Mothers Day – for some

I used to dread this day.  Cristy would sweep the pile of me off the floor and carry me off on a drive that took up the whole day.  Even though she was a mother, we would barely acknowledge the day.  I would always write a little something to Gracie and her mom and imagine what their morning looked like.  I missed her every day but really selfishly missed her on Mothers Day.  My day.

I spoke with many moms yesterday morning that live that same life.  Some of them have been there for years and others, just a few months.  I heard things like:

Do you think he knows I’m missing him?
Does she even remember me?
I can’t breathe.

It’s hard to know what to say other than – the time goes by, I promise.  And one day you’ll have every opportunity to explain where you’ve been and that you’ve been waiting.  And eventually, they’ll put the pieces of their life together.  There will be answers for both of you.

If you get a chance, look up the Sean Goldman story that aired on Dateline just a few Friday’s ago.  It’s the story of a boy stolen by his mother and taken to Brazil.  He was 4.  After a crazy turn of events, he was finally returned at the age of 9.  Parental Alienation played a big factor but the things he held quietly (while waiting) were really amazing and reassuring.

See it.  Let it give you hope.  Allow every little thing to give you hope.

Happy Mothers Day, my friends.

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Bully

Have you seen it?  It should be floating around theaters in most of your cities right now.  It’s here but I’m undecided on whether or not I should see it in public.  I have this vision of myself being hysterical because really, nothing else pains my soul like the bullying of a child.

We have vowed to take Yegs – and his friends, if they’ll go.  Even though I’m shying from it, I encourage you all to take your school aged children.  The message needs to be heard.

It’s all the rage these days.  In the blogs, on the talk shows, etc.  We hear that students are bringing attention to it at their schools.  We hear churches talk about it.  When I was working, I spent an enormous amount of time addressing “getting thru it”.  But here we are.

3 suicides at a local high school in the last 2 months – all related to bullying.  And another statistic said “1 a month in Northern Utah” – unofficially.  Utah’s suicide rate is 8X higher than the national average.

What are we doing wrong?  What aren’t we doing?  I used to tell kids how important it was to immerse yourself in the community when you don’t have support at home, church or school.  We have an amazing Pride Center.  We have PFLAG orgs that are full of “moms for everyone”.

But last week, a local community held a viewing of Bully that included a panel of people willing to talk about the problem.  One boy spoke of his boyfriend who was tormented at school.  People gathered around and thanked him for his honesty.  That night, his boyfriend took his life.  He couldn’t wait another day.

What could’ve saved him?  What could’ve given him just another day to find a different answer?  He was surrounded by people who cared and it still wasn’t enough to heal the part of his life that hurt so much.

Tomorrow night, I’ll attend a community gathering to honor his life – and others lost for the same, sad reason.  We’ll talk about what we can do – how we can help.  I’m open to any suggestions because really, there has to be a better answer.

WW”YOU”DO?

We’re not those creepy neighbors that keep track of what everyone’s doing but we also watch too many reruns of Criminal Minds.  So…

Last weekend, we noticed a car pulled up on the street that runs next to our house.  It’s a one-way street and the cars are always neighbors.  It was running for a while and Cristy noticed that the front seat was laid back.  The next night, he was back.  I went back & forth, not knowing if we should call authorities or approach the car.  I didn’t want to intrude but I also didn’t want to be murdered in my sleep.  I’ve never seen a homeless man around here.  Maybe he knows someone on our street?

On the third night, we were on our typical walk and I glanced in to the running car.  He was old.  He’s probably in his mid 70’s. He sat up a bit and I asked if he was okay.  He said yes and thanked me for asking.  He was covered in a sleeping bag and, from the look of the inside of the car, he clearly lives . right . there.

It broke my heart.  How did he end up here – on my little street?  Where is his family?  He has a car.  He pays for gasoline.  Do they know he’s just parking somewhere at the end of every day?  So far, he’s not here tonight.  And somehow, that makes me feel worse.

Really, when did we stop taking care of each other?  Really.  I mean, who knows what his particular story is but I can’t imagine all the people I’d have to go through before I ended up living on a street.  And the idea of my dad or my grandpa parked like that just makes me ache.

I have a friend who thinks the end of community compassion ended with the invention of the microwave.  It sounds funny but she can explain it in a way that makes perfect sense.  No one goes next door to borrow sugar any more.  We hardly know our neighbors 2 houses down.  Maybe this is two different subjects but right now, I just wish he’d come back so I could be a good neighbor.

What would you do?  Would you take him tea?  Would you try to talk to him – find out more?  Could I be creating a larger problem?  What if he could just use a friend?

I know what Jesus would do.  What would you do?

Time for a Cool Change

That’s a song.  I don’t remember who sings it.  I heard it some time in the 90’s and thought it was new.  I was staying in a little polygamist town and even tho the boys & girls weren’t supposed to hang out, we’d find time to sneak to the “sticks” and listen to music the kids brought.  I wonder, still, where they got it and even more … where they hid it.  But either way, that’s where I learned of this band and Styx.  If you don’t know it.  Look it up.  Or maybe, if you’re lucky, and my baby isn’t on m lap by the time I’m finished blogging, I’ll link it.  I still things it’s one of the most fantastic songs ever.

Anyway, whew!  That was a really long intro to talking about something that has absolutely nothing to do with that story.

So, incase you weren’t a reader of my last blog, I’m creepy when it comes to organization.  I’m creepy when to the order of things – routine.  As you know, my sweet family has been put through the ringer over the last year.  The 23rd of the month marks 1 full year since I’ve talked to my dad.  I think, with the marking of a year, I need to put some order around it all.

There’s no update from the last time I wrote about it.  I reached out – again.  He didn’t respond.  My mom is still waiting it out – hoping for the best.  My brother still doesn’t talk to my dad and he doesn’t see any of his grandkids, except Glory, when I (purposely) take her there every 2 weeks or so.

I’ve continued to take Glory there because I had hoped that their relationship would somehow link him back to his family.  It hasn’t.  & while Glory loves him, it’s become far too painful of a game.  Every time I drop her off, he goes to his bedroom.  I feel like my mom is rushing me in or out so it’s not so uncomfortable.  It feels bad and always leave crying.  Too much.

Time for a cool change.

No more purpose dates with him & my mom.  I’m sure she’ll still see him but it’s not going to be “just because”.  I’m also going to stop calling him dad.  That’s the hard one.  You can give me advice and tell me what you think but honestly, it hurts terribly to have this carved out place for him when he wants nothing to do with me.

Not long ago, I took my car to a place where he’s always taken our cars to be fixed.  I introduced myself as his daughter and I’m pretty sure she talked to him after I came in.  What did he way?  Did he tell her …”oh she WAS my daughter – for 40 years – but now she’s not”?  I don’t know.  It feels a bit dramatic but necessary.

So, RJ.  That’s what I’ll write when referring to him.

And if you want to hear this fantastic song, go here.  You’re welcome.

And today is their 42nd anniversary.

Human Dignity Rally Today!

If you live where I live, I hope to see you today at the Capitol.  4pm sharp!

A group of fantastic humans have put together a gathering to demand an ear from our legislature – they’re calling it a Human Dignity Rally.

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The juxtaposition could not be any more stark.
 Prop 8 is overturned in California and marriages could start again soon.  Washington just passed in their legislature full marriage equality.  They join six other states as well as DC offering full marriage.  12 States offer… some sort of legal recognition of LGBT relationships; less than 12 states have statewide non-discrimination policies that cover sexual orientation AND gender identity. While the rest of the world debates true equality, Utah is another story entirely.
Utah: denies us the basic protection to not be forcibly fired or removed from our homes for the simple reason that we are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender!
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH
We can’t take this sort of BULLYING from the legislature anymore.  A revolution is beginning and we want to start it off with a rally at the State Capitol. Join us for a showing of force by the LGBTQ community and our allies as we say enough is enough.  We deserve our HUMAN DIGNITY.
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Hope to see you there!

Awful. Plain Awful.

He murdered their mother.  He hid her so well that she’s never been found.  His story, so pathetic that I still don’t understand why he couldn’t be arrested under circumstancial evidence.  He then moved his sons in with his disturbed father (until he was arrest for child pornograph)y and kept them away from everyone they loved.

After two years, their maternal grandparents finally gained custody of the boys.  Last week, they won another round – the boys would remain safely with them.  Their father would have only supervised visits.

Today, a caseworker delivered the boys to their fathers newly rented home.  He let the boys, pushed the caseworker off the porch and slammed & locked the door.  She smelled gas.  And just seconds later, an explosion ripped through the house.

He murdered his wife.  Then he murdered his children.

My heart is broken for the parents of Susan Powell.

But I imagine them now – sitting in her arms.  Reunited after far too long.

And him, somewhere else.  Somewhere far enough away to never cross their minds.

God bless this family.

was.

It’s been a while
After so often, it’s odd for it to be so long

How strange to see your face
After being so sure of forever
We would grow old together
We would raise children

We dreamed of a view
One side,  the ocean
One side, the mountain
and all that beautiful food

It’s true that I miss you
A reminder isn’t necessary

When I need one
a song
a book
a trip to Vegas

She doesn’t know you
She never will
But I know you

Maybe I don’t.

I held you close enough to hurt me
But trusted that you wouldn’t
I suppose you could say the same

A secret note would say
Finish.  Don’t quit.
A secret dream would say
Enough is enough.
It cuts both ways

It’s been a while
After so often, it’s odd for it to be so long