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Voice of Reason

Eric is my reason and I am using my voice to stop the violence!

My Perspective

My Perspective

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THE ARTICLE THAT STARTED IT ALL

Posted on May 10, 2016 at 4:10 PM Comments comments (34)

 

 

On January 7, 2008 I started my day as usual - packed lunches, made breakfast, tried to get in the shower, run to my vehicle and grab whatever it was that I had left in it the night before. That morning my routine stopped. I had NO vehicle in the garage. The doors to my garage were open, my vehicle was gone, and on closer inspection Clarence's work truck had been broken into. As I had slept the night before someone trespassed onto my property, broke into my home, stole my vehicle, and broken into my husband's truck. My family and I had been violated in the safe haven of our home.

When the police were able to finally find my vehicle it had been taken on a joyride through the Sunchild Reserve. Joshie's carseat had been thrown out, all of our CDs, DVDs, and assorted items that hang around in a mom's vehicle(extra clothes, food, money)were discarded or stolen. My vehicle had been seriously partied in. With that came all the leftover odor and trash. The bumper to my vehicle had been ripped off, there were several large dents everywhere, window were busted, and pieces of the inside destroyed.

All of this damage was caused by the acts of a fourteen year old boy who was suppose to be in his foster home on curfew. The curfew implemented because this youth had NUMEROUS charges still pending against him and also previous convicted charges.

My family and I were riveting from the shock of someone violating our home. People made comments like - "Well really it was just your garage" or "You should not have left you vehicle keys in the ignition". What a bunch of garbage those comments were. This youth had broken into my attached garage and stole my property. I could play the what if game - "What if Matt had gone to see what the noise was?" or "What if Clarence had checked it out?" or "What if he had not stopped at the garage and tried to get in the house?". We had an alarm system on the house but not the garage. But, if he would have set it off the fright of that would have been alarming. And, so what about my keys - it is my house, my vehicle - NO ONE should enter without my permission. That thought is in my rose colored world which I no longer live in.

Once the youth was apprehended and court dates set I took action. Every date he was to appear before the judge I was there. Every member of my family wrote a victim impact statement that I read before the youth, judge, lawyers, and general court public. I was taking a proactive role to have my voice as a victim heard. The judge was very considerate of my feelings regarding this case and impressed that I bothered to show up and let my voice be heard.

Ironically one of the crown prosecutors on a particular day informed me that it was a waste of time for me to be there and I did not need to continue showing up. Even the "defense" lawyer took offense to his tone and suggestion. Can you imagine telling a victim not to have a voice? How will we ever see change and justice if we do not stand up for what is right? I informed the chief crown prosecutors office of this lawyers bad choice of words and advice. I did recieve and apology. I hope with standing up to this lawyer he does not violate a victim again. Just imagine if I was a victim of murder or rape at the time. His careless comment could be devastating to my mental well being.

The youth in my case was sentenced to time in a locked down facility. He was sentenced for one year less time served that he had already been in jail awaiting sentencing. Five months had past since his crime against me had been committed.

The day this youth was released from custody he proceeded to use controlled substances with a couple of his buddies. While intoxicated these youth physically assaulted two of Matthew's schoolmates. One of the victims was beaten so bad that his jaw was broken and he had to have surgery. This beating could have easily turned into murder. (Eric, my nephew, was severely beaten to death)

I was outraged at these events.This youth that had victimized me had not learned one thing in lockup. I wanted to take a proactive role again. This time he had victimized two youth in my community. Which really if you think about it is a crime against me and every other citizen in Rocky Mountain House. Unfortunately, the justice system protects young offenders and it is very hard to get any information at all about their crimes. I had first hand knowledge of the beatings because I knew the two victims. I wrote a letter to the judge that sat on my case and also the head of the Young Offenders Branch. I received a callback from the judge expressing his frustration also. But, because of the postition he is in he could not really comment fully. He had never called a victim back before and he mentioned to me that most victims do not keep at the system to make the offenders accountable. The executive director of the Young Offenders branch also contacted me and was going to personally look at this youth's file.

I am not privy to what was done to this offender. I just hope that using my voice helped influence the justice system to properly deal with this offender at the time.

Unfortunately I have recently heard through the grapevine that this offending youth has committed more acts of violence. I can not access any actual information. All I have is hearsay because of the young offenders act. So, I am going to rewrite the executive director of the Young Offenders Branch to look into these accusations.

If this youth is an immediate danger to my community. I am going to fight to have him properly looked after so that he is not a threat to me, my family, or my fellow citizens.

I am not without compassion for this youth. He had a seriously traumatic childhood. He is suffering from years of not being looked after properly. Every time he commits a crime against someone or the community he is hurting himself also. He needs to be completely looked after so he does not continue to harm himself. If he can not make good choices for himself than they need to be made for him. "It takes a village to raise a child!"

I hope this article encourages others to speak up for what is right. Victims are scared to standup a lot of the time because of fear of retribution. We can not live in a constant state of fear. We must take ACTION! The justice system can also wear down our resolve to take action. My case took over five months to resolve. And, even then it really was not resolved because the youth continues to commit crimes against my community. But, no change will happen if no accountable voice is heard. Use your voice - it is your constitutional right in this country!

 

 

 

 

WHY WOULD YOU SAY THAT?

Posted on February 1, 2016 at 11:00 PM Comments comments (604)

What gives you the right to act this way towards me? How dare you say those things, think those thoughts, and treat me rudely. I don’t say a word to you and yet you feel it is your right to talk to me in that manner.

How many of you out there in facebook land have felt like this? I am tired of people thinking that it is okay to say whatever comes to their minds – from what clothes I wear to how I treat my children. I think we all have to be conscientious of the words we use to others.

I have a pair of leggings that are my go to pants. I actually have two pairs but the one pair are quite bright. They are the softest material you can imagine and if my fibro is flaring I wear them because they don’t feel like pins sticking in my legs. I was out a couple times in them and have had people comment on – “Oh, how bright they are!” or “Wow you really think wearing spandex is smart?” First off they are not spandex hence why I can wear them. Second, I don’t comment on the clothes that you wear so why do you feel the need to comment on mine, especially if it is rude? Third, how does it actually affect your life what I wear? Oh yeah, it doesn’t!!!!! All you managed to do is make me feel self-conscious because of course you said what you did in front of people and I was already having a crappy day because I wasn’t feeling well from my fibro (Which I might add is another topic of why do you feel I need you opinion?).

I am sick of people judging me over a chronic illness. Do you think I want to feel this way? How about you get beat with a baseball bat, have your spine welded together, don’t sleep, and wear an outfit that is made out of pink insulation. If you can do all that you might have an idea of what my life is like when I am flaring from fibro. I do not sit and wallow. I do what has to be done but sometimes I have to bow out of certain activities so I can keep the energy I have for the things that really matter. So the next time you think I am being lazy because I won’t volunteer at that bottle drive, or go out with a bunch of people for the night, or take on that position you want me to – STOP! I just may not be able to. And, I know from speaking to others with my fibro they feel the same way. We look good on the outside but on the inside we are breaking.

I do not coddle my children. I look after my children. If that means I spend the extra time with them when they are sick or not feeling up to dealing with things so be it. My children are my number one priority. You raise your children the way you want and I will do the same. Do not accuse my children of being spoiled or babied. They are loved and guided. Under no circumstances should anyone get between a momma bear and her babies in the wild. Consider me that momma bear. When you say things to me about my kids or things to them that are hurtful or disrespectful be prepared to meet the grizzly. That’s how I roll.

I am also tired of people saying things like – “Oh you can afford It.”,” It must be nice to be rich.”, “I wish I was lucky like you.” Again none of your business what I have and don’t have. But, let me tell you this nothing was from luck. My husband has worked his butt off for his family and I have supported him 100% along the way. We are a team that worked hard together nothing was handed to us.

Yes it has been nice in my life to stay at home with my kids. It grates my nerves when someone asks what I do for a living and I tell them I am a stay at home mom and they have the audacity to reply, “OH you just stay at home?” YES I DO! And because I do throughout the years when volunteers have been needed for school to sports to community activities who do people call? The stay at home mom because she has all the time in the world. It doesn’t matter that when my kids were little I would get up at 4:30 in the morning to work on my company books, devise a safe work plan, or get payroll done before they were up and about. I became proficient when Josh was a baby at typing rig reports on the computer when Clarence got home at 11:00 pm and breast feeding at the same time. Some people have the nearsightedness to think that I stay at home eating bon bons and watching soap operas.

I take holidays with my family. I am sick to death of being judged because I take my kids from school or their activities to go on a family holiday. We go when Clarence can and if that means they miss some things they miss them. My children are only mine for a short time before they grow up and start their own lives. I am going to do what I can with them when I can! Not only that I really think some people are so condescending about this because they are jealous we get to go and they don’t. Do not judge your value by what someone else is doing. We all have important moments, activities, and opportunities in our lives. The worst thing a person can do is use a measuring stick that is fitted to someone else. Do your own thing and don’t worry about what someone else is doing.

Here is a huge one for me – DO NOT BE SNIDE TO ME OVER MY RELIGION. Do not go out of your way to cut down the basis of what my life is built on. This is possibly the most upsetting things to me. I have a very strong Christian Faith. Do not question my God to me. Do not call me names and do not tell me I am naïve. I am wiser than you can imagine. My life purpose is tied to my religion and if you make fun of my Faith you are making fun of my life.

I think that I have rambled on long enough. I am not sure why I felt I had to purge but I really did. Too many things having been piling up. I need to reflect on the things I have talked about in this blog and make sure that I am not behaving the same way or hurting others by my careless words. I know that I have in the past. Honestly, as recently as last month. I get focussed on something and I barrel ahead. If you don’t keep up with me I get frustrated and it is very obvious. I did this to a member of my family and I had to apologize to her because I steam rolled over everyone to get things done instead of taking my time.

I challenge you to go out and tell someone they look nice this week, or ask a friend that has been on a special trip to see their pictures, or read an article on chronic pain disorders and imagine what some people live with. Go show a great side of you! I know you have it in you!

 

Free the Stupidity

Posted on October 5, 2015 at 5:05 PM Comments comments (130)

With the international stage set in chaos and tumulus affairs I have really thought about my life and what it means to be a woman in Canada. As Canadian woman I need to reflect and be thankful of the many blessings and choices I am given. I enjoy outstanding liberties and freedoms that many of my sisters around the world do not have: I am free to dress as I want, speaks freely, marry the man of my choice, be educated, and live a life of my choosing.

I am angered by the “Free the Nipple” campaign. How ridiculous is this? Woman are wasting time and resources arguing for a campaign that is so unimportant at this stage of international timing. My sisters around the world are being beaten, raped, and slaughtered because they are female. There is no time to worry about the fact that a man can walk shirtless and I cannot.

Woman need to honor their terrorized sisters by pressuring governments to recognize the atrocities they endure, lobby for change of policies, encourage young men not to follow in prehistoric footsteps, battle the ignorance of fanatical religion, support charities throughout the world that offer hope and refuge to women in need and bondage, and support law enforcement to fund and implement programs to stop the rising business of human trafficking.

It is not time to worry about getting tan lines because you can’t walk around bare breasted or be upset that your brother can go shirtless. Who cares? I really don’t think this is an issue of the greatest concern right now. If going topless is important to you there are beaches, clubs, vacations, and communities around the world and at home (Canada) that you can be free to express yourself. Go knock your socks off – whoops I mean your bra off.

I do however agree that women who are breastfeeding should not be shunned at all!!!!! This is a completely different issue in my eyes. It is a natural biological process. And, since this is my article and my website I get to have MY opinion.

Right now in our world there are too many travesties happening to women. We need to rally and focus on the brutality woman are enduring. When we have controlled the violence and savagery against our sisters around the globe then there may be relevance to revisiting “Free the Nipple”. Until then let’s not let stupidity and sensualisation cloud our judgement on what is really important.

 

EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES(originally posted July 5, 2015)

Posted on September 4, 2015 at 8:35 AM Comments comments (97)

The World is full of opportunity. Those that go without do so by choice. They choose to have that low income job, they choose to live on the street, or they choose to live in squalor. Why can’t they get up off their lazy butts and start working, start caring for their families, start caring for themselves? We all have the same starting point. It is those of us that are driven that make it and the lazy ones lose out.

Do I have your attention? Are you laying on your couch right now feeling sorry for yourself? I am writing this from my luxury apartment in Los Angeles. This could be you if only you would do something with yourself.

I mean really we are all the same, it is just what path we choose to take. Right? WRONG!!!!!!!!There are those that decide for themselves to play victim or not to work to their potential and achieve very little gratifyingly, socially, or financially. They are not content to live as they are but will do nothing to help themselves out of it. These people tax my patience.

There is however a very large portion of the population that have no choices or are too sick to see beyond making it from morning until evening. These are the ones with mental illness that have been kicked out of facilities because of cutbacks, these are the children of abusive parents that don’t know how to live productively because they were never taught the skills (some do not even know to shower regularly), these are the people that fight with low IQ’s that don’t fit into the “special needs” category for government care but are too slow mentally to keep up in the face paced world we live in, these are our single mothers that have no education or help caring for their children but would love to be productive given the chance, these are the widows of a generation of men that did not make enough money to provide a nest egg for their wives, this is an example of our soldiers we ship off to fight a bloody and gruesome war but do not provide them with the mental guidance they need to fight the PTS they come home with, the list goes on…………………………..

To be so bold and arrogant to say we all have equal opportunity is unfair and unkind. Yes there are people out there that take advantage of our welfare system, that don’t work to better themselves, that expect everyone else to make them better if they are sick, that won’t put the work in to create a better life for themselves emotionally, mentally, socially, or financially BUT there are also citizens out there that because of circumstances out of their control they are left floundering. I think this is one of the greatest travesties of our millennium. With all the wealth of knowledge, power, and finances that are available to us there are those that will simply exist and never flourish. It is a harsh reality.

I wish I had the answers on how to change it. It feels like a too momentous of a task and nothing will ever change. Realistically there will always be those that slip through the cracks. There will always be a segregation between groups of people – those that have and those that are have not. BUT, we can individually close those gaps on our own home turf and beyond. We can take a responsibility to our fellow human beings and give a helping hand.

For two nights now I have observed a homeless man in front of the grocery store in LA that I am buying my staples at. I was going to just go about my business and ignore him. I took a moment to really look at him and what I saw was a soldier that bore the tattoo of service homeless and hungry on the streets. I looked into his eyes and saw sadness and humility. It cost me nothing to ask him if he was hungry and offer him my extra pizza that I had boxed up from supper that night. He was so appreciative and could not thank me enough. The second night I saw him I gave him some food and a water bottle. He could not thank me enough again. I have fed guests at my dinner table with the best cuts of meat and the most elaborate side dishes that have not thanked me as profusely as the hungry man on the street.

Before school let out I met a young teen girl whose entire life has been one catastrophe after another. Her father died when she was a toddler, her mother lost custody of her, she was placed in six different foster homes, five out of six foster homes she was molested in, she has had numerous relatives die tragically, her peers ridicule her because she does not fit the social or physical mold, she is a cutter, she has anxiety, depression, and anger management issues, and she feels totally let down by the “system”. Who could blame her? I talked with her at length and she revealed her talent as an artist to me, she shared her dream of becoming a social worker for other kid’s like her, and she helped me complete a job I had to finish in a very short amount of time. This is not someone playing the victim – she is a victim! I really listened to her share her story I was rewarded with one of her shining smiles, which I am told is a rarity. For the short time we had together I took the time to really listen to her and validate her. It cost me nothing! But, gave me something – a better understanding of the trials some have to go through just to survive.

I just finished reading an amazing book by Jennifer Weiner titled “All Fall Down”. In a condensed overview it is about a woman who has it all – husband, upscale home, high income job, beautiful daughter, clothes, car, friends, and prestige. Yet, this woman is so unhappy. She slowly becomes addicted to pain medicine prescribed to her for a herniated disk from an injury. Over time one pill does not do and she needs more and more of them. Not for pain though, she needs them to take away the edge of franticness that she feels daily trying to keep up with everything. From the outside looking in everyone thought her life was perfect but: her husband was distant, she was the breadwinner, her home was only half decorated because the task of interior design was beyond her comfort level, maintaining an upscale attitude was taxing when she was a down home sort of girl, and her daughter was extremely needy to the point of special needs. She just glossed everything over. This is not an unusual story in this day and age where woman have ungodly expectations put upon them by media, work, their spouse, or themselves. It would seem that she had the choice to have an amazing life and choose to sabotage it. Sadly, this was not a choice it was a sickness that had to be dealt with and she would have to continue to deal with it for the rest of her life. Her choice was to get the help she needed to stop the drug abuse and to also “down size” her life and live simpler. Sadly, in her rehabilitation process she discovered a majority of her issues were from her unresolved issues of childhood living with a mother that distanced herself from her and was an alcoholic. It was not this young woman’s choice to come from dysfunction but she shouldered the stress and tension from it.

I had a very good friend growing up. When I was little I never noticed the differences between us, or so I thought. Looking back now I can see that I was aware of it but didn’t really comprehend our differences. When we were in kindergarten I would help my friend tie her shoes, whisper the abc’s to her when the teacher asked her to recite them, I would scold her for eating glue, and look after her if someone was picking on her. As time went on and we grew up and became teenagers we spent less and less time together. Later on in life we rekindled our friendship after we both had our babies. Sadly, though I was elated with the birth of my son and she was despondent with the choice she had to make to give her baby up for adoption. My friend was not special needs but she was slow. She was a pretty girl and did not have obvious signs of lower IQ. Unfortunately she was prey to a cunning deceitful man. He took advantage of her and it resulted in a pregnancy. She was duped into believing that he was in love with her and would look out for her. This did not come to pass and without any options available to her she had to choose to give her baby up for adoption. I know for a fact she has loved that baby everyday of her life for the last twenty years. She did not have the same advantages I did to keep her baby. I am blessed with a stable loving husband and I have family support. If those pieces of her life would have been in place she would not have had to live the last twenty years without her child.

My parents were able to give my siblings and I the luxury of having a college fund. The three of us were able to take post-secondary training without having to go into financial debt. I have provided the same for my children. They are blessed to have financial and parental support to follow their dreams. Not every child has this blessing. Many students have to work extra jobs and take loans to continue in their field of dreams. Some may never get the opportunity because they just cannot swing it financially, emotionally, or practically.

To say everyone has the same opportunity is a lie. The child living in a home where mom works three jobs to put food on the table does not have the same opportunity as a child from a higher income family has. These children cannot afford to join sports programs that are not school sponsored like: hockey, skating, and dance, they cannot afford to wear the latest and greatest, and they may not even be able to afford a lunch to take to school. These children have to work extra hard at keeping their grades up to one day be able to go on to college or university with scholarships. Even this is hard for a large majority of these children because their parent or parents are so busy trying to keep their heads above water that they may not have time to go over homework with their child. They live in survival mode rather than thriving mode. What can you do - How about at an elementary school reading with children, help at the breakfast program in your community, hand down your child’s old sports equipment?

Let’s not forget the women and girls around the world, in our country, and some even in our own neighbourhood that don’t have the choice to get an education and better themselves because the men in their family forbid it all in the name of religion. If these females chose to step out of the box that they have been put in they may be ousted from their families, abandoned, or even possibly killed for wanting to advance. No choice!

Don’t even get me started on the Third World Nations. Poverty, hunger, disease, and social unrest create an atmosphere of despair for so many that there is just no way to have a more productive life. The people in these nations live day to day and some even live hour to hour. There is no hope and no opportunity. You and I can do our part by supporting programs such as World Vision. Make a difference in one person’s life. That small gift could be the difference between education or ignorance, or even life or death.

There are vast reasons why people do not obtain their personal best or what the world judges as the perfect opportunities. Some reasons lie solely on the shoulders of the individual – they have no drive, they play victim, or they make bad choices. There is however reasons beyond some peoples control of why they don’t live the dream. Make it your mission not to judge others with the same measuring tool you use to judge your life. They may not have had the same favourable advantages or circumstances that you or others have. Also, it is rewarding to you to take a moment and provide an opportunity for someone that is struggling. Perhaps that moment will be their golden opportunity.

My New Normal

Posted on June 21, 2014 at 4:30 PM Comments comments (110)

Your normal day is my extraordinary day. Those with fibromyalgia develop a new normal. It is normal to have pain in every joint. It is an extraordinary day when that pain isn’t joined by fatigue, active IBS, skin irritation, dizziness, memory fog, or sensory overload. Things I use to take for granted like: bike riding, hiking, vacuuming, grocery shopping, or going to an evening meeting can now be a huge hurdle for me. Every day I have to work harder at being active, at being productive, and harder at being positive. If I want to go out in an evening my day has to consist of a nap somewhere along the line. 80% of the time I don’t just hop out of bed when my alarm rings, I need 15 – 20 minutes just for my feet to hit the floor.

 

I have always been quite a hyper person. It is like I was the energizer bunny on energy drinks. In the last year and a half that has all changed. I can no longer juggle many activities at once. I have to pick and choose what tasks and activities I take on. It has been a shock to me, my family, friends, and those that have always depended on me to lend a hand. When approached to take on tasks that I am just not healthy enough for at the time I always feel guilty saying no, but no is what I have to say; no I cannot manage a hockey team this year, no I cannot sit on 3 boards, no I cannot solely organize a fundraiser for a worthy cause, or volunteer to read with kids in need. These are all tasks that I enjoy but too many at once leaves me overwhelmed and I cannot physically or emotionally handle it.

 

I am not writing this for your sympathy or because I want attention or that I am victimized by this disease. I am writing this to educate. I did not understand the severity of fibromyalgia. It is one of the most painful and often debilitating disease with the least amount of knowledgeable data. For years even doctors treated it as a “depression” or a choice to be unhealthy. This disease is not in my head and it has given me no choice – I have to live with it.

 

Fibromyalgia is a chronic disease that amplifies pain by affecting the way your brain processes pain signals. It is characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain and fatigue. It can also be accompanied by sleep disturbance, IBS, numbness and tingling in extremities, heightened sensory responses, joint stiffness, difficulty swallowing, bowel and bladder dysfunction, cognitive dysfunction, muscle dysfunction, and dermatological disorders. Basically anything that can go wrong has the possibility to go wrong.

 

I have to live with fibromyalgia for the rest of my life. This does not me I have to succumb to it or let it define me! I have the choice to live a life of happiness and productivity. I do however have to make substantial changes in how I face daily activities and extra-curricular obligations.

 

Living with fibromyalgia has given me a new perspective on life. It has made me prioritize what is truly important. My family is the most important aspect of my life and I am important to them, therefore decisions I make on where to invest my physical abilities are focussed around them. A simple example of this is; I just recently had to say no when asked to be part of a float for a parade. If I would have walked the parade route in the morning I would have had to have a substantial nap in the afternoon. As a family we had plans for the afternoon so I was not going to jeopardize my time with them. Another example is; instead of planting an abundant amount of annuals this year I have started putting in perennials. This will help in the amount of digging I will have to undertake in years to come. This will leave me with more energy to enjoy my yard and “putter” with my flowers in pots on my deck. Gardening is emotional therapy for me so I do not want it to become an unmanageable hurdle. I want it to stay a peaceful therapeutic release.

 

I have had to go to a medical pain clinic to start treatment for my fibromyalgia. At the clinic my doctor has instructed me that in order to live a positive productive life I must make sure all aspects of myself are being looked after. This includes my :

a. Physical Self

b. Emotional Self

c. Spiritual Self

d. Medical Self

Everyone needs physical activity. For me going for a walk at times can be like climbing Mount Everest. It is something I must do no matter what or I will only get worse. Healing restorative yoga has become a God send to me. With my tendency to be hyper, mindful stretching has not been something I have done until now. Yoga truly breathes relief into me. Eating healthy is a must. Some foods can even trigger a flare.

I absolutely have to minimize my stress and emotional upsets. As a highly sensitive person this can be very challenging. Those that know me well have the knowledge of the vast amount of adversity my family and I have had to endure through the past several years. I have my own personal issues, but I tend to take on other’s trials as well. I am a go to person for friends and family when they are in need of a shoulder of strength or in a crisis. I tend to borrow stress as well. When I watch the news I see the dismal state our world is in and I immediately think – What can I do? I truly believe and live by the mantra ~BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN THE WORLD~ Ghandi. I just need to learn there are billions of other people on this planet that can also help.

 

Spiritually I am tight. I am a Bible thumping praise singing Christian. I know without a doubt in my being that God is in this with me. I had a medical doctor, who was a Christian, say to me, “Look at your pain as a lesson. Jesus took the pain of the cross for you. Now you may understand some of the pain he bore for you.” I thought that was profound. He’s right at least I do not have pain from floggings torture, denial, and being nailed to a cross.

 

My last step to healthy living with fibromyalgia is medical health. I have found this one to be a hurdle as well. I do not like to take medicine, especially pain medicine. I will do anything to avoid it. I’m not sure if subconsciously it makes me feel like a weakling or it is just because I have it in my head I don’t want to be a pill popper. Either way it took some convincing by my doctor for me to concede to using medicine. I know now that it was the right choice. If a person hurts constantly it wears them down. They can become cranky, lethargic, and pessimistic. These factors disrupt the first three points of health; physical, emotional, and spiritual. Taking my meds helps me to be successful in these three points.

 

If you or someone you love has fibromyalgia get proactive. Learn as much as you can about it. Fibromyalgia affects not just the patient but their family as well. It is not easy for a family to watch someone in pain. That person may drastically change how they do things. In my home my family has had to pick up the slack especially when I am in a flare. Family and friends need to learn patience and understanding. The fibromyalgia victim is not just being lazy or manifesting it in their head. They can’t just get over it.

 

For those of you living with the daily pain of fibromyalgia I encourage you to get physical, minimize your stress, pray, and find a great medical team to walk this journey with you. Fibromyalgia will never go away but how you choose to live with it will make all the difference!

 

February 22, 2014

Posted on February 22, 2014 at 1:10 PM Comments comments (68)

STEREOTYPES

 

(This particular post may cause some controversy and debate. Some may say it has racial undertones and caustic ideas. I challenge you to debate it and take from it.)

Do you know those drunken welfare Indians that hang around uptown, loitering on benches, relieving themselves on business walls, drinking, and hassling the productive public for spare change? What an annoyance they are. Get a job, clean up your act, and quit feeling entitled.

How do you feel about the bums that scavenge through trash bins looking for bottles to cash in for booze and collect cigarette butts to smoke? They lead a filthy existence. It is time for them to go pump gas or haul out groceries - get a respectable job already!

As a society we have an ever increasing amount of single mothers. You would think with all the sex education available to our youth this wouldn't be a problem. But, it seems there are plenty of young people that just can't figure it out. Then they toodle around anywhere with their kids. Is there no shame anymore?

As a society we have an ever increasing amount of single mothers. You would think with all the sex education available to our youth this would be a problem. But, it seems there are plenty of young people that just can't figure it out. Then they toodle around anywhere with their kids. Is there no shame anymore?

What a hodge podge of unattractive people. People that don't really offer any productivity to society.

Are you offended yet? How much do you agree with these statements? Personally I find it immensly offensive.

One brutually cold December mornning a wondeful young lady, who also happens to be an unwed mom, found herself stuck in a snowbank. Her precious cargo was belted in to a carseat in the back. No matter what this mom did she could not get her vehicle to budge.

Drivers in their jacked up trucks impatiently waited for her to get out of the way. Furious some of these drivers slammed their vehicles into reverse and backed down the street to get on their way. Others just sped by gawking. No one stopped to help her.

A young First Nations man that I have observed hanging around uptown came to the rescue. He tried pushing the car. When that failed he dug the snow out from around her tires with his bare hands. He still had no luck.

Then a stay at home mom who was uptown taking her sick child to the doctor, filling a prescription, fueling up her vehicle, buying groceries (so she could make a nutritous crock pot meal for her husband who was working late, son who had hockey, and daughter who had dance) jumped out of her vehicle and started to push as well. Movement started to happen, but just not enough.

An old bottle picking bum came to lend his shoulder strength too. The 3 worked together to get the young woman on her way. With team effort the car was out of the snowbank. The young mom was so very thankful and had a huge grin as she drove away.

The old saying ~ DON'T JUDGE A BOOK BY IT'S COVER ~ was very evident that day. The muscle bound, working, jacked up truck men could not even bother to lend a hand. But, the Indian, bum, and stay at home mom gave of their time, energy, and spirit. They worked together and broke through the binding chains of stereotypes.

November 16, 2013

Posted on November 16, 2013 at 6:10 PM Comments comments (0)

Dear Jesus:

Happy Birthday this is your day. The day of the most miraculous birth that will ever happen on Earth - YOURS. I would like to say I'm kneeling in reverance at your manager but I have to finish my shopping, baking, wrapping, and then there is all the decorating so I can host a fantastic Christmas party.

I'm fairly sure I will make it to service on Christmas Eve to celebrate your arrival. Well, that is if I'm on time getting my preparations done for Christmas Day. And, just to let you know I will be a little late because I want to watch Santa fly through the sky with my family.

I have a great advent book. It has activities or readings for the whole family everyday up until your birthday. Last year it made it to the coffee table. Maybe this year I will actually open it and share the miracle of your birth with my family. But, if not don't worry we will definitely watch "Charlie Brown's Christmas" and Linus gives a great condensed time saving version of what Christmas is all about.

I plan to give to those in need this year. I'm just waiting to see how much I spend on my family first. Ipads, xbox, and sound systems are a lot of money, and my kids just have to have them. Groceries for Christmas time are very expensive, all the: fancy cheeses, crackers, wines, turkey, finger foods, and specialty treats. That will factor in how much I give to the food bank too.

I'm going to probably have to get a new outfit for the parties I am attending. Something festive and bright. No swaddling clothes for this Christmas Momma.

I must go. I have so many preparations to finish before the big day. I hope you have a great birthday Jesus.

Love - Anita

What would your Christmas birthday letter to Jesus look like? Sadly, if I don't stop myself this is very much how Christmas will be. Will I show reverance to our Saviour or will I get caught up in the whirlwind that we call the "Holiday Season"?

The answer to this question is YES I am going to make a conscious effort to celebrate the true roots of Christmas - CHRIST! And, as far as getting caught up in the "Holiday Season" the answer is NO.

I most definitely will get caught up and go over board at some points throughout the "Christmas Season". I know I will have to reign myself in occasionally. But, I will not be celebrating a "Happy Holiday". I will be celebrating a MERRY CHRISTMAS!

This Christmas I want to celebrate the birth of the greatest man to walk this Earth - Jesus. I want to share the good news of His birth. I want to follow in God's call to help others around me and to be an instrument for Him.

Time is of the essence in all of our lives. There is never enough time to do all that we set out to accomplish. This year I am going to prioritize what is important. Creating the perfect Norman Rockwell Christmas is not the priority - rejoicing in the truths of Christmas is.

It really is a nobrainer that this is what I should be doing but sadly I fall into the picture perfect Christmas category and forget sometimes it is not about the materialistic but the miraculistic(yep my own special word). Don't get me wrong I am not totally commercialized without heart. That is not me at all. I BELIEVE and celebrate the hope and love of our Saviour. I just need to be diligent that I don't get too overboard on the physical parts of Christmas.

And, rest assured I am not saying that we can't enjoy all the festivities that go with Christmas. I love the baking, shopping, wrapping, decorating, and visiting that comes with the season. It is a celebration and we should celebrate! We just need to stay centrally focussed on why we are celebrating.

MERRY CHRISTMAS ONE AND ALL! MAY THE PEACE OF GOD'S GREATEST GIFT SURROUND YOU AND YOURS!

The Green Eyed Monster

Posted on September 30, 2013 at 8:15 AM Comments comments (0)

I remember years ago when I was a child my mom had a "friend" that could be very cutting and mean. She seemed to delight in pointing out how much better she was than my mom and how everything she had and did was superior.

My mom was so gracious to this woman. For years she put up with what I would call - her crap. As a child and a teen I could not figure it out. I mean this woman was really quite a hag to my mom at times. And, at other times she was just the nicest lady doing whatever she could for my mom. This was usually when someone else was watching or she needed something in return

At times my mom would complain to the family about this friend and her ways. But, she never let her frustration show through to the woman.

I would ask my mom why she even bothered. When I was quite young she would reply that the lady was rough around the edges but had a good heart despite it.

Years past and my mom and her friend grew apart. It always made my mom sad that they grew apart. Although, I have to say I think my mom was better off for it.

When I was an adult I asked my mom one time about this friend and why she constantly put up with her degradation. Well, my mom showed me a beautiful spirit when she told me her story.

My mom's friend always had to have the best clothes, the best haircut, and the nicest perfumes. But, she would smoke for periods of time so she wouldn't look like a “fat cow” like her mom would tell her. This lady had a younger sister that was naturally tall and slim and beautiful. The family beauty queen. Even though my mom's friend was of average build and nice looking she always felt like an ugly duckling, reinforced by her family's comments. My mom was a tall slender beautiful woman so that must have been intimidating for her friend.

My father was a town councilor in Drayton Valley for many years. This was also a sore spot for my mom's girlfriend. She thought that my parents were trying to up their social standing and become elite. What a crock of blarney. Being a town councilman in a small town does not increase your social standing. It just increases your stress levels. You work tirelessly trying to create a prospering community with very little thanks, but quite a bit of criticism. My parents are very community minded citizens and at the time my dad felt this was a way he could serve the community that he lived in.

My mom's friend had a daughter that was the same age as me. We were the best of friends until grade 3. Then things started to go downhill. I was a very scholastic child. Yes, nerds are us was me. My best friend was slow in school and was delayed a bit mentally. She ended up failing grade 3. This brought jealousy to the forefront of my mom's friend and my mom's relationship. This woman could not cope with the fact that her child was a "failure". Sadly, she was treating her own child the same way she was treated by her mother, making her feel small and less important.

Sadly she was overcome with jealousy towards me that she treated my mom even worse and would make up things in her mind that was wrong with me to make herself feel better. There were times she even picked on me because of it. How pathetically sad is it that an adult picks on a child because of their jealousies. She would also accuse me of things that I did not do. I know that these acts were the final straws for my mom. She would not continue to allow someone to belittle me. If they were indeed her friend they would not treat her child this way.

My mom never confronted her friend. She just stopped being involved with her so much and over time the distance between them grew. She did not want a confrontation. She felt there would be nothing to gain from it.

My mom always told me that jealousy was the biggest strain on a friendship. Sadly, she said that jealousy could destroy the love of friends. It is not something that you can help. You have to choose to do what is best for you and your family. You should not be ashamed of your talents, your possessions, or your beliefs. They are what makes up who you are.

It is the choice of others to have their feelings towards you clouded by these things. It should not matter if one child has an ability that another doesn't. Each is unique in their own special way. It should not matter the clothes you wear or the car you drive. All these thing are irrelevant. It is what is in the heart of you that matters.

You may have to make tough choices in friendships throughout the course of your life. Always be true to yourself! Do not sell yourself short for someone else's piece of mind. Slowly make your way out of negative relationship. It is not selfish it is necessary. Take with you the good of your time together and leave the bad behind.

 

 

 

CONFLICT

Posted on January 11, 2013 at 9:10 PM Comments comments (0)

If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over.

Matthew 18:15

Sometimes hurts are brought on and people hurt those that they love the most. We are to go to those that have hurt us and talk it through with them. It is to be in a calm, private area. We are to voice our hurts and move on. It really sounds like it is cut and dry. Talk, get over it, move on!

It is not quite that simple sometimes. God does not just wave a magic wand and it is all fixed up. Sometimes heart ache and strife still prevail after we have confronted the one that has hurt us. God does not want us to aggressively take that person on and belittle them. He wants us to find a neutral ground and allow the hurts to be put behind us. This is possible, but does not always come out in a perfect colorful happy picture, sometimes it is in grey scale and gloomy and can only be viewed by one person.

My knee jerk reaction use to be agressive confrontation. When I was so unhappy in my life I did not handle conflict well or with sensitivity. When met with conflict my knee jerk reaction was to strike out and hurts those that hurt me or mine. With years of working towards a peaceful inner self I still find handling conflict challenging.

I have tried to approach conflict with the spirit God intended. This is not always the easiest thing to do in the heat of the moment. But, I have discovered sometimes even if I do all of what God has commanded of me it still does not bring the immediate results of peace that I hope for. The key is - what I hoped for. My time is not always God's time. And, my hope for resolution does not always jive with the other person's idea of resolution. It is human nature to want to be right and sometimes compromise is not in the cards for those that are in conflict with another.

I have come to the conclusion that conflict must be voiced and a resolution needs to be attempted. Sometimes those struggling together need to agree to disagree. But, sadly this is not always achieved. In the end you must be responsible for your own thought, words, and actions. If you have prayed and done what you think God has intended for you to do you have done your part. The only person you can control in life is yourself. It is up to the other to make peace with themselves and most importantly God.

You may walk away with conflict with a win win resolution on both sides, a neutral resolution, or perhaps only yourself at peace. All in God's time not in our own.

 

 

 

TBH

Posted on July 20, 2012 at 9:00 PM Comments comments (153)

I bet all my young followers know what TBH is. How about you young at heart readers? Are you on facebook? Well, TBH stands for To Be Honest. And, honestly a lot of the time it is just crap!

Sorry if I have offended some of you serious TBHers but I am getting so disgusted with what is being dispalyed all over facebook that I just have to rant for a bit. For those of you not quite up to speed on TBH I will give you a quick tutorial.

On facebook you can request people to give you their To Be Honest opinion of you. Most of the time it is just an ego stroke like: your the best, your the prettiest girl ever, oh you are so wonderful, blah blah. I guess if you are feeling down about yourself most times it is a good pick me up. I'm not a teenager anymore so I just don't get the thrill of it. But, that is okay no harm done - usually.

Lately though there has been a lot of hurtful words said and even video accounts on facebook of really hateful opinions being shared. It saddens me because I know some of the youth displaying this negativity and I expected better of them and I know that they can be better than that.

I love technology: texting, facebooking, tweeting, etc... I find it to be helpful and fun. There is a lot of information out there that can be shared quickly and conveniently. You can touch base with a friend half way across the world in just a few keystrokes. You can post family pictures for your loved ones to see. You can hold conversations via facetime or skype and actually see the person you are speaking with in real time. And, you can bully someone without actually having to face them.

A young girl in grade 7 asked for a TBH from some older girls, These older girls decided to take it upon themselves to completely rip this younger girl down. And, their justification for it was she asked for the TBH so she better be willing to hear the truth.

The rudeness and hurtfuless of this TBH was disgusting. Now, I am told that this younger girl has questionable behavior at times. You know what? That DOES NOT matter! Under no circumstancces was this TBH justfiable. If you can't say anything nice then don't say anything at all.

Plus, I am also aware of what this young girl has to endure sometimes and maybe just maybe instead of acting on impulse and being total creeps to her they should have thought about why she is the way she is. There is usually a story behind a person, something that molds and develops them into who they are.

I know of another TBH about a male youth who is trying to say the least. Well, a couple girls took it upon themselves to point out what a tool he was all over facebook. Now these girls weren't telling anybody anything new but to actually speak the words out loud and display it all over facebook was really low. I know the one young girl would never have said the words to his face. But, without personal contact she became braver and stupider.

I am just wondering how these kids would feel if someone did the same to them. It is important for young people to realize that rash comments can be extremely hurtful and can cause unnecessary pain. So what if you don't like someone, I am sure that there are people out there that don't like you either. How would you feel if they bullied you in this manner?

It is too easy to say whatever pops into our heads now days. We don't have to look people in the eye or watch their reactions to our words. As a parent if someone posted these types of TBHs on my child's facebook I would be up in arms.

That brings me to the second part of this discussion. Because of these negative posts there was extreme backlash. The kids that posted these comments ignited a fight throughout facebook. There was more name calling, slandering, and even threats of physical violence. Was it worth it? Was it really worth the hassle and hurt that was caused just to be a snot for all of facebook to see? Who gave them the right. NO ONE!Back to another well used quote: Do Unto Others as You Would Have Others Do Unto You.

Life is not easy as a teenager don't make it harder for yourself or others by being inconsiderate and not thinking before you speak. Think of how your words can hurt others. You don't have to be everyones friend, you don't even have to like everyone, you do however have to be respectful. And, respectful can be as simple as not posting a TBH if you have nothing positive to say.

REMEMBER: If you can't say anything nice don't say anything at all!


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