January 28, 2016

Dear Mattel,

Dear Mattel, 

Ruth Handler is probably rolling over in her grave.  

I can't believe you buckled under such pressure to conform.  By conforming you are in fact condoning the lessons that our society is shoving down children's throat.  You have stood up for nothing.  All for the profit of a buck.  The feminist women who hate Barbie are going to hate Barbie anyway, while they're combing nappy dreadlocks, refusing to shave their armpit hair and placing electrical tape over their nipples in some sort of weird feminist movement.  #freethenipple

Never mind that they smell like asshole.  That isn't even Barbie.  Barbie took a shower.

They're looking for someone to blame their lack of self worth on. Extreme feminist are just as bad as extreme religious freaks and the people who are building underground bunkers waiting for a live action "Walking Dead" to start.  FFS.  Yep, I said it.

My family has countless pictures of the children growing up playing with our toys.  We were 80's children you see.   That was quite possibly the best era and most imaginative one for toys...EVER.

When I held that very first She-Ra doll with her shiny cape, I swooned over the knee high boots and that feeling was one of my favorites.  It launched me in to collecting the dolls for years, even as an adult.  She-Ra was bad ass.  She was hot.  She was smart.  And she was tough.
I STILL deal in toys today, my kids covet their vintage throwbacks.

My siblings and our cousins would jump through the backyard sustaining multiple knee-scratches and bruises kicking major ass like those green turtles.  Hasbro rocked it out.  We had Barbies, He-Man's, TMNT, wrestlers and much more to play with.  All courtesy of adults who created so that children could create.  There was no bullshit political agenda.

Do you know what we didn't do?

We never once built our self worth on a doll.  The point of toys is to launch a child in to an imaginative world where they can do whatever they want, where they can BE whoever they want. We never once took a doll and used that to judge another child.  We played with whomever we wanted and didn't notice any of the things the new line of dolls so blatantly points out.  Do you know why?

Because children are un-touched.  They embrace all humans until adults teach them otherwise.


My sister and I both have daughters.  What I can tell you is that diversity is taught.  Children notice a difference in skin color, sure.  Curly hair and straight hair, freckles vs. none...but the true separating diversity is taught to them by adults.  Sexism, racism, and judgement is taught. By things like this.  

For years Barbie has given little girls the ability to believe she can be ANYTHING.  My Little Pony, Rainbow Brite, and the Disney princesses...they all fulfilled the goal of imagination and empowerment.  The characters blended masculine and feminine.

Not only have you taken diversity and plunged it in to the spotlight for the countless girls who were oblivious to it, but you've taught them sexism.  When you come out with "Moobs" Ken, we'll talk.




Sincerely,

A mom who's taught her daughter that she will be bad ass.
Period.









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January 24, 2016

"Did I Shave My Legs For This?"

I know.  It's a silly play on a great country album that Deana Carter produced.  But it was an AWESOME album.

I love music.  And I mean, LOVE it.  It is one of those things in life that literally can alter your mood.  It's like natural Prozac.  It helps people through the best and worst of times. It's played at funerals and weddings, it is the greatest form of poetry that we have.

When MB surprised me with tickets to the "We Were Here" tour on Christmas I was ecstatic.  I was also really excited because my sister and I bought my mother tickets to see Brad Paisley in February.  That meant two concerts in a row!  For music lovers it's the next best thing aside from getting backstage.  I squealed with excitement as I went through the photo album he had made from printed pictures off of the internet.  They had funny captions and in the end he asked me to go with him.  A close second to my "ugly cry" gift.

I'm far from an old lady.  But raising 5 kids doesn't really allow for the itch I get when I want to go to a show, get scratched.

You see, I've been going to concerts since I was very young.  We would all head to the fair or scrape our hard-earned teenage money together to afford whatever seats we could.  When I was 15 I bought 3 tickets to George Strait and me and my two best friends at the time went.  They were nosebleed tickets.  High in the risers.  We always managed to either make it to the floor, or at times even the stage.  We would rock out for hours.  I attended a Tracy Byrd concert one time, and was right on the stage.  He even took my hand and gave me his guitar pick.  I went home, and for four days straight I couldn't hear.  I know...I know...that's the worst on hearing, but it was one kick ass show.  I loved it. Every deafening minute of it.

So now that I'm done reminiscing over all of the amazing shows I've been to, let's get back to the Jason Aldean tour.

The concert was last night.  We had nosebleeds.  Section AA, row 11.  I sat patiently, (or impatiently I suppose) waiting for the show to start.  I'm a mover.  I'm the one who goes home with sweat pouring off of my body and my tediously applied makeup running.  I love it.  I want to feel it, I want to hear it, I want to experience it.  Jesus Christ, we only have ONE life!  ONE.

I love social media.  It's great, don't get me wrong.  But NEVER in my life have I sat at a show and watched all of the people around me stick their faces in their giant phones DURING a performance.

How miserable!

Phones, and selfies...
The man next to me brought his 10 year old, know what they did?  Instead of singing and dancing and getting over the moon excited?  They simply passed the phone back and forth.  One taking video (which we all know blows) and the other checking his email.  Really?  That's living?  Hell to the no.  You bring your kid to a music show, you GET UP!  You take their little hands and you live the hell outta that moment!  It's fun and it's exciting!! These performers are incredible and the shows are so good!!! Why should I have to be blinded by your giant phone screen?

I sat.  I wanted to get up.  I wanted to scream and dance and have fun!  Poor MB could feel my body opposing to all of the BORING and quiet clapping.  I want to go home with NO VOICE!!! Even the smallest shows I've attended with no name cover bands have left me with some of the best moments in my life!!! Show these musicians some LOVE!


A Thousand Horses played first.  Let me just say, what an in-effing-credible show!  I mean it was like Kid Rock meets Lynrd Skynrd meets 2016!!! HOLY smokes they blew me away!!!! Again....sitting.  Boring clapping.  I could feel my body starting to hate me. I looked around.   Nothing.  The energy was suffocating for a person like me. People slurping their beer and texting and logging in to Facebook and emails.

Thomas Rhett was up next....and OH MY GOD!!!! The show was soooooooooooooo good!  I mean again...in-effing-credible!!!!

Now I realize we are in the nosebleeds.  But you can stand up, scream, dance...just have a great time!  I've never, in my life, been at a concert where people just sat slurping beer and clapping as if they would rather be somewhere else.

Back to Thomas Rhett...a few start to stand up.  They are the ones I salute.  You people, are my kindred spirits.  You sat through A Thousand Horses who were so amazing..you fought to sit still for Thomas Rhett..until you just couldn't take it any longer...You are the people I adore and have a serious life crush on.  You and me are WHY these musicians do what we love so much!

Dear 20-somethings a few rows down from us, 

You probably had a flask in your handbag.  Hell the guys in front of you were sloshing beer around, standing up and screaming when Jason Aldean came out!  You are awesome.  You didn't care.  You stood up!  You screamed!  You woke up this morning with no voice and a hangover, but YOU my friends had a kick ass time.

Dear 15 year old-somethings, 

I know you were on the back wall.  The highest possible seats in the house.  Oh how I hope my sweet Erica is like you. I hope she goes to the shows and I hope she screams and yells and comes home with weeks worth of memories with her girlfriends.  You, I am proud of.  You let loose. You learned exactly what it's like to see awesome musicians play awesome music and you lived EVERY SINGLE INCREDIBLE MOMENT that last night had to offer!  YOU...go girls.  You live your life exactly as you did last night!  Those memories will last a lifetime.  See as many shows as you can!  Go to small shows and huge shows and everything in between!!

Dear 30-something who was two rows behind us and the fella directly behind us who tapped on MB's shoulders to shout in the most despicable old man voice EVER,

"I can't see!" 

"Hey...hey...he can't see!" 

We are both still really confused why you kept "showing" us your beer cup.  I guess out of intimidation?  I'll have to say that when MB hollered back for YOU to stand up and enjoy yourself, I snickered.  You are a tiny man, sir.


I hope you both had the beer shits this morning.  I hope when you went home your girls...rolled over to their side of the bed to snore, LOUDLY...and I hope they had the beer farts.  ALL.NIGHT.LONG.  You deserve nothing more than the nastiest smelling beer farts in the entire world.

Next time stand up.  Next time maybe detach from your miserable existence and live in the moment.  Life is good. And I mean...really, really, really good!  I'm not sorry you couldn't see.  I fought hard the first two performances to stay in my seat.  To "behave".  But never in my 25 years of loving music have I ever sat in a venue and sat in my seat and simply clapped while slurping beer in misery.

 It was like being at a Branson old person's show.  (No offense to the seniors or Branson, I'm just not ready for that in my life...) What.the.f...

Dear Facebook and Smart Phone Addicts, 

I get it, I do.  I love my phone.  I love social media.  But there is this great BIG world out there that is so much better if you put the phone down and just live.  You missed a great show!  I hope your botched and boring and muffled recordings were great this morning!  Actually, I hope they sucked.  #sorrynotsorry

Dear Jason Aldean, 

I'm sorry, but we left five songs in.  I couldn't SIT still.  I was excited.  MB and I work hard to buy things like this!  I was so excited to see you perform but thanks to the dick behind us, I just couldn't conform any longer.  But, I will tell you this, on the way home I vowed to take my kids to their first concerts and let them scream and holler and come home with no voice and buzzing ear drums.  Because...I'll be damned if I don't teach them how to live and love music like yours.

And to those boys you roll with (Thomas Rhett and A Thousand Horses) man...what an incredible opening performance they have! Thanks for making it hard to make my body be still and to "behave".



Live, love.

Tiffany

January 18, 2016

Just a peek...

Sometimes we get just a peek inside someone else's world.  It literally lands in our hands.  It is just a tiny peek, and yet it's enough to spark emotions.  

When that time comes...what do you do with the information?

It can spark anger, fear maybe?  Or a feeling of sadness?  Does it make you feel justified or make you re-consider the way you should handle yourself?  How does it MAKE YOU FEEL knowing what you know?



For me it is a combination.  But mostly, it is a feeling that somewhere in the grand scheme of things I made the right choice for my own life.  I own the choices that I have made.   But what I wasn't expecting to feel was a moment of the most pure gratitude that I could ask for.

Truth.  

The definition is as follows: (results courtesy of Google, herself.)

truth
tro͞oTH/
noun
  1. the quality or state of being true.
    "he had to accept the truth of her accusation"
    synonyms:veracitytruthfulnessveritysinceritycandorhonestyMore
    • that which is true or in accordance with fact or reality.
      noun: the truth
      "tell me the truth"
      synonyms:what actually happened, the case, soMore
    • a fact or belief that is accepted as true.
      plural noun: truths
      "the emergence of scientific truths"

  2. I'm not really sure what we are supposed to do with "just a peek", but in my case it is enough to see that along the way I made the right decisions and my intuition was in fact, correct.  I'm not sure why we even get a peek, it is a rare thing to get gifted.  

  3. I live with a wonderful group of friends (here & far away).  I live with incredible children who are ridiculously human and all around good little people.  And I get to live my life with a man who has been honest and loving for the better part of three years. This is what my world rotates around.  They are the planets and I am the sun, and vice verse.   

I've written elusively about divorce and the suck of life.  I've written with transparency.  I'm not sure which of the two is better.   But what I do know is that as long as you hold on to who you are and the fact that sometimes the truth is stretched and information can get really jumbled up in communication, then it'll be alright.  



What do you do when you see someone who was used, or someone who stretches a truth in order to gain attention?  Or a person who functions on drama?  What do you do with them?   What do you do when you get to see a person's true character?  What if it really isn't their true character and they were fed lies? Do you feel sorry for them?  Or do you use that to reflect on who you are and how they chose to see your choices?  Do you analyze your choices and see how they could have been misconstrued? Do you wish they had asked you, just one time and listened, to what you were saying? Probably a little of it all.  And that is okay, because moving forward often requires you to take a tiny step backwards and really understand who you want to be and where your heart honestly is.  

“Truth never damages a cause that is just.” 
― Mahatma Gandhi
Goodreads

Ask questions.  If you don't have a clear understanding of a situation you simply ask the hard questions you have to in order to get to the truth.  The truth you are comfortable accepting.  It isn't always easy being an adult.  Hell, it sucks sometimes.  It can be uncomfortable to ask questions that you aren't even sure you need or want to know the answers to.  If you knew the truth, would it erase drama that you might be feeding on?  

What I am most grateful for in my life is the fact that I've spent the better part of 10 years building relationships that at some point were tested.  Partly because of the word truth.  I've trusted my instinct and rarely has it lead me astray.  Even when I didn't even want the truth, because it was painful.  

I am blessed with good, funny, brutally honest and loving humans in my life.  But it is because we chose to make our relationships work, more importantly, we chose to make those relationships matter.  I am glad that I had (or will have for future reference) enough humility to apologize when I needed to apologize.  I am simply glad that I can learn from mistakes and just settle in to a really great life now.  

I am grateful today.  Maybe a little hurt, but incredibly grateful that I have M in my life, that I have my children in my life, and that I have a plethora of family and friends who have really attempted to see my truth.  And I, theirs.  



My imperfectly perfect life suits me well.  Gratitude is the place where I choose to reside. Often taking a hard road trip to a place of self analysis and adjust where I need to adjust.

There can never be growth without self reflection.  And there are always...always, three sides to every story.  If the last few years have taught me anything, it is almost certainly that fact.  

Love you MB & love you...all of my girls who have stuck around for each other's truths.  


Live, love.  

Tiffany 





  


December 29, 2015

Ugly Cry

It just happens sometimes.

As human as we are, sometimes the inevitable flies right out of our mouth and falls on the ears of those we love. When something is important to us, to the very core, it will eventually come out.  That happened to me today.  It was not however, accompanied by an ugly cry.  I'll get to that in a moment.  

The very things we think we need to keep to ourselves tend to wash over us and affect us in ways we don't expect.  Bottling things up inside, doesn't help any situation, and when you're running on fumes anyways, well, guess what?

The thing is, is you can't keep everything bottled up or it just seeps out. And in some cases, explodes in a moment of unintelligible and mumbled words.  

Empathy is about finding echoes of another person in yourself.

I received a Christmas gift that truly affected me.  It was the kind of gift that begins with the "ugly" cry.  You are so overwhelmed that the hot tears just fall on their own, and it ends with a sobbing and shaky hug because even though it may seem minute to everyone else in the room, it just isn't to you. As everyone stares at you while you wipe the slobber and snot off of you faces, they will quickly return to their activity so that they do not get swallowed up in to your emotions.  Realizing that the person who gave you the gift was equally as moved, that's some pretty powerful stuff.  

Then I watched as the kids played with their cousins for two days.  I took mental notes of how they interacted and I realized that if they only knew what was lying in the future of uncertainty maybe they would take stock in what was happening. But they are children.  And maybe they don't need to know just yet.  The thought washed over me that one day, one of them might not be there.  I know that sounds so terrible and dismal, and I don't intend it to be, but it raced through my mind like a thousand wild horses crossing a prairie at once.  It made my heart beat fast, matching the hoof beats that sounded like thunder.  And I literally had to fight back tears.  Because how many of us as adults DO know this?  And yet we continue to carry on as if there is a guaranteed tomorrow.  Is it because the time it takes to truly live life like there is no tomorrow is emotionally expensive?  Is it too hard?  I'm not talking about predicting terrible deaths or accidents, but we DO know that we are not guaranteed a tomorrow, and yet, we pretend it's too dark of a subject to cope with.  We use the excuse "well, you can't live like that everyday!".  My friend, you can.  It's called daily PRACTICED gratitude.  And it is so very easy.  It's in the palm of your hand, right now.

I know some aren't wired to worry about it.  And we shouldn't necessarily worry about it.  But it should cross our minds in certain moments.  Beyond all of the tangible gifts we covet each holiday season and the irony of spending hours trying to find the perfect gifts, we should remember those who have crossed over before us.  We should remember them.  We should spend our time with those important to us.  Because it can literally shove you right into a moment of precise and clear intentions of holding on to a memory.  It is how our brains sears those memories like a brand into the medial temporal lobe.   It is WHY we have memories, they feed our soul.  All of the education in the world is worth nothing if you have a life that is emotionally empty.

I just took it all in.  What I think happened in that moment was pure exhaustion.  I am emotionally so exhausted that full function didn't come easy the last couple of days.  All of the build up of the holidays, the forcing of the preparation and the final few days as it comes to a screeching halt, causes us to experience a sort of "coming down", and we sink back in to reality that the magic of the holiday is gone.  That some humans (a small portion) will return to their vile and selfish existences without second thought.  While the rest of us with souls that are like a dry sponge soak up the remnants and stock it up for the year to come.  I fought who I am for so very long.  I pushed back all the emotions out of fear and insecurity.  I was closed off and almost hateful, until I came very close to tumbling in to a pool of sheer misery.  It's a self inflicted drowning if you will.  You know you're just hurting yourself and that you are suffocating under your true self, but you fight it anyway, you just keep shoving your face back down under the black water.  The life of an emotionally hard-wired person (some call us over-sensitive, offensive by the way) can be just like that.  It takes one person to open the floodgates.  After hating the person who opened my floodgates, I now am grateful for him.

I'm not there now, I will never go back to that place, but I am emotionally exhausted.  Literally running on fumes.   I struggled with that subject this week.  Like some sort of embarrassing nail fungus, like there must be something wrong with me because I am so emotionally empty.  I hid it.  I fought it.  I wanted to punch it in the face and scream at myself "What the hell is wrong with you?"  But it's because I was running on empty at the peak of the season.  And it's because I had suppressed feelings that I had.  When we allow ourselves to run on fumes for so many weeks, we just collapse under ourselves.  Some of us struggle with it.  It isn't depression.  It isn't a "sickness".  It's just the lifestyle of being emotionally wired in to all of our situations I suppose, we are literally hardwired to feel our way through life.  And the most important thing, is that IT IS OKAY.  It will be okay.  Who you are is absolutely 100% okay.

I think we all have empathy. We may not have enough courage to display it.

Brainyquotes.com 


The reservoir doesn't stay empty for long.  Those of us wired to not wallow in total self pity will bounce back after we've reached our "full" capacity, and the cycle starts all over again.  When we fight who we are is when it becomes an all encompassing and suffocating problem.

You know though?  As much as I fought it, I wouldn't change it.  Because if that wasn't who I was, to my very core, then the gift that was given to me wouldn't have pushed me into a state of embarrassing "ugly cry". I wouldn't have the emotional capacity to operate with a house full of children for a weeks time,  I couldn't look at their faces and hold their tiny hands and smother them with love and remember that.  I wouldn't be able to feel anything at all.  And what a shame to pass up those memories and the realization that every single day is important to take stock in.  All of them, even the ones that seem so unimportant.  And to a few of you reading this, even the days as children when we ran around the backyard in mock Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle costumes, were important.  That time with my cousin and my uncle were important for me, for my brother and sister, and for Eric.  My brain recalled that particular memory while watching the kids interact with all of their cousins.  That was a gift to myself, apparently, one I had been saving for these exact moments.  And while I didn't ruin the kids time by making them stop to take a look around, I sure did make a mental note for myself of these days that are before me.





I miss Dan.  Every December 7th, every December 23rd, and every other single day of the year.  I miss my cousin, Daniel, every single painful day, and I miss my Uncle Rick.  There are others, but those particular 3 have a special place in my day, each and every day. Every one of them taught me a lesson that I can never repay them for, aside from paying attention to life and each breath I am given.


I am grateful for the lessons they have taught me.  Because I would otherwise be running on empty all the time. That just isn't an option.   While I fight back tears as I put the words to paper, as I wipe them away, I am equally grateful for them.  We have all been through the worst, losing a loved one is the worst, the rest IS an absolute cakewalk.  Because a life without love and pain and passion and emotional memories just isn't a life at all.

I hope that YOUR "ugly cry" gift is right around the corner, or that quite possibly you are recovering from one.  (Cassie.) *insert stupid winky smiley here*



Fill up the tank.  Start all over again.  Just sit back and see how amazing the next year can be.  Just make sure you don't end up on fumes.  

Happy New Year!

Live, love.

Tiffany 
 





December 7, 2015

November In The Woods

NOVEMBER IN THE WOODS 








I wondered this week, if I had cut my bangs because of that day trampling through the woods down by the creek.
Because I had once loved that day so very much.
So fucking much because it was undeniably prepossessing and intense.

There are only three other people who know how powerful that day was, and the way those memories seared in to our minds like the most painful branding you could get.
Not one of us came out of that day unharmed or disenchanted.

Friends walked hand in hand.
Shoes were taken off.
A warm and unusual breeze floated through the air.
The smiles were rich and true.

Was it the click of the camera and the excitement of the unknown and the known mixing?
Or the odd and unpredictable future looming in the distance?
There was cold in the distance, waiting for the four of us.  
Each one of our futures would be so very different than we thought.

Why did it feel like it did then?
The way my hair fell that day?  And today.
Why did I let them talk me into bangs? I hate bangs.  I've always hated bangs.

Was it because you reached out to me?

No.

Was it because I missed you?

No.

I brushed them out of my face, and I remember.

I remembered.

It was because I missed that girl in the photo.

It wasn't you.
It wasn't the way it was brushed out of my face.
It wasn't the unusually warm November day.
It wasn't the photographer or the pictures, or the way the creek gently whispered down the way.
It wasn't the book I was writing literally and figuratively.  
It wasn't the moment frozen in time.
It was the girl in that photo.

 It was her, that I missed.

It was the furious way I loved without doubt and fear.
It was the way I would imagine a wild horse feels right before it broke out in a straight run.  

The way that breeze pulled the auburn hair out of my eyes and the photographer got just the right shot was what we needed.

The pages are gone, they've been long turned and forgotten.

Until now.
I turned back to those pages, just for a little while, so I could remember who she was and who she is.

At the time I didn't understand serendipity.
I didn't get it.

Oh, how I thought I did.

I had what if's and maybes, and shoulda, woulda, coulda's.


I had not good enough's,
I had handfuls of heartaches and a heart full of love.
I had secrets.
I had pain and happiness at the awful and exact time at it's greatest magnitude possible.
I had bruises.
I had dried blood and fresh blood that had begun to run together.
It was like war paint.
The black and red contrast visible only to those closest to me.
I had beauty and ugly dancing around inside my body in pure and glorious harmony.
I had the darkest of dark and I had the brightest of the light.
I had hopeless hope.
I had what I thought was an eternity of loneliness.

And I had more coming, all of those things waiting to grow in intensity, just around that next corner.
I had a battle ahead that I was so unprepared for.

But I had not, serendipity.
Not yet.  

I didn't know what was just over the horizon of that warm, golden and breezy November day in the woods.
I didn't know that the shadows dancing on those faces would be the last time I saw them.
The way they were.  
Exactly like they were that day.
It would be the last time you saw me.
The way I was.  
 

Serendipity lies in the shadows sometimes.
She bides her time and waits until it is deemed necessary to change a situation.
Often times, maybe, just maybe because we don't have the courage to change the situation alone.
We are scared.
We are lost.
We are hoping for something that just isn't right for us.
And instead of learning the lesson, serendipity allows us a moment to breathe.
She chooses for us.  

I sat last night, and had a moving conversation.  Again, a lesson in happy accidents.
As I waited for him to say the worst, it happened.

But the worst was beautiful.  
His worst, was much like my worst.
Our worst was the same.
The exact same. 
Like that day in November, in the woods.  

As I stared at him with the intent to remember every single detail about the eyes that I love almost painfully so, I prayed that they always stare back in to mine with the exact same intense and deeply moving love.
I prayed that his worst and my worst were over.
I wanted nothing more than to wrap him up in my arms and just keep loving him as if we won't get a tomorrow.
Every single part of him.
The blood, the emotion, the good, the bad, and the past that molded who he is today...I have it in the palm of my hand.
He is my serendipity. 
And I am his. 

There can be no what if's.
If you allow it to happen.

Did you hear me? 
There can be NO WHAT IF'S.  

One single moment of serendipity can wipe every single "what if " out of your heart.

As I brush my bangs off of my face, and I think about that girl in that picture, the flood of emotions for her and the longing for who she is...is different now.  
Because if I were that same woman, my heart would never be as full as it is now.

What a beautiful day in December, to remember November.  



Live, love

Tiffany

#listening #daughtry



@tiffluv78 
#twitter
#instagram
#pinterest 

The Hive Publications, 2015



November 16, 2015

A Muslim, a Christian, and a Pagan. The playground rules.

It's no secret I'm lean mostly towards the Democratic party.  I've taken a lot of shit for it living in the cinched up buckle of the Bible belt.  M is a Republican.  Most of my family bleeds Republican.  Even the older boys lean more towards the Republican side of their views.  It takes all kinds to make the world turn.



I just don't really care to know why someone is walking in Planned Parenthood, it's none of my business.  It's been happening for centuries, only now the abortions don't KILL the mother.  She probably isn't a whore, and if she is, not my monkey, not my circus.  The morning after pill doesn't "kill" a baby, it sheds the cells from the uterus and mocks a period.  And the fetuses have been sold in the medical field for YEARS.  It's not only PP who does that, and to be honest, what would some of you like for them to do with the said fetus? Because, abortion will happen.  And that doesn't change the fact that stem cells can CURE disease and further research in domestic and foreign communicable diseases.  Do you believe that ALL of the organs donated are used for transplant?  No, they are also used to help further research in the medical field.
It's how we move forward.

Have I had an abortion, or would I consider an abortion? No.  Do I like it? No. But her sin, is not mine.  And vice versa.  My only job on this planet is to love others to the best of my will.  Even when it's tough.  If I can't, I walk away as gracefully as possible and try to make peace with my judgement.

Gay marriage isn't ruining the sanctity of marriage for the average couple.  We've already done that ourselves.   Gay marriage isn't ruining any kind of family structure.  It isn't unhealthy.  It isn't anything but two people who fell in love.  I don't believe someone "turns" gay.  I'm straight.  Not gay. It's really quite simple.

Does gay marriage affect me? Nope.  Does it affect my kids? Nope.  Not really other than the blasted political bullshit they have to wade through now on a daily basis.

I don't hate immigrants.  I don't believe they are these malicious alien creatures coming here to steal our jobs and marry our children away.  I believe we are the land of the free, and that our entire existence is based on immigration.  We just need better policies in place, and effective leadership to administer said policies.  Should we give 11 million a free pass, absolutely not?  But we can't exactly just escort them all outta the country, now can we?  It's not as simple as some want it to be.  And to be honest, the very ridiculous belief that the immigrants are "Mexican" agitates me, do some even know the statistics on immigration?  How sure ARE you that they must "all be from Mexico?"...because they're not.

Do I believe our military has been used in order to fuel power struggles between us and another nation, as opposed to truly "needed" by the people in different regions? Yes.  We have several invasions under our belt that were misguided and our nations voters misled.

I recognize that white people can be assholes, black people can be assholes, we all can be an asshole...race baiting blows.  But recognizing that racism happens is the first step to fixing a century old problem.  Same thing with sexism.  Same with stereotyping.  The list goes on.

They happen.

Now, my stance on foreign policy has always been a little bit of a mix.  I'm "on the fence", as they say.  There is a time for a war, and there is a time to make peace.  I prefer peace.  It's just who I am. I am also a supporter of the military.  Some of those soldiers and their families are down right bad ass, and deserve way more credit and recognition than they receive.  Are there assholes in the mix, of course!  This is 'merica, and we tend to place some of those said assholes in the military through the court system (maybe because they needed addiction help as opposed to being incarcerated, another topic entirely).  But almost all of those incredible said soldiers are fighting so that some of us can continue to be assholes.  So that we can type out our opinions, paint it, draw it, sing it, protest it, whatever it may be.  We are a free people.   Our problems are FIRST WORLD PROBLEMS.

I swore I wasn't going to write about the Paris attacks.  And holy shit, I swore I wasn't going to write about politics or foreign policy or the upcoming election.

I'm quite sure every artist in the world is fighting the urge to write, draw, paint and sing their way through this latest tragedy.

I SWORE I wouldn't do it.

And then I got to witness this exchange.  The names have been politely blurred out.  But this was too incredible not to share.

A Muslim woman. 
A Christian woman. 
A Pagan. 







Notice how they are all just sitting on the monkey bars.  Having a conversation.  It's meaningful, it's not offensive, it is very decisive and coherent, and it is empathetic.  They aren't rude to one another.  They do not call each other names, they simply point out some views they carry, and accept the others views and continue to dangle their pretty little legs from the monkey bars. They clarify misunderstandings, and they move on.  They each recognize the importance of the other.   

Enter extremist.  
And, he's not even a Muslim extremist.  He's an average, English speaking white male.   


Playground bully.  Asshole.   Whatever you would like to call him. Throwing his carefully collected rocks because that is the only way he's ever known how to get attention. It matters not.  But it was an ironic display.  And although some of the conversation isn't visible he yelled and hollered his way through it with insults and judgement of the finest uneducated grade.  He is from a country that isn't even considered a Western nation.  A small lesson in there for the Muslims who assume...That might be the very best part! 

Hate breeds hate.  Ignorance breeds ignorance.  

To deny that the Muslim religion has some violent (and strangely similar to Christian) beliefs is not even ignorant, (unless you haven't educated yourself on WHY the terrorists are behaving the way they are), it's downright stupid.  They do.  They have very violent and descriptive punishments for their apostates.  There is no dividing line between apostates. However, so does Christianity (we call them sinners), whether "modern" or not.  Through theology we can see that almost every single religion has a terrifying and sometimes violent reaction to those that choose not to follow it and its said elective deity, even in America.  There are seemingly very few religions that are completely peaceful in their existence and history.  
Need I remind anyone of Waco?  Charlie Manson?  For the sake of the conversation let's throw in those crazy (BB close your ears) fucks from Westboro Baptist Church.  We all agree they are nuts, right?  The list here in the States goes ON AND ON with religious and extremist beliefs that ended up with a mass amount of our own people dead.  OUR OWN COUNTRYMEN guilty of murder based on religious or extremist belief systems.  The KKK, the Black Panthers...the list goes on and on.  They didn't "cross" the border for refuge. They were bred, born and raised in the very heart of our nation.  Have you ever TRULY questioned the confederate flag?  And wanted to hear the truth behind it?  Most don't.  They would just rather argue about it with extremist pov's.  

We cannot continue to act with absolutely NO education as to how and why our world is sitting where it is with these terrorists.  We cannot let 9/11 be in vain.  Those lives are so important and were a glimpse into protecting the very soil our children bury their tiny toes into.   

I recently heard someone state that this isn't the "playground" anymore.  And apparently that statement stuck in my head.  Because it kind of is.  There is a mix on the "playground".  There are peacemakers, there are trouble-makers, and there is security and teachers.   There are rules.  There are segregated groups of children for whatever reasons.  All of the set-up is there.  Which is why I chose the blog title I chose.  
Don't be an asshole.  Don't use ignorance to breed more ignorance and hatred.  We cannot just "pray" Paris away.  We cannot blame all Muslims, or Christians, liberals or conservatives.  We need to take action and we need to truly educate ourselves with the election of 2016, because as of now, like many other AMERICANS, I'm not even sure how I will vote.  All I know, is we NEED a "COMMANDER IN CHIEF".  We need a leader who will choose to defend American soil and DEFEND AMERICANS overseas (do I remind you we are losing Americans in this war?).  We need to be empathetic and sympathetic at the exact same time.  We cannot just "PRAY FOR PARIS" because there is an entire world affected by terrorism and the lack of courage to take them on.  
Pray for courage.  That is what we need to pray for.  Blind and unwavering courage that we as a WORLD can make the decisions that keep the rest of us safe.  It isn't just about the Muslim religion, no more than it is just about the Christian religion.  It's about both worlds colliding.  
Vote.  Please vote, and please take the time to truly understand why we are in the position we are in.  Make an attempt to separate the facts from the selective victimization and sensational reporting that we are bombarded with daily.

Islam is NOT Japan. There is no comparison.  Islam is NOT North Korea, it is NOT Russia.  This is an entirely different level of carnal death and terrorism that we are dealing with.  These groups are not only killing Christians, they are killing Muslims as well.  

If you are a registered voter, you need to vote.  And you need to truly understand why this is happening.  I used to believe my vote didn't count, but I know it does now.  Throw in the bible all you want, but it doesn't replace common sense.  While the Islamic extremists are screaming "Apocalypse!" please realize that there has always been fighting among different nations,we just have major access to it through the internet and social media.  Which to be honest, might be a good thing for America, maybe it will encourage someone to get up and go vote who might not vote otherwise.  Don't let the fear of the apocalypse keep you from informing yourself and making a choice based on education.  Fear is not going to help us through anything right now.  

We can make a difference.  Not just in Paris.  

Oh we should pray, but not just for Paris. 

This falls back on the hashtag #alllivesmatter

Live, love

Tiffany 

Find me on Facebook.
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@tiffluv78 


The Hive Publicatons
2015

   

November 12, 2015

In The Beginning There Was...


“Choose your love. Love your choice.” 
― Thomas S. Monson









It's almost comical how some of us who are creative souls try and suppress who we are in order to live under society's rules.  It happens slowly and then all of a sudden we are hitting every edge of the room that has closed in on us.

So I'm starting a new writing project, one that will take a while, my original due date might have to be tweaked and arranged to be a little more logical.  Upon doing some research yesterday for said new project a few things ended up happening.  Of course a smidgen of self discovery reared her head again.  No surprise there!

I shared that hilarious Starbuck's meme that ended up actually sparking an impromptu coffee date with some friends that we haven't been able to connect with in a while.  And it was fantastic! Thank you Jesus!  (I could add Jesus-haters, which of course might describe Starbuck's, however I didn't seem to think they were Jesus-haters when we were slurping our coffee down last night, entertaining though, in the least.  HUGE, LONG run on sentence there, judge me...
side note-I had a disgusting turkey and stuffing sandwich, but no Jesus haters were present. )


Okay, back to the topic.  SQUIRREL! Yes, I am very aware, can you imagine how poor M feels?

Anyway, I'm doing research, right?  Combing through the blog, searching for the moment.  THAT MOMENT when I could see changes coming.  Did I write about it? Was it there?  How could I have publicly written about that particular moment?

I start at the beginning.  The very first blog post.

And oh-m-gee!
It was terrible.  My writing was terrible.  The subjects were terrible.

Now, in my defense, this blog was originally called "The Wright's Adventure" and was only started to be shared with a handful of individuals to follow our years away from Missouri, while serving in the Army.  Call that what you will, I served, we as military wives served.  We all "serve" and or "served" as spouses.  It's fucking hard.  It's fucking stressful, and believe me, WE SERVE.

     Moving along, I am at the very beginning.  It's fake.  It is sugar-coated.  It isn't me at all.  It isn't indicative of what I was feeling.  It is missing the grave pain and fear that I had to travel 7,000 miles and have to leave my boys here for 8 1/2 months.  I don't speak of the misery of only having one choice to keep my family together.  Nothing.  It's missing who I was.  It was missing what I was feeling, IT WAS MISSING ANY FEELING AT ALL.  Unless I was writing about the kids, or my siblings.  There were a few tiny sentences that had power behind them.  But really, nothing.  It was empty and vapid.  A fake look in to the life of a fake family that was fake happy.  Both of us were miserable.  We just couldn't openly admit it yet.



Sure, it all LOOKED way good.  I mean, perfect family, all nice smiles.  The choices were all mine, I am aware of that.  I chose to write how I was writing.  I thought maybe when I opened up those first few posts I might feel something, and I did.  But oh man, not what I expected to feel.  I felt nothing other than a sigh of relief.  I love where I am now.  I don't mean a little bit.  I mean that I LOVE this family, and M, my friends and my life now.  I am CONTENT.  I don't have any "ragrets".  I don't "miss" anything that happened, or people who have come and gone.  And I guess that is because I've kept all of those who were important in my life, right here in my life.  Even when aggravated or when I get frustrated with them, and vice versa (I'm no peach).

     I was unhappy for a while.  And it reflects for me in my writing.  There were peaks, as I coped with where my situation was.  And then when I felt like I had to just really try and salvage my marriage, I stopped writing.  I truly put myself in my life and attempted to make it work.  I can't say that about the boys father, but that was a very long time ago. But then,with the littles dad,  I tried.  I tried my hardest to make it work, even through misery and tears.  It wasn't healthy for any of us in the long run.

The writing all but disappeared.  I grew cold and hateful.  I was sensitive and yet, hid it.  I was bitchy and hanging on to what little bit of family I had left by the bloody remnant of my fingernails. It's moments like these that you realize the line between love and hatred is very, very thin.

When you go back over you can watch the crescendos and decrescendos in the writing.  It spikes and then slows, a pattern that repeats itself until the shit hit the fan.

Until this entry.

Centered.

That was the title.  The writing is atrocious.  The grammar even worse.  But in this entry is where the emotion had hit its boiling point.  I remember what was going on in my life, it was right after writing Taurean & Leo.  That project made me realize how much of a romantic I truly was and that it was okay to live with a bleeding heart.  It shook me awake inside.  I was at my breaking point.

And the next year and a half, (BB, close your ears) holy fuck, did I write about it.

I wrote about EVERYTHING.  It came pouring out like some kind of pipe that had burst.  As that time progressed the writing got stronger, and more abrasive and yet even more soft at the same time, I held less and less in and allowed feelings to emerge.  Then it became this beautiful monster that several hundred divorcees followed and contacted me over.  It peaked and then slowed again.  B moved in to my life, it peaked, he moved out.  Then jobs and summer took over and here came M.


The thing is, I didn't go back to who I was.  Not once.  Boy did I consider it, because facing who I was and learning to be okay with it was hard.  You truly have to look inside yourself, and especially as a female. We live in a society where being a real life girl is pretty difficult.

For the first time in my life, I had NO EARTHLY IDEA where I was headed, who was on the other side and what was going to happen.  I literally just buttoned up and bucked down and rode out one of the worst storms in my entire life.  I dealt with death and divorce and drama. I wrote about it.  I talked about it. I rebelled a bit, all while straightening the crooked halo that I had put on the top of my head...MYSELF.  Then I got sick of it.  The halo went out the window.  And I embraced the wild eyed gypsy that I truly was.  And I wrote about that.  Some of my family hated it.  My lawyer told me to shut up, and yet, I still needed to write.



I softened against the hard edges.  I softened up for myself.  I opened up and allowed myself to be vulnerable, publicly.  And boy did I take some shit for that.  Anyone who dabbles in the arts and dares to draw, write, paint or sing their way through a hell storm gets accused of being a drama queen or worse, a narcissist.  (All by people running from their own amounts of narcissism.) I didn't add God to the equation, although he was there.  I didn't rely on the approval of others.  I emerged as this strong and capable woman, instead of the thirty something, terribly afraid, girl I had been living as.

     The poetry and stories poured out of my heart and soul.  I literally penned everything.  (Typed, evs.)

I ended up with several books, The Wooden Girl From Nevada which was my saga with B who shook my world up, 2 more in the witch series, and started another novel.  I lost The Heart Of A Soldier to a hard drive disaster, and moved past that, one person will see the irony in that.  I sent poem after poem to Paul and Adriana for the authors bios for The Hive Publications.  I wrote song lyrics, and I wrote quotes.  There was all of this "work".  That is, EXACTLY WHAT IT WAS.  It was hard work.  It was grueling and terrifying at the same time.   Because during the wave of words and feelings that I was forcing out of my body at the time, I was morphing and growing into who I had always been and suppressed.  I had chosen not to suppress it anymore.

Back to last night, after all of the Jesus hating Starbuck's humor, we ended up at the coffee house with these friends, right?

      When we were driving in to town, I was telling him about Kess' and I, the conversation we had the night before, small yet profound.  To be vulnerable with M isn't easy.  He isn't just my lover, he has become my friend.  One of my best friend's.  The type that gets to see every single fucking broken piece of you, and you're standing there totally spiritually naked waiting to see if they still love you.

     Right before we went in I poured a little bit of my feelings out to M in the car.  I can see him looking at me now.  The wind was terrible, the lights from the parking lot were shining on his handsome face.  Sometimes he probably gets tired of my ridiculous rambling.  I said out loud that I realized I had started to lose a little bit of that woman I fought so hard to find over the last 8-ish months or so.  And that I missed her. Not for any other reason than I was starting to forget.  That's all.  Just pushing through the day to day life and putting myself on the back burner, causes me to forget.  Going back to the beginning, and re-reading it, helped me remember.

Could I have made some different decisions over the last let's say 15 years, sure, but if ANY of those decisions would change where I am now, with my children, with my girlfriends, or with M...no way in blazing hell would I ever decide differently.  There isn't a moment that I would give back or trade for a different life.


And THAT my fellow spiritual gypsy's is why we are who we are.  We don't want to change it, we don't want to give it back.  Living in a state of gratitude isn't easy, but it sure does help you see what you have right in front of your eyes.  More importantly, it helps you recognize just how important the journey is.





#listening #kissme 
@tiffluv78 

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?'
'That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,' said the Cat.
'I don't much care where -' said Alice.
'Then it doesn't matter which way you go,' said the Cat.
'- so long as I get SOMEWHERE,' Alice added as an explanation.
'Oh, you're sure to do that,' said the Cat, 'if you only walk long enough.” 
― Lewis CarrollAlice in Wonderland

Live, love

Tiffany 
The Hive Publications



.Live, love.

.Live, love.