Bitter….

via Daily Prompt: Bitter

Bitter makes me think of unsweet, unripened fruit, maybe lemons or limes, certain  roasts of coffee, and people full of regret and resentment. I can sweeten the fruit and the coffee, but a bitter person is a whole other thing.  ruffled

I think of my parents, especially my father. He has been a reliable father, a dog-lover, and a wonderful friend to many… just don’t ask him about my mother, don’t bring up sports he doesn’t like, or politics he doesn’t agree with. If he were a cup of coffee, he would have an aftertaste, even with a health dose of cream and coconut sugar. On the wrong day, you might switch to another coffee blend, or just drink tea.

Bitter also makes me think of bad choices, like fruit picked at the wrong time or eaten out of season. Have you ever had a good winter peach, or enjoyed a strawberry that is pale rather dark red and sweet? Not my preference, for sure.

Letting go, or taking time to chill out can keep you from becoming bitter, like candy without the sweetness. I am trying to remember this, as I slowly begin to  feel overworked and exhausted. I try to seek laughter and sunshine, rather than darkness, anxiety, and the impulse to recoil. I don’t want to be bitter before my time.

Letting it all out… and letting it go

I deal with people’s problems in my job everyday. I work with multiple people having personal problems currently, and then there is my life.  Although Boyfriend and I get along great,  each of us has our own stresses. This sometimes piles up on me, making me feel like the shaken-up soda bottle that overflows when you open it.

I have a pretty easy to get along with group of co-workers, just leave controversial issues (especially immigration and related issues) out of the conversation and there will be no problems. However, others do not get along quite the same as I do, which leads to some tense, heated moments.

This happened earlier today. I joked with one of the co-workers a little and she gave it right back, but it opened the door for other’s to make comments and be critical about her part in a group project. This put my friend in an awkward position, causing her to stand up for herself and then snap with the other two women kept pushing her. They didn’t care, but my friend, who has been managing a lot in her life, became tearful. It broke my heart. I left the office to handle business and later ironed things out, but it sadly showed who the other tow people really are. They are interested in getting their way, looking high and mighty, and enjoy putting someone else in their place, even to the point of embarrassment.  After working in my job for over a year, people have started to real show themselves, though not for the better.

I am struggling with family issues, as always, and issues related to my brother’s upcoming wedding. I am happy for him and glad for his happiness, nothing changes that. People live their lives as they see fit, and I understand that. I need to let go of things over which I have no control, and not hold on to bad feelings. I just want to say that most parents do have a favorite child, whether they admit it or not. Despite all of the “I’m so proud of you’s” that I now hear or the “you’re so strong and independent” comments, I am not the favorite but I make a hell of a shoulder to cry on. As I tell my clients, “You only have control over yourself and your actions,” and I need to take my own advice.

I need to keep my friends close, and my eyes on everyone else. I need to breathe, and then let it go…. Easier said than done.

 

The laws, the violence and our new President…

I have long contemplated writing my own take on what is going on in the USA, especially with regard to Trump, his policies, and the violence going on in many cities.

I voted for Trump, I will admit that, even if I can’t discuss this with friends and co-workers. We talk about many subjects, except for politics, and I turn to my stack of work while they talk amongst themselves. I have some nice friends, but politics is where we separate. My family and I aren’t even on the same page, with varying ideologies. I believe in laws, I believe in the U.S. Constitution, and I believe in the exchange of ideas. I don’t agree with the notion that if you supported one candidate you are a racist, and that  if you supported another candidate that you are a good person in support of rights.

Some people will read this and think I am heartless, insensitive, a racist, etc. I am not. I am, however, sick of being blamed for all of the ways every group outside of my ethnicity has been wronged, and I am sick of the ways each group has allowed ourselves to be manipulated to fight each other over bullshit.  In reality, those in power made bad decisons for a very long time, and now we have a bad economy, lack of jobs, a skewed sense of justice, wars still being fought in multiple countries, and a restriction on the rights of Americans.liberty_and_justice_for_all_poster

I have worked with and befriended people from all walks of life, as I have written about before. I have gotten to know them and learned from them, even while not agreeing with all of their views or decisions. I have worked with diverse backgrounds of people, and I have seen the choices families have may have made out of desperation which have long-lasting negative effects on their children and on their communities . First off, because the parents broke the law, they have shown their children that it is ok to break the law… And we as a country have shown these young people that they might have to follow some laws but not other laws. We have shown them also that, not only do they not have to follow the rules, but that not following the rules allows you to get stuff that other people pay for, and that it is ok to bash people while they are helping you.

I understand that people can fall on hard times. I have had my share of hard times, where I had to figure out how much food to buy  because I was broke. I had poor credit at one point because I couldn’t pay my bills, and I have slept on the floor and washed my clothes in the bathtub because I had a low paying job. I rented an apartment in a neighborhood drug addicts and rundown buildings because it was I could afford, until I could afford to move to a better environment. Boyfriend has also had very hard times, but the only people who could pull us up and out of the hard times was us because we are white, childless people, rather than minorities or foreigners or people with children.  People think that being white exempts people from struggling or suffering or being broke.  Struggling is struggling regardless of race, color, sex, or creed.  People of all walks of life can struggle and suffer, regardless of what the politicians tell you, right Bernie Sanders?

Being that I live and work in Central Texas, I am very aware of the policy battle raging between the governor and the Travis County Sheriff. I follow the local news and the real (alternative) news very closely. I see people walking into my work building to handle their business and I have met some very nice people, while also meeting some people who don’t get it, don’t want to get it, and who will never get it… they don’t want a hand-up, they want a hand-out, expecting someone to let them keep breaking the rules, not assimilating, and taking no responsibility for their actions.  scales-of-justice-glass-effect-800px

I am not against people coming to this country legally and lawfully. My ancestors came to this country from Europe through Ellis Island, including my grandmother, whose family made three attempts before successfully escaping the czars nearing Russo-Poland. I am an Irish/English/Scottish/German/Russian/Polish/Lithuanian/Texan-American. One of my proud moments was visiting Ellis Island 15 years ago to see where my ancestors entered this country.

So,  I am not against foreigners coming to the U.S. and wanting to become Americans. I do not appreciate my country opening the door to people who tell us what is wrong with our country while we give them food, shelter, clothing, etc., while they say it in their language, don’t follow our laws, and while their country(ies) tell us what to do. These countries would not give me or any other American the option of crossing their border and setting up camp in their country because things didn’t work out for us in the U.S. Rather, we would have to have money to afford living there and would still have limited rights, or we would be imprisoned for trying to live there illegally.

I understand helping someone in a truly desperate situation. I have done that many times without a thought, but that would not give someone the right to take over my house, eat my food and tell me what the rules in my house should be. Other countries have laws and rules and procedures that visitors must follow, I don’t think my country should be any different. Other countries get to decide who comes in and who doesn’t, who stays and who doesn’t. I also think that we as a country should be able to protect ourselves against intruders and enemies, foreign and domestic, by way of personal defense and keeping enemies out. I hope to never see another event like 9-11-01, 0r 9-11-12, or what happened in San Bernardino, Ft. Hood, Orlando, Boston, or the events that have taken place in Paris, Berlin, and so many others. I believe that people having the ability to defend themselves would have lessened the loss of life in most these and other terrorist situations. wp_20151108_002

We have started to hear a lot more about the violence that has plagued Chicago for years from Donald Trump and the news media, but society has blamed the guns rather than the criminals and gang members who shoot with reckless abandon, often striking the wrong, innocent target(s).Oh yeah, and the guns are often illegally obtained through straw buyers or on the black market, not usually through legal means (going through a background check and purchasing at a legal firearm distributor). However, it’s perfectly OK  for people angry that their candidate lost an election to destroy property, assault innocent bystanders, burn up vehicles, smash in windows, loot businesses, commit hate crimes, and fight the police. That’s just normal. And, again, I am pro-Constitution so I fully support free speech and peaceful assembly. What I don’t support is for anyone to lash out at other people just because you are pissed off, because you are might be held accountable for breaking the law, or because someone has simply offended you. I get offended everyday and I learned to deal with it, and I have learned to use effective means to hand my grievances or other situations.

I hope that things will get better in this country, and in the world. I hope people do their own research rather than be spoon-fed propaganda by the mainstream media… the same media that covered up some politicians’ crimes, indiscretions, bombing of Middle Eastern countries, political affiliations and business dealings, while openly trying to sway an election, dig up mistakes and oversights, and distort information. I am not saying that anyone who has made it in politicians is an angel, and I would dare that say that each and every one of them has made deals, justified behavior, and done things that most of us could not rest well with. I am saying that for all we have heard about someone’s marriages, flirtations, inappropriate language, and dalliances, we didn’t hear much about similar or worse behavior from other candidates and/or their spouses. poorunclesam

My intention in writing was not to piss people off, but done so in the hope they will realize that there are two sides to every story. So people will realize that the truth is not being told, and that the people who voted for Trump are not all angry, hateful people but are people who want things to improve in this country for all Americans. We can’t help others until we can truly fix our own problems.

Daily Prompt: Vanish

via Daily Prompt: Vanish

At one time, we were inseparable, you and I. Two tall, brown-haired, brown-eyed girls from the Southwest side of Chicago.

We laughed, we shopped, we partied. If you didn’t call me, I would call you. We caught up almost everyday, laughing, making plans, joking, complaining… You were a high school acquaintance, a friend of a friend, and then it was just us. I knew your mother, your brothers, your little girl, a big part of my world for awhile. Almost like my other family when I needed a break. People expected to see us together, me and you, you and me. friends-2015053155

People came and went in our lives, until…. I met someone, the One. And then you met someone. We tried to keep it going, girlfriends with relationships. We made plans to hang out for awhile… but I’ll have to call you back, something came up. Your man has a thing planned, work got in the way, my man lives too far for you to come out that way… The good old days, fun while they lasted. We were two girls who needed to have fun and a few laughs while we had a few drinks, but we had to grow-up… and ended up growing apart.

I called her about a year or so ago to say hello, what’s new? Pleasantries and catching up until the ex-husband came by with the youngest child after visitation, I’ll try to call you soon!  A year or so before that, she called, then I called, phone tag… then I called again and we chatted for a few minutes.  Friends so close until life happens, and then they vanish. Life changes while we are making other plans, but we never quite forget, do we?

 

What the future brings… Can it get better?

I have not yet posted anything with regard to the fairly recently 2016 Presidential Election in the United States of America. I have been busy settling into our new home, but also kind of waiting to see how everything will turn out… it’s apparently still not over, not until the Electoral College votes and/or Congress chooses our President. I hope it doesn’t come to that.walking-to-the-future-orange

I have become fairly well informed in the past six years, but there is always more to learn and still a lot that I don’t know.  I feel more informed than the so-called average American, though that doesn’t say much. I was one of the people who did not know that the Electoral College vote is more than a month after the actual election. I followed the election closely, even stayed up until 1AM hoping to hear the outcome, which I got the next morning while getting ready for work. I was pleased and continue to be slightly optimistic that, by the expected candidate not winning, things will improve for the economy, the decent hard-working citizens, and for industries that have suffered by the policies and actions of the past 20 years. Yes, not just the past eight years.

If you have looked at my blog at all, you can probably guess that I am not a Hillary supporter, or a supporter of Sanctuary cities, and that I am for upholding the U.S. Constitution, free speech, securing the border, and avoiding the continuous wars around the world. I can admit that I voted for Donald Trump to break the status quo, in the hopes that he would make good on improving our country, taking care of the Veterans, focusing on the good of our nation, and fixing our problems rather than being the policeman/social worker/handyman of the world. I hope that the powers that be do not take over and create the same problems/ environment/opportunity  for the powerful Elite to take over, not that they haven’t been trying lately and that they haven’t been succeeding for a very long time.

I know people who are on the other side of the political fence, probably a bad pun to use, and I have not been able to take about the election with them. When necessary, I have kept to general news and facts in the mainstream. I can understand where they are coming from, given some of their backgrounds/cultures/family history, but I also have trouble understanding why it would make sense to replicate failed decisions/policies/countries. People are leaving other places that are being ruined by violence, socialism, globalism, etc. but come here and expect to benefit from America while still championing for the U.S. to adopted said policies. If you don’t believe me, watch “There’s No Place Like Utopia” , a documentary by Joel Gilbert. He talks to a group of Hispanic men from Mexico, El Salvador and other Central/South American countries, and they say as much. They came to America for jobs but still want the same policies that killed jobs in their homelands.  Also in the film, Joel interviews residents of Chicago.  It pains me to see people similar to the clients I used to  help continue to be not only hoodwinked by the political machine in Chicago, but also to be continually stuck in the hamster wheel of poverty, welfare and rundown neighborhoods, poor economics, and ignorant of how they have been manipulated. I write this during the weekend that Chicago broke their 701st homicide of 2016, highest since 1996.

donald-trump-cartoon-3I am always hopeful that things can improve, whether its my family’s behavior, that a bad situation can turn around, that people can learn from their mistakes. I am hopeful that people can see the truth, whatever that may be, really the facts. I am hopeful that the Election will peacefully resolve itself without a criminal really winning, and that the guy who made a lot of promises keeps even half of them. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.