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.









@tiffluv
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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 





  


.Live, love.

.Live, love.