Skip the Drama, Stay with Momma

"But I shall show you a still more excellent way" 1Cor12

Friday’s Quick Takes (#4)

Welcome, welcome to a belated Friday’s Quick Takes, hosted by Jennifer Fulwiler at Conversiondiary. It is Sunday night.  I’m happy to report that Jennifer seems to be doing well and home from the hospital after her health issue from the previous week.  She wrote about it here.
So, we’ll get to it then! My quick takes this last week encircle the further lessening of myself …kinda.

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1) I am beginning to think that my Friday’s Quick Takes will perpetually be posted on Sundays. I just can’t seem to get it done on Friday, or even Thursday night! I’m working up to it. Hoping to improve!

2) I started blogging in 2005. I began writing as an outlet, just trying to work my brain out loud. If I go back to my very first blog entry… it’s embarrassing. Really embarrassing. And kind of depressing; I wasn’t well.  I was wrapped up in selfish artist world trying to connect points in my life without fully devoting my heart to my faith.  How sloppy, grappling, and how empty!
Skip forward 8 years and one gains confidence with writing once one has conviction about something. For me, getting married & having children really sped up the reversion process of my heart. Early 2012, I connected with a beautiful group of women through the blogging realm. Their ideas, their prayers, and the faith that we share is something that encourages me daily, as a woman, as a wife, as a mother, as a Christian striving for holiness, and as a “hey-you’re-not-the-only-20something-mom-out-there-who’s-trying-to-live-out-the-Faith!”. Because I’ll tell you what: we get to Mass and short of booking it out of there afterward, we don’t linger with a hungry infant and two super squirmy toddlers, let alone seek out and mingle with the other young parents and their squirmy babies.

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3)  Getting out of bed is something I struggle with every. single. day. I am a tired person.  One of the ladies I’ve had the pleasure to meet through intranet recently shared a blog through Pinterest. And wouldn’t you know, I read this entry last week and had a small prayer answered. I’ve always been le tired. In first grade I wrote a book titled: I am Tired. Through high school, my parents wondered if I was on drugs because of the amount of sleeping I did (I actually got Mono one summer- slowest summer of my life). Becoming a mother did not magically transform me to a wakeful, motivated, morning person. In fact, becoming a mother has made it much more difficult.

It’s been whispering to me that WAKING UP is part of the “becoming less” that I need.  By denying myself the simple pleasure of lazing in bed for a half hour more —and let’s face it, it’s really more of a frustration than a pleasure knowing that you need to be up anyway— I’ve started my day off with a YES to my vocation as a mother, as a servant of God for whatever the day brings me.  Rather than a “…zzzz…10 more minutes, Almighty Father…” And this blog entry confirmed it:

The heroic minute. It’s time to get up, on the dot! Without hesitation, a supernatural thought and … up! The heroic minute; here you have a mortification that strengthens your will and does not weaken your body.
That’s from St. Josemaria Escriva’s The Way #206. And then there was this quote:
Conquer yourself each day from the very first moment, getting up on the dot, at a set time, without granting a single minute to laziness. If, with the help of God, you conquer yourself in that moment, you’ll have accomplished a great deal for the rest of the day. It’s so discouraging to find yourself beaten in the first skirmish! The Way #191.

So, as part of this year’s goal of becoming less, I will strive for Heroic Mornings. Laugh if you will. But that is exactly how I have to think of my mornings, or else I’ll lay there, wishing for 20 more minutes. Thank you friend, for pinning this blog.

4) …but then Saturday, I slept in with my baby until 10am… (My courageous husband heroically conquered the morning for me, bless him).  ”I shall diminish”…when I get out of bed.  …FAIL.

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5) However, Saturday evening, I became a fully grown woman. I made my mother’s spaghetti and meat balls.  I wanted to cook for my MIL, whose birthday is on Monday. So why not spaghetti, right? Pasta is easy and feeds lotsa people. I really enjoy cooking (which I didn’t know until I got married), and don’t mind detailed methods, or a little prep (I don’t mind the occasional frozen pizza, either). My mom’s spaghetti sauce, however, is unlike any sauce I’ve ever tasted. It’s not difficult, but it has a few surprise ingredients. The recipe actually belongs to my Aunt’s (ex)mother-in-law, who is 100% Italian and immigrated by boat to NY. The recipe, in my mind, is one of those that is so good, we the lowly, unseasoned, amateur cooks dare not defile the sacred deliciousness by trying to actually MAKE it.  I feel that I need be at least 40 years old before I should be allowed to cook something like this. BUT, Saturday evening, at 28 years old, I made it, and felt that I’d crossed the threshold into GROWN-A** WOMANHOOD. …ahem. Excuse me, I couldn’t help it…

6) After the evening of cooking, eating, baking, cookie-monstering, carrying sleeping children to bed and finally peeling the skinny jeans from my not quite as skinny legs (I managed to cram myself into non-maternity jeggings for the first time sans extravagant muffin top), I got to have a mo’ with the ol’ iPhone and its apps. Scrolling through Instagram I was delighted to see this! Shared from none other than one of me marvy Cathsorority ladies. It reminded me of my failings, but I strengthened my resolve to crack on with it!

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7) I am very blessed to have been able to have my hairs cut. Oh yes, all of them. My hair stylist (whom I’ve been following from salon to salon for over 4 years because she is fantastic), chopped nearly a whole foot in length from the shoulders down. I turned around in my chair to behold what looked like a pile of snakes laying, tangled upon the floor. The photo doesn’t really do the serpents justice: 

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If getting a haircut were to be a painful experience, I’d have to say it hurt so good. I wanted the long dangly, gangly strands to feel pain as they were sliced off. But they didn’t, the stupid, dead things. They didn’t even know they were gone. Irritating things. Anyway, how do you like me NOW! 

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7 (kinda)Quick Takes Friday post 2 (for me)

Here we go again! I skipped last week’s 7 Takes, so I packed both weeks together this time: 7 Quick Takes is hosted by Jennifer Fulwiler at conversiondiary. After reading my takes, go check out the many other peep’s takes all linked-up on her blog. Many of the writers are downright hilarious. I just read Jennifer’s from last week, and laughed out loud the whole time. She listed 6 recipes and one Advent tip that is VITAL for those who use the storage space in their attic, if available.

Here go my 7 (We’ll go backwards this time, like conversiondiary):

7) After 3.5 years, I have achieved the status of NINJA MOM.

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I received my black belt on (last) Monday night at about 1am. I’d watched a late movie because I unwisely drank a late coffee as an effort to open up my nasal passages from this madness they call “a cold”. Boy #2 was heard from his crib throughout the duration of the movie, being a little turd, flopping around on his bed and jabbering away.

Movie finished, #2 finally sleeping, I entered the room to cover him up with his blanket and was immediately confronted by a fragrant odor.
My poor boy was not BEING a little turd, he simply HAD a little turd.
So, with my highly refined mom-skills, I was able to change his diaper without waking him up. I walked out of the room wearing my imaginary Mommy Ninja Black Belt (given to me by a mom-trainer who looks like Pai Mei), and noted that I can check-off “Change poopy diaper in the middle of the night without waking child” from my bucket list.

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PAI MEI APPROVES.
(http://killbill.wikia.com/wiki/Pai_Mei)

6) I am not one for pomp and circumstance

I may be artsy fartsy, but I’m not really crafty …schmafty(?). And by crafty schmafty, I mean I don’t do a bunch of refrigerator “art”, or save toilet paper rolls, popsicle sticks or keep a stash of cotton balls and glitter: cute little crafts for every season, reason, or holiday.  I don’t even do Christmas cards, for goodness sakes.  I get as far as taking a few photos of my children, and if I upload the photo from my camera onto the computer, I count that as an accomplishment.

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^This is as crafty as it gets. And I wouldn’t even qualify it as crafty. It’s artsy fartsy. My oldest boy loves watercolor, and I think this is beautiful.

Nearly every time I find myself trying to micromanage, I end up stressed out and frustrated.
Thursday afternoon, it was rainy and windy and yucky out. So I connected our TV to YouTube and thought we’d listen and dance to Christmas music! Note that this is me REALLY stretching on the pomp&circumstance here.
So I turn on Frosty the Snowman and my oldest two seemed to enjoy the music—- and the power goes out.

FOR FOUR HOURS.

Enter screams of terror mixed with blind running and jumping of excitement about candles being lit, blended with tripping and falling over each other, doused with me in agony over stepping on legos, blocks, and die-cast cars and airplanes. I felt like the bad buy from Home Alone as he broke-in through the window:

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Only with two toddlers by my side and an infant in my arms.

We packed up, by candle light, and drove to my parent’s house for the rest of the evening. That’s an extreme example, but a vibrant one, nonetheless.

5) Instead, we went on “The Polar Bear Express”


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We packed up the boys in their pajamas, I threw on my bathrobe (thanks Grandma Cook!), made coffees, warm milks (which I forgot in the microwave), bagged some cookies, and we drove around town in our car, momentarily renamed “The Polar Bear Express”, listening to the Christmas music we were cut off from a few days previously, and enjoying the beautifully decorated & lit houses.
And that, folks, is the most pomp&circumstance this mom’s ever been. It was lovely -anything involving coffee and cookies always is, right?- cozy, and my boys loved it. Baby C slept the entire time. Easy. This was also on our second boy’s birthday. I would love this to become a tradition we do for his birthday every year.

4) We began praying the Rosary daily.

I get anxiety about how I believe my children will react to my plans. 9 times out of 10, my belief is incorrect.

I had desired to teach my boys the Rosary. My oldest is 3.5 years and definitely old enough to know the prayers. He knows his ABC’s and all the other toddler learning songs, the complete lyrics to Justin Bieber’s song, “Baby” (“it’s cool on the playground, butIREALLYWANNASEEHERONDAWEEKEND”), and play him any one of his favorite Disney movies and he’ll watch the movie while reciting the lines and singing along exactly. For me, all of that’s sweet and funny, but it ain’t doing nothin’ for his eternal soul. It’s like feeding him a bunch of candy.

Where’s the wholesome stuff?
Where’s the REAL stuff?
Santa, Lightning McQueen, and the “Guardians” don’t exist.
The Father, Son & Holy Spirit, and all His Angels and Saints do.
My job, as a Christian parent, is to get my children to heaven. Why would I delay teaching my babies about Jesus? I feel like instilling Christian values, morals, prayer, and of course the Sacraments first and foremost is imperative for how they grow into adults in this society. I don’t want my children growing up, and thinking it’s okay to set-aside their Christianity for a later time, for when “they’re ready”. If I parent them that way, they will live their adult life that way… and they may never “feel ready”.  

Ready or not, for the sake of their eternal souls, I’m stamping this knowledge into their hearts, so they will always have it. Just like teaching our kids to read, or to eat healthy foods, we know it’s good for their mind and body. We don’t let them choose to learn to read or eat their veggies “when they’re ready”. I know this is good for each one’s soul. 
"let the children come to me, do not prevent them"

One Sunday, many months ago during Mass, I noticed my oldest boy speaking along to priest’s words  during the Consecration, and I realized, “He should know the Rosary”.  November came and I finally let go of my anxiety of outbursts of temper tantrums over doing something other than watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse in the morning.


About a month ago, I gave my boys their breakfast, opened Youtube, and found a link for Children’s Rosary (lots of photos). They were excited, interested, and quiet. I let them wander about the room and quietly play with toys as the video played and I prayed along, out loud. To my surprise, my younger boy sat through the whole 20 minutes, and I noticed my oldest crouching over a tower of legos mumbling along to the Hail Mary.
I chalked it up as a success in my eyes!
We try to do this every morning. No pomp, no circumstance. Just relaxed, prayer.  Sometimes my oldest asks to pray it, and my heart swoons.  Other days, he says, “I VERY DON’T LIKE THE ROSARYYYYY!” and I bribe him with chocolate milk. Either way, the Rosary, gets prayed.
 

3) I drew a “Rosary Board”.

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I found myself getting frustrated trying to show my oldest how to hold his Rosary. Nearly every time he gets ahold of his little, blue, hand-knotted Rosary, it becomes the propeller of a helicopter. So I drew the Rosary on a large sheet of paper, utilizing my drawing board from college, for the boys to be able to follow along with their fingers.

I numbered the decades so that at minimum, they’d know generally where we were.

2) This year, we only did stockings on Christmas Day.


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Commence gasps and feelings of sorrow for my little boys.
Guess what?
They didn’t notice a difference.

We woke up, emptied their stockings (I filled them with a few small toys, a movie, crayons, fruit snacks, new toothbrushes, a couple “squeezy yogurts”, and a sketch pad for Lexington), got ready for Mass, and celebrated the birth of Jesus. 

My children were as joyful, and perhaps even more so, as the rest of the little boys and girls throughout the world who have full bellies, a roof over their head, and both Mommy & Daddy present on Christmas day.

My boys received presents from their grandparents, great grandmas and aunts and uncles. They experienced the excitement of opening a present. This obviously is not what my husband and I originally planned to do as far as presents this year, but we had to be flexible.  I am so, so, so thankful that I’ve given the whole “presents vs. Presence” extra thought, because this year I was truly put to the test.  And my reaction was that of peace and happiness.  This, so far, has been a most beautiful Christmas.

1) Enough with my words! Gobble gobble gobble! Here’s one more (fuzzy) photo of our youngest boy and I on Christmas day.

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Merry Christmas!

A Comeback? Maybe?

I was hoping to snap back to blogging as soon as I pushed out Mister Collin.
It’s just not working that way.
I’m not exaggerating when I say that I spend all day. All. Day. Feeding three boys. Feeding them and then wiping rear ends.

Totally unglamorous but then again glamour is not known to lead a human being to a life of love and fulfillment, so I have hope.

When I do have a few free moments and two free hands, I use them to feed myself, shower or take great leisure in simply reading and catching up on news, social media, and writing grocery lists while finding new dinner recipes.

I ignore phone calls.

I have a handful of people to whom I owe email replies.

Even I, in my laziness, know that this is beyond laziness; it’s just trying to find a normalcy that includes space for me too.
I’m not whining, just stating what it is.

For almost three years before getting married, I was a waiter and bartender at Bonefish grill. I absolutely loved the job. It’s odd because I never thought I would. I looked at serving as a trashy kind if occupation that I wouldn’t sink to doing.

I got over my pride years earlier and served at various restaurants until I was hired at BFG. Love the employees, love the company, LOVE the food, love the people who come in to eat there. Most of all, I love serving.
I enjoyed dinner rush. I thrived off of it! Many times, I found myself multitasking with so many tables, I felt right at the threshold of completely losing it if I allowed the pressure to overcome me. But for the three(ish) years I worked there I never did.

What allowed me to succeed (and make lotsa moula) was the conscious foresight that dinner rush is just a short period.
It always ended.
I always felt a great sense of accomplishment sending every table home, happy and satisfied with their dining experience, knowing they’d come back to request my tables again. (Though I got a few creepers along the way, which my now husband had to scare off, but that’s another story) Just a short period.

Flash forward to today and that’s what gets me through this time.

And the Incubus song periodically pops into my head too…

“Yeah it’s just a phase,
It will be over soon…
Yeah it’s just a —”

Imagine that going through Momma’s head as she’s changing an epically poopy diaper. 

I used to be a big fan.

Anyway there you go.

So I have ambitions of starting a short series relating to eugenics and how our generation and younger can better relate to exactly what it is and acknowledging how it’s woven into the very fabric of our culture without us even realizing it.  We’re stitching with it! It’s there but we are blinded by the propaganda that covers it. 

I intend to do this by utilizing my favorite medium: Harry Potter. BOOM.

Obama Ad Campaign Compares First Time Voting To Losing Virginity. 

Here’s the ad video:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o6G3nwhPuR4&sns=em

“Absolutely repulsive. Obama Campaign degrades women by advertising first time women voters consider their vote as they would having sex for the first time. 

“You wanna do it with a guy who will make sure you have birth control”

…because heaven forbid Obama gets you pregnant. “I’m not paying for that mistake!” He’ll holler as he leave you to be a single mom in need of a job— or drives you to the abortion clinic and leaves you on the doorstep, never to be heard from again. 

Disgusting. Disgusting that a presidential campaign thinks women are that shallow, that unintelligent, that they would vote knowingly compartmentalized as a sex object.”

I quote this from my Facebook post this morning. And this counter ad (photo above)comes from LiveAction.org. 

That’s all I have time for! 
I’m sorry about my absence— I promise to be writing regularly again soon. I just had to get this out there with Election Day so soon. 

Women deserve better than Barack Obama.

Obama Ad Campaign Compares First Time Voting To Losing Virginity.

Here’s the ad video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o6G3nwhPuR4&sns=em

“Absolutely repulsive. Obama Campaign degrades women by advertising first time women voters consider their vote as they would having sex for the first time.

“You wanna do it with a guy who will make sure you have birth control”

…because heaven forbid Obama gets you pregnant. “I’m not paying for that mistake!” He’ll holler as he leave you to be a single mom in need of a job— or drives you to the abortion clinic and leaves you on the doorstep, never to be heard from again.

Disgusting. Disgusting that a presidential campaign thinks women are that shallow, that unintelligent, that they would vote knowingly compartmentalized as a sex object.”

I quote this from my Facebook post this morning. And this counter ad (photo above)comes from LiveAction.org.

That’s all I have time for!
I’m sorry about my absence— I promise to be writing regularly again soon. I just had to get this out there with Election Day so soon.

Women deserve better than Barack Obama.

The Circus Act of My Natural Birth

{In this photo, I was in labor. Early, happy, excited labor -but labor nonetheless, and I wanted a last shot of luxuriously blow-dried hair, because I know by now, that won’t be happening for the next few weeks… months maybe.  It’s good.  I’m at peace with neglecting my vanity.}

So we’ll just dive right into it then…

Friday evening, the 14th I began feeling mild contractions— heavy menstrual cramps for the ladies who’ve never experienced them— or waves of the sudden onset of impending diarrhea for the men who’ve never experienced menstrual cramps.  Also, I experience a sudden congestion in my sinus cavities before each contraction.  Strange, I know… but relevant, now that I think about their location in relation to my body’s central blood vessels and nerves.

The morning came and they persisted. I knew that my labor had officially begun. How exciting!  I’d been preparing for this for 9 months and was anxious to put my knowledge and research into practice!  The playoffs had arrived, and this was the championship game.  My husband and I called/texted my parents who took our boys for the day so that I could labor peacefully at home.

It made such a huge difference to labor in the quiet, comfortable of our home.  Instead of my previous two births: basically panicking and hustling out the door for my epidural, instead, I eased my way into each contraction.  For the better part of the day, I was able to shuffle about, crocheting my blanket project, napping and lightly snacking as each contraction came and went.  I mostly experienced one or two every half hour.

The contractions slowly increased in intensity throughout the day.

 After a long afternoon nap, my husband and I took a tour of the grounds on our property.  That’s saying something for me, as I never take “tours” or hikes or walks outside… I’m not the outdoorsy type.  Walking is supposed to help gently encourage the baby further into the birth canal (gravity, duhhh).  I really enjoyed just slowly walking with and being by my husband, talking, joking and laughing. 


{On the far side of our little pond, which I never visit.  Bugs.  That’s why.  I don’t enjoy bugs or their bites.}

We decided to install the infant carseat and took a small drive to get a “dying man’s wish” of some greasy McDonald’s French fries. 
I know that’s a terrible choice, but whatever.


{my husband snuck a lot of ridiculous photos of me…}

So after a relaxing, restful day, the intensity of my contractions picked up at 4pm. I remained in our living room with our orange medicine ball, hanging over it, sitting on it, kneeling over it while crocheting the blanket I’ve been working on through each contraction.

I decided to upload a contraction timer App for my phone which helped a ton. My children have a little Pottery Barn Kids chair that I moved to and started leaning over for support.  As the contractions picked up in intensity and frequency, I didn’t want to move from the chair.  My husband made a joke that I normally would have laughed about, but as another contraction began, I told him, “No, no, no, that isn’t funny, this is serious right now…” and I began to breathe through the throbbing wave.

{My husband later told me that this photo made him think of the scene in Disney’s Tangled where Maximus hides and poorly disguises himself behind a rock… like so:}

I realized we needed to head to the hospital when I found myself in a meditative rest -almost sleeping- in between each contraction.  Yet the contractions were 3-4 minutes apart.  I knew I would absolutely refuse to get into a car for a 30 minute ride to the hospital if I’d waited any longer.

 I had probably 10 contractions which I had to work through in the car, in the parking lot and into the emergency entrance.

Of course, we enter and I’ve got a large audience in the waiting room, silently watching me work through the one contraction I had at the desk. Seriously, why were there 20 people in the waiting room at 9:30 on a Saturday night!?


I refused a wheelchair and Craig and I walked our way to the labor and delivery floor. It was difficult and I began to become emotional, knowing “this is really happening”. Craig let me hang onto him and supported me through each surge of pain that coursed through my body.

We finally made it to triage where I was examined and told I was dilated at 6cm and fully effaced. 
My doula, Maren came, as well as my OB (to my great surprise!) and we all walked to my birth room.

There I chose a chair to kneel in front of, on top of a cushion, and work through many contractions. 
Sitting on the toilet actually felt nice too, but I could tell I was making my nurse and OB nervous that I would deliver into the toilet, so I moved toward the bed…

I felt extremely relieved to not be forced to have a hep-lock placed into my hand.

Quickly, I realized the nurse attendant was extremely respectful of our crunchy wishes (no medication, no IV, ability to freely move, intermittent fetal monitoring, no vaccinations, eye goo, etc) and she asked me before she did anything to me or in preparation of the baby’s arrival.

Such a stark contrast from my last experiences. It was so nice to be fully mentally present and feel fully integrated into my labor and delivery of our child. Not just a vessel.

I began to be so uncomfortable that I sought different positions. The labor bed had the capability to transform into a sort of step ladder shape so that I could squat on it foreword or backward, with different handles for me to use for support or to hang onto. The nurse and Maren attached a huge metal bar, encased with soft sponge, as I decided to turn forward and rest semi upright on my back in between contractions.  (Not typical of a natural birthing mom, but it brought my tailbone some relief!)

I began to feel some relief in pushing and crying out during the intense waves of insanity that tore through my lower back and hips.

Here’s where the one man—er, woman— circus act began.

I lost it.

Completely lost it.

I was pushing, but our baby wasn’t moving.  

With each push, the pain intensified instead of bringing the reported relief that each laboring mother is supposed to experience.

As I had just finished a particularly shocking contraction, we heard a knock on the door and in walked a man with a table full of tools and medicines, “I hear someone called for an epidural?” he sang merrily.  (&!^%!@?#%*!!!!!!!!?)  

"NOOO!!!" shouted everyone synonymously. 
"no thank you, " I heard myself squeak.  And everyone laughed at my little, polite refusal.  

Out backed the epidural man with his table of drugs.  If I had a chance to back down and get an epi, I’d lost it now, I thought to myself with a sense of finality and triumph over the temptation to escape the fear of the unknown…

The contractions were double-peaking and so closely on top of each other by now that I refused to let my OB (who’d remained in the room with us the entire time) check my cervix for progress.

When he finally did check me, he informed me that he needed to aid in pulling the cervical lip back; that it was keeping our baby from being pushed to the point of crowning.  Which explains the abnormal pain.  I was pushing our baby into a wall, basically.  


{This diagram illustrates why I was experiencing such pain.  I wasn’t fully dilated, yet still pushing.  Ouchie.}

So instead of my OB doing the typical perineum stretching that happens in the final pushing stage, he was aiding in cervical stretching. And it hurt. It was like rubbing salt onto exposed nerve endings in an amputated arm.

At this moment, I closed my eyes and did not open them to anyone for the last half of my labor.  It was me against myself, I knew, by myself.

I sang the opera: 

http://youtu.be/ojeLyPo_Wz4?t=20s

Held a long, low note of a male Tenor with each contraction and crazily thought I might be auditioning for the part of a pirate in the musical Pirates of Penzance. (which I did do in 7th grade).

I bellowed like a blind, old cow. 
I barked like a constipated, fat dog (Craig’s favorite sound to recount).
I wailed like a banshee,
Screamed like a girl riding down a roller coaster. 
 


Screamed like a horror film heroine.


{Psycho, anyone?}

I Bellowed in such a way that I actually heard my OB utter the word “water buffalo” during my resting period.  


{Now I know what a water buffalo is, and what it sounds like}


When hollering proved insufficient, I punched my own thigh in disbelief of the reality of the pain. I slapped it like “DAYYYYYUMMMM!” as if I could not believe such sensations were gaining victory over me. 
I thrashed my head- shaking it saying “NO NO NO NO NOOOO!!!!!” absolutely forbidding the pain to triumph. 
And then, after each contraction, I raised one hand or the other into the air, eyes closed, like a passionate gospel singer, and slowly grasped at absolutely nothing.


{Or Mariah Carey.}

The few times I did open my eyes, I refused to focus them on any one.

I was gone. Lost. Completely lost. 
Craig tells me it frightened him to see me so lost, knowing he could do nothing to help me find my way out.

At this point, soaked in sweat, I actually sobbed, saying “I don’t want to do this anymore!!! What else can I do! Please!!” I looked my husband full in the face for the first time and I knew there was nothing. He firmly urged me on. My nurse urged me and my doula reminded me that I was born to do this. Finally my water broke— 


And I felt a new pain.  A welcome pain.  Our little boy was descending.  Finally descending.  I gave two great pushes, and out came our little boy’s head.  

"Open your eyes and look down!" I was told.  But I refused to open them until my husband placed our boy onto my chest.  

Craig caught our little Collin John Paul.  I opened my eyes as Collin was handed to me, and I was completely taken aback by the shock ofjet black hair covering his head, his beautifully colored, baby pink skin (our other boys came out grayish/purple because of the epidural I believe), and the amount of vernix still coating his little body (indicating that he perhaps wasn’t overdue like we’d all believed).  

And it was: love at first sight.  I feel bad for my first boy…I didn’t know and I was too afraid of the unknown to appreciate seeing him for the first time.

I was filled to the brim with a complete sense of peace.  Of love.  

And then I barked, “NEVER AGAIN!” to the whole room.

And 15 minutes later, I caught myself saying, “well, next time…” 

I realized my voice had a sudden similarity to that of a heavy, life-long smoker, and I laughed at my labor charade. 

This birth humbled me to my core.  It fulfilled my identity as a woman.  

My life is full of incompletes, of goals never accomplished, of things started backward, or not carried out from A-Z. 

But this one.  This I can humbly claim.  I can know in my heart, “I really did it.” 

It wasn’t easy.  It wasn’t enjoyable.  It wasn’t.  

But it was amazing. It was better than winning a sporting event.  Better than winning a gold medal.  Better than getting a raise, a promotion, a new possession, being famous, walking the runway, jumping from an airplane…better than any achievement, award, reward or drug I could ever possibly attain.  And I got to experience it.  I did.  Just me. 

And I am humbled by that privilege.

But I must admit that I’ve never in my life felt or understood the genuine meaning of the word GLAD.  I was SO GLAD it was over and completed.

Will I do it again?  

…how about asking me that question again a year from now… ;)

…and in the end, the love you take…

So here we are yet again at the end of another pregnancy.

Really, could I possibly have MORE thoughts about being pregnant?

I daresay I could and I do! Hoo Hoo hoooo.

[So here’s where I’m going to give my readers an option. If you’re my age-ish, you might remember in grade school the books where you can “choose your own ending”. At the end of each chapter, the author gives a choice to the reader to:

"A.) continue to the next chapter if you want the character to change paths."

Or

"B.) Go to page # whatever if you want the character to feel all warm and fuzzy and live happily ever after."

So I’ll give the high points of my pregnancy and we can end there on a happy, fuzzy, comfortable note and not be offended, good day to you. But if you’re interested in putting personal agendas and feelings of being personally sought-out by me aside to think a little deeper, read on!]

*****

In stark contrast from my first pregnancy, this one was “planned”. I write that word in quotations because as far as a Christian mentality goes, all life is planned by God. So what I mean is that this pregnancy was strategically anticipated by all parties involved.

That being so, I can say that these 9 months have come and gone the quickest of all of them. I’ve had less pregnancy scares (no falls, car accidents, illnesses…) and hardly any physical pain at all. My last two pregnancies came with pretty overwhelming back pain during the whole 9 months.

I am certain that the pleasantry of this experience is due to:

1.) The fact that it’s my third experience being pregnant, thus knowing what to expect makes me worlds less nervous or anxious about my body changes.

2.) Having two toddlers rampaging the house definitely distracts me from noticing and obsessing over every little rise and fall of my heartbeat or sweat production or nail breakage. Basically, I don’t have time to revel in the Pregnant Princess crown that first time moms get to enjoy. And I’ve discovered I like it that way! It has made the time go so much faster. And it edifies my belief that serving others ultimately brings about personal fulfillment and happiness.

3.) I am wiser. I’ve done a ton more networking with other moms. I’ve read a zillion blogs and articles and books about pregnancy, labor and delivery and how to ask the right questions to your doctor. I’m still learning, but I have such a greater confidence in the natural ability of my own womanhood to do what my body parts were created to do!

4.) My generous in-laws gave us their king sized bed along with a memory foam topper. The last half of this pregnancy, I folded that sucker in half and have been sleeping (as my husband calls it) in an ivory tower of back-relieving heaven.

So I begin my 40th week feeling immensely blessed and greatly thankful for the ease and peace that I’ve experienced thus far.

[Here’s the end of the feel-good chapter in my story. If you have a tendency to think that everyone is out to offend you, I’d recommend you press the little x at the top of the screen and carry on to more important tasks. Seriously, there are more important things. Really. I honestly mean it. Life’s too short to get worked up over a pathetic blog entry. I don’t do it.]

Next Chapter:

Here’s what’s different:

Read More

The Story of a Ballerina from Africa →

In April, I wrote about 17 year old Ballet dancer, Michaela DePrince, and her parents who adopted her out of Sierra Leone, Africa. When I saw her perform on Dancing With the Stars as a featured performer, she moved me to tears and strengthened my resolve (as if it needed it) that there is no such thing as “an unwanted child” when considering Abortion issues.

Someone responded to me by saying while her story is a triumphant example of how all humans should be treated, she was a lucky one out of the thousands of others just like her in the culture she was born into… thus, the other children who were not so lucky probably would have been better off aborted.

Better off killed. Better off extinguished. Not even given the chance.

Why? How is this logic workable in someone’s mind? That it’s okay to go ahead and kill an indispensable human being because that person might be subject to pain or suffering in his/her life? Who are we to feel that we can stand on the outside and judge the value or —what do they call it now? My prego brain is losing me… the QUALITY OF LIFE! there it is— how can we judge the quality of someone else’s life to be unfit so far as to deem that person not even worthy of the air he or she breathes …or has yet to even experience breathing?


For the general group of individuals who are pro-choice, they tend to be your “bleeding heart liberals” —though I can attest that this is only a stereotype, as I myself am an artist, a dreamer, an increasingly crunchy-granola-“earthy child” and my heart is pretty bloody— But to the bleeding hearts who feel it necessary to, in the case of someone they somehow deem as unworthy of his or her own life that anyone besides the Almighty Creator has the authority to remove that life from them, without even asking permission… that makes no sense to me. It is backward for a group of people who claim tolerance and love above all to be the guidance of their life choices and their “pro-choice-ness” to turn around, point a finger, and say, “YOU. You there, you’re better off dead!”

Those children like Michaela are living saints in today’s filthy world of people bantering over whether or not to eat at Chick-Fil-A because the CEO doesn’t support a certain sexual lifestyle. I say LET THEM LIVE. They are our silent angels among our ridiculously petty selfishness. The underprivileged , I am willing to bet, understand more fully the value of a human life.

This morning, I stumbled upon a second article about Michaela and just had to share. It gives more details about her amazing journey. Even though it’s a Yahoo article (I detest yahoo), give it a chance to alter your own perspective on human life and the gift that it is in itself. The article gives links to some videos of her dancing and my link above has the DWTS feature. She will move your heart.

What NFP REALLY is. →

This series of articles is written by a Cathsorority sister, Katie.  She’s a medical student and explains NFP in such a way that it’s easy for anyone to understand what it’s about.  I hope anyone who thinks they “know” what NFP is, but has never actually read about it, to check these well-written articles out.  NFP is not the Rhythm Method.  It’s much more in-depth than that.  It is an amazing science and I’d say an imperative tool for women to use if they are interested in seeking total health.  Check it out, you’ve got nothing to lose but knowledge.  

Experiencing the Mother Grizzly Syndrome

I knew it was there. The Mother Grizzly.

In my family, on my father’s side, when the women experience the Sarah Palin famed “Mother Grizzly” syndrome, in which normally calm mommy is forced into a situation where -unbeknownst to herself- she bears her teeth and bellows, roars and shakes her wild hair at anyone who hurts her child, we call it the “woosh-hog” ingrained into our genetics through a native American bloodline.

My father’s family is from an extremely rural part of the “hollers” of Kentucky.  Like, no paved roads or indoor plumbing in many parts.  Every time I visit, I meet a cousin I never knew I had.  My great great great (?) granny was American Indian and, so I am told, was not to be trifled with. For she kept a machete or a hatchet of some sort in her little tin roof house and came out a’swinging if her temper was ignited. …or so my cousins and I have been told.

I guess the title “woosh-hog” was some sort of nickname founded from this grandmother.  Whatever its origins, it stems from a folklore of family grizzly mothers and their tempers when provoked.

And today the woosh-hog in me came out. Don’t get too excited, though; it’s really more comical, not so much woosh-hog-y.

I have been struggling with getting my oldest boy to go #2 on purpose on the potty.  About 2ish months ago, we tried potty training and #1 was a success but #2 was not.  He’ll do number 1 all day. And he knows how, where and even when he should do #2. We read potty books, watch Elmo’s Potty Time, I’ve got the dang Elmo App where Elmo will “call” your phone and my son can fake FaceTime with Elmo about going potty. Yet, actually doing #2 has been met with absolute refusal, fits and crying.  So I have backed off of the constant nagging him or getting frustrated with his failed #2’s over the course of these last few months.

Elmo’s joyful enthusiasm about the potty irks me to my core.

I’m feeling increasingly stressed about it because baby boy número 3 is fast approaching his birthday …in 3 months.  I was hoping that by my oldest boy’s 3rd birthday, he could be out of diapers and my life would be smooth sailing.  So here we are, beginning of June, and his 3rd birthday is the 12th!  Last week, I figured I’d start back up with heightened encouragement and ask him to sit there a little longer.

I get easily worked up about these things and then I realize: I will STILL have to help my newly potty trained boy to wipe and clean up accidents, so I don’t know why I’m actually thinking that it’ll be all done and he’ll be a professional pooper and wiper in a snap.   

After a desperate day of forcing my oldest to sit on the toilet for the entire duration of Monsters Inc, I felt miserable and totally disgusted with myself for putting him through that. I could see the stress on his little face and I knew he wasn’t ready.

I’ve always sworn to myself not to associate the potty with frustration or anxiety: but THERE I WAS: sitting in the doorway of the bathroom pleading with my son to sit and try… To read some more books… To sing a song.. To try some more… To just sit there and be quiet. And he looked at me with a crease of anxiety in his tiny forehead continually asking to get down. Never again will I do that to him or myself, said I.

This was only last week. I was given some much appreciated words of encouragement from family and friends.  I read around the blogosphere and saw that many moms have the same trouble with some of their kids and that no matter how many tricks or treats they used, the real stubborn ones finally decided to go when they were good and ready on their own accord.

So I let it drop and just grit my teeth through the gross clean-ups since then. The older they get, the bigger the mess …duh.

Today however, my wild child pooped on the toilet all by himself, without me pushing or forcing. I teared up and danced and gave high-fives and sent pictures to grandmas and aunts. We didn’t flush so he could show Dad his triumph when he came home from work.

We decided to celebrate by going out for ice cream and playground time after dinner. And here is where the grizzly bear enters the story:

'Twas a lovely, cool evening at the newly built playground/ball park. My oldest proudly bouncing and climbing and sliding on the jungle gym. My husband manned his safety while I followed our nearly 1 and a half year old, toddling around its perimeter.

Enter 10 year old hooligans playing “throw-the-ball-at-each-other tag” while raucously running and rampaging the entire area.

There were other toddlers playing as well as ours and I kept watching as many times, a clumsy-limbed 10 year old lumbered through and nearly trampled a few of the smaller children -and a few times even me, the large, pregnant woman in a black maxi dress -hard to miss, right?

I’m sure they were good kids, to be honest. Just your typical, active youngster, unaware of his surroundings and only concerned with having fun. I didn’t mind their playing amongst everyone, only I was aware that if a ball was misfired, someone would be hurt.

But I joyfully waddled on, giggling at my boys and their delight of the unplanned playground time.

UNTIL.

I heard a scuffle and looked up to see a small child on the ground, underneath one of the hooligans. I did a double take and realized it was MY SMALL CHILD.

ROAAARRRRRRR!!!!!!!

"HEY! THAT’S ENOUGH! IF YOU’RE GOINA PLAY LIKE THAT, THROWIN THE BALL AROUND ALL THE LITTLE KIDS AND RUNNIN LIKE THAT, GIT OUTA HERE! GOOOO!"

…or something to that effect is what came out of my mouth, while I flailed my prego arms and puffed out my prego belly.

In thirty seconds we had the playground to ourselves.

And five minutes later I realized I actually yelled at someone else’s kids. Eeek. Oops.

And it wasn’t until we got home that my husband told me he didn’t realize it was me  doing the yelling because I sounded like some southern hillbilly with such a twang that it couldn’t have possibly been his wife.

Woosh-hog, I presume? Ah yes, quite.

Ah that’s embarrassing, but it’s done and passed now. I have learned over many loud-mouthed blunderings of my own youthful doing, to shut it, lest I appear the fool that I really am and remove all doubt of my observers. It’s helped me to gain wisdom and learn much from a tempered reaction.

Yet today, my little honey was trampled and I’ll be the most obnoxious fool in the world if it’ll keep him safe from hooligans. He was fine, by the way. Up and playing in a minute.

When we came home, he asked me, “a boy hurt me… Where did those big boys go?”

A mother grizzly roared at them, with a southern twang, and they went “wee wee wee” all the way home.

Baby, You Were Born This Way.

I want to write about something that may be obviously apparent to parents of multiple children.
But to the parents with only one child, they might not yet have fully grasped it. For I only began to REALLY notice it after our second child was born.


Especially to the individuals who’ve never had children before, though, is who I write for: DOUBLY especially, to the pro-choice, pro-contracepting individuals who’ve never had children, is who I write this for; for perhaps they’ve never thought about this to quite the extent they should.


I’m sure there’s much more intellectually stimulating writings than mine out there. In fact, I’m absolutely aware of the world of scientific research to support what I’m sharing.

The average, curious Joe may do a tiny lifting of his finger to find this information. I’ve done it and so can you. I’ve generally found that whether or not I litter my blog with links and endless amounts of scientific research backing up what I have to say, whomever reads my blog ultimately rejects what they’re reading on an obstinately angry prejudice or is open to finding out more and does the research him/herself. So there you go, do what you will.
Moving on!

I believe that babies are born, with their personality, their disposition already intact.
I believe that babies are given their personality from the earliest moments of conception.

Because otherwise, when is a human being given his/her personality, his/her predisposition to the way s/he handles emotion, the way s/he communicates, his/her temperament?

At 6 months in utero? 9 months? AFTER birth, a random string of personality traits, plucked from the combined genetics of the mother and father, just spontaneously erupts within his/her brain?

Or perhaps the baby is born with absolutely no personality whatsoever and it’s only developed after coming into the world and being influenced by the environment and people in the human being’s life?

I believe that common intelligence will tell us that the latter must be mostly false.

Common intelligence, from a parent of more than one child, will observe that at the first moments after birth, if the parent is a perceptive one (trust me, not all are) each child is very different than his/her older sibling.

The cry not only sounds different, but a parent can perceive the urgency, the demanding or un-demanding of the cry. Parents more closely observe, over the next few days after arriving home from the hospital, how their baby handles the daily routine of the family: the changing of the diapers, baths, feedings, naps, “tummy time” …etc. All of these mundane events sound like pathetic material to have for observations and conclusions, but if one can consider the newness of life, how drastically different these events must be for the newly born human life, can one not wonder how that baby might handle the situation, depending on his/her disposition?

The differences are sometimes subtle, but if you’ve had more than one child, you can attest to the observation that the baby isn’t JUST yet another baby, like any other baby. Each new baby speaks his/her own personality differently.

My first son- beginning with his kicks within the womb! -was much more vocal about his presence. He was wound tight: vocal from the very beginning. If a diaper was too tight, or a bottle not warmed enough (I only breastfed him for the first three months: he went on a screaming nursing strike after I felt pushed into introducing the bottle to him very early on.) he let me know, loudly. He was up at all hours of the night. He was walking at 7 months and literally running at 8. He was talking before he was one year old and then varying his octaves and tones of voice before he was a year and a half. (I could ask him to say “momma” in a very high-pitched tone or a very low-pitched tone, and he would do it and then replicate the tones with other words.)


My son, now almost 3 years old, is a running, jumping, rollicking, screaming, yelling, non-stop talking wild child in a blaze of endless energy. I truly believe that he has only now begun to reach a satisfactory communication level (according to him) equalling the personality he has been given.

I believe that as a parent, after giving birth to our children, it’s not a matter of “training my baby” to do this or that, or follow a certain schedule that I desire. I believe that instead, my job is to get to KNOW my child. My already uniquely made child. (hence, my Attachment Parenting style of parenting… check out Ask Dr. Sears and this: )

A baby is a human being before s/he is born. This human being is born with limited abilities to communicate his/her personality until s/he reaches the earliest age possible to fully communicate his/her needs. Until then, a parent needs to be perceptive enough to read and understand the newborn human being’s personality.

My second boy barely cried after birth. He slept through the night from the get-go. He only cried (if I could even call it that) when he was hungry. He grunted instead of bellowing or screaming. He is now 1.5 years old and still has yet to purposely say “mom” or “dad”. He started walking at 10 months. He still only becomes whiny when he’s hungry, if I haven’t already fed him. Normally, he’ll just walk up to me and arch his head backwards and look at me with huge, chocolate brown eyes, raising his arms for me to hold him, and I know it’s the “feed me something, Momma,” look.

One might say that the differences in my son’s personalities lie in how I ate while I was pregnant or whether or not I had medication during birth.

First, being medicated isn’t going to be the source of development for my child’s personality. I was given an epidural for my first, wild boy. For our second, laid-back boy, the epidural was placed too high, never reaching lower than my belly button, and was ceased to be administered 2 hours before I began to push. We know that, instead, medications during labor may affect the health of the baby (i.e. drowsiness, unresponsiveness, lack of interest in nursing right away… etc.).

Secondly, I barely consumed any caffeine at all with my first crazy boy. I drank coffee (nearly daily) and Coke a Cola with our second, very calm boy. This third time around, I have had coffee daily.

I understand that environmental influences DO affect the health of the new human life. I do understand and acknowledge that if I were a smoker or consumed alcohol abusively or ate obese levels of sugar while pregnant, I would definitely be putting the physical health of my child in danger. But I cannot agree that I would be putting his/her personality in danger of alteration. This is a difference that many people misconstrue: especially the pro-choice, pro-contraceptive lot.

These people do not understand, or refuse to acknowledge that at the very moment of conception, parents have created, in union with the Ultimate Creator Himself, a very literal separate and unique human being. Like a snowflake, non-replicable. A snowflake the size of a zygote.

To the people who do not or will not understand this, they view having a child as either a commodity, or as an inconvenience. They may contracept, willfully, yet ignorantly flushing down the toilet all other human life that was “accidentally” conceived while on the Pill or IUD or Patch or shot.

We know this happens for a fact. We know that women get pregnant while contracepting. Google “pregnancy rates among contraceptive users” and you’ll find that even Guttmacher Institute (Planned Parenthood’s research arm) gives statistical evidence of failure among chemical contraceptive use. Yep, there’s failure for all types of birth control, natural and chemical. Honestly, the percentage rate does not matter… 0.1% or 10%, the failure rate is absolutely present, and who am I or you to put full faith into a failing chemical that will harm the newly created life, just banking on the assumption that “certainly I’m not likely to be that 1-10%”?

ESPECIALLY when the percentage of failure weighs upon the death of a human life.

But the even more questionable concern rises when we understand that when pregnant, a woman must not continue using her contraceptive because the chemicals will kill or greatly harm the already conceived life.

THEREFORE, how can we pretend to be blind to the “unsuccessful zygotes” that are the result of the effectiveness of the chemical abortions that take place without the knowledge of the poor mother and father who do not view each human life as sacred and unique (even though they think they do)?

We know that within hours of conception, the brand new human being’s DNA is fully formed (check my link below); DNA unique to the mother, unique to the father, unique to any other human being in the world. Hence, my snowflake allusion.

From what minimal biological knowledge I acquired from my college education, in combination with the light scientific research I have found through general internet searches, I am aware that fundamental personality cells are stored within the human DNA.

I have read that complex personality development is later developed and influenced by environmental forces; Yet we are born, already having been given our base personality. At the moment we are given our DNA. at conception.

Yikes. The people who think that contraceptives are OK and that abortion is OK have some answering to do.

What I have written is in the most elementary, rudimentary basics of human development. Pathetic, to some it may be, I really think that one doesn’t need to be a scientist to fully acknowledge these truths. One only needs to have a willful stubbornness to adhering to his/her personal convenience, though, to reject them. And sadly, so, so many people do.

http://www.ehd.org/dev_article_unit1.php

Natasha Bedingfield (Wild Horses) With Ballet Dancer Michaela DePrince - DWTS 2012 (Results) (by AwesomeArtistsLive)

I don’t watch much television.  We purposely do not have cable.  Yes we watch tons of movies, and I’ve definitely got streaming wi-fi.  But we chose not to introduce our children or infest our family life with endless television shows which are hard to monitor if I’ve never seen them before and endless trash commercials.  

However, some evenings, my husband and I enjoy watching American Idol or The Apprentice if we happen to remember which night it shows.  Last night, Craig flipped on the TV, knowing that we had missed American Idol -though now that I think about it, I believe it’s on Wednesdays and Thursdays- and Dancing With the Stars was halfway over.  I’ve never paid much attention to this show, but I was captivated as soon as DWTS started airing the story of this young woman.  

I was deeply moved by her story and am affirmed in my beliefs that adoption is always the better option.  If she had been aborted, there would be no Michaele DePrince to inspire dancers who come from such challenges as she.  What an amazing testimony to life, equality and love.  

Probably the Most Beautiful Birth Story Ever →

My friend shared this link with me this morning.  Go on, click on the title, watch the video, if not, at least some of it.

I like photography. I am a passionate pro-lifer. So one could assume that I’d be a fan of photographed births.  But oddly enough, I’m not comfortable with that idea for my own births.  I view giving birth as one of the most intimate events life offers and I ignorantly assume the photographer will take photos of my bum, which of course no one wants to see.
 But this story is one for the documentation.  Not that all births are not.  But this one is more precious to behold because the parents chose life in the face of hearing that their baby is “not compatible with life”, when, as Rick Santorum has shared with media during his presidential campaign, “Almost 100 percent of Trisomy 18 children are encouraged to be aborted”

 This is one of those stories for the opposers who turn the human being into a “thing” touting,  ”IT WON’T HAVE A GOOD LIFE” “WHO WOULD LOVE SOMETHING LIKE THAT?”  ”WHO WOULD WANT TO HAVE THE STRESS OF TAKING CARE OF SOMETHING LIKE THAT IN THEIR FAMILY?”  ”THEY WOULDN’T HAVE A NORMAL LIFE” “IT’S MORE COMPASSIONATE TO JUST KILL IT.”  ”IT’S BETTER OFF DEAD!”

This story is physical proof of love and faith.  This is a story to say to anyone who can’t get it through their minds that not everything can be controlled by man and that even when the doctors tell us the worst of news, a miracle is still possible.  One only needs to have faith as tiny as a mustard seed. 
How could there be regret in that?

"God loved the birds and invented trees. Man loved the birds and invented cages."  -Jacques Deval

This doctor also delivered my first son. So there I had a very emotional connection to the story. <3
 

Authentic Compassion. →

Authentic Compassion.

 Society has twisted the value of human life into being dispensable as soon as we are seen as having a less-than-happy life i.e., one of suffering. It welcomes “dignified mercy-killing” and abortion out of “compassion”.  Society is losing its grasp on authentic compassion.  
 


"But there is nothing dignified about either euthanasia or suicide, for each declares that life is utterly undignified and disposable.
[…]
Christian charity calls us to embrace opportunities to selflessly care for the weak and vulnerable even though they may never repay our love and kindness.

Likewise, the afflicted must not view their declining self-sufficiency as a diminishment of their worth. Admittedly, it is both humbling and frightening to envision oneself with an addled mind, foul breath, unkempt hair and the most intimate details of daily hygiene being beyond our capabilities. Yet, such images should not drive us to despair.
Rather, we should see this as a transition from doing to being: our purpose in life at that point is to be the recipient of compassion, generosity and love. Our disabilities can be the occasion for another’s sanctity.What greater cause can we serve than enabling holiness in others? How sad if we reject this calling out of either pride or fear.”

This article, written by Denise J. Hunnell, M.D., talks of the beauty and true humanity to be found in pain and suffering and how it calls others to a life of charity, as well as it calls us, the ones suffering, to humbly accept this charity, aware that it can bring sanctifying grace to those who freely give it!  She defines compassion and compares its definition with how so many today have such a warped understanding of what compassion truly is.


The word compassion actually comes from Latin, and means “to suffer together.” We show authentic compassion when we suffer with someone, not when we get rid of him because his suffering makes us uncomfortable. There is no doubt that it is agony for a husband to watch the woman he married fade before his eyes due to physical or mental disease. This infirm woman is far different from the woman he married. Yet this suffering provides an opportunity for heroic generosity. Offering love to this woman who can no longer reciprocate imitates the love of Christ who took our suffering, weaknesses and sins upon His shoulders when He carried the Cross. 

Though what Ms. Hunnell doesn’t delve into, I shall: 


Pieces of the foundation of the perverted perspective on “compassion” can be found in Planned Parenthood’s founder, Margaret Sanger.  She writes in her 1922 book, The Pivot of Civilization:  


"This book aims to be neither the first word on the tangled problems of human society to-day, nor the last. My aim has been to emphasize, by the use of concrete and challenging examples and neglected facts, the need of a new approach to individual and social problems. Its central challenge is that civilization, in any true sense of the word, is based upon the control and guidance of the great natural instinct of Sex. Mastery of this force is possible only through the instrument of Birth Control.
[…] 
Motherhood has been held universally sacred; yet, as Bouchacourt pointed out, “to-day, the dregs of the human species, the blind, the deaf-mute, the degenerate, the nervous, the vicious, the idiotic, the imbecile, the cretins and the epileptics—are better protected than pregnant women.” The syphilitic, the irresponsible, the feeble-minded are encouraged to breed unhindered, while all the powerful forces of tradition, of custom, or prejudice, have bolstered up the desperate effort to block the inevitable influence of true civilization in spreading the principles of independence, self-reliance, discrimination and foresight upon which the great practice of intelligent parenthood is based.

To-day we are confronted by the results of this official policy. There is no escaping it; there is no explaining it away. Surely it is an amazing and discouraging phenomenon that the very governments that have seen fit to interfere in practically every phase of the normal citizen’s life, dare not attempt to restrain, either by force or persuasion, the moron and the imbecile from producing his large family of feeble-minded offspring.
[…]
But there is a point at which philanthropy may become positively dysgenic, when charity is converted into injustice to the self-supporting citizen, into positive injury to the future of the race. Such a point, it seems obvious, is reached when the incurably defective are permitted to procreate and thus increase their numbers.
[…] 
At the present moment, we are offered three distinct and more or less mutually exclusive policies by which civilization may hope to protect itself and the generations of the future from the allied dangers of imbecility, defect and delinquency. No one can understand the necessity for Birth Control education without a complete comprehension of the dangers, the inadequacies, or the limitations of the present attempts at control, or the proposed programs for social reconstruction and racial regeneration. It is, therefore, necessary to interpret and criticize the three programs offered to meet our emergency. These may be briefly summarized as follows:

(1) Philanthropy and Charity: This is the present and traditional method of meeting the problems of human defect and dependence, of poverty and delinquency. It is emotional, altruistic, at best ameliorative, aiming to meet the individual situation as it arises and presents itself. Its effect in practise is seldom, if ever, truly preventive. Concerned with symptoms, with the allaying of acute and catastrophic miseries, it cannot, if it would, strike at the radical causes of social misery. At its worst, it is sentimental and paternalistic. (1)

These words, written by the founder of the largest abortion business in America, have been echoed and expounded on by many others before, and certainly after Sanger.  The idea that the weak, the feeble-minded and the moron class should be eliminated and squashed out through the sterilization of those within that class is the worst kind of eugenic and discriminatory ideology available.

"Well, certainly, I am not feeble-minded, so this type of thinking has nothing to do with me anyway!" we’ll all say.   

How can you be sure?  How can you be certain that you, you with your family history of breast cancer, of depression or “nervous disorders”, of arthritis, or because you did not have the privilege of attending a higher education program, YOU are not considered part of the “weaker race”, the degenerates, the “incurably defective” as Sanger coins throughout her entire life’s works?  

Her idea of compassion would be to sterilize you with the sexually liberating Birth Control Pill, so that you don’t reproduce that kind of “weed” into society.  
This ideology twists compassion to the complete upside down:  ”I don’t want to take care of you and you can’t possibly WANT to continue making me take care of you, so let’s relieve us all of your life and of your future children.”
 
Sanger dedicates chapter 5 of The Pivot of Civilization to “The Cruelty of Charity”: 

Even if we accept organized charity at its own valuation, and grant that it does the best it can, it is exposed to a more profound criticism. It reveals a fundamental and irremediable defect. Its very success, its very efficiency, its very necessity to the social order, are themselves the most unanswerable indictment. Organized charity itself is the symptom of a malignant social disease.”

Sanger describes that through this “Christian type of charity” the weak and degenerate are allowed to live on, sucking the life and resources out of a much more worthy society.  

As nearly crazy as that may sound to many (I tried to describe Sanger’s ideology to a family member who absolutely rejected that it couldn’t be possibly accepted in society today),  we see it vividly, erected in inner cities across the United States:

"PLANNED PARENTHOOD: A reason for being."

A society devoid of love and authentic compassion may freely objectify any human being it deems as unworthy, unwanted, or without reason for being, regardless of what proof science may provide us.  

it’s just a fetus, not a human being, just a clump of cells

And here we are today, with a governmental administration staunchly in support of such an ideology.  It’s real folks. 

(1) Pivot of Civilization source: http://www.gutenberg.org/files/1689/1689-h/1689-h.htm

Bible Readings for Holy Wednesday →

What I write about are things that I think about all day, every day, all night- sleeping and waking.
I’m not joking, I’m not exaggerating.

Aside from taking care of our children, feeding everyone and minimally maintaining our house (I’m pathetic at it), this is my passion and these issues are where my mind turns to in each and every idol moment I have. And that may explain my pathetic household tendencies: I should be doing laundry right now.

I read. And read and read and READ.
Articles, news stories, essays, blogs and books. When I’m not reading about these things, I’m thinking about them.

And when I have the moment I’m having right now, I write.

I do not have many close to me who are constantly wanting to talk about these issues as I do. In fact, most, if not all of my extended family do not agree with me and wont even breech the subject period! And some who do share similar beliefs easily tire of the subject. I do have a handful of close loved ones who openly discuss with me- and often! But I yearn to hear from more! So here is where I go to talk and share.

Today, however, I am tired! Weary even, I suppose… Just tired that I CAN’T even NOT think about these things.
I go to sleep, with the last thing I’ve read or written in my head, I sleep lightly, conscious that I’m still thinking about the issue, and wake up searching for the next resources to draw upon to help form deeper thoughts.

This morning, I woke up, checked FB cause don’t most of us? I get a lot of my news from the companies and organizations I enjoy by being a “fan” of them, thus inserting their news onto my feed.

But I also enjoy reading about what my real friends are doing.

This morning I was kind of disgusted.
My newsfeed was filled with literally 10 stories of :
"So-and-so read an article: SNOOKI LOST WEIGHT, BUT HAS SHE GONE TOO FAR?"
And “TV STAR GOES TO PRISON”
And “TV STAR’S RACY NEW PHOTOS”

I wonder to myself, why is this junk seemingly (according to how FB documents our actions that we share) more important to people than what is happening to our society, to what is going on in our nation? I know that FB only shares a fraction of the reality of our life and what we do or care about. But I guess, today I am pouncing on the apparent evidence.  

Why is it I CANNOT turn my brain off- irritatingly and exhaustingly so- and others don’t seem to even think of it, or of anything else worldly?  We say we believe this or that, but have we really learned it?  And why would we leave questions unanswered?  Especially the important ones!? 

Today I literally have a headache from the ideas and words and stories tumbling over and over inside my head, like a cascading mountain of heavy books! 
I am no great writer by any means, but to anyone who writes… how can I shut my brain down?  Just for a day… for an hour?

I dunno. But today I’m tired so I’ll just share the readings for Holy Wednesday.

The first reading resounded with me very well and made my heart lighter.
Here is part of it:


The Lord GOD is my help,
therefore I am not disgraced;
I have set my face like flint,
knowing that I shall not be put to shame.
He is near who upholds my right;
if anyone wishes to oppose me,
let us appear together.
Who disputes my right?
Let him confront me.
See, the Lord GOD is my help;
who will prove me wrong?

      Is 50:7-9