Boys of PHB

Boys of PHB
Barefoot boys

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Politically Offensive

     They all tell us to be politically correct all of the time.  Then they say you can't please everyone.  My question is, which is it?! 
     I've decided I've got to offend someone.  I'm going to offend some because I'm Christian.  I'm going to offend some because I'm Republican.  I'm bound to offend people of other nationalities because I'm a Caucasian and an American.  I'm going to offend people I meet just because I'm me.  I'm going to offend my kids because I'm a mean mom (this I hear more often than necessary).
     I've decided I'm not into politics, therefore I can never be politically correct.  It just isn't going to happen.  I will try not to hurt feelings, because everyone wants to be respected.  I want respect.  Where respect is due I'm there to give it.  This includes giving respect when I disagree with some one's viewpoint.  However, it doesn't mean I won't offend them with my differing opinion.  I plan on it.  I will stand for what I believe, raise my children the way I see fit and enjoy every moment of making people squirm and become upset because I said something totally wrong in their viewpoint. 
     Sometimes I'll explain myself, and sometimes I won't.  Most people don't want to know why you've offended them, they just want an apology and for you to admit you were totally wrong in the way you see things and to finally see it their way.  That's when the nod comes into play.  It's a way of agreeing to disagree when no more words are needed.  I use it when I know they are never going to believe or like what I say because they've decided there is nothing more to be learned by listening to some one's take on something.
      I realize that listening to an other's opinion is a good thing because it helps me expand my own.  I can grow and change with the best of them.  As opinionated as I am, I am in no way close minded.  Though I do admit to coming across that way and offending people because they have thought that about me.  There I go again. 
      I'm OK if someone speaks their mind.  I'm OK if they don't want to say prayer, because I expect they'll be OK if I do.  I'm OK if they don't like something that is important to me, because I expect them to be OK that it is important to me.  I don't mind a good argument because it can make for a great exchanging of ideas. 
     I do have a problem with things like the census.  I've noticed that all of the other Americans who were born and raised here are allowed to state their genealogy on there.  I still must state my skin color as being white.  I'm thinking that if everyone were to be politically correct we could start with me being able to either say I'm American, or to state European American.  I mean if a 6 or 7 generation black or Hispanic gets to state where their father's came from, shouldn't I get to? 
     I feel offended over several issues out there, but I don't go changing everyone else to fit my viewpoint because you simply can't please everyone.  It just isn't going to happen.  Someone will always be unhappy with something and we're an imperfect people trying to live together on the same planet. 
     We all need to chill out and agree to disagree listen with our ears and understanding rather than taking every word out of every one's mouth as a direct attack on us.  I'm not attacking, I'm just saying.
     (Just a side - I wasn't offended by the spell check telling me I'd spelled so much wrong even though I disagree.  It was just saying.)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Leap of Faith

     I heard a saying once that went something to the effect of - If you have to take a leap of faith God will either catch you, or teach you how to fly.  I totally believe this.  I think the saying was worded a lot better, but the point is the same.

     I've jumped several times when I wasn't really sure what was going to happen when I landed.  A leap of faith is called that for a reason.  You jump and it takes a lot of faith to realize it could go either way, but you trust you'll do your best and hope it'll all end up being OK. 
     I took many leaps in the past few years, but the one that always sticks out the most is the one when I was having my first child.  I had the full time job with benefits and Aaron had just finished school and still couldn't find a job to do what he'd graduated for.  It was that same old loop of trying to find a job after graduating with no or little experience and all of the positions required experience.  The problem was he wasn't going to get the experience without getting the job.  Well, that's where we were when we were nearing having our first child.  I knew I didn't want to go back to work after having a child.  Being raised in a traditional home with my mom being a stay at home mom I knew I was hoping to do the same for my kids.  I just wasn't sure how to make that happen.
     I had Joseph.  15 hours of labor and 3 1/2 of that pushing he came into this world ready to overcome everything.  He's been amazing from day one.  We've gone head on even from then because we both have strong personalities, but he's been the most amazing experience and blessing.
     I was able to have a choice up to 4 months off after having him.  Aaron was able to get a job finally, though not for what he'd gone to college for, and he was happy with his job. Joseph was born in September, Aaron got his job in November and my work called me in January. 
     The phone call from my supervisor went along the lines of her asking if I was coming back on Monday and me hesitating.  I didn't know what to do.  How could I leave this helpless little guy?  Financially I didn't know if we'd be OK.  We had bills from the hospital, my medial insurance and peace of mind would fly with my solid job.  Aaron hadn't even had his job for 2 months yet.  I was terrified and unsure.  I remember taking a deep breath, holding it, saying a quick prayer and responding I wouldn't be back on Monday and wouldn't be coming back at all.  She was not happy and was not hoping that was how it would play out, but I wasn't going to take it back.  I didn't know how things could work out, but they'd have to now
     I'm a planner.  I like to plan things out as much as possible, for as far into the future as I can.  I have learned to "plan variables."  Children are an uncertain thing.  You can have a planned life until you add someone else into the mix.  Children are something you can't be sure of one day to the next. Sometimes you take one day at a time.
     I'm happy to say now that I'm more than grateful it played out how it did.  Joseph came right on time to make it play out the way it was supposed to.  I realized looking back that if it hadn't played out like it did then we would've had a harder time had it played out differently.  Amazing how some of our trying times can be some of our greatest blessings.  What would I have done without that lesson?! 
     We can learn to fly in our lives.  We can jump out into nothing and know there will be a way to overcome the moment.  It does only last a moment in the scheme of life.  I've learned a valuable lesson and so was willing to sacrifice and have 4 more of these boys.  It's not that kind of world we live in.  The world doesn't make room for many children, or having faith in much.  I couldn't have gotten through without it though.

Saturday, October 15, 2011


     I don't really have many heroes I really admire and want to emulate as far as famous people, or anything like that.  I don't put people on pillars because everyone is human and everyone has flaws.  However, I do very much  believe in heroes, princes and princesses.
     My son Jonas decided the other day to clean the whole house by himself.  It was one of those days that I just wasn't going to.  I sometimes just sit down and don't clean like I usually do because it's so discouraging to clean and have it look like you haven't cleaned in years by the next hour (if it takes that long).  So I was stunned to find him buzzing through the house and doing so many chores - all without being asked that I couldn't help but praise him over and over. 
     That is when someone is a hero.  Anyone can do amazing things.  Amazing things aren't always changing the world, and being a hero doesn't always mean you're being a hero to everyone.  Sometimes it's making a huge difference to that one person whose world you change.  Sometimes it's doing such a simple thing like cleaning when mom seems so exhausted that she isn't able to that makes the big changes.  Jonas doing that made a world of difference to me.  I knew for a moment I was noticed and cared for.  He doesn't do it all the time, but because he was that awesome I was able to get dinner done that night.  The next day I heard him tell his brother he now knew what mom feels like when she cleans the whole house. 
     I may never be a hero to anyone, but I'm grateful I have heroes in my life that set a good example to me and my family.  I'm grateful that my kids are my heroes.  They keep me going and give me a reason to not give up when I feel overwhelmed and am not sure I can go on.  Aaron is my hero when I've had a nightmare and he's woken up in the middle of the night to hold me.  He's taken time out of his day and his to-do list to do the things I want or feel I need done.   That's a hero.  Someone who does something and most of the time doesn't even know they are doing something amazing.
     I have friends I look up to, but not because I think they're better than anyone else.  I look up to them and think they are amazing because I've watched them go through a hard time and they've come through on top.  Sometimes they have a harder time and that's when I hope I can be there for them.  I'm so thankful that my life is filled with people who have learned to overcome and become better because of their trials.
     As far as the prince and princess goes.  Aren't we all?  I tell my boys all the time they are son's of a King.  They are son's of a most High God. They are my princes.  They therefore need to act accordingly and treat everyone else like they are a prince or princess as well.   Especially the girls.  I'm so surprised I have such amazing children. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Fear of Failure or Success?

     One thing I remember my dad telling me is that people often don't move forward with what they want to do, not because of the fear to fail, but of the fear they'll succeed.  I agree with this to some degree.  With success comes much responsibilities and changes.

     I've had a problem that's been going on for 3 years now.  The burden of this is completely on my shoulders and no one else.  I've been told by numerous people what I need to do, what I should do, and what I haven't done right.  I've actually tried to solve this problem several times, but it's one of those things that gets thrown back in my face just when I feel I've come to terms with things again. 

     In relationships there are at least 2 people involved.  Usually only 2 because no one else is really apart of your individual relationship with anyone else.  With relationships taking 2 people, then fights also take 2 people, which goes to say that fixing the problem or resolving problems in a relationship also require 2 people.  If one person is putting forth all of the effort in the relationship and only one person has decided things need to move a different direction to make the relationship better and only one person has decided to work for that goal, it won't work.  It takes both of those people to make changes or to better the relationship, a partnership to better the circumstance.

     I've been told several times by various sources that I'm needing to change somethings in what used to be a relationship I had with someone.  What no one knows except me and this someone is that I've tried on several different occasions.  I may have gone about it the wrong way, and I'm sure I've done a lot wrong, but I know I've tried.  It's been thrown back at me all the times I've tried.  On a last attempt I tried again a year and a half ago.  This person told me in no uncertain terms I was to stay away from them and out of their life.

     Now, I had a decision to make.  I could have kept trying and kept having them upset with me.  I had that choice.  I had thought about it.  I also had the choice to follow their direction.  I'm normally a more forceful person.  I'm sure that's one of the things I did wrong in the last conversation, among many other things.  I was determined the mess should be handled and we should fix the gap that had been separating us.  This person disagreed, very obviously.  So with these 2 choices in my hand I decided I was causing myself too much pain and heartache by trying to make someone want a relationship when they so obviously didn't.  I took what they said to heart and stayed away.

     I guess it goes back to that saying - You can take a horse to water, but you can't make it drink.  I feel I've tried.  It's been put back in front of me recently and I've been told I'm the one dragging this on.  I took myself out of the equation and was just starting to find some peace when a new puzzle piece was added.  I am certain I can still do nothing to change this person's mind, therefore am still not going to make an effort at this time.
     Due to this decision I've been told I'm judgemental and I am dragging this out and holding a grudge.  I really don't feel that in my heart, but who's to know what's in someones heart unless they ask.  I have resolved myself to let others believe and act as they will.  I'm at peace with that.  I have been blamed recently also for some other peoples actions and I'm at peace with this too.  I know fully I am only responsible for my own actions and my own thoughts and what I do with it all.  I'm in no way perfect.  I'll never be able to control others or be responsible for their actions, reactions, choices,or decisions.  I'm sad I have people who should know me well deciding they know what's in my heart and being so far from the truth.  However, I'm fully aware I can't change their minds.
     With a brick wall in front of me and my hands firmly secured behind my back everyone was looking at me like they couldn't understand why I hadn't scaled the wall and overcome my binding.  I felt it an impossible task so therefore saw a path leading another way and decided to take that path.  It wasn't an easy decision.  It was quite difficult.  I'd gladly go back if I felt there was a chance of success.  And yet........
    This is where the fear of success comes to play.  How could I ever trust that my heart wouldn't be ripped out again?  How could I ever trust if we were able to mend the relationship that they wouldn't turn on me in a heartbeat again?  How could I trust I'd even have a chance to change their minds when for three years they've kept their affirmation to keep away too?  I don't know if I could.  Fear of failure with trying again has been a constant companion for years.  It's only just now I've realized I also have a fear of success.  What if.........

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


     I realized something not too long ago.  Something is not truly yours until you've worked for it, cared for it, and in essence made it yours.  My boys I call mine, but in truth I'm making them mine.  They weren't mine because I gave birth to them, they weren't mine because I paid the hospital and they weren't mine because I wake up every morning and send them off to school.
     My boys are mine the same way my house or my car is mine.  Sacrificing and hard work are making them mine.  I could sit down all the time and do nothing in teaching them right from wrong, do nothing in helping with their education and leaving it to the teachers who my tax dollars are paying, or I can spend the time and energy to help them grow, learn and become the amazing men I know they can be.  I can let me house go down hill and never work on it.  It's an older house and requires more work than I sometimes want to give, but if I did that then it wouldn't really be mine.  It's the sacrifice and hard work that makes something mine or someone else. 
     They boys can't understand for their life why I want a clean house.  They can't understand why I want them to take care of their things.  This is why.  I have been telling them lately that if they don't care about it they sure are showing me well.
     Family, friend, husbands, wives - all require work.  They aren't our family until we've worked on those relationships.  These aren't my kids until I've put in the hours and effort required to make them mine over the years.  That's why marriage and adoption can work.  As in "you love those you serve," it is the same with this.  My marriage wouldn't be mine if I weren't willing to do what it takes to call it mine.  I know this is something that most people pick up along the way long before they're as old as I am.  I knew this the whole time.  Maybe I just didnt' appreciate it like I do now.  So much more is at stake than when I was younger.  I could lose so much more now if I'm not willing to keep working on things than when I was a child.  However, due to now noticing this years earlier I've missed a lot I should have worked for. 
     Here on out the priorities are stronger and more reachable.  I'm more determined than ever that I'll be worthy at the end to call my family mine and they won't need ask why.


     My dad used to say there are three kinds of truth - truth as you see it, truth in advance, and truth as it is.  Truth in advance is when you are writing the check for the bill collector who is on the phone and telling him you just mailed it.  It's true that the payment is basically in the mail.  Truth as it is would dictate that you are going to mail it out as soon as you get out again and off the phone with the bill collector.  Truth as it is would be hard to discern.  The reason is because truth as you see it gets in the way so much.  If there is a car accident in an intersection and four different people are standing in four different places then they will all have a different perception of what happened.  Especially different in that accident would be the perspective of the two or more drivers in the accident themselves.  It's all true that there was an accident, but the people in the cars are not going to want to say they are at fault because they knew what they were doing at the time.  The people on the corners watching the collision could say different things depending on where they stood. 
     When my boys get into a fight I know they both see it as unfair.  Both boys (or even several of them sometimes) see it as the other person's fault.  They see themselves as the victim and that they have been unfairly dealt by their brother.  I agree.  Both are usually being unfair.  However, it takes a listening ear and an outside perspective to hear both sides to let both of them know how they are each being unreasonable.  The fight in either perspective is truth as they see it.  Be it that their brother took a toy from them and they "had it first", or whatever else.  They are viewing it from their perspective and therefore it's truth as they see it. 
     We all have issues with the truth in our heads vs. the truth as it is.  I have what I've found to be a unique view point when it comes to some things.  I'm able to take myself out of the situation and see it from all angles.  Even with this, sometimes it's hard to use it when the truth as I see it comes out in droves.  I have some situations that I would like to resolve or fix, but am unable at this point to take myself out of it all and see truth as it is.  It's especially hard when the truth as it is is skewed so much by every one's truth as they see it. 
     I'm very happy with life.  I've found peace in many aspects and situations.  I've been through some hard things and found myself on top at the end.  I want to be a better person and try for the real truth and not just the truth that is in my own mind.  If I can remember it's always about the other people I'm around and how they feel, it'll be better.  One step at a time.  One lesson at a time.  I'm grateful for a Dad who always told me that I'll never make all the mistakes I'll have to make in this life to learn all the things I'll need to know.  He taught me to learn from other's mistakes and build my knowledge on that as well as my own mistakes.  I'm hoping to remember to look at the truth as it is and learn my lessons of truth rather than the truth of my mind.  They are much better lessons and much more deeply rooted that way.  Now, on to teaching the kids what I've learned.