Re-define my Freedom of Speech?

Okay – anyone else out there dismayed at all the seemingly mean, insensitive, even outright heartlessly cruel comments and posts on social media these days? Good Lord, what on earth are people thinking?  I just don’t get how people can so easily and carelessly say such brutal, hurtful things, obliviously crushing each other’s feelings.

We see this kind of ridicule or “bullying” on teen’s pages regularly and chalk it up to behavior acceptable for the seeking-out-who-I-am teen years. Though most of us don’t necessarily care for this behavior, even from our teens, we have come to expect it.

What I didn’t expect, however, is this kind of careless crushing coming from supposed adults.  Reading comments under news headings this week my eyes were jolted open and my heart stunned.  Under a Facebook article announcing the Freedom of Speech Blog hand compnew Dancing With the Stars cast, I was blown away by comments of dislike, ridicule, cruelly dissecting the “Stars,” and outright hatred towards some of them, as well as the show itself.  One of the tamer comments that really bugged me was something to the effect of why do producers always put _________ with Stars that he can’t win with, why don’t they sometimes put the old ones with _____.  After reading that comment, I couldn’t help but wonder what the “Star” paired with _________ would feel after reading that.  If it was me, my feelings would be totally crushed!  To think that someone whom I have never harmed, someone whom I have probably never met, who doesn’t know me would publically call me a looser – What was that commenter thinking??? How could they publicly post a comment like that? And, again, that was a very nice comment compared to others.

No, I just don’t get it.  I wonder; how would any of those commenters feel if any of those remarks were made to or about them? Would they be upset?  Would their feelings be hurt? Would they feel it was just “free speech?”

So, this morning I can’t help thinking that this sums up the largest problem in our country today; the anesthetizing of Americans.  We seem to just blurt out whatever is on our minds, uncaring or oblivious to how it will affect the recipient of our words.  No, we don’t seem to care about the feelings of others any more.  Gone are the days of considering our words before we say them.  Gone are the days of putting another’s feelings before our own.  And sadly (I can’t believe I’m saying sadly to this), I haven’t even heard the dreaded “just kidding” after a hurtful comment lately.

 Yes, it would seem, gone are the days of loving your neighbor as you love yourself.

          Seeking some wise words this morning (from Wisemen, Scholars, etc.) which give direction on caring for other’s feelings, I came across a Biblical verse that seemed to hit the mark: Galatians 5:13-14 (NIV).

13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh[a]; rather, serve one another humbly in love. 14 For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

        Then verse 15 says: If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.  That seems to be exactly what we are doing – biting and devouring each other with our words.

So, will we completely destroy each other with our words, with our Freedom of Speech?

          For me, that is too scary to think about.  Therefore, today, I am sweating out the worldly anesthesia I have allowed to numb my senses.  I commit to once again being mindful of other’s feelings, as well as my own.  I renew my efforts to think before I write or speak and refrain from making casual, hurtful remarks.

Yes, today, I purpose to love my neighbor as I love myself,

In not only my actions, but in my words as well.

Today, I redefine my own Freedom of Speech.

What about you – will you sweat out your anesthesia today?

Will you join me in a personal redefining of your Freedom of Speech?

Think about it, ok?

Beautiful…finally!

 Reading this woman’s experience (article link below) made me cry…

…cry because even though I have never been what most women would call overweight, I have obsessively struggled to be and remain “thin” my entire life. Like this woman, I have bought into the worldview of what “beauty” looks like and found myself lacking. 

         But the last 2 yrs as I struggled with an injury, not able to physically exercise much and gained 10 lbs, along with seeing the signs of an aging body, I have come to accept myself more.  I have come to realize and accept that I have EARNED every single one of my “dimples”, “sags”, “wrinkles”, “dark spots”, “age spots”, etc.  Like the wonderful, beloved-by-her-children woman in the article below, I have loved my children, have romped with them, have sacrificed for them, have laughed and cried with them, have held them, spent TIME with them, and did my very best to LOVE them as a Mommy should. 

         And like this beautiful woman, these characteristics and joyful givings from my heart have made me beautiful. They have made my life beautiful.  YES, I can say that now – I am beautiful – with the kind of beauty that matters. Who cares if I don’t wear a size 2 or 4 anymore, or if my abs are flat, or if I still have a nice thigh gap – being obsessed over being, having and keeping those things doesn’t allow enough time to love my children properly every day and be an attentive, giving partner for my husband. Besides – my husband likes curves!

         So, now that I’ve learned a few super important lessons, like this gorgeous, wonderful woman in this article, I choose to be truly beautiful and concentrate on the things that are realistically and ultimately important: my kids, my husband, and the special people in my life who add so much beauty and grace to it.  And the time left over after I have loved them each as they deserve will be devoted to being as physically healthy and fit as I can be. 

         True beauty is what is on the inside – the characteristics of the heart.  And the most beautiful of these is truly loving and giving love to those who are around us.  Exterior physical beauty is in the eye of the beholder and is just icing on the cake!

         And we all know that cake doesn’t have to be beautifully decorated to be delicious

http://blog.petflow.com/a-moms-kids-exposed-what-she-really-looks-like-and-her-reaction-is-perfect/?utm_content=bufferb8dcb&utm_medium=Facebook&utm_source=sungazing&utm_campaign=PFPost#rhuTXP6EfeTQusVG.01

Tommy's First Day Home comp Mindy, Tiffany, Tommy cropped Happy  Birthday Son comp Tommy Tiff and friend and dog Candy is a girl's best friend! Me and Cyndi - rabbit ears

Ebeye, Marshall Islands Time with the girls!

Ebeye, Marshall Islands
Time with the girls!

Here we go!!

Here we go!!

Frankenstein Room

Frankenstein Room

Showing Cap Mindy Tiffany Tommy, red Stripes comp

Grief Has Gripped Me Today: A Note to My Family

Grief Has Gripped Me Today: A Note to My Family

It has been 20 years since my little Tommy died, but today would have been his 30th birthday.

A milestone.

It seems it is the milestone days that still grab a hold of me;

The anniversary of the accident; his birthdays; His special days.  My special days. 

I think about him on these days and wonder, “What would Tommy think about this?” Or like today, I wonder what kind of cake and decorations would he have wanted for his big 30th birthday?  Would turning 30 have bothered him? I can’t help thinking these things.  I remember my daughter’s 30th birthday 2 years ago and how much I enjoyed plotting with her BFF.  How much I enjoyed sharing the milestone and excitement with her, by phone, texts, and pictures.  How much fun it was!! 

Memories I will cherish forever.

But today, I don’t get to do that with my son. 

This is what hurts; not getting to share these special days with my son.

It’s not that I wish he was back here on earth with me; no, I believe – I know – he is in Heaven with his father, his Papa, and his Heavenly Father and living it up, happy and fulfilling his ultimate purpose.  I am so happy for that!  I am so thankful that I don’t have to worry about him and his well-being anymore.

But I miss him! Oh how I miss him still!

 I miss having the opportunity to share these special milestone days with him. 

I miss getting to make new memories with him. 

Like the milestone of getting his driver’s license, and graduating from high school; or the fun of meeting his girlfriends and contemplating his getting married, or his actual wedding!  Or holding his new baby for the very first time – Lord, I’ll never have that sweet, precious blessing.  All these precious memories I didn’t/won’t get to make and keep with my sweet little boy, Tommy. 

Who would have been 30 years old today.

That’s what I grieve for – the missed memories.

The promise of each of those sweet, life-bringing memories, whispers through your heart the moment you lay your eyes on that tiny, fresh new miracle for the very first time.  He takes his first breath outside of your warm protecting womb and your Mommy hopes and dreams take breath and soar! You are that little exquisite miracle’s Mommy!

When you lose that child, a part of yourself leaves too.  But you’re still left cradling that exquisite little box inside of you that holds all those sweet promises of life giving memories that are yet to come. 

But when the memory-making day comes, or the days that should have been memory-making days, you can’t seem to comprehend; your heart cannot understand – because the reason for that special day is somehow not here; he was – but somehow now he’s gone!  There’s no life or breath to give to that memory.  That memory that you looked so forward to, now will never be.

That is what a grieving Mommy grieves for. Not to have her beloved child back to suffer on this earth – no!  But to have life breathed back into that little box of memories, to live and experience each of those exquisite little promises with that beautiful little miracle that was her child. 

To keep making and living those life-giving memories secretly promised the day he was born.

 

Yes, grief has gripped me today.

But I have pulled out my exquisite little box of memories already made and am filling up with the life-breath they are breathing into me.  I’m smiling and my heart is glad!

And then I sob.

My heart is overwhelmed and begins to break apart again. 

And I sob.

But then I remember – I have these memories.  And they can be enough.

I feel relief. 

The burden, swollen and heavy, is lightened once again.

And I cry again.

But it’s ok. 

Because I know I need to cry – tears to relieve the hurting, to release once again the broken promise of what this day might have been; to help me accept what my box of memories will now never hold.

So, tears go ahead and fall.  Yes, at first you were Pain, but now you are Healing.

Each of you land in a broken part of me and with enough of you given, you‘ll hold me together again.  And I‘ll live and breathe and smile once again.

Yes, I am different; there are scars from the loss.  But with time they fade and don’t hurt as much. 

So, please let me cry to relieve the hurt.  And remember those memory days – will be the worst.  If my child was still here, today would be all about him, so allow me to spend today in memory of him.  And please remember that when he died, he didn’t cease being the child I birthed.  For in my little exquisite box of memories called Tommy, there are 9 full years of promises fulfilled; 9 full years of dreams come true; 9 full years of the life and love that was Tommy; 9 full years of me being that little exquisite boy’s Mommy!

So let me grieve a little – or a lot – for a little boy full of love.  Let me release those built up tears that will heal my wound.  Remember, that like a broken bone, time heals, but still leaves a scar, and on a cold winter’s day, that scar will ache.  So like an athlete, we must adjust and make allowances for those cold winter days and that cold winter ache. 

So, yes, I’ll have cold winter days and my scar will ache, but I’ll pull out my warm little box of memories and breathe them in.  My tears will fall, but when my heart warms with memories, the cold ache will fade.  And I’ll smile again – until the next cold winter’s day.

Mindy, Tiffany, Tommy cropped

With Sissy

Yes, grief will grip me from time to time, but with your tender understanding – I’ll be fine.  

Tommy's First Day Home comp

First Day Home