25 January 2011

Father/Daughter Talk

Father & Daughter Talk

A young woman was about to finish her first year of college. Like so many others her age, she considered herself to be very liberal, and among other liberal ideals, was very much in favor of higher taxes to support more government programs, in other words redistribution of wealth.

She was deeply ashamed that her father was a rather staunch conservative, a feeling she openly expressed. Based on the lectures that she had participated in, and the occasional chat with a professor, she felt that her father had for years harbored an evil, selfish desire to keep what he thought should be his.

One day she was challenging her father on his opposition to higher taxes on the rich and the need for more government programs.

The self-professed objectivity proclaimed by her professors had to be the truth and she indicated so to her father. He responded by asking how she was doing in school.

Taken aback, she answered rather haughtily that she had a 4.0 GPA, and let him know that it was tough to maintain, insisting that she was taking a very difficult course load and was constantly studying, which left her no time to go out and party like other people she knew. She didn't even have time for a boyfriend, and didn't really have many college friends because she spent all her time studying.

Her father listened and then asked, “How is your friend Audrey doing?”

She replied, “Audrey is barely getting by. All she takes are easy classes, she never studies and she barely has a 2.0 GPA. She is so popular on campus; college for her is a blast. She's always invited to all the parties and lots of times she doesn't even show up for classes because she's too hung over.”

Her wise father asked his daughter, “Why don't you go to the Dean's office and ask him to deduct 1.0 off your GPA and give it to your friend who only has a 2.0. That way you will both have a 3.0 GPA and certainly that would be a fair and equal distribution of GPA.”

The daughter, visibly shocked by her father's suggestion, angrily fired back, “That's a crazy idea, how would that be fair! I've worked really hard for my grades! I've invested a lot of time, and a lot of hard work! Audrey has done next to nothing toward her degree. She played while I worked my tail off!”

The father slowly smiled, winked and said gently, “Welcome to the conservative side of the fence.”

If you ever wondered what side of the fence you sit on, this is a great test!

If a conservative doesn't like guns, he doesn't buy one.

If a liberal doesn't like guns, he wants all guns outlawed.

If a conservative is a vegetarian, he doesn't eat meat.

If a liberal is a vegetarian, he wants all meat products banned for everyone.

If a conservative is down-and-out, he thinks about how to better his situation.

A liberal wonders who is going to take care of him.

If a conservative doesn't like a talk show host, he switches channels.

Liberals demand that those they don't like be shut down.

If a conservative is a non-believer, he doesn't go to church.

A liberal non-believer wants any mention of God and religion silenced. (Unless it's a foreign religion, of course!)

If a conservative decides he needs health care, he goes about shopping for it, or may choose a job that provides it.

A liberal demands that the rest of us pay for his.

23 January 2011

Staying home

Before Michael and I had kids, we talked about what we wanted for those kids.  When I mean before, I mean we had this discussion back when I was 16 and he was 18, long before children were even a solid thought in our mind.  I loved to discuss my future with him, and he didn't seem to have any problems with it either, so we'd sit there holding hands and talking about our hopes and dreams, or we'd be laying down in a bed, cuddled together.  Like many things, Michael and I had different ideas.  Michael assumed I'd work, our kids would go to daycare, and then eventually school.  I assumed I'd be able to stay home with our children, at least until they went to school.  We did agree on the fact that we wanted many kids, but after having the kids, we had a couple of issues.  Michael's views though, were not solidified, he had them only because that's what he assumed all couples did.  I, even at that point being incredibly interested in childbirth and raising had other ideas.  I also wanted our children to have one parent stay home because that's what I had until my father's death.  My daddy stayed home with me.  I didn't come home to an empty house devoid of human contact, or go to the after-care center where I'd spend most of the evening until my Mom could pick me up, then rush me through dinner, then bed because it was getting late.  I came home, and spent time with my father, played games with him, and helped him make dinner most nights.  I wanted that for my kids, having someone home, knowing that they wouldn't have to be alone.  So after one conversation we agreed, that when we had kids, one of us would stay home, at least until they were in school.

Of course, as all well-laid plans do, it's not what happened.  We got pregnant out of wedlock, which you would think I'd be more upset about, but I'm not, and I was providing for myself.  I couldn't just quit my job at the time.  I worked as many hours as I could though, building up money for my maternity leave.  Since I'd been at the job for almost 2 1/2 years I knew I'd still have it when I got back, and they were willing to work with me on the fact that I'd be breastfeeding, which was awesome of them.  I ended up changing jobs, when my son was 6 months old, because I had an opportunity for better wages, and I loved my photography job, but we got pregnant again, and it was hard on my body.  I finally made the decision to quit my job, as Michael was making enough money to support us, and we were trying to get him enlisted.

That day in April of 05' was the last day I worked.  I haven't regretted it for one second.  Being home with my children brings me great joy (most of the time).  We've had to make some sacrifices sure, and there's been times that money has been tight, but when it comes down to it, money is just not important.  Michael and I feel that the security our children have, knowing that I'm always here for them is what is most important to us.  So like many things, when it comes to child-rearing, EBF, baby-wearing (which Michael took to quickly), homebirthing, and homeschooling, Michael was enlightened on the benefits, of each of these practices.  I feel blessed and lucky to have such a caring and wonderful husband, who supports me, and who does not ever make me feel like I'm taking *his* money just because I'm not working.  He's told me countless times that we're both earning *his* money because were both sacrificing, and we're both doing the jobs we were meant to do.

I love my husband.

22 January 2011

January is not even over

and I've managed to break my New Year's goal.  This is one reason I don't normally make resolutions.  I was just attempting though, and I'm not going to feel horrible for not making this particular goal.

This week has actually gone by fast, but this month, oh this month.  It's been at a dead crawl!  I really wish I could see the end of January in sight, but it still feels like it will be forever before it's February.

We're at the tail end of the deployment.  This is the hardest part for me.  I'm watching the numbers dwindle down, but the end still feels too far away to see the light yet.  Even though I have 2 months of calenders up, and I'm counting down on there, and I replace weeks as they pass by with the 3rd month, so I'm able to see the numbers even lower.  I just want to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  I want to feel like I'll have my husband again.

Yep, I know I'm complaining.

My kids are acting up, I think they feel my stress for the end of this deployment and that's why they are acting up.  Steven and Willow are sick now too, Jade just got over hers, and James may or may not be getting sick, but I guess we'll see.

God answers prayers apparently!  Michael just told me a stop-mail date!  That helps for seeing the light!

Jade so far has loved cheer, but we've now missed 2 games, and 2 practices because of her being sick.  I feel bad for her.  I'm hoping next week we'll be able to make it to the practices.  She's still practicing the cheers every day though, so she knows them.

I think we really need to get over all the sicknesses in the house though, we haven't made it to church at all since we've gotten back home and that makes me sad.  Hopefully we'll be able to get there soon, but I want everyone to be feeling better first.

13 January 2011

Under triple digits now

I hate this part of the deployment.  When it's SO close to being over, but it still feels SO far away.  The stress is more, for me at least.  Knowing I'll have my husband back in X months, I just want to jump up and down, scream at the top of my lungs, go crazy, and lay down and just cry. So many emotions, or fondly dubbed deploymones happening.

I've missed Michael, I always try and use our deployments or separations as a way to grow, and I think we have.  We learn new ways to communicate, bond in new ways, but I've missed the things you can only do when you have your loved one with you.  I miss holding hands while just sitting on the couch.  I miss sneaking kisses whenever we can.

So, things I'm looking forward to:
Watching the Entire series of Avatar:The Last Airbender.  Yep, I'm obsessed with it now.  I've bought a lot of the books, and will hopefully in a couple of months be able to collect all the graphic novels too.  I don't care that it's a children's cartoon, it was well made, the writing was awesome, and come on, who wouldn't like a cute little flying lemur named Momo?

I'm looking forward to having Michael home for James's birthday, he's missed so many of them.
I'm looking forward to having Michael home to help me with the kids, being able to take mini breaks occasionally, to have some one help me with cleaning on the weekends, and to cook dinner occasionally.

I miss my husband. :(

09 January 2011

It's that time again

I've had a bad week this week.  Today though was tough to start out with.  The kids have been stealing candy, food and a ton of other things out of the kitchen (getting caught every time of course) and I've tried a lot of things to get this to stop.  I finally threw away all the candy this morning, save very few things I'll probably finish eating by the end of next week (and the candy lives next to me now at all times).

The point being that it's been stressful and I've been cranky mean mommy all this week and its kind of sucked.  So today, I decided that for a little bit at least I wasn't going to be cranky mean mommy anymore.  The kids and I have been dancing around the house, talking to each other, and spending time, the 2 hours spent watching Hannah Montana.  It's been a pretty good day though, my living room is clean, and my kitchen and dining room while not spotless are a whole lot more clean than they were thanks to my kids this morning.

So, it hit me this morning that I wasn't enjoying my gifts.  Now granted they were still stealing all this week, and not listening, but I realized they also helped out a lot too, but I couldn't see it past all the bad they had done.

It just kind of hit me this morning.  Now, non-believers would just chock this up to a coincident or to just a random moment, but I think it was God.  I stopped, I was by myself (hiding) and I was quiet and I said a little prayer to God, to help me, to give me patience or whatever it was I needed (loaded prayer there).  But, he did.  He gave me what I needed.  I needed some time with my kids, some quality time, and they did too, without mean mommy.

So that's where I saw God this week.

08 January 2011

One day a year

I allow myself to think about him for a long period of time.  One day a year I allow myself to mourn what I've lost.

Today is that day.  It just hit me that next year will be 20 years since he left this earth.  I've been without my daddy for more than half of my life.  Somehow this realization made things a little harder today.  It made my chest squeeze just a little harder in missing him.

I allow myself today, to wallow so that I don't let it overwhelm me the rest of the year.  It's my way of coping I guess.  I wish I could go take flowers to place on his grave, it's been so long since I did.

My daddy was not perfect, no one is, he just had some bigger faults than others.  But he still loved me.  He spent time with me, he was my life line on this earth.  I think I heard my heart shatter when he died. It's weird to me, how many memories in my life from that age have faded, but not the one where I found out he was dead.  I can replay, in almost perfect detail what happened that day, down to what my Mom was wearing when she came into the room to tell me.  I know what was said, I have no clue what I was wearing.  I know what day it was, and some of the events of school, and what happened after school.

She never told me.  I knew.  I knew when it happened and I ignored it. My daddy was invincible.  Aren't all daddy's invincible?

So I'm going to go have my good cry over this day, and tonight, I'll let the pain go again, until next year.

03 January 2011

Week 1

So for this past week I've thought about what God has done in my life this week.  My New Year Resolution is to write, once a week where I've seen God's influence in my life.

One of the best place I find God is in the creation of children.  I met my friend Sarah's new baby Josie, and that is what I'm going to write about this week.  Human beings, especially in their smallest forms are so perfect.  The way their bodies are put together, their little noses, ears, fingers, eyes, everything.  So perfect, and not random.  I see God when I look at babies.  The fact that even as a small mass of cells, everything comes together to be such a complex form at birth, is just amazing.

I find everything about human reproduction fascinating, because of the science, and the way God put everything together.