Monday, April 22, 2013

Boston, discrimination, hatred, and evil - my review on the events of the last week

Today, as it has been for the last few days, my heart is heavy. I've spent the better part of the last few weeks dealing with new information about a close family member which has shaken me to my core. I've tried to not let it affect me, but it hangs over my head and keeps me up at night. This information is personal and quite scary so I can't say much more about it at this time. However, the bombings of the Boston Marathon have stirred the same sort of emotions within me, so I've decided to write more about that instead. But first, I have an anger running through my mind because today, I was the victim of discrimination, for a reason I'd never thought I'd face discrimination for. I left my job in 2010, a single mom, determined to be a stay at home mom yet still support my family. Thanks to friends and great advertising, I did well. I never applied for state assistance, never tried for unemployment, never mooched off family or friends. I worked, by opening my own daycare in my house. I researched state guidelines and was even inspected by the state to ensure that I was following state guidelines, and passed with flying colors. I claimed every penny on my taxes, did everything by the book, and had many happy parents and children who trusted me and what I did. So why then, did I feel like such a horrible person, almost borderline criminal, during a child support hearing? Because the hearing officer heard "unemployed" and didn't listen to the rest. I may not have worked for a corporation, but I worked over 40 hours a week and only made 1/2 the income I made in an office. I had to stop due to medical reasons and have diligently been searching for a job I could get insurance from, with a very promising prospect supposed to call this week.
I wasn't seeking more child support. We were there to decrease it due to a 50/50 custody agreement we peacefully made back in February. There was no argument about the need for the decrease, we mutually agreed on the change, we didn't fight. We sat outside the court room for 2 hours, talking and laughing peaceably. Once in the court room, we followed all orders, said yes ma'am, and thank you and used all the respect our mothers taught us, yet this hearing officer continued to talked down to me. Not once, but over 15 times in 10 minutes, to the point that Love's father chimed in for my defense at one point regarding why I wasn't married to the man I live with and have a 4 yr old son with. This hearing officer was so caught up in the fact that I didn't have income and lived off my boyfriend's money that she messed up the figures and awarded me the wrong amount. It had to be recalculated and she had him over paying $40, all because she was angry that someone wouldn't have a job and opted to be a stay at home mom instead.
I really wanted to go and file a complaint about her, but I'm scared to say something and have it held against me in future court cases. I felt like writing her a letter with my whole back-story so she would feel guilty for treating me like that, but really, why should I have to do that? Why should a person have to play a poor health card, mental disability, or special needs card in order for a person to be nice to them. A person shouldn't have to have a sign with their back story for us to feel compassion and treat them a little kinder. Today, I was hated for being a stay at home mom by an officer of the court. I still feel like crying but I've held in the tears and am trying to not let one ignorant person upset me as much as it has.
Then there are people like that of Dhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, seemingly normal, maybe a little lost, but, never in a million years did their friends suspect them of being capable of the acts they committed last week. What about the eldest's wife? Did she know? Did she ever wonder if the man she loved would one day flip a switch and attempt to kill and injure hundreds of people? And what of his child? Will this child live with 1, being hated because of his father's actions, and 2, in fear that he may one day be capable of such horrid acts?
What happened to these two brothers to make them such monsters? How does a person hate that much? How does one lose regard for other human life? At what point did they lose the ability to judge right from wrong? How...I just can't formulate how much this scares me. To think that someone you trust one day, can wake up the next day as a monster, who has really just been hiding behind this human mask the whole time. I can tell you that your life flips, you second guess the actions and looks of everything. You wonder what else is not as it seems, you judge a little deeper, and you push away from those you once held closer. You fear for reality, wish for sanity, and pray for it all to be just an awful nightmare which you can just wake up from with a pinch.
I am still lost, for personal reasons, and for these men monsters, and fearful for the world we are living in, where it seems that we have nothing to fear but our own neighbors and even our own family.
Prayers to Boston, to Texas, and to all of my fellow humans who are helping to make this world one of compassion and kindness and eradicate the hatred and evil that has shaken us all.

<3 p="">Bethanne


Monday, April 15, 2013

Goodbye iPhone, Hello Windows 8 phone.

Welcome to my new iPhone-less world. One in which candy crush saga doesn't exist!! Eeeek!!! :( It's ok, I'll survive. There is a whole page of events that led me to this decision, but here's what really made up my mind. On Wednesday last week, I dropped my phone for the hundredth time, only this time I wasn't filled with the panic that it would be broken. I had dropped it plenty of times before and it had always been fine. As luck would have it, it was in fact very much cracked. (note: this was the 3rd iPhone in two years thanks to cracked screens and water damage) I was due for an upgrade in a few days(today,)  so I thought I'd live with the cracks for now and wait until the new iPhone was out. However, a good friend suggested I go over to the Samsung Galaxy line because they use gorilla glass and would probably withstand the abuse I give my phones. They were due to release the newest S4 model 4/16/13...tomorrow. Surely, I could hold on for one more day. So I starting watching reviews on the S3, new features slotted for the S4, as well as still looking at the iPhone5 and thinking about just sticking with it. Then Hun made sure to drill it in my head, that $200, even $100, for a new phone was way out of our budget range. All of our money has gone towards a new backyard for the kids and us to enjoy this summer. Plus, I don't have any personal income right now, since I've stopped my in home daycare, so I went into Verizon today to see what was available in my $0.00 price range, that I could see myself using without missing my iPhone too much.
I was pleasantly surprised when I saw the Nokia Lumia 822 (free with the 2 yr upgrade). I loved the touch screen, the Windows 8 environment, the ability to connect it to my windows 8 notebook. I searched for the top apps to make sure I had the ability to access all my favorites, like Pandora and Facebook, and was truly satisfied by what I found. Still, I perused through the store looking at each and every phone, the galaxy's the stratosphere's, the note, as well as the iphone5 among others. No matter how cool their features, they just couldn't sway my decision. Like a bride in a dress shop, I had found THE phone. I've only had few hours to play with it but I love it so much more than the iPhone already. Why did I ever let apple sway me with their overpriced phone, which had so many malfunctions that we are just supposed to accept, or pay for a new one, such as the lock button which lost it's ability to lock my phone on not one, but all three of my phones, an issue that apple has still not corrected with the iPhone 5. So goodbye Apple. You've lost another customer today.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Momma Trauma: Special Announcement!

I've written before about a group I frequent on Facebook, a group of mom bloggers who just seem to get me. We all have just started out in the blogging world and have been very supportive and helpful with each other in finding new tips and new tricks.

One particular mom I've written about previously, deals with a very sensitive issue, one that affects a lot of moms in my community and all around the world. She blogs about "birth trauma" which ranges from physical to mental health issues and complications during pregnancy, child birth, and postpartum time periods. She has become a rock for women world wide, an advocate for the victims of Birth Trauma. Her name is Jenn, her website/blog is Momma Trauma. She knows all too well the emotions of PTSD, PPD, and birth trauma.

Below is an amazing project she is heading. I can not wait to start a local circle for the members of my community.

From Jenn:

The Project

What are we planning that is so top-secret? A global birth trauma sacred circle support network.

Why is this such a huge deal? This network will be the first of its kind dedicated to birth trauma and perinatal violence victims. It is a peer-to-peer network run for and by those who have walked the warpaths of birth trauma.

What will this network offer?

·         Localized, in person sacred circle support groups that will meet at least once a month

·         Online forum for support, advocacy, education and all aspects of birth trauma & perinatal violence.

·         A sacred circle support group via phone conference for birth professionals, at least once a month.

·         Birth professionals available for individualized support to fellow birth professionals.

·         A growing bank of resources: local and international

·         Future opportunities to participate in advocacy and education efforts

·         All areas above will be growing as time goes on!

 Why is this network needed? As a birth trauma mom myself, I know how difficult it is to find resources for healing and recourse following a birth. I also know the importance of voicing my story (both online and in person) so that I may heal. It is my goal to get these resources out into the local community to “unearth” the unspoken traumas and get moms the peer-to-peer help and support they so desperately need. We have also come to learn that birth professionals can experience birth trauma, even if only through witnessing the course of events. These professionals who give so freely of themselves need a place to decompress from births so that they may give themselves freely in subsequent births. 
Why will the first meetings be held during Mother’s Day Week? We’re asking local communities to hold their first meeting during or around Mother’s Day Week in May. This gives them one month to organize a place and time and to also promote their meetings. This network is designed not to re-traumatize the mom or birth professional, rather to help her empower herself to work on her own healing journey. It’s the empowerment that we hope a community member will take away from this network during Mother’s Day Week. As mothers, we deserve to be happy and healthy And “healthy” includes our psychological well-being.
What do we need? Volunteers! Community Members! If this project interests you in any aspect, we want you! We understand that while we may feel adamant about advocating for birth trauma healing and support due to your own journey, some may not be ready for a role in leadership yet. That’s okay! We have other volunteer needs and of course you can join your local group to further your own healing and meet others nearby with similar problems. No local group yet? Fill out our feedback form and tell us! We’ll add your location to the “Location Needs” list so those interested will know there’s already an interest in your area! We need:
·         Local Organizers

·         Regional Help

·         Forum Administrators

·         Advocacy & Outreach Team

·         Education & Resources Team

·         Translators

·         Have an idea? Tell us!

Medical Disclaimer:
While we understand there may be medical and/or psychological issues at hand for any one of our community members, we ask that everyone involved remember that this is not a ‘professional’ support group, rather a peer-to-peer space. While we may discuss treatments within our own healing journeys, we understand that we cannot diagnose nor can we suggest any one avenue of treatment over another. We respect the autonomy of women to make their own informed decisions and in order to make those decisions; we must have information for all sides free of coercion. It is for this reason that we seek to offer a comprehensive resource library for our community members, supporters and local organizers.

Spiritual Disclaimer:
We are working to create non-denominational, all-inclusive spaces, understanding that religion may come into play in each community. We respect the beliefs of our community members and know that the idea of “sacred space” can be created regardless of religious affiliation.


“It is my opinion that if even one person comes to a meeting, that is at least one
life changed for the better! I will always be there, even if only for that one.” – Momma Trauma

Head on over to Momma Trauma, click on Sacred Circles and get started. Volunteer, join the discussions, and find out more.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Eff this Shish, It's Friday!

Yesterday was all sorts of fun between Babe and I. Although the beginning of the day was rushing off to beat the drug test for the new job deadline of 10am (after sleeping in til 9:15), the remainder of the day was for him and I, (and my blog, and my Facebook page, and candy crush saga, but you know he came first.) I even skipped my chores for the day (although I did laundry and dishes so it wasn't a complete lazy day).
We've been learning about the value of money, which is way above his preschool level but he learns everything so quickly, I don't want him to get bored, plus he has been curious about money values, so, why not? We headed over to the local teachers supply store, picked up a few workbooks for him and Love, as well as a money bingo game and a bag of plastic coins which ran at a ridiculous price tag of $16.99USD for a total of 60 plastic coins. I may return them because that was the stupidest thing I've ever done! They have a whole piggy bank full of coins we could use! Anyway, he could count by fives by the time we were done and now he knows how many pennies are in a nickel and a dime as well. Today we will learn quarters. He truly does amaze me everyday with his memory retention skills.
Another thing I taught him yesterday was our address and our phone numbers. I made sure he knew the importance of knowing them in an emergency and he was intent on listening. I started with my cell number, went to used the magnet refrigerator thing to put the numbers down, asked him to read it, closed my laptop and asked him what numbers were on the fridge. He responded "I can't read them because the computer is closed!" So I opened it and had him read the first three numbers, covered the number and asked him if he remembered the first three numbers. He did and repeated them from memory, so I repeated the process with the next three numbers, had him give me the first and second set of three. I then repeated the same process for the last four numbers had him say the full number from memory three times, and did it all over again with daddy's cell number. Then altered it a bit for our address. Two hours later he had his dentist appointment. They asked for my phone number and he jumped at the opportunity to repeat it! 6 hours later we were out to dinner, I asked him what my phone number is, daddy's phone number and our address, and he rambled it off like he's known it for years! Thank god he has my talent with number memorization!
Apart from the learning bit, we had fun not learning too! We had another dance party, played hand puppets (I have no idea how this got started, but it's his new favorite right hand is a dog, my left hand is a cat...he cracks up whenever I make one of them mad, or sad, or snore) We let our inner silliness fly wild while he was getting a bath. I told him to smell the bubbles and dunked him into the water, making him laugh water out his nose. Then he started doing it to himself and hit his head on the bottom of the tub, and still came up laughing hysterically, I got it all on video but I need to hide his boy pieces before I post it. We made an Easter bunny craft (a week late) played Lego Star Wars, did an invisibility trick and disappeared right before daddy's eyes(under a towel). Bought a new vacuum and vacuumed the spider webs off of the ceiling above my bed, and played at the park.
Pretty much I did enough "mom of the year" shit yesterday so that today I can sit here and say, I'm not doing a damn thing! Shh! Momma's blogging and posting to facebook. Why don't you go play with Captain America and the Hulk? Oh, you want to watch movies all day and play video games until you bleed mega pixels? Sure, just leave me alone kid.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

2 for 1 special: Epically Awesome/Very Inspiring Blogger awards

I am procrastinating writing again. I have nothing to write, which is kinda good, considering this blog was supposed to be chronicling my struggle with depression, so no news is good news. I am doing very well. I got a job, not THE job, but I'll take it until something bigger comes along. The house is getting done more and more each day, the back yard will be re-vamped next week!!! Spring is here, and it's actually starting to feel like it. Just all good and quietly plotting out other people's demise over here.
So, thank you to Ellen (Bad Word Mama) for giving me a reason to write by nominating me for this Epically Awesome Award of Epic Awesomeness. Yay!!

I'm supposed to give you 10 facts about myself and then pass this award off to other bloggers. I feel like I'm being hit with chain letters disguised as awards, but eh, I'll take good praise where I can get it. Thanks Ellen! :)

1.  My biggest "quirk" that tends to piss people off, is that I tend to bust out in song (and sometimes dance) if I hear a word or phrase that reminds me of a song. This in itself doesn't piss people off, it's that I completely forget what we are talking about and we have to start the convo all over again. Tell me that you want new boots because these boots... I have no idea what you said after this point because Patsy Cline just came out of my mouth. :) Made for an awkward first date when I did it 9 times in 30 minutes. The guy must had thought I had some disorder or something.

2. My parents are in the process of a pretty nasty divorce after 35 years of marriage. My sister and brother are all sorts of fucked up about it, but I haven't gotten upset about it. Sometimes I think I should care more, but then Hun pisses me off and I realize marriage sucks, my parents deserve to be happy.

3. 2 extra large cups of Dunkin donuts coffee, a Starbucks venti caramel macchiato and 2 "5 Hour" energy shots, and I'm still tired, but I'm starting to see unicorns and zombies.
4. I want to start a petition to get Spongebob banned from being marketed to ages younger than 10. I hate all shows that "dumb down" kids.

5. I worry that I may be getting more strict than my own mother.

6. I've was going to confess a big problem of mine in this line, but I just deleted it. :) Not quite ready for that step yet.
7. Orchids are my favorite flower.

8.  I just recently broke down and let my daughter listen to pop music. She listens to "Kidz Bop" type songs at daddy's house, but I wasn't ready to admit she was passed the Old MacDonald stage yet. Suffice it to say she is growing up much to my chagrin. :(  Her favorites are Lady Gaga and Kesha. Lord help me!

9.  We had a "Clean the House/Dance party" today listening to Kidz Bop Station on Pandora, and I have to admit that party rock really did make me lose my mind and I really did have a good time.

10.  I sound really old now, on top of discovering wrinkles forming today and sighing at the number of gray hairs on my head this morning. I guess I am getting older too. Time to get a plastic surgeon on call. Botox anyone?
DONE!!! Woot I did it! (only took me two hours to type that)
Epically Awesome Bloggers:

AND, as if I didn't just indulge your inner stalker enough, I now am going to complete the requirements for this "Very Inspiring Blogger" award. Thank you kindly to my friend Jen over at Simply at Home Mom ( I just wrote simply a hoe mom, thought about keeping it that way, but I have too much respect for Jen to do something like that to her, you're welcome Jen)

I'm supposed to tell you 7 things about myself and then nominate 15 bloggers for this award. Which I'm only doing 5, because I'm the boss of this blog and I said so!

1) I miss the days when getting a shower everyday was not so difficult to achieve. I fear I may be starting to live back in the Renaissance times. Please kids! Let me get a shower today!!!

2) I am 95% sure I am going to hate this new job, so I am hoping that I get a call from somewhere else before I have to start. 

3) Even when Hun and I were having a silent standoff, we still went out on "Date night" it was a quiet and awkward evening, but it is a special treat every other Friday, so we did it anyway.

4) I can throw my voice and I do some awesome impressions, but never on command. It's got to be completely spontaneous or I can't do it, I'll be nervous laughing too much to do it.

5) I really laughed at my uncle's funeral when I was 12. I'm a nervous laugher, and at one point I had to bring up the "gifts" to the priest, in front a very large family, I started laughing really loud walking up the aisle. No one ever said anything about it, but I think it's because they knew I had already gone nuts.

6) On my mom's side of my family, there is a Nun and two priests(one retired priest, and one ex-priest.) I did this laughing at a funeral bit in front of all of them and their nun/priest friends....ay yi yi! Lots of prayer went out for my sanity that day.

7) My son has the worst breath possible, but we were just at the dentist today and he said his mouth is very clean. It's either caused by his sinuses or his Reflux, or both...I hope we can get to the bottom of it soon or I might be forced to get him a Hannibal Lector type of mask.

Top 5 Inspirational Bloggers who I think truly deserve this award:

1) Diary of a Fit Single Mom - I only just found her, but I read through her posts and really like this one. Plus, single moms are the most inspirational kind of people.

2) Curveballs - Allison, aka "Al" over at The Crumb Diaries is the one who inspired me to start blogging, her daily struggles and joys of her son Logan, her Daughter Abby, and her son in law, Kevin, have brought tears and laughter (mostly laughter) to my days. She is the top on my list of inspiring blogs!

3) The Klonopin Chronicles -  Another one I feel a kindred spirit to is Klonnie. She tells it like it is. Doesn't sugar coat her life and make you think she has all her shit together. Her daughter "Troubled" is very similar to myself growing up, quite troubled. Everything worked out for the better for myself, I just pray the same for Klonnie and Troubled.

4) Tell Another Mom - This is a mom on a mission, to stop "Mom Bullying," Fight off the perfectionism bug, and spread the word that it's ok to be just a "Good Mom". Truly a blog after my own heart.

5) Being Positive with a Depressive Soul - She is the embodiment of what I want to do with my blog, teach others that it does get better, that this is not their end, to keep fighting to be happy, and to be at peace with yourself.

Now go over and see the fabulous blogs I've mentioned, grab some coffee/martini (or a coffee martini) and settle in for a good day/night of reading! :)