarette butt
Fag: a Drudge, someone less privileged in british culture *but we ain't in Great Britain, are we?*
Fag: Freak who has sex with the same gender. (homophobic slur, themz fighting words too)
White trash: Good ole' down to earth white folks living the simple easy life
White trash: Same definition as Nigger except with white folks.(for me these would be fighting words)
 Personally Im good eliminating all of the above from my vocabulary. I'd like to think Im intelligent enough to express how I feel without the  passive aggressive invitation to figure out what I mean by saying any one of those phrases.   Yet, on the other hand, people say they're just words, which is true. However we used words to bring across particular meaning. So they aren't just words. Words have meaning and evoke intention and action.  If someone can't read your meaning or intention, THAT'S A PROBLEM!
The U.S.A has a history of races struggling when discovered or brought to this country Starting with the colonial times. We hear all the time about "well American had white indentured servants who acted as slaves for time."    There is a HUGE difference in putting yourself into a life of servitude knowing that in a few years you'd be free and being captured and born in captivity with a nothing but a life ahead of you of servitude and you having no say or other options, except to try and escape and likely be injured for life or killed doing so. The word Nigger serves a a reminder of actual family members who endured that life. When white people use it, It makes us think you'd put us back to lifestyle in a hot second if you had the chance.

Is that so hard to understand?

Last but not least... need I say it?

The Queen of Butter is having a melt down.   You know this whole Paula Deen issues didn't even really start out about Race. The media grabbed that part of her deposition and ran with it.  Paula Deen is an old southern white woman who has used the word Nigger in the passed. What old southern white woman hasn't?  Not excusing it. Not condoning it. And sure don't feel like it's Justified. I'm not surprised by it either.
 Hell, at least she's honest and you know where you stand with her. But this is where Paula got herself into trouble:
Here is a summation of her court deposition.  The link gives you the source. Below are the "low"lights of the summation.

1. She refused to have her empire destroyed by “a piece of pussy.” (Also, she uses that word!)
Former employee Lisa Jackson said that she was hired to replace a general manager at the restaurant Uncle Bubba’s who was fired for having sexual relationships with underage servers. While demanding the manager be fired, Jackson says that Deen told her brother, “If you think I have worked this hard to lose everything because of a piece of pussy, you better think again.” Asked in her deposition whether she actually said it, Deen responded with an abso-friggin-lutely: “I said that day and I would say it again today if it applied.” She then repeated the sentence, making not being in that room a regret we’ll all have to live with for the rest of our lives.

2. She really wanted to stage that Southern plantation-style wedding. But she didn’t because the media wouldn’t understand.
Jackson said she was put in charge of arrangements for Bubba’s wedding, which Deen apparently said she wanted to have a “true Southern plantation-style theme.” What, pray tell, does that mean? “Well what I would really like is a bunch of little n----rs to wear long-sleeve white shirts, black shorts, and black bow-ties, you know in the Shirley Temple days, they used to tap dance around,” Deen reportedly elaborated. Alas, the wedding Deen envisioned never came to be. “We can’t do that because the media would be on me about that,” she reportedly told Jackson. In her testimony, Deen said that she actually was referencing the “beautiful white jackets with a black bow-tie” she saw the wait staff of “middle-aged black men” wearing at a restaurant she visited “in Tennessee or North Carolina or somewhere.”
3. She did not use the N-word to describe the waiters.
Deen objected to the accusation that she used the N-word to describe the waiters. Asked whether there was any possibility that she may have slipped and use the word, she said, “No, because that’s not what these men were. They were professional black men doing a fabulous job.” Still, when asked why nicely dressed black men would be a part of a “Southern plantation wedding,” she said it reminded her of southern America “before the Civil War.” After being reminded that black men serving people in the South before the Civil War were slaves, she agreed, but said she “did not mean anything derogatory” by her comments.
4. She doesn't think that watching porn or being racist at work makes you a bad boss.
In her deposition, Deen was asked whether the fact that her brother admitted to watching pornography and using the N-word at their restaurant caused her to have concerns about him running their business. She responded, “just because he’s got a sense of humor does not make him a bad person or incapable of running a business.” Questioned as to whether jokes of a sexual or racist nature are in poor taste at a place of work, she responded, “We have all told off-color jokes … Every man I’ve ever come in contact with has one.”
5. But she does use the N-word!
Deen admitted to using the N-word in her life, after a “black man” put a gun to her head at a bank where she was working. She said she used it because she “didn’t feel real favorable towards him.” She also said she’s sure she’s used the word since, “but it’s been a very long time” and guessed that she probably used it when quoting “a conversation between blacks.”
6. She doesn’t think the N-word is bad, as long as it’s used in a joke. 
Deen said that she and her husband taught her children not to use the N-word in a mean way. Asked when exactly that word be used in a not-mean way, she said either when repeating what you may hear “black people” say in the kitchen or when used in a joke.
7. She sees nothing wrong with watching a little porn at work. A major point in the suit is that Deen’s brother, Bubba, was accused of looking at pornography at work and showing it to employees. Asked whether she has any problem with such practices, Deen said, “If somebody sent him something and he pulled it up and looked at it, no, I would not persecute him for that.”
Paula Deen is mostly guilty of Bad People Management in her business. Knowing these things went on in her place of business and omitting to do anything about she has put herself in a position of concern. She has put her self in a position to be sued for sexual, racial, religious and gender harrassment.  She is therefore a liability to those who have invested in her, her brand and her business practices. Were I a business partner, I would drop her on her butter too. So, to some extent, it's about race and her desire to play out some twisted good ole boys pre civil war plantation wedding. But for the most part. Her business practices in regards to her working staff cannot be trusted. And her sponsors are saying 'Aint nobody got time for that."  Now the "Deenies" are coming out of the woodwork to those who are dropping her and protesting. But I ask you.would you want an impressionable young adult child of yours, say age 20-21 work in that kind of  environment?  And do you want to be subject to that in your place of employment? Some of you actually would, but I bet the majority of her sponsor would not.  
I was reading an article inTime Entertainment Online Magazine that put race portion of the it so well....
"Deen made a pile of money off a certain idea of old-school southern culture. In return, she had an obligation to that culture–an obligation not to embody its worst, most shameful history and attitudes. Instead, in one swoop, fairly or not, she single-handedly affirmed people’s worst suspicions of people who talk and eat like her–along with glibly insulting minorities, she slurred many of the very fans who made her successful.
Paula, Much Like the star witness in the Trayvon Martin trial are both Products of their Environment and surroundings.  Are they racist, the old white woman from the south and the young black woman from the hood?  Possibly. Is there a difference in Using the word Nigger as long as it's in a joke, or not recognizing that Creepy ass Cracker is just as much of a slur?  Quite possibly.  While being a product of your environment is typically not your own doing, but how you hold yourself and serve in that community is the difference. The affect you have on others and the example you become when you're a Popular Star or on  a platform where the world can see you. How you uphold or betray the trusts and efforts of those who put you in the place and path of success, makes a world of difference in how the world will see you when you make mistakes. I feel for Ms Deen, I really do. I've never been a real fan. Never made one of her recipes, used her cookware (which I understand you can get a great deal on while supplies last) and never read a book of hers.) I know she's been paid millions for it all. And now, unfortunately she's paying the price of her actions (or lack of them.)

These are not new experiences and situations we're having where we don't know how to act toward's our brothers, sisters, neighbors, community and countrymen. I feel like we took steps backwards this week and truly haven't come as far as I thought we have. Why are we not learning from these situations so we have to keep on peddling in circles like some crazy carnival ride that just wont stop.   I don't know about y'all but.. I'm tired and tired of it.   It's time to stop the madness and get out of the circle that is doing nothing but making us Sick...and dizzy.

Peace out...

May 01, 2013

Look Out World,....HERE SHE COMES!!!

In 3 Days on May 4, 2013 My daughter will Graduate from Utah State University. GO AGGIES! I could not foresee this day 23 years ago when she was exactly the age of age of 3 months and four days (and 9 minutes) old. I was barely used to the idea of being a mom and in charge of another life be sides my own.  It feels like a hundred years and another life time ago.

  Random memories come flashing through my mind at different stages of her growing up. She was just as brilliant and genius as every other kid on the planet.  At the age of 2 when she was playing reverse peek a-boo by herself by putting a blanket on her head, pulling it off and saying…
 Or running into the living room and say…
”mommy? What time is it?  Eight Firty!!”
 and run out of the room laughing out loud.
We used to pass a gas station with a sculpture of a dinosaur next to it. One day, when she was the age of three, while I was pumping the gas she said…
 “Mommy… look at that tremendous dinosaur! Have you even seen a tremendous dinosaur like that before? I like tremendous dinosaurs!”

 Which prompted me to take her to the local museum to look at more dinosaur stuff.  That was the beginning of our discovering the world together. If she had an interest in some thing  I would  find way she could explore it and learn about it. Sometimes she was just ok learning a little more and other times she would delve into it with curiosity until the hunger for knowledge was explored and then we were on to the next thing.  In elementary school she liked  to do cartwheels so I put her in Gymnastics class.  One time she was in the yard until dark trying to get that stupid cartwheel down correctly.  When she sent her  mind to something. She did it.   We determined she was just too tall for her age and too young to coordinate her body to do gymnastics.  So it was on to the next things
 She had an interest in music and liked to play around with piano and key boards and sing.  So I put her in music lessons.. Since her Aunt had a key board she liked to play with. In Jr high school she fell in love with the violin and began lessons and learned to read music. This was the birth of her being as she calls herself  and “orch dork” (orchestra dork)  She may not remember but with her learning to play music we got her a keyboard and a self teach piano program so she wouldn’t be so board in the summer. She could go at her own pace.   She finished the piano program in less than a week. so she began put some of her poetry to music.   When she got bored with that, it was on to the next thing.   She became a crafty sort of person. I taught her how to make bath salts and she had beads and string and elastic and started making wooden bead bracelets.  She sold them to the ladies at my sister’s office.   I thought “hey, this kid can make money…”
When her 1000 colored wooden beads were all gone… she was on to the next thing.   I kept her off of computer games and video games, which meant a lot of her entertainment, would come from good ol’
mom.  It was a love hate thing. When her friends were grounded or playing their video games, good ol’ mom would grab the tennis rackets or the roller blades and off we’d go. One day is was raining and we were bored so for 2 hours we just walked the neighborhood with the purpose of jumping into every mud puddle we could find. Who ever was dirtiest was the winner.
 (I won )

   I made sure that anytime she committed to something that involved other peoples time and money, she would commit to one year. If she was grounded it wouldn't be from a rehearsal or a practice where she was part of a team because the team would then suffer at her expense which is unacceptable.  I hope this is what helped her to be a team player and hold her end of responsibilities where other people were involved.  The sad thing is… while I was teaching my child these things, many of her friends were not learning the same things: being responsible, accountable, team players, following through with commitments and obligations.  She doesn’t deal  well with people who don’t have these same principles and ethics. She has learned to tolerant them while keeping them at arms length.
I taught her to drive at age 11.  Shoot! She was tall enough and pretty mature for her age.  So I would let her drive 2 blocks to where my sister worked, or 1 mile to church and back on Sundays.  Teaching her things  and watching her figure things out was fun.
Since the age of six she always said she wanted to be a “premature baby Dr.”   By Sixth Grade I was informed the correct verbiage was a Neonatalogist. (exxcuuuuze me!)

 When she entered JR High I only had 3 class requirements of her: She had to choose 1 instrument, 1 language and 1 sport and maintain it through High School.  She chose the violin, Spanish and basket ball. When she didn’t make the basket ball team she started throwing the discus for track. Either way those things along with her various church activities  kept her busy, out of trouble and entertained enough for her various interest.  I made deals with her that if her GPA didn’t drop below a certain point, she could skip school 2 days a semester, Which she never did because she hated missing school unless she was sick.  (who does that? “hates missing school mess…”)  On her birthdays I would send flowers and balloons.  A couple of times I showed up on her lunch break with a few pizza’s, balloons and cupcakes.  Yeah, I would just “show up” and not tell her.  I’ve done it since she was in elementary school.  To make sure she wasn’t screwing around in class and to make sure she wasn’t being screwed with in class.  And my parents did the same thing to me and my siblings.  I remember feeling horrified one day in 3rd grade looking up and seeing my father talking to the teacher.  I remember thinking…
 “uh ohh was I just asking a fool or was I in behavior mode..?”  It’s a good strategy. Every parent should do it.
 My daughter was set on going  into the medical industry so she took a field trip to the medical lab at the University when she was 16.  It was cool, but the reality of having someone else’s life in your hands was a bit more than she felt she could take. So after all these years of wanting to be a “premature baby dr” she needed to find another career path.    So she chose engineering.  As long as I can remember anytime something broke, she wanted to tear it apart, look inside and see how it worked.  This kid has asked me for old TV sets, phones, radios, VCR’s, walkmans, etc.   “Mom, can I tear it apart and look inside??”   Even now every once in a while she’ll ask to destroy something.    The fun thing is…
she figures out how to fix a bunch of things too, like her car radio. Her next thing is to figure out how to change her own breaks.  Excellent, because then she can change mine too!
  She was accepted to USU her senior year of H.S as an engineering major.  She also rec’ a four year tuition scholarship for Academics. She took the ACT’s twice.  USU wanted her BYU and U of U didn’t want her until after she took it the second time and increased her score.  She chose USU saying…
“IF USU wants to take credit for educating me to be the amazing person I'm going to be, who am I to stop them?” (Go ahead on baby girl!).
The more she was getting her General Education done and working toward the Engineering major the more she recognized how difficult it would be for her to have a family and be an engineer.   She also had a desire to help children and thought. She had many friends who were caught up in the foster care system. Eventually she changed her major to Something I can never remember, but it had to do with  being a family home therapist and dealing with families before they get to the point of sending children to foster care.   I have a few friends who work with Child welfare here in Utah so I sent her to work with one for the day.  She said it broke her heart but she hoped she could be of some help to these families.
My daughter has been fortunate to find scholarships, grants, internships and work study that pays for her other expenses.  She entered a work study program called  “read America” where she helped  tutor 3rd graders how to read.  This is where she fell in love . Soon after she was wanting  to change her major again.  She was reluctant because she felt she let the family down by not being a Doctor or Engineer.  I told her we don’t care what she graduates in as long as she graduates and can make a living.    She changed her major for what would be the last time.    She is good at what she does no matter what it is, but teaching children, she is excellent.  So much so that as a student, her professors have asked her to speak at Teacher conferences.  The dean of her college  tracked her down at her job  to tell her if she goes to graduate school is has to be a USU and they offered her a paid apprentice position  and internship to help with expenses.  She put a pause on that situation just tying to get through getting her bachelor’s degree.   To which she will be getting in 3 days.   3 days!

  I have received conformation that before  my daughter was born, she was on the other side of Heaven hanging out with my Grandmother.

 My grandmother went to Lane College ( Same Time as Alex Haley I believe) and got a Degree in Nursing and  Nutrition. But since folks weren't hiring black Nurses or dietitians she ended up being a kindergarten teacher.  As a matter of fact many of my friends from JR High and High School were taught by my Grandmother . So my family is well known in the area for her, and my grandfather.   What’s even more amazing is my daughter is a Grandtwin. She looks like my grand         Alieshia: daughter @ H.S Graduation

Pearl Dryden (Flowers) Dudley: Grandmother                        

 (try punishing your 12 year old grandmother when she does something you want to smack her for…Not so easy!)

 I believe the 2 of them were thick as thieves before my daughter was born because there's soo much of my Grandmother in her. She was born 4 years after my Grandmother passed away. There was a lot of education going on up   there.  Primed and ready for the world.
 I don't think it's just coincidence that my child is following the footsteps of my Grandmother. I believe she listened to the whisperings of her ancestors and followed the path they created for her. So many doors opened when she was placed before them as if waiting for her to walk in.  For some of us it just happens that way. Her whole life has been that way and I had to make her brave, strong and independent enough to walk through them with or without me.

When I think of  my daughter and her education, 2 images come to mind.
One you will know of:
Ruby Bridges.  Every time I think of her story the first black child to integrate public schools. I cry.  She was six years old.  SIX YEARS OLD. What a heavy, heavy load for such a little girl.
Six years old!!! To be threatened and told her food was poisoned. How scary it must have been to face vicious hostile, white crowd just to get an education. Escorted by state Marshall's to keep her life intact. I can't Imagine. I'm so grateful for her strength and for her pioneer spirit that allowed her to march forward in paving the way.  Even her name, Ruby Bridges... a visible symbol in bridging racial gaps and standing out like the jewel she is. So strong in faith of her God in asking the father to "Forgive them, for they know not what they do.."  What an honor. I weep for the six year old who was brave and scared and did it anyway. I stand in awe of her courage.

 I weep for the six year old who was brave and scared and did it anyway. I stand in awe of her courage. 

 This other image I'll be almost no one recognizes. I went to the  Civil Rights exhibit and the Leonardo last February. It was  UH-MAY-ZING!   I saw this photo. I don't recall who the photographer is so if anyone out there knows, please tell me so I can give credit. 
 The story behind this photo was about the  first "HEAD START" and the sadness of how the black schools and student didn't have even the proper materials to learn with. 

The black preschools didn't have materials so butcher paper was hung on the brick walls since tables and desks were non existent for them. I saw this photo and immediately wanted a picture of it for my Daughter to one day hang in her classroom.  I wanted her to continue to be inspired to teach. I also want to get this picture of  Ruby Bridges...
The problem we all live with - Norman Rockwell

   So she won't forget the road that was paved for her to have these graduating moments and so she will instill in her student this legacy (which actually belongs to us all, Black, White, Latin, Asian and everything in between) and desire to grain knowledge, and to fight the good right to pave the way for those who will come behind us.
  So my family has come for the graduation. And when I say family I mean those who walk the Earth and those who dwell on the other side.  I can see and hear them. ' My parents flew in today, my mother from Michigan and my Father from Arizona.  Their parents have already been here for a week. My daughter was wondering why the dog has been flipping out.  I didn't really tell her because these things tend to freak her out sometimes. But she has been surrounded by  Dudley's and Gambles and Jordans and Flowers and Warfield's for the last week. 

 She is their legacy and they are here to support and cheer her on to victory. I hope somehow she gets a small glimpse of who is here in her behalf. And I hope she knows they pleased with choices she made, the hurdles she's crossed and the accomplishment's she's achieved.  She is their success and the example of her family members who follow behind her.  The Lord has paved her way with blessings all her life and will continue to do so. 
  Many of my friends have looked at me with a saddened face and said... "She's all grown up now and startling life on her own don't you want to just hold her back for a little while, it's all moving so quickly?"   
 I say to them as a proud mother.   Hold her back?  NO WAY! I didn't  do all this to hold her back. How will I ever know what kind of mother I truly am unless I give her to the world and see what she can add to it? I"m excited to see her go. I'm excited to watch her fly. I'm excited for the world to be blessed with all she has to add to it! i can't wait to see her in action!"  I thank All who encountered my child  through education whether it be in the class room or outside of it.  As a Single mother I was NEVER a single mother.  So this is an accomplishment we share with many! I thank USU for taking her,  guiding her, nurturing her, calling her and letting her know there were scholarships and grants she qualified for and having her come in and apply for them. I thank USU for including health care cost into tuition so that was one less thing as a student she had to worry about.  I thank USU for having a Black Student Union to give minority kids like mine a place to come together and socialize in a safe environment  focusing on academics and community.  I thank My Daughter, Alieshia for putting in the work to reach those accomplishments that many who come from single parent homes don't end up reaching.
  As she puts on her cap and gown and  walks with her  Tassel and her  Cum Laud cords.... I'll be saying Watch out World... There's an Aggie in the house about to change the world in her own little way. 

March 16, 2013

Kickin Ass and Just Don't Care

When I hear stories of kids being bulled, It makes me wanna find the bully, and start kickin ass...
 And YES I KNOW by doing that it make me hypocritical and also makes me then become a bully but  I totally wouldn't care because I think all bullies should get a taste of their own actions.

Quite often we hear from those parents who have concerns for their kids who are being targeted and picked on and we offer ideas to try and help the solution. We go to the schools and start these ANTI- BULLYING and NO TOLERANCE -NO BULLYING or STOP HURTING Campaigns.

Are they working? Do they mean anything to the kids? And what happens outside of school when there are no teachers or principles in charge?  What happens on the buses or at the bus stops?  What about the neighborhood parks and play grounds or even at Church?  It's not secret that kids to day are more Audacious, less respectful and  to some degree clueless about social graces. They'd rather text a friend then actually pick up a phone or walk next door to speak with them.  In leaving them to their electronic devises have they become hard hearted toward the feeling of others and the impact of what their actions cause? Life is not a "restart" when life levels of age 11, 12 and 13 get difficult. There is no google apt for "life cheats" they can download into their brains and just allow it to take over until life gets easier.

The average age of cyber bullying starts about 9 years old that's around 3rd and 4th grade. That's pretty young.  I have seen it start in real life in kindergarten with 5 and 6 year olds.  That's horrific.

Children are killing themselves because of it..[ Children every year commit suicide because of extreme bullying. An estimated 160,000 students stay home from school every day because of bullying incidents Says an article in TIME magazine:,9171,1978773,00.html

That's heart breaking.

  My daughter, now age 23 and about to graduate from Utah State University with a Bachelors in early childhood education, is student teaching at a local school.  She is working with children how are being bullied in school and at church. She knows it's happening, however in the schools if you don't see it happening, there if very little you can do to confront the bully or their parents, which is where I believe the problem is.  This should not be a situation the schools should be dealing with. This is a HOME TRAINING situation. Bullying starts and stops within the home.  Too many of us live under the umbrella of  "NOT MY CHILD..."  When indeed it can be ANY of our child on either side of the bullying.  We barely take the time to sit with our children and go over home work and school assignments let alone talk to them about bullying.  We leave too much up to the schools these days When indeed the schools and homes should be in partnership to consistently train and educate a child in the ways they should be.  My hell we had the time to lay up with someone and make the child. We out to make the time to educated them every step of the way in every aspect of life. Maybe all too late we've come to realize that 30 minutes of "love" can birth 18+ years of heartache if we are not careful in dealing with our children.   I am under the impression that every parent should carry on as if their child is the bully and the one being bullied.

 One thing I carried from my childhood school days is looking up at random times while in class and seeing my father talking to the teacher.  I wouldn't know how long he was in there. what I was doing when he walked in and if I was going to get a show down when I came home from school. All of my siblings have had this experience. I can remember speaking with him about one time when I was away to college. I said..."well I know I was sometimes the child from hell and you needed to check and make sure I wasn't causing any trouble in school.."  He said that was exactly right. but then he said... "I also needed to make sure that you were being treated properly in school by teachers and schoolmates."   I never thought of it that way.    When my daughter started school I carried on that tradition. I would show up to her school and in her class at random times from Kindergarten until she graduated high school. In elementary school it was a special treat. I remember walking into her third grade class and speaking with her teacher and hearing one of her friends say.. " Hey, your mom is here!" To which my daughter said... "I know, she like to come and check up on me sometimes."  Her class mate said.."Oh wow, that's cool  I wish my mom would come and visit and check on me!"    I remember turning and winking at her when I left the class that day.

There were a couple of  times when I got reports that my daughter was causing disruptions and so on.They were usually at parent teacher conferences and it was usually she has a group of friends that sit together in class and kind of disrupt it by always visiting and laughing with one another.
 I remedied that rather quickly with requesting her seat be up front and way from her friends to making her write and read an apology letter to the class for being disruptive and taking away from education time. This didn't make her a target, it made her a class leader. When I learned there was a problem (and that's been all of twice in her school days) I Jumped on it. I handled the situation by letting her know expeditiously what would and would not be tolerated. I knew my child, what she was capable of  good and bad. Her teachers knew her, what she was capable of good and bad. When crap went down as school they recognized the my child sticks up for the underdog, took time to learn why people act the way they do and could disrupt the class with a joke or comical story to stall the teaching process.  I do recall one incident when I got a call from her...she was in tears and all she could say to me on the phone was... "I WANT TO COME HOME."  I bolted from work, rushed to the school, found her in the principles office in tears saying  " I want to come home."   I asked the principle what was going on. He didn't know.  We went into his office and closed the door.   The first thing he said to me was.."I know your daughter very well, she is one of the only students who fits into every clique or genre in this school so if there is a problem with her, she's been acted upon. I asked her if she was hurt or felt her safety was in danger and she said no. That's all I could get out of her so we let her call you."
   Turns out there's one kid in class that likes to target people and for whatever reason today she chose my child.   As it turns out my daughter stood up to her face to face and handled the situation. But after class she was so angry that her own friends in the same class didn't have her back that she felt betrayed and hurt.  She said she didn't "give a damn" about the chick in class because she's got her own issues to live with.     I was relieved that she was not in any harm and most of all that she stood up to this class jerk. However I told her that I couldn't let her go home, because then  those who upset her would win.  I told her she had to stay and finish out the school day.  The principle however asked if she wanted to have her friends called down to the office to talk about what happened and how it made her feel to have "friends" like that.   We all agreed that's what she should do.      It turned out to be a good thing.
       I believe in making children accountable for their actions and choices. Right or wrong, I would have been in favor of this picture had it come to it:

 I hope this young lady receive something other than a sign to hold and a vacation from school for a few days.  IF adults can go to jail for harassment and assault, perhaps children should  also do some time
 Bullying. I don't know if that's the answer, but I sure would make me thing twice about putting my hands on or threatening someone just for sport doesn't only happen to the kids that are different. We need to teach our kids they are not alone in the struggles they're having as kids. We also need to teach them how to have self esteem so they can make it through those tough times because once you come out of it, life can be pretty amazing!!!!


Here's a look at some other kids who were bullied :

Tom Cruise
Tom has said he was a victim of bulling at the hands of his father. He has "vowed" to be a great father so he will never make his children feel how he was felt by someone who was supposed to love him



Charlize Theron
Charlize has shared that she was never popular at school. When chatting with People, she revealed that she cried one day at school because the popular girl at school wouldn't let her sit next to her. When someone as gorgeous as Charlize speaks about being bullied, it really highlights how it can happen to anyone.

Jessica Alba
In an interview with Mirror, Jessica shared that she was bullied so badly as a young child that she had to be walked to school and eat her lunch in the nurses office. She also shared that she never wanted to "lower to their standards" so she wouldn't say anything mean back.

Sandra Bullock
Sandra shared that she was the victim of bullying while in school because of her clothes. She went on to say that she can even remember the first and last name of every mean kid -- which shows just how much of an impact it has.

Chris Rock
Chris was bullied from a very early age because of his race. He has been quite outspoken about how he feel bullying is what makes the world go round -- and America wouldn't be what it is with out it (good and bybullies

Christina Aguilera
Christina was bullied for different reasons than some of the others. She feels it was her talent that was making people try to tear her down. Around the time she was starting to make a name for herself with her singing, the bullying got worse. There really is no 'one sized fits all' victim when it comes to bullying