Wake Up, America

In the coal mines of our country there must be detectors of changes of atmosphere toxicity. Historically, these detectors were canaries. The canaries would cry out to warn the miners so they would escape. 

America, I’m a canary and this is my warning cry: Plan your escape from the matrix. Turn off the screens. WALK to a library. Make a comment to one person. Tell another person something you like about them just because. Research your biggest fear by finding a physical book that helps you find a different perspective of your fear. Discuss what you read with one other person, but the person must be of a different gender, religion and/or race. Sing your favorote song. Go volunteer. Get out of your comfort zones. In this age of information, you do not get the luxury of ignorance or complacency. You owe it to societial evolution to be proactive so that your children, and even great grandchildren, can benefit from the things you teach yourself in the next five years. Do not believe what you’re told – any of it , even from me, until you find out for yourself. The next five years matter greatly to our democracy’s legacy. It’s time to wake up. 

**tweet, tweet**

Welcome to Trumpland

For awhile now, in relation to the words that have left Trump’s mouth, I sat with my mouth agape, trying to wrap my mind around the possibility that this could be a serious candidate for President of the United States of America. Trump as THE representative of our country? Surely, this is entertainment trying to intercede in politics. Some of it was funny, at first, but as Trump gained momentum it became terrifying. When a party I used to have so much faith in nominated him as their presidential candidate, I was in disbelief. It was surreal and sad. Really sad.

I falsely believed there was no way in hell evangelical Christians would fall in line. Behind this guy? No way. It not only happened, but it revealed the true identity of many who have played integral parts of my life. People I love and respect. It unraveled my faith in not only these people, but in the very existence of God. I still don’t know what to do with that.

This is about more than politics.

As a sexual assault and harassment victim, I feel like everybody is laughing at me, as though I deserved it somehow. I learned from a meme my grandmother posted to Facebook that because I’ve read 50 Shades of Grey, that I am less deserving of  being appalled or maybe even empathy. As the mother of a disabled child, I feel like everybody is ok with the most vile acts of his being preyed on and bullied. When I think of his tears through the years, I don’t know how we placed a man who mocked a disabled reporter on this most public pedestal. As a mother of a a child who has planned out their career in the military in the tradition of a grandfather full of integrity, I feel like his life is now more in peril and given less value by a war-thirsty administration of a country that doesn’t deserve my child’s ultimate sacrifice. As the PROUD mother of a child who identifies as LGBT, well, I am simply heartbroken. I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy to ever have to bear the sight of their child in such confusion, pain and fear.

Still, I mustered up my best mother mask and told the kids how resilient our country is. I decided to set an example to push forward into the unknown and hope for the best.

This evening, I left the house the first time since the election results were tallied and President-Elect Trump was paraded in front of the world. I went to Walmart, against my better judgment and experienced something, I had only previously imagined, from the Civil Rights or holocaust era. Maybe, I had read it in a book or seen it in a movie before, but this,  THIS was happening, right now…right in front of me. A white suburban mother and her young daughter, ridiculing a middle eastern women in a hijab. It immediately struck me across the face and shook me to my core.

I can only recall this feeling two other times in my life: 1. Seeing a KKK cross burning as a kid and; 2. hearing a gas station attendant tell my boyfriend in high school, “Boy, you’re in the wrong place.” followed by being cruelly intimidated for our interracial status.

I’ve been brought to tears remembering Obama’s inauguration as I look ahead to Trump’s.  I remember how proud I was of the progress made across generations because my son didn’t understand the significance in the difference of his skin color.

Just stop and think about that for a second. 8 years ago I had hope that racism was dying off. I wept tears of joy thinking that my children would never experience those core shaking memories from my youth. Things were different. Change had come. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s most beautiful dream was a budding reality.

I feel like I have been sent back in a time machine.

We haven’t learned and so history will repeat itself?

Not on my watch. Not my children. Love will trump hate.

It has to.

There’s a part of me that’s trying to hang onto the little bit of rope I have left without stringing it around my own neck, however, there’s another part of me that is already standing atop the rope and is ready to keep standing up for everything I hold dear and love about my country.

Ive got a feeling 

I cant explain it, but I feel like something good is on the horizon. Something that is “meant to be” is going to reveal itself. It’s going to bring about good…abundance of…something. 

I don’t know what I can do to prepare or facilitate this but Im going to do something.

 Purge the old, organize the new. 

He’s gone. 

Lord knows he checked out mentally long ago but I told him to leave physically. I can’t handle his ghost on my couch that stalks the kids and I’s emotional sanctuary.  

 I have to re-examine my life alone.  I have to face the reality that he’s never  coming back. 

I don’t know where this road leads. There’s parts of me that think it leads right into the treacherous pits of hell. There’s another part of me that thinks maybe that’s where I’ve already been. I’m hoping the only way out is up now.

God knows, I’m crawling and clawing at my surroundings trying to regain my balance and find some foundation to build upon. I’m being careful to not hastily build on quicksand. I’m doing a lot of examination of my surroundings and those surrounding me. I’m taking stock of intentions vs. actions, reaching out more to those that are willing to take action with me. I have no use for lip service. Put up or shut up.There’s work to be done. Lend a hand or get the hell out of the way.

Mostly I’m just promising to love myself in a way that maybe I never have.  I’m loving my body and soul. Taking time to care for each. And so, I need to recommit to being here more often and writing more. That’s part of taking care of me. I always show up for my kids and friends. I know that about myself. I love that about myself, however, I need to be more selfish. I need to make time and space for my thoughts and feelings because no one else will, unless I recognize and make them a priority. I’ve given myself permission to have bad moments and days, but not all at once. If I slip and stumble, I will do the next right thing for myself. I will not allow myself to get stuck in these moments and days though. I will continually reach deep down inside myself, or even outside myself if need be, to find the momentum to keep going.

 
I don’t know where this road leads, but I will keep going.

Sunday’s Song

Jer signed a year lease on his own place and is in the process of moving all his big ticket items out of the house. I guess that makes the separation “official”.

I had hoped that something different would happen, anything. I kept hoping he’d be the one guy in my life to stand up and fight for me, but instead I’m just here shadowboxing, prepared to swing at something, anything.

He had said that his intentions were to take this time and space to work on his own issues so that if we stood a fighting chance, he’d be able to fight. Words vs. actions doesn’t seem that way though. Im grown enough to recognize that. 

As his best friend was helping him move out yesterday, I heard him say, “If this is a bluff, I’m not helping you move your shit back in.” It made my gut drop. My gut said this was something I couldn’t ignore. That’s his best friend. What exactly, if anything, has he said to him about his intentions? 

I don’t know. I just don’t want to deal with any of this. I’d just like to awaken when all the dust is settled and decisions are made so I know what to do. And so, we have this Sunday’s song …

Fucking Furious

This post is brought to you by voice to text. It will not be edited. Hell, it may not even be read again. All I can tell you is that I’m infuriated. I am sick to death of people who take no accountability for their lives and circumstances and play the victim. Especially when there are actual victims they have hurt and left in their wake. 

I have officially moved on in my grief cycle and am done with denial and sadness. 

I’m fucking furious. 

And I quote …

Love is a choice as much as it is magic. Magic comes in moments, but choices stretch out over time. We make them new each morning. In the first fall, they were magic. Then the seasons brought their storms, as seasons always do. Summer brought a winter. There was crying and silence and he would go away to change, for sometimes we have to lose a thing to find it.

Change Ahead

I have not been writing much of my own content lately because I have been preoccupied with things going on here and preparing for a potentially BIG change within our lives.  We have arrived at a point with Pickle in which he is pushing up against a ceiling right now in placement. When this has happened in the past, he has regressed. The last thing I want is to see all the hard work and efforts everyone has put in go away, but the question has now become what is in his best interest and where do we go from here.  I also know that every time we have presented Pickle with an obtainable goal, he has shown us that he is able to do it and I would really like to see what he can do.

On our end, the circumstances that led us to seek Children Service’s involvement are no longer present. Pickle is not the same person he was coming into the situation or even three months ago and neither are his siblings or Jer and I.
I know that what Pickle needs is more real world experience that he is not going to be able to obtain within any paid placement with staff being paid to oversee his every move. I think he needs guidance from his parents and the mentoring available through his peers and siblings to learn to navigate the world as he would like to know it. So, we have decided to try and bring him home and attend the high school for his last nine weeks of his senior year.
This is not something that Jer and I are doing on a whim. We’ve re-evaluated this situation at every turn and right now, we see that he has maxed out what he can do in the system and that home is the best option. We have already agreed to a voluntary six month plan with Children Services because we know it is in Pickle’s best interest to ensure continuity of care and have the proper supports in place.  We are also realistic and know we will still need services for job training and placement, education planning, behavioral counseling and waivers/vouchers for things like summer preoccupation/camp and possibly respite to ensure that nothing/no one becomes stagnant.
I don’t know what will happen. I don’t know how long home will be the best option, but I know right now it is and may continue to be throughout his attendance at college. But I am not envisioning home to be a permanent placement. Only because I am mother who wants for my child what any other mother wants, to see her child reach his fullest potential and him living at home for the rest of his life is not Pickle’s fullest potential. I also think that allowing him to come home will give us the opportunity to see if Pickle may be able to go beyond a group home setting and with supports in place he may be able to achieve what he ultimately wants, which is to reside on his own.
The MR/DD board is concerned that we are setting him, and potentially our family, up for failure. I could not say why they’ve developed this stance and I really don’t want to get too caught up on that statement or those feelings. I just know what I know. And I know that I’m not asking DD to do anything that they wouldn’t normally do for a client. I’m only asking that they begin the process now instead of waiting for him to age out of the system at 21.
Everyone else is on board and has arrived at the same conclusion we have.
Hopefully, after the meeting with all the parties involved tomorrow we will have a better idea of the big picture.
I would ask that you join me in prayer for God’s will in this situation, not my own.