Friday, October 05, 2012

Ghost (or God?) Radio

Sometimes the things we need to listen to are so we can share them for other people to hear...

While driving to work this morning something caught my vision in the corner of my eye - I looked down and my radio was adjusting the volume... by itself...

The radio had been on but the volume all the way down. After staring at the radio somewhat warily for a few seconds I hesitantly reached down and turned the knob to turn the volume up. My radio is almost always on either Power 88 or K-Love - both Christian radio stations

What I turned it up to was a caller on the air talking about how God had really pressed upon her heart recently to donate to the radio station... she didn't have the money.. things were really tight but she felt so led she went ahead and followed her heart and donated. 

After donating she cried and prayed - asking for a miracle. Money was really really tight for her family and even though it was a burden to give she knew she had to do it... 

Then on her way to work she got a call from a job she had interviewed a couple of months ago - offering her the position...... at 3 times the salary she was currently making.

Talking about your blessings returning back to you!

Tithing has always been very important to me and while there have been times money has been tight and I've slacked I'm blessed and thankful to say my faithfulness has always paid off and I'm now in a job where I can comfortably tithe. It is always a joy and a blessing to be able to give back to the places that bless me most.

While hearing her story was a blessing I had a feeling it wasn't really meant for me - so I'm sharing it with you. Hope it blesses you in the way you need it most. ^_^

Because Being Mad is Easier Than Being Hurt

I love getting DailyOm in my e-mail - it's always something that I can relate to, and today's post is no exception.

I spent the majority of my teen years very pissed off. I hated my parents, my life, the world in general. I had a lot of bad things happen to me as a kid and being mad about them seemed much easier than dealing with the hurt and confusion and letting them go. As long as I was mad I could blame someone for the things that I had been through and there seemed to be some sort of imaginary justice in that.

There is an illusion of power in anger. If we hold on to things, grudges against people then we 'control' our relationship with those people and things. We 'punish' them for hurting us until we feel that they've been punished enough and have grovelled sufficiently to be let back into our lives.

The truth is.. the only person you hurt by being angry is you. Anger leads to stress, it's bad for your physical health as well as your mental and emotional health. Not to mention the toll it takes on your spiritual health. You can't very well bask in the peace of God/Buddha/Mohamed etc if you're holding on to being angry at someone. Peace and anger simply cannot coexist.

Another truth is - most of the time we're angry because being mad is easier than being hurt. Being hurt sucks. Being hurt means someone let you down, or you were weak, or not good enough, or they didn't care enough. Being hurt means all sorts of imaginary slights we put on ourselves and others and that can be hard to accept - whereas being mad... being mad just means someone else f'd up and you're justifiably ticked about it. Being hurt gives someone power over you.. being mad gives you the power.

But either way that power is imaginary. It doesn't really exist.

A lot of people think forgiveness is for the person who 'wronged' you... but the truth is forgiveness is for YOU. When someone hurts you - forgiving them is your way of giving yourself permission to let go of that hurt and move on to healing. It is your way of letting go and getting past it.

It took me many years but I finally realized that there really wasn't any room in my life for anger. It served no purpose and benefited me in no way. Now that's not to say I've perfected not getting angry by any means - believe me - my husband is a master at pushing my buttons and flipping my pissed off switches. But I've found that if I just stop for a moment.. take a breath and ask myself - what am I really angry about?? I usually find that it's nothing - an imaginary slight I took upon myself by taking something personal instead of being objective. Now things that used to be quick triggers rarely bother me and when I do get bothered I'm over it in literally minutes instead of taking hours or days (sometimes weeks or years!) to let it go.

So there's my take on anger... now here's DailyOm's ^_^

October 5, 2012
Habitual Anger
Unblocking the Ally
Anger can easily become our go-to emotion; to remedy, start noticing when and why you get angry.

Sometimes when we feel anger, it is coming from a deep place that demands acknowledgment and expression. At these times, it is important that we find healthy ways to honor our anger, remembering how dangerous it is to repress it. However, anger can also become a habit, our go-to emotion whenever things go wrong. Often this is because, for whatever reason, we feel more comfortable expressing anger than we do other emotions, like sadness. It can also be that getting angry gives us the impression that we’ve done something about our problem. In these cases, our habitual anger is inhibiting both our ability to express our other emotions and to take action in our lives.

If it’s true that anger is functioning this way in your life, the first thing you might want to try is to notice when you get angry. You might begin to see a pattern of some kind. For example, you could notice that it is always your first response or that it comes up a lot in one particular situation. If the pattern doesn’t become clear right away, you could try keeping a journal about when you get angry and see if you can find any underlying meaning. The good thing about keeping a journal is that you can explore your anger more deeply in it—from examining who in your family of origin expressed a lot of anger to how you feel when you encounter anger in others. This kind of awareness can be a formidable agent of transformation.

Anger can be a powerful ally, since it is filled with energy that we can harness and use to create change in the world. It is one of the most cathartic emotions, and it can also be a very effective cleanser of the emotional system. However, when it becomes a habit, it actually loses its power to transform and becomes an obstacle to growth. Identifying the role anger plays in your life and restoring it to its proper function can bring new energy and expansiveness to your emotional life.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Equally Yoked - or How My Buddhist Husband Brought Me Closer to God

I am a Christian. A grew up in church, saved and baptized when I was 13, born again at 25, filled with the Holy Spirit - evidence of tongues - Christian. My husband is Buddhist.

When my husband and I met he was studying Buddhism but had not fully immersed himself into the religion so it didn't bother me much. After all, we all get a little side tracked now and then, but he'd grown up Christian and we loved the same God.

But as our relationship progressed and he became more dedicated to the Buddhist path the dogma of my Christian upbringing and youth spent in church began to cause me a bit of uncertainty.

I was never one of those girls who grew up planning their wedding. I never imagined what my husband would look like, or what kind of flowers I'd have. I didn't spend hours picturing our first dance or how my hair would be styled. Those things just never really mattered to me. I did have one picture of a dress torn out of a magazine that I tucked away for that special day but that was the extent of my 'when I get married' fervor.

When it came to getting married, there was one thing though that did matter. One thing that I knew would be an all or nothing stipulation for my groom to be and that was that we would be 'equally yoked'.

"Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness?" (2 Cor. 6:14, KJV).

My husband and I would both be Christians, go to church together, pray and read the Bible together and love the same God.

So as Matthew and I became more serious I started to worry about how 'unequally yoked' we appeared to be. I believed in Jesus... he followed Buddha. And that's where I got hung up. But our relationship progressed, we got engaged and as any 'good Christian' wife-to-be would do, I began praying for his conversion or 'return to God' in time for the wedding.

I've always had a slightly different view on God and the Bible than most Christians I know.. some things I'd been taught just didn't add up with the God I knew in my spirit but that yoking thing was apparently drilled in pretty deep because it really started to wear on me. But I had faith and was sure he'd 'come around' and everything would be fine. I mean he grew up in a Christian home.. his dad was a Southern Baptist minister for crying out loud.

No go back... you didn't say that right...drop your voice an octave......

slow down.....

and try again.. 

Suuuuthernnn Baptist. There you go. We're talking DEEP South Southern. 

To the point where if Matthew was caught trying to read a book about another religion his parents would take it and properly scold him about the dangers of letting in demons and the like by reading anything other than 'Godly' material. So I thought surely this Buddhist thing was just a fad.. a lingering rebellion and he'd snap out of it and go back to being a Jesus freak like me.

What I didn't know then.. and has taken me almost 3 years to realize is that He loved Jesus and God the same way I did all along. He worshiped the same God. We had the SAME beliefs. He just used a different method on his path to spiritual growth than I did.

I recently had an extended Facebook debate with a Christian friend who is the exact same as I was back before I decided to stop putting God in a box and let Him be GOD. She in short 'educated' me about how Buddhists worship Buddha as their God, and how they thought Jesus was 'below' Buddha and how she had no need or desire to read about any religion other than her own and from no other book than the Bible because that's what a Christian was supposed to do.

Needless to say I failed in my attempt to help her see how grossly incorrect she was in pretty much every statement she made because even though she'd never read one single thing about Buddhism she knew all she needed to know about it because she read the Bible.. and that gave her the right and authority to tell me (I'm paraphrasing here) that my husband - and I by proxy - was going to hell for worshipping false Gods and that she'd pray I found my way back to the 'real' God. Because apparently mine was fake.

It made me sad... for her.. and for myself - because I'd been just like her for so many years.

Blind in my 'faith' and unyielding in my views. Funny how easy it is for us to skip over or completely forget what the Bible actually says when it suits us... I mean I'm pretty sure Jesus said that we should Study and show ourselves approved.

"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. "  (2 Tim. 2:15, KJV).

Our different faiths actually caused some problems the first year of our marriage.. I wanted a strong spiritual head of my home.. a husband that 'led me' in the right path who sat down and read the Bible and prayed with me and Matthew's Buddhist practice of meditation and mantras just wasn't giving me that. It wasn't that he didn't try... he did... it was that I wanted him to believe like I did and anything else just wasn't good enough.

Thank God (literally) that I've always been open to His voice and leading - even when I wasn't open to anyone else and I finally realized that I was being selfish. I wanted my husband to follow my faith my way yet I couldn't even be bothered to so much as read a webpage about his... his faith and spiritual practice that was just as important to him as mine was to me and here I was completely disregarding it because it didn't fit in the box I'd put God in.

It was hard but I finally opened my mind to learning something knew and in the process I found my heart opening more to God. The same God I grew up learning about and loving in small town Southern (did you say it right this time) Baptist church. Learning about Buddhism didn't make me a Buddhist, or less of a 'Christian'. It didn't take away from my faith and it wasn't going to condemn me to the fiery depths of hell.

What it did was open my eyes to how amazingly big and wonderful God truly is. God can't be put in a box.. and just because I call him 'God' and you call him 'Dios' doesn't mean we're not worshiping the same marvelous Creator.

This is a slight segway in this particular post so I'm only going to mention it briefly but I feel it warrants attention. You may have noticed that I spelled God in both English and Spanish as explanation that people may call God by a different name but He's still the same God....

Allah... is GOD in Arabic... it literally translates to 'the God'. Little mind blowing trivial for the Muslim haters out there. Same GOD.. different LANGUAGE.

Now back to Jesus...

By being open to actually educating myself about something I was unfamiliar with I learned that the core teachings of Buddha and Jesus are almost identical. In fact - Buddha taught those same core teachings a few hundred years before Jesus was ever born. If they'd lived in the same time I fully believe they would have been best of friends and brothers in their mission to bring the world to enlightenment through peace and love. 

Now I personally claim Christianity as my 'religion' because it was Jesus who led me to God.. it was through Jesus' story that I learned who God was and developed the amazing relationship that I have with my Creator today. For my husband.. it was Buddha's teachings that brought him to that place.

He doesn't worship a different God than I do... he doesn't discredit Jesus for what He did by dying on the cross. He's not anti-Christian or a lost sinner because he's Buddhist. His journey to God just took a different fork in the road than mine did.

.... The important thing to know here is that this forked road didn't take us on to separate paths... it brought us to the same one.

I now have a closer relationship with God than ever and my husband and I, both as individuals and as a couple, are growing leaps and bounds in our spiritual walk. A walk we're taking together.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

You ARE Worthy...

This is something I've dealth with often through out my life - questioning my self worth.

Am I worthy of love? Worthy of success? Worthy of happiness?

Regardless of our current state of mind - the answer has always been and will always be a resounding YES.

We, well most of us anyway, are brought up being taught that we are children of God - created in His image and likeness and unworthy of His love - 'but' that He loved us so much anyway He sent His son to 'save' us.

Though I believed that lie most of my life I am thankful to have seen the light of God's truth and the truth of His love... We ARE worthy for no other reason than we are His.. we don't have to do anything to deserve love.. from God or anyone else and the only 'saving' we need is from the absense of His love and presense in our lives.

Jesus came to teach us that we could know God in an intimate and personal way... NOT to free us from a life of 'sin' but rather from a life of darkness..from an absense of the knowledge of God in our lives.

I am worthy...

YOU are worthy...

We ALL are worthy... just because

**An excert from

August 10, 2012
Accepting Our Calling
by Madisyn Taylor

Our worth of being on the planet at this time cannot be judged as we are all worthy and essential to being here now. The issue of worthiness may come up in many areas of our lives, as we ask, often unconsciously, whether we are worthy of success, love, happiness, and countless other things, from supportive relationships to a beautiful home. In the end, though, it all comes down to one thing: our willingness to claim our space in this life as humans on this planet at this time. When we accept our divinity, we no longer question whether we are worthy, because we know that we are meant to be here to fulfill a particular purpose, a purpose that no one other than us can fulfill.

There are no replacements who can take over and live our lives for us, no other person who has had the experiences we have had, who has access to the same resources and relationships, who carries the same message to share with the world. Our purpose may be large or small, and in most cases it is multi-leveled, with important actions taking place on the interpersonal level, as well as in terms of the work we do in the world. Small acts of kindness share the stage with large acts of sacrifice, and only through accepting and honoring our divinity can we know what we are called to do and when.

Ultimately, we are all equally, exactly, completely worthy of being here in this life. Moreover, we are all essential to the unfolding plan of which we are each one small, but important, part. If we suffer from low self worth, it is because we have lost track of understanding this truth, and allowing it to guide our actions in the world. Seeing ourselves as part of something larger, as beings called to serve, is the ultimate cure for feelings of unworthiness. In the end, it’s not about evaluating ourselves as worthy or unworthy, so much as it’s about accepting that we have been called here to serve and taking the steps required to listen and respond to what our lives are asking us to do.

Monday, July 02, 2012

Ending the Cycle...

Ending the CycleStart Today
by Madisyn Taylor

Each day offers us an opportunity to renew our resolve to the universe that we are ready for change.

One of the hardest things in life is feeling stuck in a situation that we don’t like and want to change. We may have exhausted ourselves trying to figure out how to make change, and we may even have given up. However, each day offers us an opportunity to renew our resolve and to declare to the universe that we are ready for change. We may even say out loud that we have tried and struggled and have not found a way, but that we are open to help, and that we intend to keep working to create change for ourselves. Making this declaration to the universe, and to ourselves, may be just the remedy for the stagnation we are experiencing. And, it can be done today, right now.

It is difficult to understand, even with hindsight, how the choices we have made have added up to our current situation, but it is a good idea to examine the story we tell ourselves. If we tend to regard ourselves as having failed, this will block our ability to allow ourselves to succeed. We have the power to change the story we tell ourselves by acknowledging that in the past, we did our best, and we exhibited many positive qualities, and had many fine moments on our path to the present moment. We can also recognize that we have learned from our experiences, and that this will help us with our current choices.

When we do this kind of work on how we view our past self, we make it possible for the future to be based on a positive self-assessment. This inner shift may allow us to get out of the cycle we’ve been in that’s been keeping us stuck. Now we can declare our intentions to the universe, knowing that we have done the inner work necessary to allow our lives to change. Allow today to be the day to end cycles and enter into a new way of being.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Let it Roll....

This is something it took me a long time and many hurt feelings to figure out, especially since I have a family that would rather judge me than accept me. And while I still on occasion take something to heart that I shouldn't I've definitely gotten better and am living a much more peaceful and content life as a result.

Words only have the power you give them.. and getting all riled up, hurt, angry or offended over something someone says is simply NOT worth the time and effort it takes.

Let It Roll off Our BackDodging and Deflecting
by Madisyn Taylor

When we are criticized or attacked it is important to not take it into our heart space.

One of the most difficult challenges in life is learning not to take things to heart and hold on to it. Especially when we’re younger, or if we’re very sensitive, we take so much of what comes our way to heart. This can be overwhelming and unproductive if it throws us off balance on a regular basis. When we are feeling criticized or attacked from all directions, it becomes very difficult for us to recover ourselves so that we can continue to speak and act our truth. This is when we would do well to remember the old saying about letting certain things roll off us, like water off a duck’s back.

Most of the time, the attacks and criticisms of others have much more to do with them and how they are feeling than with us. If we get caught up in trying to adjust ourselves to other people’s negative energy, we lose touch with our core. In fact, in a positive light, these slings and arrows offer us the opportunity to strengthen our core sense of self, and to learn to dodge and deflect other people’s misdirected negativity. The more we do this, the more we are able to discern what belongs to us and what belongs to other people. With practice, we become masters of our energetic integrity, refusing to serve as targets for the disowned anger and frustration of the people around us.

Eventually, we will be able to hear the feedback that others have to offer, taking in anything that might actually be constructive, and releasing that which has nothing to do with us. First, though, we tend ourselves compassionately by recognizing when we can’t take something in from the outside without hurting ourselves. This is when we make like a duck, shaking it off and letting it roll off our back as we continue our way in the world.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Saying Yes to the Universe....

Today's post by DailyOM

Saying Yes to the universe opens the gate to receiving
what your soul really wants.

The hardest thing about saying yes to the universe is that it means accepting everything life puts in front of us. Most of us have a habit of going through our days saying no to the things we don’t like and yes to the things we do, and yet, everything we encounter is our life. We may be afraid that if we say yes to the things we don’t like, we will be stuck with them forever, but really, it is only through acknowledging the existence of what’s not working for us that we can begin the process of change. So saying yes doesn’t mean indiscriminately accepting things that don’t work for us. It means conversing with the universe, and starting the conversation with a very powerful word—yes.

When we say yes to the universe, we enter into a state of trust that whatever our situation is, we can work with it. We express confidence in ourselves, and the universe, and we also express a willingness to learn from whatever comes our way, rather than running and hiding when we don’t like what we see. The question we might ask ourselves is what it will take for us to get to the point of saying yes. For some of us, it takes coming up against something we can’t ignore, escape, or deny, and so we are left no choice but to say yes. For others, it just seems a natural progression of events that leads us to making the decision to say yes to life.

The first step to saying yes is realizing that in the end it is so much easier than the alternative. Once we understand this, we can begin examining the moments when we resist what is happening, and experiment with occasionally saying yes instead. It might be scary at first, and even painful at times, but if we continue to say yes to every moment through the process, we will discover the joy of being in a positive conversation with a force much bigger than ourselves.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Fairytale Love

When I was growing up my mom had a bookshelf full of Danielle Steele & Harlequin romance novels. Around the age of 15-16 I started reading them.

I read about star crossed love, all consuming passion, feeling like someone was the center of your universe.. I read about fighting and making up, I read about overcoming insurmountable obstacles for love. I read about hot sex.... - well they were romance novels.

But the thing that stuck with me most in all of the books was the idea of what 'true love' was. What it felt like, what it looked like, how it made someone treat you and how it make you treat the person you loved in return.

I read that true love was all encompassing, breath taking, joyful and heart breaking... I read that true love always won... that true love conquered all.. and since that's pretty much what I'd been taught in church and reading the Bible it didn't seem all that unreal or unreasonable to me - in spite of never really having experienced that kind of love first hand or having seen it between my parents or family members.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ESV
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant (5) or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; (6) it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. (7) Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
I believe to this day, with all my heart that I truly loved the person I was in a relationship before my husband. He ended up being abusive and it took me 3 years to finally walk away. I know you're thinking.. she probably said she stayed because she loveeeeed him and that is what most women in those types of situations do say. Well I did love him but I stayed because I was scared, and young and naive and didn't know any better. When I finally left it wasn't because I realized that I didn't love him.. I did.. it was because I realized that I loved myself more. Sometimes love means walking away - especially if it's one sided.

That relationship put a big dent in my view of love. I could say there were many other factors in there as well - my birth father was never a part of my life (abandonment issues).. I never felt like I belonged or fit in with my own family (never good enough).. or really that I was even liked, much less loved by most of them (unlovable)... I have always been different from everyone else I've ever known... I didn't have a relationship with my mother... the list goes on and on and while some, hell probably most of those things probably had and to some extent still have some effect on the way I love and allow myself to be loved they never broke the dream of what I, in the deepest part of my heart, believed love was supposed to be.

All the hurts and let downs I've had in my life never crushed me to the point where I gave up on or stopped believing in love.

After leaving my ex it took 5 years of being single before I even dared the idea of putting myself 'out there' again and even attempt dating much less opening myself up to loving someone or being loved in return, but I finally did and I met my husband.. whom I love dearly.. and who loves me dearly in return.

But even with that love being returned things aren't the way I dreamed they would be.

Lately I've been feeling lost in joy seems to have gone missing and I'm having a hard time finding it. This funk, for lack of a better word, I've found myself in has resulted in me becoming much more 'needy' of my husband than I usually am and it's also made me much more aware and affected by things he does that I normally would be able to brush off. When I ask for your attention I want it NOW, not when you finish the level you're playing on your game, or when you finish reading a couple of e-mails or whatever it is that you're doing that doens't involve your very real human live wife! It's also brought me back to what my idea of love is...

My husband says that the kind of love I talk about only exists in movies or romance novels. He says that the husband I want him to be isn't reasonable, realistic or even possible. I say he's wrong.

This leaves me in a scary place... I believe with all of my heart and soul that the kind of love I believe in is real... and I believe that my husband and I are 100% capable of experiencing it and showing it to one another, but I wonder can two people who've never been shown or experienced that kind of true love find their way to it.

My husband's parents divorced when he was young - his mom and dad fought a lot and from what I understand didn't have the best relationship. His mom remarried as did his dad and while both are still married to their respective spouses neither of them have a kind of relationship I'd call normal or healthy. His mom & step-dad are pretty apathetic about life in general. I've never seen them be affectionate to one another or heard them tell each other I love you. His dad and step-mom are an uber Christian version of a Stepford house. His dad is the 'man' of the house and his step-mom does his every bidding and agrees with everything he says. Neither of those reflect the kind of marriage I want.

So neither of us grew up with great examples of healthy happy love... and where I'm apparently a romantic at heart, he's a very fact based, scientific reasoning driven realist. Which lately leaves us both in a not so happy place.

I believe that next to God your spouse comes first. I believe that a human living wife should take precedent over ANY electronic devise - well unless it's a defibrillator and someone is in cardiac arrest - and that it takes spending time together, communicating and cherishing each other to have a happy marriage.

I believe....I believe that I've come to a point where I'm stumbling over words and have no idea where I want or need to go with this anymore....

I guess that's the thing about using writing as a cathartic means... you just write until you get out what you need to get out and eventually - finished thought or not - you run out of steam.

Ladies and gents I seem to have reached that point... I'm spent. My heart is breaking, my soul is weary and I'm deep down to the bone tired.

I spent a lot of time crying today and calling out to God for some kind of peace... some kind of help to regain the joy I used to have in life, to regain the connection I used to feel with Him and a way to fill the emptiness that is currently devouring my soul... and while I didn't get an audible response I do think He answered.

We have rows and rows of books in our apartment and searching for something - anything - I came across "The Purpose Driven Life" by Rick Warren. I'm a big believer that God puts things in front of you when you need them most so I'm believing out of all the spiritual and religious books we have that this one stood out most for a reason.

"The Purpose Driven Life"  is 40-day spiritual journey that will transform your answer to life's most important question: "What on earth am I here for?"

And I think that's just what I need.

God is truly amazing in ways I can't even begin to put into words... as I'm typing this, crying, feeling lost I had a thought come through my mind... a quiet thought that.. in trying to be the best wife I can I've forgotten how to be the best ME I can.... In getting caught up in the role of spouse, I've lost who I am in the role of ME. In trying to once again take care of someone else in my life, I've stopped taking care of ME.

I expect I'll write a lot in the next 40 days... and Praise God I also expect I'll find my way back to who I really am in Him.. and I'll find my way to being the wife my husband needs and finding the man I need in my husband. Because in Him I KNOW the kind of love I dream about is real.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Responsible Parenting... or 'To be or not to be.. preggo'

Fist let me say that I absolutely despise the word 'preggo'. I think it's tasteless and low class, but for this post I think it fits.

When I was a kid I never wanted to be a doctor, or a astronaut or a famous actor or singer. I wanted to be a wife and a mom.

Ok there was that year I wanted to be a fighter pilot (thank you Tom Cruise) but that only lasted until I realized that A) women weren't allowed to fly (back then anyway) and B) I was horribly afraid of heights.. and flying meant high HIGH heights!

Considering the family dynamic I grew up in I find it a little odd that being a wife and mom was my deepest desire - my parents fought horribly on a fairly regular basis and my mother's 'mothering' was more in line with Mommy Dearest than Leave it to Beaver, but for as long as I can remember all I wanted to be when I grew up was a wife and a mom. I imagined by the time I was 25 I would be married with at least one child. I wanted the whole tire swing in the front yard & white picket fence dream. As you may have guessed that didn't happen.

When I was in my late twenties I found out I had a defunct uterus. I ovulate - sometimes - but I don't shed the lining (Aunt Rose rarely visits me) like I'm supposed to which makes my uterus an angry confused place - not conducive for baby making. I've been told with 'assistance' I can possibly become pregnant, but the who's and what's of that are complicated and to be honest a little scary, not to mention incredibly expensive.

My husband and I are 100% for adoption if that becomes the only option but we're also 100% in agreement that until we are in a relatively comfortable place financially it would be horribly irresponsible  and incredibly selfish to even consider having or bringing a child into our family. - Which brings me to the topic of this post.....

I've made the comment before to friends and family that my husband and I don't want to have children until we can afford them, and I've been told that "you'll never be able to afford children". Now you're either shaking your head in agreement with that statement or you're raising your eyebrow like I did.

What does it mean to be able to afford children? Does it mean you have one year's worth of back-up emergency money in the bank? Does it mean you're debt free and the expense of a new baby would barely dent your finances? Does it mean you're husband makes enough money that you can easily afford to have a baby & be a stay at home mom? I don't think it has to mean anything as dramatic as that but I DO think that if you're currently only able to put a few dollars in savings (and I do mean a few!) after paying your bills then you 100% most definitely can NOT afford a kid.

If you or your spouse haven't been able to keep a stable job for more than 6 months in the past 5 years, then you most definitely can NOT afford a child.

If you're borrowing money from your parents/grandparents/friends etc to make ends meet then you most definitely can NOT afford a child.

And if you've only been with your baby daddy a few months, are jobless, live with your momma, or his momma you sure as HELL can NOT afford to have a child.

There are a dozen other situations I could describe but I think you get the point of what I'm saying.

Yet these are the people who are dropping babies like it's the most responsible thing in the world to do and I just don't get it.

While my family, growing up, wasn't what you would call poor, we definitely didn't have any major cash reserve in the bank. I remember as a kid hearing my parents stress about money and fight because one wanted to do something & the other said we couldn't afford it.

I remember not going to homecoming, or prom, or getting a letter jacket (yes I could have lettered!), or a class ring, or any number of things that make a high school experience memorable because I was told we just didn't have the money. At 36yrs old I clearly remember the stress and tension money issues caused in our house and I would NEVER willingly put another child through that.

I've been married for just over a year,  and my husband and I both have good stable jobs; and I still to this day want more than anything in the world to be a mother and my baby clock is not far from its last tick, but we would not even THINK about trying to have or adopt a baby right now because it would just be too much of a strain on our finances.

There are more people in my family who have kids that can't afford them than I can shake a stick at. Hell there are more people in this country - psh the world that have kids they can't afford that I can't even imagine or possibly conceive the level of selfishness and irresponsibility it would take for me to bring a child into a financially strapped family situation no matter how much love my husband and I have to give.

Children going hungry, growing up in orphanages, growing up feeling unloved, neglected, a burden to their families, becoming introverted and sad from not knowing how to deal with or understand the stress you sense between your mom or dad... whether 'parents' realize it or not these are all possible outcomes of having a child when you truly can not afford it.

It's not like I'm talking about kids getting knocked up because they were stupid. I'm not even talking about ladies in their 20's or 30's who get caught in an 'accident' after a night on the town and too many drinks - although those women should be smacked in the head too - I'm talking about grown women who know good and damn well they have no business getting pregnant not being responsible enough to prevent it.

I'm going to piss some people off in my family with this post but they piss me off being so selfish and irresponsible so we'll be even.

Anyway - the more I write about this the more indignant I get so I'm going to turn it over to you.

What's your opinion on becoming parents? Is it 'OK' if a woman forgets to take her pill and gets knocked up? Is it responsible to actively try to get pregnant when you can't even pay your house note?

Or are you like me and my husband and think being a parent is the most amazing rewarding precious gift in the world and the act of becoming one should be treated with responsibility, selflessness and respect?

Does having ovaries and a womb give us the right to bring a child into this world whether we can afford it or not, or just because we 'want' to be a parent or because we were careless about getting busy?

***Disclosure - I do want to say that I am in no way, shape or form a supporter of abortion or ending an unplanned pregnancy. I am one bajillion percent pro-life.

That being said we live in a day and age with resources enough that there really is no excuse to not be actively preventing pregnancy if we know it's not in the best interest of anyone involved to get knocked up!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Hello Blog... it's Me Again

Tap, tap, tap... is this thing on? Is anyone out there?

I've gone and done it again... taken an unintentional haitus from blogging.

I've not quite figured out yet why I do that.. skip writing for long periods of time. It's not like I don't have computer access, or lack of things to write about. I think that maybe, even though I write to help me get through life when things start to seem 'too much', that occassionaly they get too 'too much' to even process in thought much less type.

I do notice though that I don't feel as centered or settled when I don't write so I'm making a promise to myself (and those of you who read me!) that I'll do my absolute best to stay more active in the blogosphere from now on.

My last entry was Dec 2011 so I'll do a quick recap of all that has gone on since then for this post then get back to my normal type entries from here on.

My job with the BP oil spill relief as a contractor for the USFWS ended Dec 23rd and I spent the next 4 months being unemployed and freaked out by the underwhelming job opportunities in Gulf Shores, AL. I've never in my life had trouble finding work, but when you live in a tourist city and the primary work force consists of retail, hotel or fast food options for a highly skilled Admin are few and far in between.

Praise be to sweet baby Jesus I finally found a job! On April 30, 2012 I started working as the Executive Admin for a Media Consultant. It's an entirely new field for me and in less than a month I've already learned a boat load of very interesting new stuff! If you're as well versed in this field as I am you may be asking - 'what exactly does a media consultant do?'. In this case we do radio. Well, other forms of media too but primarily radio.

My boss is somewhat of a big deal in the radio world and I'm finding it very cool and rewarding to work for someone who's experience and work is so well known and respected. I've worked for CEO's & company presidents before but other than within their own company they were relatively unknown. That cannot be said about my boss...when it comes to radio his name is very familiar & I'm finding that quite neat.

As for what a media consultant in radio does - the long and short of it is they consult radio stations. That includes anything from suggesting what kind of music to play, to creating the format and developing on-air talent for a morning show. We do studies and reports and panels to find out what people are listening to music-wise and what they want to hear conversation-wise on the radio. Suffice to say there's a LOT more to radio than what most people & I thought!

Other than the search for work life has been pretty normal.

Matthew is steadily working his way up in his job & is waiting approval for his 3rd raise & 2nd promotion in the last year and I am so incredibly proud of him.

My health has been... eh. Still having issues with the intestines and for the last almost 3 months I've been dealing with one infection or virus after another. If it's not sinus, it's stomach, or upper respiratory. So far 2012 has not been a fantastic year for good health for me. I'm fairly sure I've coughed up part of one of my lungs today, but without insurance going to the doctor just isn't in the cards. As long as I can breath & walk I'll work & when it gets to the point where I can't do one of those we'll figure out how to scrape pennies together & schedule an appointment. And since we'll be spending the next few months catching up our finances from me being on unemployment for 4 months I'm thinking it will be some time before we have spare pennies. So if you'd send healing prayers, thoughts, vibes or whatever it is you believe in my way I'd be incredibly appreciative!

I don't want this catch up post to end up being overly long so I'm going to wrap now, but I WILL be back soon to update and share with you all what exciting things have been and are going on in my life!

Thanks for reading & I hope you stick around :)