Monthly Archives: June 2016

How does this work exactly?

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Why? Why do we have to spread so much hate? Why are we using the fact that we have had enough bad things happening as an excuse to spread hate?  Why are we allowing ourselves to make assumptions and then make judgements based on those assumptions? Whatever happened to asking questions? What happened to no question is a stupid question?

 

I think it happened very slowly. It has been building and I see it reaching critical mass. I think it is important to state what we will and won’t tolerate. However, sacrificing the inherit worth and dignity of each person is not the way to go. Insults are only hurtful. Name calling to get your point across is hate.  Yet we are grappling with it because PEOPLE are BEING killed. The people we are name calling are stupid and causing the trouble to begin with. I have heard it explained away a thousand times. Often people even bring their religious beliefs into it. I have even seen people use the quote “If your religion requires you to hate then you need a new religion” against Muslims. They are the problem. What is wrong with this though is that it is just as hateful. It is actually not only hateful but ignorant. We are judging an entire religion based on the actions of a few. I am pretty sure if the Jesus you believed in were here, he would call foul on that.

Really you could blanket that to make it apply to just about every hateful situation I have heard in the news lately. We are judging an entire groups of people: Race, Religion, Gender and even Parenting by the actions of a few.

Haven’t we learned that it starts out so slow. People who have gotten fet up with the way things are and want change or don’t want change.  People that don’t agree with the government and start protesting. The KKK were resisting  change, The Nazi’s wanted change. The KKK started as a social club. A SOCIAL CLUB fueled by hate and the results were horrendous.A social club that elevated themselves over other people because of a difference in RACE. When are we going to learn that meeting hate with hate only gets us more hate and death?

Okay put that on hold for a minute and let me take a little side track.

Recently I have been listening to Brene Brown on Audible. She makes a valid point and one that I have been trying to implement in my daily life. What if you had it on the highest authority that you believe in that every person you met was doing the best they could. Not just the best but the very best. If that doesn’t convict your feelings about a situation I am pretty sure nothing will. That person who took forever in the line in front of you? The very best they could. That person that cut you off? Yup they were doing the best they could. This was very hard for me to understand at first. It wasn’t until later in the book it became more clear. I can’t judge their best based on my standards. However great I feel my standards are they are not the other person’s standards. Huh. Well shit. Look at me being a judgmental bastard. How would I feel if someone judged me based on one of my worst moments, when I was barely hanging on? When I was so stressed out I didn’t even have patience for myself let alone anyone else. DAMN! now I feel bad. So I need to change that.

Now take that and add love. Stir in some U.U. principles ( The inherent worth and dignity of every person;Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;) .

Take a deep breath and tell yourself they are doing the best they can.

This is all great but how can we apply this to daily life?

Instead of judging people and being put out that they are taking so long in the line, I am trying to remember to make eye contact(that’s an important way to value people) and smile. You don’t have to say a word. Smiles project love. Especially when you let it show in your eyes. Which kind of happens when you stop and think they are doing the best they can. It might be just the smile they need that day to keep going.

I have found myself smiling more, enjoying myself more. It is not like I never held a door for someone or helped someone. It has just become almost a basic instinct reaction. Even when I think I don’t have time. The moment I think that, I take a deep breath. This is what works for me. Time is so precious am I really going to waste it being upset someone was in my way for thirty seconds longer than necessary? Oops there it is again. To me it is thirty seconds longer than necessary, if they are doing the best they can then is it really longer then necessary?

I am trying to make my basic instinct reaction one of love. What if everyone, everywhere started thinking like this?  What if instead of name calling and demeaning people- we helped raise them up? We helped them improve on being the very best they can. When you look back there is always someone somewhere that helped you be the very best you can be. What if we made that our morning mantra.

I am doing the very best I can.

They are doing the very best they can.

Time is precious, embrace love.

I don’t even want to put the word hate in there. I don’t want to even say it, let alone think it.

This entire post was inspired by something I saw on Facebook. Shocking I know. It started from a pledge that I believe came from the 1000 Voices of Compassion speak

pledge

I made this pledge as well. I shared it on my facebook page. For a few days I kept it in mind.

Then Life.

Then Lo and behold Facebook steps in again, mainly because I am picky about what is allowed in my feed to begin with.

choose love

 

Well Shit, I think to myself I did it again. I had been losing my patience and bemoaning certain people to my friends. The good news is I can choose love. I can choose love not just for others but for myself too. I slipped. I am human. It is going to happen. I need to be just as gentle and loving with myself as I aim to be with others. So, even if I made a mistake and chose annoyance, I will choose love next.

If this speaks to you and makes you think, please share it. Share the love. Share the thoughts about love. Take the pledge yourself. Make it your phone wallpaper if you must to remember it. (I have done that before it is a very useful tool). BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY: LOVE.

 

 

 

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The missing Grateful (#10thankful post)

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Recently I have not been as active in Ten Things of Thankful as I would like to be. It wasn’t because I lacked things to be thankful for. There is a plethora. I was missing something. I was missing that link to being thankful to actually feeling thankful. I had gotten to the point where I was like yeah yeah I have this and that and those to be thankful for but really, I am not FEELING thankful. That deep down in the bottom of your heart true feeling of ……….gratitude. Ooooooohhh maybe I need to change the word. Maybe it’s a word thing holding me up. Getting me all tangled and discombobulated.

Here enters in Dr. Rebecca Ray, and her instagram account that somehow I started following and I believe she followed me back and then that was it for a while. Here is someone who is putting out a similar vibe as what I am aiming for and sharing it!!!!  Often it happens this innocently , for me anyway, where someone likes a photo.  The next thing I know I am on their instagram and then on their website and before you know it I had found and downloaded her gratitude journal. I can’t remember my exact thought process but it followed the line of maybe I need to stop thinking of what I am thankful for. Maybe I need prompts. Oh how I really hate prompts. I really, really do.  Don’t tell me what to write about. Don’t give me IDEAS!!!! What if that is not how I am feeling that day? WHAT IF I AM AVOIDING THAT AREA OF MY LIFE?

So I downloaded the journal. I can do this. Sure I can do this. Oh I like that quote. Um. Eh. OHHH that is sticky. Well another thing I absolutely abhor is useless written things. If I write, I want to share. If it helps someone, great. It helps me to share so I share. Some of these though? Oh yeah that word vulnerable came to mind.

Enter in Brene Brown’s book  Rising Strong which I had been listening to for, I don’t know a week?. I had long ago decided I was okay with being vulnerable to also have compassion and empathy. Her book was speaking to the whole-hearted living I wanted but also how to deal with the tired of being hurt.

These two things percolated and collided and percolated and collided until I realized the only thing I could do.

I had to post my gratitude journal daily on Instagram. I like Instagram the most because photos say so much more then words but then you can add in words. Poetry words, rhyme words, words in general.

So for my Ten Things of Thankful Post I have included the first five days of my journal. If you are on instagram; sorry for the repeat but now you know the process of how it came to be as well.

Day one of gratitude journal I downloaded from@happihabits

Today I am grateful for the following sounds in my day.
Coffee done brewing dinging
Mockingbirds and hawks
Children’s laughter
People singing
Glasses tinkling
Waves crashing
Seagulls screeching
Doves cooing
Popcorn popping
Bathtub splashing

Gratitude journal day two

…..wowzer. I am grateful for my strengths.

On a day where I am not feeling very strong….. I am grateful for my strength to always try again.
I am grateful for my strength to always look for beauty
I am grateful for my strength to believe in good.
I am grateful for my strength to keep going
I am grateful for my strength to live in the now
I am grateful for my strength to function despite depression
I am grateful for my strength to be there for others
I am grateful for my strength to laugh during hardship.
I am grateful for my strength to spread love through the hate
I am grateful for my strength to write about my issues

I don’t even know if these are strengths but I am counting them as such.

Gratitude journal day three

….I am grateful for the simple things in life.

Today’s simple things that I am so incredibly grateful for.

Sun peaking out from behind clouds
Walking in the park with kid and dog
Lunch out with friend
Beer
Friends who love on my kid
People who drop and send light/prayers/vibes at the drop of a hat
A car to drive me to appointments
A phone and internet to search for housing
Friends who send me housing ideas
Free cookies

So much more that I can’t even put into words.

Day four of gratitude journal
Wow this is one I struggle with daily often hourly or minute by minute.

I am grateful for my health.

I am grateful for a body that produced such a gorgeous daughter.
I am grateful for a body that provided for my daughter’s needs.
I am grateful for my eye health
I am grateful for the health of my hair.

I am grateful for my health issues as they have made me slow down and look at life differently.Gratitude journal day five

Gratitude Journal day Five:

 

 

Today I am grateful for my basic needs being met.

Coffee
Medication
A car to drive
A job to go to
Food to eat
Time to relax
Shelter from the storms
A place to sleep

 

I don’t know what it is but this has been working and what lays in store is exciting. I am positive it is going to blow my mind. I am positive this is the right track. I am positive this is the grateful that has been missing.

Bang head here

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Oh where to begin, where to begin. That has been half my problem of actually hitting the publish button on my writing. My posts don’t really seem to have a begining. It just launches into whatever is in my head at the time and right now that is a freaking lot.

I am so grateful for the people who reach out and say, ” I am thinking of you. I am praying for you. I saw this and thought of you. I am so sorry I wish I could help. ” It means a lot to know I am not in this uphill battle alone.

Uphill battle? , you ask. Oh yes. See for the past several months I have been trying to work with several different agencies that help with housing. The problem has been I am several meetings in with them before they either : A. Refer me to someone else or B. Tell me they can not help me. Our main issue is finding a place in our price range. One we can afford. We have the funds to cover moving in costs, with one stipulation. It has to be a sustainable housing option. Meaning that we can afford the monthly payments and foreseeable can for twelve months. That is the crux of the problem. There is no reasonably priced housing to rent. Between needing two bedrooms, having a child and having a service animal, the no’s have been frequent. When they actually say no and don’t just start laughing.

What about section eight housing you say? Well , I am on the wait list to be notified when the waitlist is actually open and accepting applications again. Habitat for humanity has already disqualified us because we have a judgement against my husband. So we have been in a shelter. One we are so very grateful that we have. There are no scary drug addicts hanging out in the same room as us. It is a cozy little efficiencie but our time there is running out.

At the base of all this is , I am tired. I am tired of searching daily for housing and finding no matches for your search, even when I double what we can afford. I am tired of being judged. I am not working hard enough. I need to give up this, or that, or both of those. I am tired of being told I am lazy. Or that we don’t rent to people like you. I am tired of being told this is my fault.

Not one of those people has any idea what I do every day. Not one of them has asked to see. Not one of them has checked my web history to see that I am searching daily, multiple times a day. Not one of them has driven around , almost aimlessly, Looking for , for rent signs.Not one of them has printed out and provided every scrap and piece of their budget and their private lives to the scrutiny of an agency. I have a tendency to give way more information than they are looking for. Shocking them because , I am so honest. Here it is, this is who we are. Not one of them have fended off questions from their eleven year old of what did you do today? Did you find a house? Do you think we will have a home by……. or by…… or when….  Not one of them are ready to fall into bed at four pm completely devoid of hope and faith in humanity. Not one of them are being questioned about the necessity of every purchase they make, not realizing that I am focusing on the good that is in my life. I don’t make all those purchases, mainly because I have freaking amazing friends. I am focusing on the good but trying not to embarras my friends by also including. P.S. I didn’t buy thing my friend so and so did. Our relationships are rarely about money or who has the money. That is really truly difficult for some people to comprehend. I know this because I have started using my frustrated anger to ask them. To throw these questions at them. To tell them in vivid and explict detail just exactly how hard I am looking and working. Thanks but this is exactly what my anxiety whispers to me when I try to take some selfcare. I don’t need it from you as well.

This is not the world or the economy that it was twenty years ago when I moved out of my parents house. Which is truly a shame.

There are so many rules about housing. I get it. I truly do. We owned a house. I know how expensive that is. When you add in renters insurance and maintance , I get it.  The thing I don’t get? Why can’t people see the homeless problem for what it is. At it’s core there is a lack of empathy. It is all about making money, not helping our fellow neighbor. It is looking out for only yourself. Some people here won’t even admit there IS a homeless problem.  We are a society that loves to deny the problem, even when it stares us in the face. We are so sure there must be an answer out there, this person obviously has not problem solved enough. Again it traces back to compassion and empathy.

My writing has turned into more like journalling. It is helpful but not what I want to be doing. I am not sure this even would not be called a journal entry. It is what it is and it is exactly what has been on my mind on a daily bases for almost six months now. I could add so much about the next time you assume, or make a judgement…….however, that really doesn’t do anyone any good. Let’s just call this food for thought.