Tag Archive | People

Pressing Onward in 2017


After announcing my resolve to ‘do better,’ I unfortunately took a few steps backward. Thus far, it’s been a difficult year. It’s about to get better. It will get better because I recognize that despite all the self-sabotage habits I continue, I am a warrior.

I’ve spent a lot of time in reflection. The 18-year-old bridge in that photo still exists somewhere within my soul. Decades have passed and I’ve watched people I love die, but I’ve also watched people I love flourish. My children, who weren’t yet here, have grown to become adults pursuing their own paths and dreams. I had to say goodbye to my mother, my wind beneath my wings, and not a day passes that I don’t wish I could speak to her. I spent most of the last decade grieving the husband I loved dearly, too distraught to see life through the rose-tinted glasses the young girl in the photo donned. It was as though the girl in the photo shed those windows to optimism and died the same day he died.

Despite the grief, I managed to overcome many seemingly insurmountable obstacles in life. I learned that even with all grief consumes, the slightest connection to perseverance prevails. Even with this knowledge, I could see myself gradually slipping into a dark world in which optimism fades into the shadows. Negativity was slowly consuming my soul. I began to experience anger and resentment. When I saw couples holding hands, I felt pangs of envy tug at my heart. I knew the person feeling envy wasn’t me; it couldn’t be what I had become.

Recently, a dear friend said a few words to me that finally pulled me from a dark world filled with only negativity. That friend has no idea how profound seven little words spoken aloud could influence my heart. In that fleeting moment, I could see the direction in which I was moving and I realized how ugly and dark my soul could become. Since then, I’ve reflected on decisions I’ve made, things I’ve said, and even my thoughts. I didn’t like what that reflection revealed. I don’t belong in that world.

My friend will never know that one comment pulled me from darkness, but I’ll know and I’ll always be grateful. None of us knows how much time we have here; all we can do is live our lives and hope that we leave the world a little better than we found it. My friend reminded me how important it is to make helping others an ultimate goal.

My gift is that I love and care about people. I received an important message last week and it is the key to restoring my soul. It is ironic that one of the last things my husband said to me was, “The key is in helping others.” I lost my way for a little while, but I’m finding my way back. Through the chapters of my life, I’ve lost loved ones, as have we all, but I have blessings too. I’m going to remind myself that every day for the rest of my years. I am blessed.

©Relinda R. 2017

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Ranting and Bitching While Wondering…


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                                                                                             Photo from babble.com

   

     It just happened to me again. I was channel surfing, believing that I might find a suitable program to watch since I have about 200 channels. While continually tapping that little arrow on my remote, I wondered what happened to television during the last 30 years. It seems as though we gave up on sitcom escape and settled for ugly dramatic reality. Just as I was cursing the television for allowing so much rubbish on the air, I ran across a program titled, “Toddlers and Tiaras,” again. I am ashamed to admit that this is the second time this outlandish program caught my attention. I could feel my brain cells melting again as I watched. Why do I do these things to myself? It took months to recover the brain cells I lost last time I watched the show. While I question these mothers’ sanities, I also question my own for watching. In my defense, their stupidity mesmerized me.

     I just find it so ironic that people complain when little girls become obsessed with weight and looks, but we allow them to be judged like cattle. Some of these children are just babies and are subjected to massive amounts of makeup and told to “wiggle their butt.” Really? There was one little girl of about nine years or so wearing false teeth and dancing like a showgirl. She also displayed the attitude of a spoiled little brat. Not one of these girls demonstrated unique talent unless shaking your butt and pursing your lips counts as talent. Oh, I have heard the arguments about pageants being so crucial to a child’s health. Come on—that is bullshit. Teaching a child that looking pretty will determine his or her future is ridiculous. I actually see two possible outcomes. First, the child will believe that appearance determines success, welcoming a host of emotional disorders including Anorexia and depression. Second, while the child may adjust well to being displayed like a show animal; he or she may turn out to be a narcissist or worse—a sociopath.

     Yes, I am ranting. All children are beautiful. Teaching them otherwise is atrocious. Let us discuss the mothers on the show. The majority of them appear as though they have not missed any happy meals but they starve their children. Could this be an attempt to recapture some semblance of youth by living vicariously through their children? Apparently, winning Grand Supreme or something like that is very emotional. I remember my brothers showing cattle. The titles are similar—Supreme…Grand Supreme. Ladies—get a clue. Find a hobby, perhaps knitting, preferably anything other than putting your child on display like a show animal. Teach them that good morals and caring about others will pave their road to success. Whether they have won “Little Miss Grand Booty-Shaking Supreme” will have little, if any, impact on their future. 

     I know that some people may be horrified by learning that I object so vehemently to beauty pageants. If that is the case, I encourage you to watch this program. Once you see how utterly ridiculous it is, I think your opinion might change. These little girls will become young women soon enough; let them be children while they can. There is no need to parade them like cattle, teach them to show all their teeth in a fake smile and encourage them to “shake their booty.”  One cute little three-year-old became very emotional upon learning she won “Grand Supreme” or some other crap-title and threw a tantrum on stage. Her mother said, “Oh, she’s crying, but I know that she is just thrilled deep down.” Hmmm, really? Let’s evaluate. The little toddler was screaming, trying to rip some giant tin crown from her violently teased hair and throwing money on the floor. I failed to see that “thrill” her mother claimed.

     My favorite pageant mother’s defense is the claim—“Oh, she loves the attention and competition.” The children are CHILDREN, for God’s sake! They would love playing on a swing or in a sandbox! Be honest. The mommies (and even some daddies) love the attention and competition. I find it sad that they need a group of judges to validate their child’s beauty. If they fail to see their child’s beauty of innocence, then they are missing one of the most important experiences of life. Some of the things these insane mothers tell their children are disgusting. “If you don’t listen to mommy and shake your booty, you’re going to be a loser.” That is unacceptable. What would possess a mother to say such a thing to her child? What happens to these little girls when they lose? Will they become the next generation donning black trenchcoats and sporting sawed-off shotguns? I hope not.

     There—I am through bitching and ranting about the absurdity of beauty pageants. Wondering—I will never be through pondering the stupid things we do as we struggle to blend in with a constantly evolving society.

©2012 Relinda R.