Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A New Year

Every year it's the same. January 1st rolls around, and most of us are thinking of all the things we should change in our lives. The pen and paper come out, and the goal-setting begins. As one embarks on the long list of dreams they would like to achieve for the upcoming year, the scratching of the pencil becomes a furious race to encompass all the new resolutions one finds in front of them.

The question is always the same...What can I do different this year?...and the answers seem to be shockingly similar to the last time those words entered our minds. The yellow legal pad is lined with all the same old, good intended, half-realistic goals that we never seem to accomplish. Such as, loosing weight, kicking the cancer-stick habit and being kinder to others. The truth is, as much as we want these things for ourselves, let's face it, when week 3 of 2009 approaches, we will be right back to our old ways; eating bagels with cream cheese, lighting up, and flipping the bird to the stupid motorist cutting you off.

Really people! What can we REALLY do to make our life better and more fulfilling? Instead of asking what we can do different, how about we search deep inside ourselves and ask the tough question. What do I need to change? Doing something different is easy for awhile, but making a real change is much more difficult. It isn't easy looking at ourselves and admitting that we need to take action or we will never be truly happy.

It's impossible to make such a change without one vital element though. Belief. We have to believe in ourselves, and know that we can do what it takes to make ourselves, and everyone around us, happy.

Is there really such a thing? Happiness?


Have I found it? Not really. I say this because I know there are things in my life that I should change. I know I can be a better mother and wife. I know that if I want to get healthy, I can. I know these things because I believe that I can make them happen if I truly want to. Fate is in my hands this year, and I choose to make the changes necessary to be more successful in my relationships, career and interactions with my fellow man. Sure, it's true that when I begin my list of new years resolutions, I will have "loosing weight" and "treating others kinder" (among others) at the top of my list. However, I will also have noted beside those entries all of the different ways I can accomplish these goals of mine.

2009 can be a great year if we believe we can make a difference in our lives, and in doing so, we may just make it easier for "John the crazy driver" or "Sally the rude cashier" to achieve the things they expect out of themselves.

So, as the new year approaches, lets not bypass the whole, corny "New Years Resolution" tradition, and loose the chance to do something great for ourselves. Let's embrace the opportunity to look long and hard in the mirror at ourselves. Sure, as you gaze at your reflection, there may be a few more wrinkles and pounds staring back at you. That's okay. Give yourself a wink, and make a secret pack with the image before you, to move on to bigger, better and greater things. Just believe in yourself, and you will.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

34 on the 25th

Another year older? Yes.
Another year wiser? Maybe.
Another year to be happy, healthy and alive? Priceless!

Monday, December 22, 2008

My Position

This last semester I was enrolled in an English Writing Class. I had the task of choosing an issue I felt strongly about, which I would then spend the whole semester developing a position for. In the end, I was able to describe my thoughts and convictions on paper, which resulted in a final essay of my carefully thought out topic.

This wasn't an easy assignment for me. I had many ideas of what issue I would take a stand on, and then write about. I finally came to a decision of the topic I would develop over the course of 16 weeks, and it became an issue that was near and dear to my heart.

Fathers Rights.

I'm sure the rights of fathers is an issue that many of us have heard about, or even personally experienced. The perspective of fathers rights I choose to concentrate on was the lack-of rights fathers have to prevent their wife or girlfriend from having an abortion.

This may not be something that most people even think about. Well, I have been thinking about this for 12 years, and I finally want to express my thoughts about this seemingly unknown issue.

The following is the final copy of my Position Paper/Portfolio for those who may be interested in what I have to say. Be warned, it is a long post, but one that I think you will find worth reading.

Fathers Rights to Life:
The Struggles Men Face to Protect Their Child in the Womb.

As the world turns each day, we are faced more and more with the many choices life presents us, and in an attempt to make sense of exactly who we are, it’s tempting to choose the path of least resistance. This is done, subconsciously or consciously, in an effort to survive with as little pain as possible. However, through the never ending choices one finds in front of them, the one path we painfully decide on can drastically and negatively affect those around us. The following story illustrates this point.

As a young man hears the news for the first time that his girlfriend is pregnant, the seconds that follow are a blur. At first, he is overwhelmed with a flood of emotions, and then the hypothetical questions race through his mind as he tries to make sense of the information he has just learned. There’s no doubt he’s scared and nervous. Then he comes to terms with the idea and starts to feel a little joy. He will be a father! He has always wanted to have children, he just didn’t think it was going to be this soon and with this woman standing in front of him. He tells himself, “What’s done is done. Now where do we go from here?”. The days and weeks follow with conversations of marriage, baby names, nursery colors and whether the baby is a boy or girl. There’s excitement in the air even with the future grandparents as they plan for their first grandchild to enter the world. However, much to their surprise, the girlfriend informs her boyfriend and his family that she will be having an abortion. She doesn’t give any real explanation as to why, only that it’s her body and she has the right to decide what’s best for her. This comes as a bombshell to the boyfriend and his family. They cry, beg and plead with her to carry the baby to term and then turn over her parental rights to the father who is willing and able to care for an infant. Even the soon-to-be grandparents offer to raise the child themselves. She refuses. Her parents are in agreement with the choice she has made, and are paying all the expenses involved in carrying out the abortion. The boyfriend and his family are devastated and shocked at the apathy they feel from the girlfriend, especially since there was never any talk or question about abortion. She just didn’t want the responsibility of a child, and took it upon herself to decide for the both of them.

Abortion has been controversially practiced and debated since the beginning of time, and the reasons behind the choices are so vast that one can’t possibly comprehend them all. As was just illustrated, the girlfriend was faced with a choice that was extremely difficult; however, in her effort to do what she felt was best for her, she devastated the lives of many other people. It will never be clear if she considered the different family members this baby would have had. This decision shattered a whole family and no one could stop her. Now the grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles of this child will be mourning the death of a family member. The hard truth of the matter is, fathers don’t have any legal recourse to stop a woman from terminating her pregnancy. Fathers should have rights when is comes to protecting their unborn children from unwanted abortions, and they don’t.

If the issue of abortion itself were set aside, and the focus was just on the rights (or lack thereof) of the fathers, you’d find many different perspectives on this controversial topic. There are many positions and opinions as to why women have abortions, including: overpopulation, rape, incest, birth defect, poor health, inconvenient timing, unplanned or unwanted pregnancy, and poverty (Reasons). However, regardless of these justifications, many claim that it’s a woman’s right to abort a pregnancy for any reason and on demand. After reviewing several of these explanations as to the rights father’s have and don’t have when it comes to abortion, the following are three that I felt were important enough to exemplify: first, the lack of consideration fathers have in the decision making process; second, the effects on fathers after an abortion has been performed against his will; lastly, the fact that husbands and boyfriends don’t have to be consulted or even informed before an abortion.

First of all, the fact that fathers aren’t even considered with regards to this issue strikes me as odd. As the law reads today, only women have the right to decide when it comes to aborting a pregnancy. However, the father’s voice is slowly being heard. In an article by Mike Hixenbaugh, a staff writer for The Record-Courier, he states, “Simply taking a look at this as a possibility is a step in the right direction. Pregnancy is a unique human condition and obviously a woman is affected differently than a man…However, to completely take rights away from the father is unfair” (Hixenbaugh). Men deserve the same rights as women do when it comes protecting their unborn child, and the fact that fathers are only being taken into a fraction of the consideration is, in many ways, quite disturbing. Jeffery M. Leving, a family attorney and member of Congressional Task Force on Fathers, Families & Public Policy, says, “Depriving fathers of a meaningful voice will not solve the problem for anyone…Moreover, many children will be far beyond the protective reach of their fathers who want to be included in such a pivotal decision” (Leving).

Secondly, the effects of an unwanted abortion on a father-to-be can be long-lasting. There are many different ways an abortion may impact the life of a father. A father experiencing such a situation may suffer a wide range of emotions, including: depression, sleeplessness, bad dreams, nightmares, sexual dysfunctions, fear of failure, fear of rejection, loneliness or numbness, relationship struggles, difficulty with commitment, lack of self worth, inability to trust friends, anger, rage, addictions and sexual compulsions (My Life). A man can experience grief and pain for his unborn child as each year passes by. He may fall into a depression during a time when his child was due to be born and feel extreme heartache with the realization of the age that child could be any given moment. In the article titled, “My Life was Changed Forever“, it states, “Although the abortion may take care of the “immediate” problem, the impact of its finality and irreversibility can be overwhelming”. With this in mind, a frequently heard quote among pro-life advocates is: “There are only two victims to every abortion, but only one survives”. On the contrary, “for every abortion there is a third victim that gets overlooked most of the time. The victim is the father-to-be of the aborted child ” (Tabor). Dealing with the symptoms that occur from the loss of an unwanted abortion can be difficult. However, the most important way to cope would be to find someone to share the experience with and express the grief and pain being felt (Mattes).

Lastly, a perspective on abortion that may not be wide spread, is the fact that fathers do not have to be consulted or even informed when his wife or girlfriend aborts their child. According to a Supreme Court case in 1976, “Planned Parenthood of Central Missouri v. Danforth, a decision was handed down regarding fathers’ rights and abortion. One of the findings was that a man’s right to know about his wife or daughter’s abortion is ‘unconstitutional’” (Stewart). To some degree this doesn’t make much since especially when “in most countries men have no right to insist that a woman abort an embryo that they have fathered. Most legal systems don’t allow a father to escape responsibility for his child and for paying to support that child; this applies even if the father had wanted the mother to have an abortion” (“Abortion and the Father“). If this is understood correctly, a mother can abort a child without legally having to ask or inform the father, even if he wants the child and has the willingness and means to care for it. However, if the mother gives birth to a child against the will and/or knowledge of the father, legally he is financially responsible for the well being of that child. He has no legal rights to protect his unborn child; however, a deadbeat dad is held to a higher standard in terms of caring for children that are alive. Although logically it may seem cruel and horrible to not allow a willing father to care for a child he helped create, the law is the law, and women have beaten the fathers in every aspect when it comes to the choice of an unborn child’s life. “Women have all the power, and men have none at all” (Lithwick).

In addition, one may find themselves being compelled to understand some of the reasoning why a woman may abort her pregnancy against the will of the father, especially when he is willing and able to care for a child. The choice of abortion seems to be a constant issue for the government to decide and pass laws about. It’s understandable that abortion is sometimes necessary when the circumstances are that of rape and incest, in fact, it may be the only option a woman, man or couple may have. However, more often than one might think, a woman aborts a pregnancy without the consent and/or knowledge of the father, even if she is married to him.

The issue of abortion itself isn’t being debated in this paper. Having an abortion is a right a citizen has according to many states in the U.S., and the idea that someone may make use of the services of an abortionist is entirely the choice of the individuals involved. The position that this paper is taking is not that abortion is right or wrong, it’s the fact that fathers are becoming victims by not being afforded the same rights as women. Is there anyone out there willing to take a look at these devastated fathers and realize that they are people too, who experience feelings of heartache and loss just like any woman in this world? Will there ever be equal rights when it comes to this issue? A father has the right to have an active role in the decision making process when an abortion is being thought out. It’s sad to learn that a husband and father doesn’t even have to be informed when their wives or daughters terminate their pregnancy, claiming “…it an “undue burden” on women to have to share their abortion decision (or even notification) with their husband” (Stewart).

There are many individuals who disagree with me. They believe that it is a woman’s Constitutional Right to be in control of her own body, and that she should have the right to choose for herself what is and isn’t done with it. They also feel that no woman should be forced to grow a baby in her womb against her will. In fact, according to Dahlia Lithwick, Senior Editor of Slate, “The courts won’t stomach forcing a woman to bear a child to term against her will”. Other reasons may include: feeling pressure by parents or other family members, financial concerns, the inconvenient timing of a pregnancy, and the interference of goals (“Reasons”). These may seem like very logical reasons, however the thought of a father not being informed of the possible termination of his unborn child goes against his rights as a human being. He doesn’t have the freedom of choice to decide whether he is willing to take on the responsibility of fatherhood.

No one wins when it comes to this very controversial issue of who has what rights and who doesn’t. The lines are clearly drawn and when it comes right down to the basics, the one who loses is most likely the unborn child. The fact of the matter is, a father’s voice isn’t being heard and it should be. In the United States alone there have been 48,589,993 abortions performed since Roe v. Wade in 1973 to the year 2004 (“Abortion in the United States“). Hypothetically, if only half of these abortions were performed with the disapproval of the fathers, that would leave 24,294,996 grieving men in the United States. Unfortunately, like the boyfriend in the story, he was one of many experiencing the same disregard. In this manner, the lives of these fathers will never be the same.

The decision to have an abortion is one of grave importance. It can and will change the lives of many people, not just the mother. Although the argument that a woman should be able to choose what happens to her body is a valid position, the fact that there is a huge lack of consideration for fathers in the decision making process, is one aspect that needs to be reconsidered. The effects on fathers after an unwanted abortion has been performed against his will are very real and can change a man forever. The devastation that follows after an unwanted abortion can last for many, many years. Also, the fact that husbands don’t have to be informed of their wives’, or daughters abortion, seems so disturbing that the law deserves to be criticized, and the possibilities of more equal rights for fathers should be considered. The men of this country deserve a voice in this matter. It isn’t justifiable that a father be excluded from the process of determining if a child, his child, should or shouldn’t be brought into this world. If the choice comes to pass that an abortion is the right choice for the couple, than so be it. The only argument is, fathers need and want to be a part of the decision, and we have a responsibility to make that opportunity available.

It’s our duty to acknowledge these fathers whom have experienced this heartache and will continue to do so, until their voices are heard and someone or something makes a change. It’s ignorant to believe that laws can’t be revolutionized and people can’t make a difference. Hopefully, one day the eyes and ears of the law will shift in the direction of fathers and ultimately give hope to those who seek the opportunity to be heard.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

School's Out...

School's out for winter break...I can actually breathe a sigh of relief! Ahhhhh.

Finals are over...Thank goodness.

Classes are scheduled for next semester, and I have a whole year of school under my belt. I really can't believe it. Three weeks seems like enough of a break for me to collect myself, regroup, and get geared up for the next round of madness. Believe me, I'm gonna need it with A&P, Sociology, Math and Chemistry on my plate.

Well, I'll do whatever it takes if it means getting me closer to finishing my degree.

(I just hope that by the time I'm done, my brain won't be fried!)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008



A word I have always dreaded!


See, even saying now makes me cringe.

I hate the fact that at the end of each semester an exam is given to evaluate how much I learned. I get so nervous having to study a huge amount of material...feeling like I could never remember it all when the time comes to spit it out and answer a question.

What if the teacher is really tricky, and messes with the wording of the questions in order to trip us up to see if we really studied the material.

What if the teacher is really mean, and puts questions on the exam that make no since just to see if we can think on our feet?

What if the teacher gives a ton of essay questions, and I have no clue as to how to answer in an intelligent and eloquent way?

What if there are no multiple choice questions to jog my memory as to the correct answer, and I can't use the process-of-elimination?

What if she/he requires us to give one sentence answers...requiring us to pull the information from our brain?

These are all questions that go through my mind at the end of each semester. I almost start to panic...okay that's exaggerating things a bit. But I DO get nervous thinking about the dreaded study sessions that I have ahead of me.

Luckily for me, finals this semester won't be bad! For my Psychology class, I don't have to take the final at all. My Professor is excusing those students who received an A on the midterm from taking the final exam! That was such a relief!

My English class is doing a crossword puzzle for the final! I know, that sounds so silly, however the Professor decided to take it easy on us because we worked our butts off with a huge writing assignment.

And my Communications Class...well that might require me cracking a book.

So, there it is. Finals. I can actually say that word this semester and not hyperventilate.

Finals. Finals. Finals.

Yep! Still here.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Office

The Office.

What more can a person say?

I always wondered what was soooo funny about this sit-com. I mean, even when my sister and her husband raved about how funny it is, I never got into it.

Now that I have an awesome membership to Netflix, I can watch just about any TV show online anytime I want. So, I thought I'd see what all the fuss was about.

You know the saying, "I laughed my butt off"? Well, I did just that from the very first episode!


I've watched every show up until the 10th episode in the 2nd season, and I can't seem to stop until I get caught up and current with what's on TV right now.

Don't worry, it's not effecting my schoolwork...the shows are only 20 minutes long without the commercials, and when I have a free moment, or want to take a quick break, I log on and watch the next comedic episode in line.

I think my favorite episode so far is the one titled "Health Care", from the 1st season.

Dwight makes me laugh when he is put in charge of making cuts to the company's health care plan, and makes everyone write down their previous/current health conditions. This is when Pam and Jim start adding made-up illnesses to their lists. Once Dwight figures out that someone is screwing with him he announces to the office, "Until the perpetrator is caught, there will be NO HEALTH CARE COVERAGE FOR ANY OF YOU"!

Corban and I busted out laughing so hard when he said that!

How ridiculously funny this show is...can't wait to see what happens next in this hilarious TV Comedy that I have become so addicted to.

The Office. See it.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008



The day when family and friends gather around a lavish spread of turkey, stuffing, yams, greens, pies and cobblers. This is the day when loved ones congregate to stuff themselves with good food and even better company. But more importantly, it's the day we give thanks. I, for one, have much to give thanks for.

My health, children, husband, shelter, warmth, running vehicles...


Although these examples are sufficient of the many ways I feel I am fortunate, I have one thing that I am the most grateful for...

My marriage.

This December Jedbot and I will celebrate our 13th wedding anniversary. An anniversary that we, as a couple, almost didn't make it to.

Life is hard.

Marriage is even harder.

Many months were spent questioning the strength of our union, and we faced struggles that seemed too difficult to endure. We DID endure! We made it through all of the messes we made and came together stronger than ever.

This past year is one that I NEVER want to experience again. And although I say that now, I KNOW that it was crucial to the success of our marriage.

I love my husband. I love him, I love him, I love him.

So this year, as Thanksgiving approaches and I am reminded of all the wonderful things I am fortunate to have, the one gift I will cling tightly to, is the love I have for the man by my side.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

$1.75 - Is This For Real?

It was only a few short months ago, that I pulled up to the gas pump, dispensed a full tank of gasoline, and about had a heart attack when I realized that I had just spent

That's right!

25 gallons x $4.12 = $103.00!!! (I was really pushing it that day...my car only holds 26 gallons!)

What is this world coming to? I was shocked! It was becoming so difficult to keep the tank full. I mean, who wants to spend that kind of money on gas?...

Remember the days when you could scrounge up a few dollars by collecting change from under the seat or in the ash tray, and just a few bucks would get you like 3 gallons?...Let's see, 3 gallons at 2o miles to the gallon would get me 60 miles...that would take me up and down Main Street... like 27 TIMES! When JB was in California for Basic Training, back in 1999, gas was only $ .77!

okay that was a tangent...focus! Where was I? Oh yea...

I was reduced to only putting in a few gallons at a time, and limiting my travel to a 5 mile radius from my home. It was becoming ridiculous!

Scoping gas prices around town had become a daily ritual. Each time I was out, I'd check to see if gas had gone up or down...I even began breathing a sigh of relief when the prices hadn't changed at all. I figured no fluctuation in price was better than it growing more expensive. The kids even started scouting for good deals, too!

Then it finally happened! The prices started to dip lower and lower, when finally, just yesterday I was able to scrounge for some change (I forgot my pocketbook) and dispense 3 gallons of gasoline, at the satisfactory price of $1.75! That's right Ladies and Gents, you heard correctly, $1.75! Ahhhhhhh! (That's the sound of relief!)

...now, if we could just get the milk prices to go down.

But...until then,

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


What does the number 108 mean to you? The temperature outside in the middle of a scorching summer? The amount of miles left to drive before reaching your favorite vacation spot? The number of stories in a building you will never enter, let alone ride to the top floor in an elevator? How about the number of paces you must precisely step to find buried treasure?

I bet, when you thought of the number 108, you never dreamed it was the number of fat grams in a Hardees Monster Thickburger! I know, it never crossed my mind either. Can you believe it? If THAT doesn't make you sick, the amount of calories in this burger will surly do the trick! Ready for this? 1,420 Calories!! Yep, you got it! Believe me, I took a double-take myself, when I saw that astronomical number.

I was doing a little research for a Persuasive Speech in my COMM class coming up, and I thought I'd try to persuade my audience (my teacher and classmates) that fast food is bad for you. (even though it's a no-brainer). I never, in my wildest imagination, thought there was so much crap in the on-the-go convenience slop we all call 'fast food'!

I used to salivate every time a Micky D's or Wendy's commercial came on TV. Now, I feel sick to my stomach at the mere sight of a value meal! So, the next time I'm driving through town in the middle of the lunch rush, and I smell the odors of steaming french fries and fresh, made-to-order sandwiches, I'll think to myself, "108, 108, 108". Then, I'll pity all the folks waiting in the long line of cars at the drive-thru of the local Fast-Food joints, and I'll zip home to whip me up some fast food for myself...salad with romaine lettuce, tomatoes, green peppers and olives spritzed with lemon juice. Then I'll fry me up a veggie burger (in olive oil) and smother it with onions and mustard. Now THAT makes my mouth water!

Maybe then, the number 108 will mean something else to me...my weight! Ha, I know, that's funny isn't it? Never gonna happen...

...well I DO know this, it certainly won't happen eating fast food!


Isn't there just something about seeing people in love? It's almost breathtaking! You wonder, "What kind of attraction could there be to cause such a vision of beauty?" The seemingly uncomplicated act of hugging and giving a kiss doesn't feel like it should be this beautiful. Maybe it's the simple appearance of embracing someone tight, and offering a smooch with a little flare, that makes the performance of these two gestures a work of art. Now, that's beauty!

Oh, lookie there. I think her leg is about to 'pop'! (That was for all you Princess Diaries fans!)

I think I'll be making a little work of art of my own tonight!

Until then,

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Why the title Peanut-Butter and Jelly Sandwiches, you ask?

How many ways can you make a PB&J sandwich? Hundreds! This might seem like one of the easiest tasks known to man, however if you think about it, there are so many choices, varieties and combinations. Just choosing the bread alone can be tiresome! Wheat, white, whole grain, fat-free, potato (ewe, gross) and rye (even grosser)? And then, there's the peanut-butter; smooth, crunchy, extra crunchy, fat-free, organic, Jiffy, Great Value, Peter Pan...and yes, there is a difference in taste when it comes to different brands.

Now comes the many different varieties of jellies, jams, and marmalade's; grape, raspberry (seedless or red?), strawberry, peach...the list goes on and on. What about the Palanter Fruit combobulation?...that stuff makes me ill. Honey, anyone? My mom always made peanut-butter and honey sandwiches for my school lunches...yummy!

Not to mention the fact that there are those who add a different spin to the traditional making of the sandwich. Some love to add sliced bananas, chips, bacon and other various toppings. This adds spice, flavor and character to the sandwich!

The point is this: Life is like a Peanut-Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Everyone has a different perspective and opinion on what makes a good PB&J, however regardless of how you look at it, it's still a PB&J! The same it true for life. Just like a PB&J sandwich, our lives are what we make of it.

For me, I love a good PB&J on soft white bread with crunchy, Jiff peanut butter, and seedless raspberry jam. It must be sliced in half, with Doritos on the side and a tall glass of 2% milk to wash it all down.

If you think about it though, this might not be true for my fellow neighbors. They may totally dislike the way I choose to make my sandwich (or live my life), however it doesn't mean that I'm wrong in my choices. It certainly doesn't mean that they are wrong either. When we all get together to make PB&J sandwiches together...

...or in other words, pass one another on the street, stand in line at the grocery or share the open road...

...I'd like to think that I can make my sandwich my way and they make there's their way and we can all enjoy ourselves despite our differences. At least that's the way it should be. Wouldn't it be nice if we could all accept each other regardless of the way we make a PB&J sandwich? Maybe someday we will.

But, until then, I'll be making mine the way I like it!

You want to know the best part? Here's the big secret! You can always change your mind and make your sandwich different from time to time. Try new toppings or flavors, making it different ways until you get it just the way you like it! How true is that for life? So true!~


"This I Believe"

"This I Believe: The Remarkable Philosophies of Remarkable Men and Women."

A wonderful book of essays, written by everyday people, with the intent to express their beliefs. I was so intrigued by the different perceptions each author displayed as they graciously allowed the world to understand even the smallest of beliefs they hold so dear.

I thought I was going to read different perspectives on religious and political belief systems, instead I came away learning much more about humanity. For instance, why one woman believes everyone should have flowers on their grave, and another feeling that the pizza delivery guy should always be generously tipped. The reasons behind these different feelings allowed me to feel a sense of respect for my fellow man. It allowed me to believe that there IS goodness in this world filled with hate and terror.

The following excerpt is from an essay titled: "A Shared Moment of Trust" by Warren Christopher. I'm not sure why it struck me so profoundly, however it allowed me to see the truth in his words.

"One night recently, I was driving down a two-lane high-way at about sixty miles an hour. A car approached from the opposite direction, at about the same speed. As we passed each other, I caught the other driver's eye for only a second.

I wondered whether he might be thinking, as I was, how dependent we were on each other at that moment. I was relying on him not to fall asleep, not to be distracted by a cell phone conversation, not to cross over into my lane and bring my life suddenly to an end. And though we had never spoken a word to one another, he relied on me in just the same way...
...I have come to believe that there are moments when one must rely upon the good faith and judgement of others. So, while each of us faces - at one time or another - the prospect of driving alone down a dark road, what we must learn with experience is that the approaching light may not be a threat, but a shared moment of trust."

I love this book! Check it out of the library or buy it for your own collection. You won't be disappointed as you learn the different perspectives on belief! Trust me!

Until then,

Post Script: You can click on this book on my bookshelf to learn more!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Prop 8

Although I don't live in California and didn't vote regarding Proposition 8, I do have some thoughts on the issue. I share my feelings only as a way of understanding myself and the position I may or may not have regarding this topic. The expression of my thoughts are not meant to imply that I have all the answers or that I firmly stand my ground on my side of the line, without hearing and understanding the opinions of others. I use this forum as a form of expression and not for the purposes of pointing fingers as to who is right or wrong. That being said, here are some thoughts and feelings I have regarding Prop 8.

I have wondered about what it means to be gay for quite some time. I, myself am very confident in my sexuality and gender. I know that I am straight and that I enjoy the intimate company of my husband. For others it might not be so cut and dry. For a long time I believed that men and women weren't born gay or lesbian and that it was their 'choice' to become attracted to the same sex. The more and more I research about the issue, the more I start to believe that a child may very well be born that way.

If you take, for instance, the child born with ambiguous genitalia. A parent of this newborn may not know the sex of their child (a horrible feeling, I'm sure) and ultimately be forced to choose which sexual organ to remove or keep. Do they remove the enlarged clitoris resembling a penis or sew up the small space that looks a little bit like a vagina? What ever the choice, the parents will have to decide how to raise their child...as a boy or a girl. These thoughts were on my mind during each of my pregnancies.

Children are born with ambiguous genitalia more often than we think. Therefore thrusting parents and doctors into making a choice. What if they choose wrong? How do we know, just by looking at someone, that they weren't born with this condition? During a specific developmental stage in the womb, the genitalia of the fetus develops one way or the other depending on their chromosomes. Somehow, if this process doesn't go as planned, there is no way to know for sure what the gender of the child will be.

There have been many cases of individuals being raised a certain sex and come to realize that they have hormonal tendencies opposite of the way they grew up. Imagine the young man entering puberty and instead of being attracted to females he is attracted to boys. This happens at the same time he begins to develop breasts. "He" really wasn't a "he". He was really a "she" with the chromosomes of a female. Now, if this child was raised a girl then her tendencies would be perfectly normal. However, that not being the case, "she" is now forced into the many questions one might face when determining their sexual orientation. "Am I gay or straight?"

So now, the question is: "If it's possible for a child to biologically have ambiguous genitalia, is it also possible to psychologically have ambiguousness?" Somewhere the physical development is scrambled, if you will, resulting in uncertain sex organs. Can a person during psychological development experience a similar crisscross, therefore resulting in a confusion in sexuality preference? This would cause them to prefer the company and companionship of a person of the same sex.

With all this said, I believe the G&L community should have the same rights as any other straight couple. Because it is not my business to inquiry as to "why" a person is gay. My only thought is this: what if they were in fact born this way? Who am I to say that they are a sinner (only because how can a person be a sinner if they were born with uncertain sex organs...again, this not being my place to ask if they were or weren't.) and that they don't deserve to find happiness with the person their sexual orientation guides them to?

Fortunately, I find myself in a situation where I don't have to ask these questions about myself. However, if I were born with the uncertainty of who I was, I would want to have the freedoms of any other citizen of the United States of America. There is no certain answer to this issue and regardless of how the laws change or stay the same, not everyone will agree. Times are changing though, and one can never be sure about what will be 20 or 40 or even 100 years from now. However, until then, maybe gays and lesbians should be allowed happiness and afford the same rights as any other couple.

Thank you for hearing my thoughts on this issue. I would be happy to hear your thoughts also.

Until then,