They have spoken.

My heart hurts.

Last night, I made a comment about aliens, I don’t believe in them. I just don’t. No particular reason, I just don’t. Sure I think somewhere out there, there is another universe that has other beings, but as far as aliens living among us now, Nah, don’t believe it.

One of my children responds with “Well if that isn’t the most backwoods Christian thing I’ve ever heard.”

My heart immediately broke.

I never dreamed that I would hear a comment like that from my own child. I’ve dealt with a lot, heard many comments, had many discussions over how some of my beliefs are antiquated, old fashioned or just plain old out of style. But never from my own flesh and blood.

In the past 24 hours our Supreme Court has made some major decisions on some magnificent issues.

ACA- Not a fan. Nothing religious, I just have not had a good experience with the ACA. I won’t go into depth here, but its been one huge headache after another getting insurance for this family.

Gay Marriage? Believe it or not, I am happy it is legal!  What I’m not happy about, is that now that SCoTUS decided to rule, our religious freedom now becomes in jeopardy. I’m all for gay marriage, I have many friends who deserve a marriage and their sexual preference should not keep them from being able to have a long lasting marriage. What I do object to is the fact that now, if Stud or my father or any other pastor were to decline to perform the ceremony, they can be penalized. THAT is wrong.  We don’t penalize doctors for not performing abortions. So why should ministers, or anyone else for that matter face fines or charges for not performing a marriage ceremony. Why should a business face charges for not baking a wedding cake.

That stomps all over our religious freedom. And not just for Christians, but for Muslims, and any other religious group, or sect that believes it is morally wrong for same sex couples to marry. A Catholic priest should not have to worry about jail time or how to pay his fines because he morally objects to same sex marriage and refuses to perform that ceremony.

That is what I object to.

I may seem to have old or antiquated morals. But I happen to have the right to have those morals thanks to the Constitution of the United States. Just like you have the right to your beliefs. We need to draw a line somewhere, this country was based on certain inalienable rights. One of those rights, one of the very reasons this country was started, was the freedom to worship and believe in whatever God, entity, higher power or whatever happens to float our boat. Even a head of lettuce. When I am told that I have to do something that goes against my religious and moral beliefs, that violates my freedom.

SCOTUS should have had the Gay Marriage case to rule over. There is nothing in the Constitution that states we have the right to marry whom we want. It is not a Constitutional right. It is a Civil right. There is a huge difference.

The scary thing is, now that SCOTUS has ruled on this issue, this opens them up to ruling on a myriad of other issues that are also non-constitutional. Where does it end? How do we appeal to a higher power? We don’t. SCOTUS is the highest legal authority in our country, they have spoken.

But did they have the right to speak?

The perfect father.

I don’t wax poetic about Stud much.

He doesn’t really like when I get all girly and mushy so most of the time I just keep it simple and say I love you. Three little words that say it all.

Its been a rough week, but then most weeks around here are rough so we should be used to it by now, but I don’t think you ever get used to living with a parent who suffers from dementia.

Stud didn’t really want kids. He had never met a kid that he liked, until Oldest was born. We have a picture of Stud, holding Oldest for the first time and his face is literally glowing, even in the picture printed old school way. He is shining, smiling from ear to ear, holding his first son up for the camera to show him off. From that moment  on, Stud was suckered in to loving kids.

I think that if it hadn’t been for dr’s advice we no longer have kids, we would have kept going with having children, and they would have all been boys.

Stud has always worked extremely hard, making sure that when the boys were in their formative years I was able to stay home with them. He worked 7 days a week, for a very long time so I would be able to stay home because we decided early on that we wanted to raise our kids instead of them going to day care and our children learning their morals from other people.

As adults, all the boys come to Stud for advice on everything from women, work, and fantasy golf picks. They have a great relationship with him, and he keeps the communication open with them, helping explain to them what peri-menopausal women mean when they say one thing, do another and get furious over the third.

They know that whatever the subject, they can come to him (and me) and while we might not agree with their decisions from time to time, that will not change our love for them.

He makes sure that each one of the boys knows that beyond a shadow of a doubt, they are unconditionally loved. I can’t remember the last time one of them left without Stud telling them how much he loves them.

They all know that if they ever have need of anything, no matter what that we will do whatever we can to get it for them. They also know they will forever have a home for how ever long they need.

He understands how they think, and translates that to me so I can understand them better and take things less seriously than I tend to.

He reminds me that boys brains are different than girls brains, and they are definitely wired differently. He has taught me that pissing contests are just that, the boys love each other and would fight for each other, but they will also fight each other to prove who is top dog. It doesn’t mean anything dramatic, just that every once in a while, each one needs to assert his dominance.

He has taught me sports, and that I actually enjoy them!

Stud is the perfect father for our boys, the perfect husband for me.  We are by no means a perfect family, and never will be, but we are perfect for one another.

Why even ask.

I got a call today form  my sister.

I knew before I answered it wasn’t going to be a good one.

You just get that feeling sometimes.

She opens with asking how I am, how dad is, blah, blah, blah, then says “I need to ask you a question”.

I’m thinking, here it goes.

She goes on to tell me she is planning on coming to see dad for Fathers day and can she bring our other sister with her.

My immediate answer, no thought needed, was NO.  I told her I would meet her in the closest city and she could see dad that way, but otherwise, no she is not welcome at my home.

She knows this answer. She knows the reason why our other sister is not allowed at my home.

So please tell me why she felt she had to ask the question?

Our other sister has done nothing for the past 10 years but cause me personally a lot of grief. She has made false police reports, false CPS claims, false EPA complaints, all of which cost me time and money to get them cleared. All of them were cleared, all of them in my favor because SHE LIED when she made the claims.

Once we moved to new state, the trouble stopped. Mainly because I refuse to put up with it. I will not tolerate her antics and she knows it.

She had behaved herself for about a year, then after mom died she started back up again.

She started saying things about mom that were derogatory, and so false they could only have come from a movie script. I told her I was not listening to her stories and hung up.  That made her furious so she started calling everyone who knows us and making threats to have me “beat down” by her biker buddies.

So, I blocked her phone number and cut off all contact between her and my home, as well as dad.

She was saying this derogatory line of vitrol to dad when she would talk to him, and in his state of health, he couldn’t hear her, couldn’t understand and process what she was saying, and would just give un-huh’s while she talked.  He was always extremely agitated after he spoke with her. So it was affecting his health and well being.

Since I cut off contact he has never mentioned her. Has not said her name or referred to her in any way.

That says a lot.

The sister who called today knows all of this, and has heard it first hand. She has been a witness to the vile things that the other one has said.

So please tell me again, why would she even ask?

What this sister doesn’t realize, is that if this keeps on, I will cut her ties as well. I will not put the added stress of those two in my life. Once dad passes on, I will cut all contact completely from all of my siblings, except one. I will change my number, and at some point, my address. Yes I will move and never have contact with them again.

I am tired.

I am done.

Small things.

Sometimes it is the small things that bring you hope.

We have a pond here in new state, its just where ground water runs off, but its enough to support some wildlife like frogs, turtles, crawfish, that sort of thing. This spring a Canadian Goose family spent their breeding and hatching season here, and they were joined by a mama Mallard duck and her 6 ducklings.  It has been very cathartic for me to spend time out by the pond just watching the animals go about their daily routines. I feed the water fowl twice a day and look forward to it, as do the birds. They will wait for me in their chosen feeding spots every day.

One day last week, the goose family migrated away.  And then a few days ago, I took the morning corn out and the duck family was gone as well.  I read on line that ducks migrate as well, but had hoped they wouldn’t. I’ve been a bit melancholy ever since.

Yesterday I didn’t take any corn out but went out to walk around the pond. I normally feed on the side that is closest to my house, and had noticed some activity on the other side of the pond and decided to check it out and make sure there wasn’t an injured animal over there.  As I was walking over to the other side, I silently said a little prayer that I just want to know that the duck family is ok.

I checked out the other side of the pond, didn’t see anything interesting, so I was walking back around, and heard a woosh then a plop on the water, I looked and there was mama duck. She was alone, but she swam around the pond beside me while I walked back to our normal side.

I quickly texted Stud and told him to send me some corn out, I was afraid if I walked back to the house to get it she would fly off. Oldest brought me some corn, but something spooked her and she flew off to where ever she is hanging out now.  She left a feather behind and it is now on my board behind my work station.

I’m leaving corn out for her now just in case.  But the point is, while it was a small thing, my prayer was answered right then, right there. I got my answer, and know that mama duck is ok.

It is the small things.

I’ve been floundering for a while now.

But I know that even if I am floundering, confused, and just not sure what is next. God still hear’s me.

I’ve got a feather to prove it.

How does that make sense?

I am sick of hearing about Caitlyn Jenner.

Fed up with hearing about her.

She, as she is now, is not a hero.

An activist?  Yes.

A hero? No.

Hero’s are people who sacrifice of their own selves to help others.

Heroes give their lives so that others may live.

Heroes risk life and limb to further our freedom, so that people like Bruce Jenner/Caitlyn Jenner can choose which gender they prefer.

Changing your gender does not make you a hero.

I saw today that ESPN is giving Caitlyn the Arthur Ashe award. This upsets me highly.  They overlooked Lauren Hill, the young lady who kept on playing college basketball despite her brain cancer. She ultimately lost her battle with brain cancer a few months ago, just a couple of weeks after playing in her last game. She inspired so many people around the nation to donate, to fund research into brain cancer, and to just get up and do something.

Yet to ESPN she is not a hero.

How does that make sense?

They passed over the guy who WON Dancing with the Stars this season, who is missing limbs and still competes in Extreme sports.

They passed over numerous others who have fought a battle, in some cases lost the battle with disease, in other cases lost limbs or other body parts, yet continue to participate, the push, they go when it hurts to much to go.

Yet, none of these were courageous or awe inspiring to the masses.

But Bruce Jenner deciding to become a woman was?

He is a multi-millionaire who is ready to make even more money off his reality show that will show his transformation. He has had his day in the sun, plus many more. I wonder how much of the money he is making off his interviews and reality shows that he is donating to raise awareness for anything other than himself?

Lets not forget the woman who lost her life because of Jenner’s texting while driving. Wonder if her family thinks he’s courageous?

Jenner is already getting publicity, raising awareness for his so called plight. He is being lauded for making an elective decision to become a woman. He is being awarded for making a conscience decision to become something he wasn’t born.

Lauren Hill, and all the other athletes that were passed over for the Arthur Ashe award could use some of that publicity for their causes.  None of them are courageous by choice. Lauren Hill did not choose to have brain cancer.

Noah Galloway did not choose to lose his limbs when an IED blew up in Iraq while he was there fighting WAR. He lost his limbs during war, still competes in eXtreme sports, crossfit, and many others…. yet he is not courageous?

Please tell me how any of this makes sense?

Making introductions

Stud and I went back to old state yesterday. My brother is sick. The good brother. He’s not doing very well.

We were there in his room, with his wife, when some people from their church came in. Sister in law was introducing us, and she introduced me as Charmed, the ADOPTED sister. The later also quantified by saying I was the one that had our dad.

For about 5 seconds I let the introduction bother me. Then I let it roll off.

I know my sister in law didn’t mean anything by it. Categorizing me as the ADOPTED sister. I know she meant no harm. But sometimes, it stings.

On the way home, Stud brought it up. How I was introduced. It bothered him.

I understood.

But then we started dissecting it.

When we started talking it through, I realized, that’s how every member of my family, except my dad, has introduced me my entire life. Even mom. She would introduce me to anyone and everyone, as “This is our adopted daughter Charmed” If she for some reason didn’t introduce me that way it was, “This is Charmed, we adopted her when she was a baby”.

I’ve heard it so much, I’ve never really given it much thought.

Until yesterday.

I understand my older siblings, and how they would continue to see me as an outsider. They were all grown, married, moved out, having children, living their own lives when mom and dad adopted me. We have no memories of fights over toys, pranks pulled, wearing each other’s clothes, none of that sibling rivalry stuff.  They weren’t there to see the cute, adorable things I did on a daily basis as a toddler. I wasn’t there through their teen angst years.

I get it.

And while it does still sting, I choose not to wallow in it.

I choose not to let it bother me that they see that distinction, still today, almost 50 years after I came in to their lives.

Growing up, I always felt like I had 5 sets of parents, because if any of them or their spouses were around, they would be bossing me around telling me what to do, how to act, dress, you name it…  To them I guess I am more like a niece than a sister.

That sentiment is the reason, I think, for why I always wanted so many kids. I wanted a family of my own. One that was my flesh and blood to give my love, and to love me back. A husband to love me, cherish me, and make no distinctions. To look into the eyes of my child and see my eyes looking back at me.

I am forever grateful that my parents adopted me. They loved me, and still do love me more than words could ever express. I even think they love me more than their biological children. I never doubted for a minute that I was loved.   I hope that my children will always say the same.

Happy Birthday.

Its finally here. My mom’s favorite day, the day I’ve been dreading since she passed away.

Today is mom’s birthday.

She loved her birthday. It was the only time that was all about her, and just her, no one else but her! That’s one reason I was so glad youngest was born the day before. I can’t imagine her sharing her birthday with a grandchild. Or anyone else that she knew for that matter. It was HER day.

She wasn’t one of these moms that would play games to like see if you remembered her birthday or not, nope, not my mom. She would remind you 6 months in advance that her day was coming. When it finally arrived, if you called her, the first words out of your mouth had better be Happy Birthday. If you went to see her, you better have a present. If you did come empty handed, then you would leave with your pockets empty because she would guilt you into giving her everything you had.

I know its not real, but if it were, She would be holding court up in Heaven waiting for everyone to bring her gifts.

Tonight we will lift a glass of her favorite blackberry wine in her honor.

Happy Birthday Mom, we miss you, we love you!  It just isn’t the same without you!