Kindness is FREE

I promise you, kindness is FREE! The ability to keep one’s mouth shut and not say rude things does not cost you a dime. Perhaps you will have some dents in your tongue where your teeth clamped down and kept it from moving and saying rude things, but I promise no money will be exchanged. It isn’t that hard to not say anything at all. You may actually be saving a life by keeping your rude thoughts to yourself.

Perhaps you didn’t realize you were being rude. Maybe  you were simply sharing your ideas on your idealistic world and didn’t stop to think that others may not agree. Did you considering asking me first what my plans were? Did you consider all of the work I have put into this project for the last year? Did it occur to you that this WAS important to me? Sometimes it is hard to look past yourself and see the others around you.

I think you are part of an amazing organization, I admire what you do as part of that group, and I did look forward to being part of it all. Yet, in 25 seconds, it all turned to ash and blew away in the gentle breeze from the door silently closing. You made assumptions, based on your conceived ideas on who I am, and changed my path within this amazing group of people.

I could fight back, but I have only invested a year into this. I worry that if I did push back I would be perceived as an aggressor because of my passions, and kindness is free so I should be kind. I set the example for my children to live by, and they know I chose to not fight this battle, that I gave up, and keeping my mouth shut was all about the kindness of not sharing my anger, hurt, and frustration. Instead I will focus my energy where it is appreciated and needed. I wish you well in all of your endeavors.

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Engulfed in Sadness

Lately this is how I have felt, completely engulfed in sadness. An emotional wreck of crazy.

First there is the uproar of the lion named Cecil. Poaching is wrong. I am sad by the loss of this animal and for his community.  I am also sad for the poached bull moose that was found shot and left along a road. However, my sadness does not mean I don’t care about other important issues. My sadness is because these are animals that are being tricked by deceitful humans for their personal enjoyment. To me it would be like one of my neighbors luring one of my dogs out of the yard so they could cause harm or kill them.

Next there are the animals that are in shelters. The old, the young, the ill, the healthy and the perfect animals all together waiting. I have read a lot of stories lately about these animals. Some have been saved and others have not. The senior animals seem to have a harder time finding new homes and often times don’t leave the shelters. This makes me sad. My son told me yesterday that my dog was looking pretty old with his grey muzzle. I reminded him that I have had my dog for 8 years now and I hope to get another 8 or more years with him since he is a Dachshund and then can live 15 – 20 years. I am sad for the shelter animals because they don’t have homes. They don’t get to enjoy the life my own animals do and share their own unconditional love with humans and be part of a family, their own family.

I also miss my mom. She has been gone for 4 and a half years now. There are so many things she wasn’t able share in. There are still times I forget and want to call her and many nights that I dream she is still with us. Adding to my sadness is my kids miss their Nana and wonder if she would be proud of where we have all ended up in life. I wonder often if her Heaven is everything she hoped it would be and if she “knows” all that happens in our lives.

My kids are all 18 and older now and officially are not my “responsibility”. I raised them, taught them right from wrong, and hopefully helped them improve their skills in self sufficiency. Meaning that they can continue to manage their own finances and afford to care for themselves. This also makes me sad, I miss them with their noises and chaos. Sometimes the house is way too quiet. It isn’t as easy getting together and spending time as a family now that they are all older and independent. It is something we all work on though because so far we still like each other!!

I know this sadness will pass or at least it won’t feel so overwhelming. I am aware that there are others out in this world with their own struggles they are facing. I try to stay positive and look and the bright side of things and offer smiles to all I see. I also snuggle with the dogs often and offer them lots of love and attention because everything I give to them they give right back to me :)!

Lost in the Chaos

Reality has a way of sucking you in and trapping you in a moment and not letting you go. My moment started on April 30, 2015. It was a gradual the way things started to engulf me and until recently I hadn’t even noticed my life was at a standstill. It started with the loss of a young life to suicide, then my youngest daughter’s presentation of her Senior Project, which happened to be about suicide awareness, followed by her graduation from high school. In that time she also registered for classes for college, secured a summer job and had started working her job she intends to have through college.

I stopped doing the things that I liked, started doing things that consumed my brain but offered nothing in return and stopped making plans for my future as I will no longer be a full time mom. I have no motivation to fix the things that are wrong and no desire to care. Each day offers a new opportunity to start making the changes I need to make, yet my desire has not been very strong. It also doesn’t help that the temperature has been between 80 and 102 degrees the past 3 or more weeks. I function well at 72 to 75 degrees anything over that and I become sluggish and irritable. Today the temperature is currently at 53 degrees which would be great if my house wasn’t still feeling like 85 degrees.

The chaos has consumed me. I have known this for the past few weeks. I have decided today that I will start taking a more active roll in my own life again. I didn’t actually stop living completely the past two months, I just stopped providing the visual documentation on why I am thankful daily, I stopped writing and I haven’t been participating in many things I enjoy physically either, like spending time with other people. This all stops today as I enjoy these activities. I have a plan for my future, I will be going back to school at the end of August. This is not so I can find a different job but instead because 21 years ago I had to quit school to raise my son and then my daughters. Now it is time for me to try again.

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World of Wonder

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IMG_0543 My best friend, Cat-A-Piller.

Montana beautiful sky. !cid__0212121455 !cid__0211121153_01 Trip to Missouri from Montana to see my son graduate boot camp. We stopped at the Denver Zoo in Denver, CO and the Rolling Hills Zoo near Salina, KS.

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Girl Scouts took both of my daughters across the country. We are all hoping to someday make the trip as a family.

 Sweet Penelope after she broke her toenail down to her paw.    IMG_0520

Oscar Mayer Time as a family.

Time in the garden is quiet and relaxing. 2014-06-16_07.52.57

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An afternoon of painting with my kids is another one of my favorite things to do.

Teachers

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 When I was younger I played school. My students where my stuffed animals and dolls, including my Cabbage Patch Kids. My teachers would give me left over worksheets at the end of the year and I would be entertained for the whole summer. My siblings were much younger then me so they could not be used as my students. My children are about 2 years apart, making the oldest and youngest about 4 years apart. A great combination to have a teacher and some students.

My son was called the dictator. His sisters hated that they had to play school with him. He would be fine for the first little bit and then WHAM the girls would giggle or not do what he instructed and he was the meanest teach that ever taught in the universe. He did provide lunch and did school photos as well. Eventually the girls learned to say NO when he asked them to play school. The rule at our house has always been if you start something you need to finish it.

The oldest girl, the one who is actually going to school to be a teacher now, was much kinder. However she gave harder work that her students struggled to do correctly. She also was able to get leftover papers from her teachers at the end of the school year and a few times got some retired library books, if I remember correctly.

Nobody played school when the youngest was the teacher. All she wanted to do was stuff about animals anyway. So when she played school she did so with her stuffed animals. I think she probably had the most fun. Her animals almost always listened to her and they didn’t talk back as much as real people did.

They all have grown and discovered other things about themselves. They have grown and become three entirely different people. They all are passionate about different things and they all love to tell others about what they love. I hope they each continue to share their loves with the world and educate others along the way. The best teachers are the ones who have the passion to share with others.

Suicide = Selfish

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There was a time I believed that suicide was selfish. I didn’t understand how someone could end their life when their current situation was temporary and death was permanent. How they could leave the world and let everyone else deal with that loss. You see that is the problem, I didn’t understand. I understood my bouts with depression and my fling with attempted suicide. I understand what motivated me to hold on and not give up my fight as an adult. When I was between the ages of 12 and 13 I took a handful of sleeping pills. I missed my brother who had passed away and I missed my mom because she was never the same after that accident. I felt numb and alone and I just wanted to sleep forever. Flash forward past this incident and on to my adulthood. I didn’t ever think that my attempted suicide was selfish, never once, some how I kept this separate from how I began to feel about suicide in general. Yet as I became an adult and had more of an education on life and what it was all about I did start to believe that suicide was selfish. That the act of suicide went against all that was good and most importantly was the ultimate sin, to take away a life that God had created. I personally have dealt with depression most of my life. My own battle, watching my mom’s battle until her passing and now with my own children. My youngest daughter was told the other day that it was all just a state of mind and she could get past it.

Now I understand things better. I understand that it isn’t about anyone else but yourself and your own battle when you contemplate suicide. This isn’t an act of war against God, not everyone believes in God. It is a release from the fight you have been fighting, a battle that you can’t seem to win. There are no right or wrong answers. There is no one size cures all. It is different for everyone who deals with thoughts of suicide and depression. I don’t have the answers,  I wish I could save everyone who suffers from some form of mental illness. Until then I will do my best to show compassion and support to those I can. I hope that I can be there for those that feel that they have no hope. Of course this is my very own opinion on suicide, everyone is entitled to their own.

Quirky

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Quirky is defined as having or being full of quirks. Similar words include whimsical, erratic, curious, fanciful and odd. This defines the life of my kids growing up with me as their mother. I hope they loved it as much as I did. There are so many memories from their childhood that I hold close to my heart. All stuffed animals could talk (and still do), if you can draw it we can go there (even if it is through a story) and sometimes socks were used to get everybody up and moving in the morning. I remember some awesome fashion shows my three amazing children and their friends put on for me. There was a ton of makeup and crazy outfits and funky dancing one night. I even have pictures of this night, although I am unable to share those as I may need them later to blackmail my children. There were other times that they put on skits and filmed movies that they shared with me. One was a snow day with them sledding in our front yard and scooting right under the truck parked on the street. There were giggles and laughter and wide eyed wonderment. I don’t have that particular video any longer, it will be embedded into my memory forever. Without sound of course because the kids set up the video recorder in the house while they played outside and for some reason it didn’t pick up the sound clearly if at all most of the time.

My hope for my children is that they hold on to the quirky behavior taught to them by their mother and continue spreading that quirkiness into the world.