affection v. aggression

when she was 7, a boy pushed her on the playground
she fell headfirst into the dirt and came up with a mouthful of gravel and lines of blood chasing each other down her legs
when she told her teacher what happened, she laughed and said ‘boys will be boys honey don’t let it bother you
he probably just thinks you’re cute’
but the thing is,
when you tell a little girl who has rocks in her teeth and scabs on her knees that hurt and attention are the same
you teach her that boys show their affection through aggression
and she grows into a young woman who constantly mistakes the two
because no one ever taught her the difference
‘boys will be boys’
turns into
‘that’s how he shows his love’
and bruises start to feel like the imprint of lips
she goes to school with a busted mouth in high school and says she was hit with a basketball instead of his fist
the one adult she tells scolds her
‘you know he loses his temper easily
why the hell did you have to provoke him?’
so she shrinks
folds into herself, flinches every time a man raises his voice
by the time she’s 16 she’s learned her job well
be quiet, be soft, be easy
don’t give him a reason
but for all her efforts, he still finds one
‘boys will be boys’ rings in her head
‘boys will be boys
he doesn’t mean it
he can’t help it’
she’s 7 years old on the playground again
with a mouth full of rocks and blood that tastes like copper love
because boys will be boys baby don’t you know
that’s just how he shows he cares
she’s 18 now and they’re drunk
in the split second it takes for her words to enter his ears they’re ruined
like a glass heirloom being dropped between the hands of generations
she meant them to open his arms but they curl his fists and suddenly his hands are on her and her head hits the wall and all of the goddamn words in the world couldn’t save them in this moment
she touches the bruise the next day
boys will be boys
aggression, affection, violence, love
how does she separate them when she learned so early that they’re inextricably bound, tangled in a constant tug-of-war
she draws tally marks on her walls ratios of kisses to bruises
one entire side of her bedroom turns purple, one entire side of her body
boys will be boys will be boys will be boys
when she’s 20, a boy touches her hips and she jumps
he asks her who the hell taught her to be scared like that and she wants to laugh
doesn’t he know that boys will be boys?
it took her 13 years to unlearn that lesson from the playground
so I guess what I’m trying to say is
i will talk until my voice is hoarse so that my little sister understands that aggression and affection are two entirely separate things
baby they exist in difference universes
my niece can’t even speak yet but I think I’ll start with her now
don’t ever accept the excuse that boys will be boys
don’t ever let him put his hands on you like that
if you see hate blazing in his eyes don’t you ever confuse it with love
baby love won’t hurt when it comes
you won’t have to hide it under long sleeves during the summer
and
the only reason he should ever reach out his hand
is to hold yours

Fortesa Latifi – Boys Will Be Boys
(And Why That Is The Stupidest Thing You Could Ever Say To A Little Girl)

the air will come

I needed to hear this today.

“Breathe. You’re going to be okay. Breathe and remember that you’ve been in this place before. You’ve been this uncomfortable and anxious and scared, and you’ve survived. Breathe and know that you can survive this too. These feelings can’t break you. They’re painful and debilitating, but you can sit with them and eventually, they will pass. Maybe not immediately, but sometime soon, they are going to fade and when they do, you’ll look back at this moment and laugh for having doubted your resilience. I know it feels unbearable right now, but keep breathing, again and again. This will pass. I promise it will pass.”
— Daniell Koepke

you teach me

spending the weekend with my little (well, younger brother he towers over me) i am reminded that he has taught me more about love and life than any other person i know. he is the most caring, generous and loving man – not just to those who show love to him, but also those whose love he will never see in return. he gives without expecting, shares his heart with strangers and is quick to lend a hand to anyone in need. he has been broken and hurt by compassion too many times yet he stands up to help those who’ve pushed him down every time.he has shown me the heart of Christ and challenged me to live closer to Him. he has asked me to seek to forgive those who depleted my soul, when i only could speak words against them.

he is my bestest friend. my Superman.

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chicago

for those who do not know, i am currently living in chicago – learning passion, art, design, life, community and general awesomeness at The Starter League. i am so excited to be apart of this great community of thinkers, idea makers and creators. i hope to find a way to make all the chaos and creative thoughts i have going on every second of the day assimilate into some kind of organized process. i have met some if the people that will be sharing this journey with me and so far i am feeling a little behind. but, i am dedicated to catching up.

the next months will be filled with the journey i am on. the good. the bad. the ugly. the really frustrating. super fantastic journey.

so far i have learned:

i do not need a car in chicago – i sold Peggy (my car)

i love the train/subway/EL much better than the bus

i do not like the red line

i love my apartment is right across from school – i can literally see the classroom

i can not imagine not hearing the sound of the train pass by now – it has become so soothing

i can have anything delivered

i love having a doorman

i am a little afraid of being by myself and without someone to bounce ideas/validate my thoughts

i miss my pooches

i miss my kids

I do not miss Oklahoma.

i feel at home here

IMG_0133 IMG_0157 IMG_0169 IMG_0191 IMG_0189

 

30 Letters in 30 Days: day one

day one: the best friend ❤

Dear BF

Since meeting you, becoming friends then roommates I have had more fun, learned who I am and who I am not, been challenged, been reminded that I am and can be stupid, drink too much and that you have no love when it comes to vomit, discovered what support is, learned about fashion and what not to wear with a “total outfit,” how to dress a table, what monochromatic is, and friendship means starting where we left off like no time passed at all.

I have seen you married, become a mother, struggle with heartache and kick his ass, support your own life and lifestyle, and be stronger than you ever imagined. You inspire me to be a better mom, friend and woman. You have the best fashion sense of anyone I know – I know this because I have stolen many of your outfits and put them back like no one was there. Your beauty shines in whatever you are doing. You can create awesomeness with anything and design like a star! I admire your independence and strive for my own self worth to model yours. You have the most stupendous sense of wit and sarcasm… it is seriously genius!

I am so thankful for you, your encouragement and love. “Thank you for being a friend.” I hope when I’m 50 as well as 100 we will still be as fantastic as we are today! 

I truly love you!

-Me

30 Letters in 30 Days

day 1 — your best friend
day 2 — your crush
day 3 — your parents
day 4 — your sibling (or closest relative)
day 5 — your dreams
day 6 — a stranger
day 7 — your ex-boyfriend/girlfriend/love/crush
day 8 — your favorite internet friend
day 9 — someone you wish you could meet
day 10 — someone you don’t talk to as much as you’d like to
day 11 — a deceased person you wish you could talk to
day 12 — the person you hate most/caused you a lot of pain
day 13 — someone you wish could forgive you
day 14 — someone you’ve drifted away from
day 15 — the person you miss the most
day 16 — someone that’s not in your state/country
day 17 — someone from your childhood
day 18 — the person that you wish you could be
day 19 — someone that pesters your mind—good or bad
day 20 — the one that broke your heart the hardest
day 21 — someone you judged by their first impression
day 22 — someone you want to give a second chance to
day 23 — the last person you kissed
day 24 — the person that gave you your favorite memory
day 25 — the person you know that is going through the worst of times
day 26 — the last person you made a pinky promise to
day 27 — the friendliest person you knew for only one day
day 28 — someone that changed your life
day 29 — the person that you want tell everything to, but too afraid to
day 30 — your reflection in the mirror

Poopy

Five reasons I, today have poopy pants:

1.  The kids are driving me crazy. School is 2 weeks away, they are bored. I am bored. It is 115 degrees outside at 9am.

2.  The Amazon purchase I was so looking forward to was wrong. My fault not theirs. Still a huge bummer.

3.  I have had a migraine for a week.

4.  I am stir-crazy like a squirrel stuck under a deck. There is no where to go in the hot hot town.

5.  I miss 84025, my friends there, the things to be doing that I would be doing, the 85 degree weather and the mountains.

 

Thank you for letting me vent.

**smiles**

Reflectional?

The funny thing about a mirror is that is shows you what is projected in front of it. 

Not the truth.

Not what is real.

Only what is placed before it. 

A lie painted to be seen as the truth will be seen in reflection to be true.

If a mirror can be fooled, which is only glass masked ….

Then what is used to see truth?


Lunch and Mincemeat

My mom eats with Chandler 3 days a week, this was initiated to make sure he ate… because he would not. Now it is more a time of 1st grade conversations. Today she came home to inform me that something interesting had been discussed. Dads.

The discussion began over the annoyance of a certain boy that “always” gets into trouble, bugs Chandler and everyone else and seems to be the topic of gripping. We will call him Seth*. His mom is a single parent (as am I) older and seems to have her hands full with this one. The kids at the lunch table were mentioning to all there that they had just kinda had it with his behavior and sick of being part of his troublemaking. Then it was said by Cliff* that “it is because Seth has not dad.”

Hmmm… and Hmmmmer…

They all agreed this was the case and reasoning behind Seth’s antics.

ummm….

Cliff: “Well, Chandler doesnt have a dad”

Chandler: “Well, all weekend my mom had some guy over and he was nice and he played with me and my brother the whole time and he was kinda like a dad, and they are going to get married.”

Ummmm…

Nan (my mom): “Chandler that was your daddy, you do have a dad. You know him, he plays all the time. But he and your mom are not going to get married im sorry sweetheart.”

Chandler: “oh, thery’re not?”

Nan: “No honey.”

What do I do with this. My heart feels like mincemeat – and not the good pie kind. The 3 day old school cafeteria kind.

dine

This image here is me. Simple.

I cook food from scratch. I use organic everything-I-can. I am determined about making eating together a time of reconnection, enjoyment, and conversation. From the drinks to the dessert, the music in the background and the plates and cups on the table – I want time to stop and the only movement is memories being made.

4″ Snowpocalypse

If you don’t watch the news, the midwest has been under a snow blanket. Schools have been closed, restaurants closed (even Mcdee’s), life has stopped in Edmond Oklahoma.

This afternoon, Tanner recited 11 mins. of Spongebob Squarepants – They so need to go back to school.

BUT – Chandler and I made a castle of empty boxes, butcher paper, and scrapbook supplies.

I love my boys dearly! But no more snowdays.

Moms… what is keeping the peace and sanity in your house during this winter craziness?

Everything She has

8:34am Wake up to the boys watching tv and arguing about LEGOs or iPhone time, go downstairs to make breakfast let the dog out and feed the cat.

9:12am Hit the showers, primp & curl, get the boys dressed in something other than a pj shirt camo shorts and slippers, let the dog out.

10:02am Coffee time (not starbucks) need to load up on the java to get through playtime and lunch.

10:47am Let the dog out, bring out the LEGOs, the cars, the tracks to race the cars, the crayons, the markers, the construction paper – bring on the creative play.

11:54am “What do you want for lunch kiddos”

12:09pm The most perfect homemade mac-n-cheese hits the table with fresh melon medley and ice water, let the dog out.

12:39pm Lunch over, “clean up clean up everybody everywhere…”

1:07pm Run errands, movie, outside, computer games, Wii, draw, friends…. something.

4:47pm “Mom, Whats for dinner?” Hmmm to cook or not cook? Take-out? Nope, save money. Grilled chicken with fresh organic seasoned green beans and homemade mash potatoes.

5:51pm Great conversation about school and friends, funny stories and laughing, I love the dinner table.

5:59pm “Clean up…” you know the drill. Oh, yeah let the dog out.

6:11pm Rainbow Serbert (organic of course) maybe some tv

7:30pm Bath, books and bedtime. We love to read Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak & A Bad Case of the Stripes by David Shannon

8:30pm Squenches and sleep.

9:01pm Me time, reading, bath, tv, awwwww. Let the dog out. Reflect on how very blessed I am. How much I love my babies. How much God gives me, takes care of every single need.

 

 

I Want MORE.

I want  MORE.

I want a MORE productive life.

I want a MORE loving marriage than the one my parents have.

I want a MORE beneficial educational loving children.

I want a MORE committed relationship with my future spouse.

I want a MORE REAL lifestyle.

I want MORE.

I want MORE than I could even imagine for myself.

I want MORE dreams to come true.

I want MORE so I can do MORE for those with LESS.

What do you want MORE of? What would you do with it?

*”…I don’t go to church because the line long”

Two friends of mine announced via Facebook that they had each lost a close friend today, each no relation to the other but both in car accidents.

Which got me thinking, these two individuals both died around the same time, and I am sure that others in this world lost someone around that same time too. So is there a line when you get to Heaven? Is there this flow of people who just keepflowing, standing waiting and asking each other “what are you in for?” Or is the omnipresent Christ just there to lead you home, hand-in-hand walking with you, holding you and welcoming you home.

I think it’s the latter, “welcome home my child, well done!”

Lord, remind me of how short my time on earth is. That this life is not my home. Pray for the families and friends so they can embrace your peace and love in this time.

 

* Lyrics from “That Ain’t Me” by Lil Wayne featuring Jay Sean from the album “I Am Not A Human Being”.

*❅* 2010 Ornament Swap *❅*

I am pumped about starting and joining some super Ornament Swaps!! Here is where I am joined up! ( I will add more links as I join more – I love these)

freshlyblended

Hi Mamma Designs

Dream, Inspire, Create

Dolce Vita

 

Christmas Sparkle Ornament Swap Spectacular

Rules:

1. Email your first and last name, mailing address with country, blog/website address {if you have one} and if you would like to ship internationally to staceyrootmedia@gmail.com

2.  Create 8-10 {depending on group size} handmade ornaments (no food or perishable material please) in any shape, color, sparkle, glitter, fantasticyness you chose same or different.

3.  Sign up by Nov. 14th so we can get the groups out to you in time to make magic with your creativity!

4.  On November 16th you’ll receive an email from us containing the addresses of 8-10 other swap participants to send your ornaments to.

5.  Package your ornaments well…especially if you create anything fragile.

6.  Send one of your ornaments to each person on the list of 8-10 other swap participants in your group by DEC 6th 2010. < thats the deadline ppl!!

7. Sit back, relax and wait as you receive 8-10 wonderful gifts in the mail! {so fun}

**Dont forget to take pics and share! You can do this by placing them on our Facebook Group Page.

Common questions we answered just for you!

What sort of materials can be used?
~Anything! Knit, sew, letterpress, gocco, paint, draw, sculpt, glaze, cut-out, glue, weave, blow glass, weld…go nuts. Please note that certain countries have restrictions as far as importing grains, beans, or other like materials, so please take that into consideration if you are making ornaments to ship internationally.
Who are the other people I’ll be swapping with?
~The other people on the swap list you receive on November 16th.
Will my address be on the internet anywhere?
~No. The only people who will receive your address are the people you are swapping with.
What about shipping costs?
~You are responsible for shipping costs for your ornaments…just as others are paying to ship ornaments to you.
** Q&A and some rules were based on the plan over at freshlyblended
Other questions? >> Email staceyrootmedia@gmail.com
HAPPY SWAPPING TO ALL!

Carmen

catching up with Danielle and her medical writing genius i linked to Carmen’s Story which not only brought tears rushing to my eyes but it reminded me that in the things that i do everyday, my “normal” is very normal. I have two very healthy children, my health and the ability to know that they will be here on earth normal for as long as normal is.

I was inspired by the mother of this little girl and her older sister who not only loved Carmen dearly but loved that she would be in Heaven “running” and “free”.

Please take 10 mins. (or more its worth it, trust me!)  to read about Carmen. Her healing was not in this world but to heal the hearts of those here and bring them closer to God. Amazing story!

“How Great Thou Art”

♬ Music Provides a Path ♪

I began playing music at a very young age, first piano then violin and finally landed on the flute at 6. I hated practicing, I just wanted to be able to pick it up and release the magic inside my head. I competed in competitions and only by the sheer will of my teacher Mrs. Nancy Toone I kept up with it after I discovered boys. Also, I secretly wanted to be better than Jamie Prince who was a violin genius and lived next door. I think music has always been apart of my soul. I feel the closest to God when I am playing, singing, listening or around music. I feel and gain the most inspired my music; David Crowder, Flyleaf, and Sade speak volumes to me, seriously they changed my life. On the flip side, Lil Wayne and Tupac have made a soundtrack to another part of my life, one that drives me to move farther, harder and never give in.

I can’t sing a note. I can still play music if you do not expect grandeur. Tanner and Chandler will be picking a form of music to incorporate into their lives this fall and I can not wait to share with them my love for this 6th sense. Tanner already has a love for music, we’ll sing Johnny Cash and Michael Jackson, Lil Wayne (relax, it’s the clean versions) Da, Da, Da, Fleetwood Mac… so many more.

Also, I have to say nothing beats a record, yes, a real record older the better. The old ones crack and pop with every turn. I love putting on records on my vintage player on rainy days and listen to vintage and antique records with a great book, a comfy chair and either a warm blanket or a warm dog.

What are your top ten artists/songs??    ♪♬♩   How do you enjoy those artists???

My List:

10. Sade – Cherish the Day

9.  Reliant K

8.  Citizen Cope

7.  Flyleaf

6.  Billie Holiday

5.  U2 – Joshua Tree Album

4.  Howie Day

3.  Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi Soundtrack

2.  Lil Wayne

1.  David Crowder Band

SMS davidcrowderband

This song sings to me.

(Verse 1)
Send me a sign
A hint, O whisper
Fill me with life
‘Cause I am listening

Come break the quiet
Breathe your awakening
Bring me the light
‘Cause I am fading

Surround me with the rush of angels’ wings

(Chorus 1)
Shine Your light so I can see You
Pull me up, I need to be near You
Hold me, I need to feel loved
Can You overcome this heart that’s overcome?

(Verse 2)
You sent a sign
The hint, O whisper
Human, divine
Everyone is listening

Death laid low
Quiet in the night is stirring

All around the rush of angels

(Bridge)
O the wonder of the greatest love has come

(Chorus 2)
Shine Your light so all can see it
Lifted up, ’cause the whole world needs it
Love has come, what joy to hear it
He has overcome, He has overcome

** I would appreciate any and all prayers as I continue in my job search – That God will provide the means, the       job I can be me in and my heart to be open to his blessings!

– Thank you!!

So…

I have been absent from this site from some time partly because I hated the world and all who live in it, and partly because my worldly  hatred caused me to write things that only Debbie Downer would enjoy.  Not saying that all that has changed, but I now only have a small hatred for the world and some of its inhabitants, but I have gained a much bigger love for where I am being asked to grow. (you know, bloom where planted)

Here’s where I, we, us are:

We are living at my parents as the University was not too pleased at me living under the radar in student housing considering I graduated in December, so we vacated our grand apartment and moved into a 2 story brick with a pool. I admit, at first I was so bitter that lemons and limes looked like gumdrops. Now I have let go a little and realized that we are here for a reason, I hate not being able to do my own thing and wander like I want, eat after 10pm and sit with my doggie watching House Hunters INternational. BUT… I have lost 10 lbs, go to bed at 10pm instead of 4am and the pool is nice.

On the job front, I have applied everywhere from Target to The Richards Group and not had much luck (although I did meet with The Richards Group and loved it, although they did not love me as much as I did them). I want to work like nobodies bidness and think I am a catch in the work world, plus, that whole degree thing I now have. (ta daaaaa) I have passion and heart and grace and humbleness so I know it is just around the corner.

Dating. Hmmm, well that is a void, but I have hopes that a perfect man is being molded just for me. I have placed an order, but it seems to be taking longer than anticipated. I’ll wait.

So… there’s your update on us, me, I.

I hope you enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed getting here.

fate and her front gate

i hate you. no really i do. its like the worst feeling trying to love you.

you claim, this love for me is true, well i got news for you boo… that aint true.

fussing and fighting is more common in this house than love and trust. something i say

i must.

never once did i step out on you, lie to you bring home pain to you. well maybe that one time…

but. no that was not a lie or mistrust that was me taking care of us.

no i know you lied and cheated, made plans then retreated, made us wait while you completed –

your plans.

2 kids, 11 years, uncountable tears and for what? nothing. nope nothing. I am left with the choice to stay,

oh, ya huh it is a choice to stay raise two boys into loving men. Men will not raise a hand like you did, raise a voice

like you do, stick when it is slippery and love when there is nothing but hate.

so fuck fate, i am walking out on that bitch, and closing that gate –

behind me. you are behind me.

mY wIsH LisT

**this video is my favorite from childhood – its how i picture myself telling God what my heart desires [like his doesn’t already know, lol]

Tanner has been asking about a husband, telling me his wish list for this person (cute, eh?) so here’s mine:

  1. must be hot! not talking cute, good looking, nice – I want hot! I have wasted too much time on acceptable.
  2. by hot: tall-er 5’11 – 6’3, well groomed, hair, light or really dark eyes, baby soft skin, no unibrow, eyelashes longer than mine, own a pair of nose trimmers and use them, ears (sounds simple but you never know), no hair issues on chest stomach or back, does not need to look like a body builder but I do appreciate a nice physique, a a** would be fun but not too much, no kankles, nice feet.
  3. Knows how to dress – I dig peacoats, turtlenecks, trousers, shoes that do not have letter or animals or characters on them, boxer or boxer briefs, no excessive chains medallions rings or earrings, piercing are ok if well done.
  4. THE MAJOR STUFF
  5. HONEST
  6. FAITHFUL
  7. COMES HOME TO ME
  8. LOVES GOD WITH ALL HIS LIFE
  9. Cooks
  10. eats
  11. sleeps
  12. likes dogs cats and enjoys spending time around my animals (i have a sphinx)
  13. likes to travel to new places and explore them
  14. will travel with WITH me
  15. not afraid to try new food places things ideas
  16. is smart i mean really smart in a backward not so noticeable way (like the brains of dickinson, dorothy parker, southpark creators, Steve jobs, Mike Rowe, lil wayne [seriously read his lyrics  – they are genius])
  17. LOVES MY KIDS AND WANTS TO MAKE BABIES
  18. BRITISH ACCENTS ARE BONUS
  19. loves to watch movies (i like bollywood a lot)
  20. likes to talk on walks
  21. loves to go driving
  22. take me out – alot
  23. like to have people over to play games like Cranium and cards
  24. Like to travel with other families
  25. thinks prostitution, porn, cheating on ones partner, lying and deception are negative to a growing relationship
  26. LIKES MY FRIENDS
  27. likes snow, skiing and mountains
  28. does not hold it against me that i do not dig yardwork
  29. loves to grow things like veggies
  30. thinks organic is the only way to go
  31. understands that i could have a orgasm everytime i go to wholefoods – its that wonderful! and does not think that is weird.
  32. loves that i share my secrets with him and that he shares his with me.
  33. TAKES MY BOYS TO GAMES, PARK, RIDE BIKES, FISHING, CAMPING, TO GET DIRTY AND DIG IN THE DIRT – all the things they missed out on.
  34. knows that i am a little quirky  – but loves it!
  35. is proud of me
  36. thinks im beautiful even with pjs and tears
  37. loves to dress me up and show me off
  38. understands that i think outloud and loves to here me talk
  39. know im an idea person and loves it
  40. loves that i dream
  41. lets me love him
  42. lets me take care of him
  43. lets me stay home and raise our family even though he knows i could be doing something amazing at the office
  44. doesn’t get mad when i forget stuff or fall asleep during the movie
  45. reads to the boys
  46. leads the boys in Christ
  47. prays with and for us and our family
  48. doesn’t mind coming home to mess sometimes
  49. is my friend, lover, and  knows when to be them and when to let me be his
  50. knows my 5 loves languages and let me know his
  51. is my knight in shinning armour
  52. lets me be me
  53. laughs at me when i make dinner and it burns because i had to share with him the news of the day
  54. loves that i run to him
  55. is open to me loving him in the quirky ways i do
  56. loves the notes i leave on his car  and in his breifcase and on his  phone
  57. loves that i surprise him with things
  58. loves that i am a lady but a freak in bed
  59. loves that i love him
  60. loves that we have blessings
  61. understands that money and things are not as important as family and life
  62. HE NEVER RAISES HIS VOICE TO ME OR THE KIDS
  63. WOULD NEVER HIT OR ABUSE ME OR THE KIDS
  64. WOULD NEVER BRING SOMETHING INTO OUR LIVES THAT WOULD HURT US
  65. is strong
  66. knows how to fix stuff bc i sure dont
  67. he knows how to laugh at life
  68. has tattoos not bc its cool but bc they mean something to him
  69. is an artist
  70. has a job
  71. has a career
  72. established
  73. loves that i grew up the way i did
  74. knows me inside and out
  75. willing
  76. trusts
  77. gives
  78. takes
  79. provides
  80. shares
  81. not sure if i could do *secret* that…. i trust you God.
  82. IS A MAC
  83. or if he is a pc is willing to convert.
  84. knows the 2 BIG SECRETS about me and does not care but supports me in the struggle.
  85. LOVES GOD MORE THAN ME – and knows i do too!

ok so this is it! if you fit the bill – APPLY!

God’s Will at Capitol Hill

Tonight I had the pleasure of spending a class with the 4th and 5th graders of Capitol Hill Church of Christ, an inner (way inner) city mission church. I have to say my white bread, spoon fed, silver platter view of my bubble was challenged. I have seen the “ghetto” and even been quite comfortable with those inside it (my kids father lives there) but I had not seen the inner city as anything different from the ghetto. It is. Here’s why…

three out of the 7 kids asked for prayers for death, “bad things” parents were doing and loss. One girl came in with fresh tears, later I found out she had gotten in trouble in school for asking a boy to sleep with her (she’s nine) and she said her mother “beat her up”, she had marks on her arms and legs, and a red scrape on her face. She spent the class with the female teacher talking, begging her not to call CPS on her mother because she hated foster care. A boy I talked with said that he was trying to get his dad to stops doing bad things, he kept asking me to color with him, he wanted to talk and watch me color.

WTF is up with parents?? I mean, I have lost my tempter and yelled too loudly, spanked the toosh, been a insensitive parent while hearing the story of the wierd kid in school for the 5th time, oh yeah and had those days where I feel like a complete douche bag parent! BUT… I have never beaten my children.

So again, WTF is up with parents? I know the economy, no jobs, feeding the family and deadbeats to deal with but, i was just broken for these little hearts that are SCREAMING and literary jumping up and down and doing cartwheels for someone to just sit down with them and be interested in their voice.

MY HEART IS SCREAMING for these kids and at the same time I am so totally freaked out and scared of these kids. Scared about their germs, their unkept clothing, their parents who lash out at the world and teachers, worried that their primary school gangs are going to run after me, scared that they will get my attention and call me for everything they need, worried that I might actually fall into their hell and not be able to get out without turning it into something resembling life.

These kids need something more than a prayer and a bible story. They need a friend, stability, balance, understanding, ears that listen to them, a soft place to land, a blank page to vent out all the BS they deal with daily! Then and ONLY then are they going to be able to hear that bible story you are pushing. Because to them, God is absent, he is a fable, a myth, a hope for and a never seen, God is something that is mentioned when a mom yells or a dad stumbles into the table after being drunk all day, God is not a savior, that 15 yr old kid that offers them a 500 dollar bonus for selling the bag of rocks he has and another 1000 when he sells two more – that is his savior because he can feed their family and turn the lights back on and get their moms next drink so she will wake up and act like a mom for a couple of hours. THAT is THEIR CLASS.

So now what? All these ideas are running though my mind. Run in there and save the day, bring the passion from my side of the tracks to theirs, show them God, show them God? What God, the one that allows me a college education with a price tag of 100k, or the God that kept me from being engulfed in the gang lifestyle and the God that delivered me from a promiscuous life, that let me live when others are dying of addiction? That is not their God.  I want to go into that classroom and change everything, bring videos and media and songs and worship. I want to meet with directors and suggest tons of things. Nope. Just love. Not force, just love.

What are your thought?? Be honest!

Letter to Those Left Behind…

DEAR my babies, friends, family, relatives, acquaintances,  distant companions, lovers, and loved ones….

first do not fear for the walk was short, the breeze was kind and the way well lit

i know you must be wondering what heaven is like, i was too and i can’t even create the words to speak

Jesus is here, he met me at the door took me in his arms and said “welcome home”

there were no clouds that lead my feet but light that followed us as if it was commanded to do so

the most glorious sounds not from the mouth of angels but the hearts of saints welcoming me back

and praising the King who leads

me into the house, you know that big big house with a “big big yard were we can play football”

oh how i wish you were here, but then i guess you would not be there. and oh, there, how is it there? I almost forgot about ‘there’ i miss them,those little boys that you gave, i miss you and that gentle hand as it squeezes mine and as i look up i see

see him, i see him, God. His arms that are larger than anything I have ever seen, yet small enough to hold my hand, and in his hand, and around me. Oh what a glorious gift this is, this is Love and this is Grace.

i say to God, I miss them, there love and hands, and that little noise they make when they snuggle up against me that smell from there freshly washed hair, the way they run to me when I came home, hearing about their day, sharing their tears, the loud arguments and the whining, can i see them smile, or walk down the isle, give me peace about being in this place with you

please forgive my doubt, my sadness and my fear

can i fear here?

can i hurt?

i am so confused God.

then God said, “Peace my child, let me hold you and wipe your tears, hold you close and let you cry into my hand”

and then he said this “Be Still”

and just as my heart was about to explode with pain from missing you more than i could ever say, i blinked.

“MOMMY. MOMMY!!! i’m home” and i opened my eyes to see you running towards me hand in hand with Jesus and the other arm open as far as the sea.

‘welcome home i said’

Welcome Home…

so do not fear, do not hurt, do not worry, climb into His lap and cry into his hand for i blink and we will be together again.

~me

I Laughed

French Letter

TR: Dear Jacques,
You ask me about Duluth, now that you will be transferred here to train Northwest pilots in flying the French Airbus, and first of all I must say that I miss Toulouse and all of the good times we had. I like my life in Minnesota, but I must tell you that if you are French, Americans associate you with wine, cheese, and perfume. They forget that Airbus beat out Boeing in airplane sales last year. They boycott French products not realizing that Motel 6 is French-owned and so is Motown Records. But you ask about Duluth. It is to the rest of the U.S. what Norway is to France. Long winters, cold, faraway. They use the word “whatever” here. And “go figure”. People don’t like to discuss politics with people who disagree with them. If you have a passionate opinion, they just say, “whatever” and walk away. From the top of the hill in Duluth, there are magnificent views of the Lake, and they built a high school on top with no windows facing that way. Go figure. People here do not have a sense of fashion so you need not worry about what you wear when you go out. Whatever. There is no smoking here. In fact, they show sex in movies but if the couple were to light cigarettes afterward, people would be shocked. Smoking is allowed here only in bars that do not serve food prepared from a stove —- if they serve microwaved pizza, then you’re okay. And unlike in France, you can’t bring your dog with you to a restaurant. Stores are open on Sundays but you can’t buy alcohol or automobiles.

When you arrive, you will have to choose a health insurance plan, and let me tell you, it’s not simple. It’s easier to set up a corporation than to get health care. Here there are two networks, SMDC and Care North, each with its own hospital located pretty much across the street from each other. You’ll be given a lot of literature about premiums, deductibles, co-pays, restrictions, and exclusions, not like in France where you just go to the doctor. And church is different: you don’t just go to the service, you have to stay around for lunch. Actually, I like red Jell-O though as a Frenchman I cannot admit this openly. It’s easy to find your way around Duluth. The streets are numbered and run parallel to Lake Superior and the avenues run uphill.

Let me also point out that there are 31 pages of lawyers in the Duluth yellow pages. Go figure.

No monokinis on the beach, but a lot of mosquitoes. But it’s a beautiful place, and I love living here, and look forward to seeing you.

Au revoir et bon voyage!

Your friend Pierre

Listen to the FUNNINESS!