Friday, June 10, 2016

For the Voiceless, The Invisible, The Victims of Rape ...


Hello ...

I'm going to let my Blog "take a twist" for a few ...

I find myself thinking and thinking about things that to me, seem important for the World to know. Here I am, unknown to you, talking back at CNN, MSNBC, Facebook, Twitter and Print. It's like a little "comment box" comes up and scrolls across media with my commentary, frustration and disdain.





So, yea, you thought this first one out of the gate would be political. Well, not so fast. Although I've wasted countless hours worrying about everything I cannot change about the Presidential Primaries, it's not the "thing." 

This is.

In the News ... 
Outrage for Stanford Swimmer who "sexually assaulted" an unconscious young Woman behind a dumpster. Father writes letter that Son should not have his life ruined for "20 minutes of action." Son gets 6 months and probation.

Well, first of all, Four Fuckers are better than one. Shame on the Rapist, Shame on his Father, Shame on the Judge and last but not least, Shame on Society.

Yes, Society. 

You heard me right. Here we are again, A "Stanford Athlete" makes the news and the victim of his crime is victimized over and over so that we, Society, can revel in our higher level of consciousness and righteousness. 

Please. 

Where's the outrage for the forgotten? The countless Women who are raped, molested and assaulted daily. The Women who are shamed over and over for being dressed a certain way, "knowing" her attacker, drinking alcohol or not adding up to what "we think" is an acceptable existence. Can a prostitute or a girl who ends up in porn be raped?

Yes, Every day.

Today I'd like to tell you what happens to me when I run into said "outrage" at every turn of the Internet. I think about that "20 minutes of action" and I feel in every bone of my body how diminishing that statement is compared to the life altering reality of being a victim of rape.

As Americans, we are outraged by Rape Cultures in the World. What about our Rape Culture? The one that says a Woman, just by virtue of being a Woman, that little girl twirling her tutu, skipping to get to you faster, that smile, the way she moves with pure innocence is an object to be penetrated.

Her.

Me, you, someone you know. No one you know. The faceless, the nameless, the invisible impairment that girls and Women live with, alone. Absolutely alone. 

But, this case is different? 

Yes, you are right. Different in that the young Woman was unconscious and therefore vulnerable at the highest level. Different that it happened behind a dumpster, giving the visual connotation that she was "trash." So many reasons to be outraged. But what about all the other vulnerable Women who are raped? Where is the outrage for them?

Take the case of a Woman with a brain injury as a result of a gun shot. An injury that left her without an eye, any short-term memory or judgment. She's at a Christmas Eve Party at the Nursing Facility where she lives. No one realizes she's missing. Did she walk off or did someone lure her away ...

Where is she?

Meanwhile, Two employees slip away for a smoke break and they hear commotion in a room that has been unoccupied. They think, "I wonder who's in there" thinking it's two employees who had slipped away for a sex break. 

A Woman walks out, clothes disheveled, confused. A male nurse shortly follows while zipping up his pants and looking side to side down the hall to see if the "coast is clear." They wait, they watch and they directly report the incident to their Supervisor.

The Woman is taken to the hospital and a rape kit is performed. Semen is found and DNA testing is available. It was not performed. Instead, the Defense Attorney for the Rapist argued that "she could have had sex with anyone" and that "she is not a credible witness."

Not Credible?

Did you mean not capable of giving consent or being a witness? Surely that's what you meant. Never mind, you didn't. You actually meant that this Woman was not important enough to protect. She was invisible, she was unknown, her attack wasn't "viral" material. The case fits within the range of  acceptable "rape."

Unacceptable.

After almost two years, a DNA test linking him to the semen, another sexual incident linked to the rapist in a nursing facility surfaced that had been covered up by the State of Washington Nursing Board and many plea bargains later, the State of Washington sentenced the Male Nurse Fuck to Four Fucking years in Prison. 

That was November 18, 2005. That was my Sister Sandy's and my Birthday. I know that, because we were in the Courtroom. We were there watching our Mom stand before the Judge, her voice quivering and  holding a picture of my older Sister, Debbie who had died a month earlier from Liver Disease. The Liver Disease that she had contracted through rape from the Fuck who knowingly had Hepatitis C. and apparently no use for a condom. The Fuck in the orange jump suit before us. 


Often I am asked how Debbie died. I usually answer with "it's complicated." It is complicated. Most people can't wrap their brain around the double tragedy of my Sister being shot in the head by one Fuck at age 25 and then being murdered 27 years later by another Fuck who "shot her" with his penis and infected her with his disease. A disease she suffered with for over a year and until her last breath. All from "20 minutes of Action."




For Debbie, Today you're not invisible and you always mattered ...


 

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Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Super Tuesday is not so "Super"


Super Tuesday, is, well ... Not so Super!


As a self proclaimed optimist, this election year has been a challenge I was not prepared for. In my fifty-six years of life, I've never ever felt so helpless. From the candidates to the media, the issues, social media and last but not least, people.

Regardless of my experiences, my beliefs, my views ...  Looking at what is happening in this country has cast a dark cloud over my head.  I go online and at every turn, I am hit in the face with images and text that has been ripped out of the history books. Not the history books that told us that America is a great country. Not the country to be proud of; The country to love.

Today is "Super Tuesday" and for me it's not so "Super."  It's a spectacle. A spectacle pit stop from the track we've been on. A media frenzy that's powered by greed. The greed that fuels the "anger train" that has taken over this election. Fueled by fear, hatred and dismay ... The political "wheels" have been running in reverse.

When we witness on social media, hatred and violence regarding our political process, we are witnessing the electronic Civil War of the 21st century. Our civil liberties are threatened. Our civil liberties are diminished. 

Regardless of my experiences, my beliefs, my views ... I know right from wrong. I know good from evil. I know hate from love. I know.  What I don't know is how hate has empowered this election to breed hate. For prejudice to breed prejudice. For violence to breed violence. 

In a fight between what I see happening and what I know is possible, I have to believe that there will be light. That the America I believe in will heal herself. That the noise will go away and the volume will lessen. This can't happen fast enough.

I do have experiences, beliefs and views ... They are a powerful part of who I am. I believe in humanity. I believe in this country.  

It's time to believe together ...

 
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Friday, September 18, 2015

My Life with the Paparazzi ...

Yes, The Paparazzi !!!





I suppose if you're beautiful and or famous, there's a chance that you might elevate yourself to a status in which you are chased and followed by the Paparazzi ...


I'm here to tell you that there has never been a time in my life where I would want that. I, in fact, have never liked my picture taken by anyone. Until now ...

The other day I asked Tim if I could look through his phone to see if he had a picture I would like for a new FB profile pic. Well, I found one and so much more. It seems that my Tim has taken up being the iPhone "paparazzi" in my life since he retired in October. 

 No, no, no ... These are not glamour shots, but they do "catch me" as I am.  They "catch" me as I was and they just plain "catch me" ...

ME, the Beach and my iPad ...




ME, and the girls ...


ME, Ninja Painting ...

ME, Sweeping ...


ME, cooking at Matt's ...


ME, chillin in Mexico ...

 ME, Pups, Hammock and iPhone Necking ...


Shhhhh ... Secret Santa!


ME, "What beers do you have on tap?"


No, I'm not anyone who is elevated to the level of being chased by the "Paparazzi" ... But then again,
I don't need to be. I have my very own ... Tim!



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Friday, June 5, 2015

She was my Sister and She's Gone ...

~ Becky and Me ~

She was my Sister ...


Becky was born on November 11, 1962. I was three years young. She was the fourth girl to be brought home from the hospital and she seemed perfect.

As the legend goes ... 
When Becky was 3 months old, she began to show signs that something was wrong.

Wrong?
Yes, very wrong.

She was diagnosed with a hole in her brain where it had not developed. She began to have grand mal seizures.

At that time, not much was known about what was then called profound mental retardation and epileptic seizures. As a consequence, Becky suffered a static grand mal seizure when she was two years old that took everything away. She lost cognitive abilities and her speech.

I remember when that happened and how we'd lost our sister. Then, one year later, my parents and bully grandparents made the decision to place her in a home that was not our own. It's unimaginable to think of being six years old and my sister just went away ...

Gone.

A lot was lost with that decision that we as a family will never be able to get back. There is a lot of pain. The Doctors told my parents that Becky would not live past age six.  Well, she did. She lived her life for 46 years past six and then she began to decline.

The past three months have been rough. When the phone rang, we knew it was about Becky and it was bad. After nine 9-11 calls and trips to the emergency room in 8 weeks, we were in crisis mode.  That came to an end exactly one week ago today. She passed away under the care of a "Hospice Angel." She died in her sleep.  I knew it was going to happen, but when the hospice nurse called at 4:30 a.m. to tell me she was gone ... I was overwhelmed with that feeling again.

Gone.

You see, she was my sister. She was the sister I knew. The sister I didn't know. The forgotten sister who was never forgotten. The sister I knew we'd have to take care of after my Mom passed. But for this ending, things happened out of order and instead, she's just gone.

Gone.

She had no husband, children or even a first grade education. She had no friends or foes. She had no debt, never drove a car, had no idea what a computer or a cell phone was. The Internet? Nope. There were no dreams unfulfilled or "bucket list" ...

She's nearly untraceable. Her entire footprint on society is one social security number. That's it. She will be remembered, though. All the staff,  therapists and doctors favored her. She wasn't able to do much with a cognitive ability of 12 months, but she had a strong spirit. She was opinionated and she knew what she did and didn't want. You see, she was my sister ...

It's been one week. It's felt like a lifetime. A lifetime of tragedy, a lifetime of pain ... My lifetime. 

My heart aches for her and  for my older sister, Debbie who I am sure has found her and has taught her about 70's rock and roll, that "girls like to party" and I am positive that  Becky has already had her first beer. Deb would never believe pot will be legal. I sure wish I could tell her that.

Goodbye, Becky. For all your struggles and suffrage through life ... I'm happy you didn't know about the ugly side of the world. I'm glad you left this world as innocent as you arrived. You leave this earth unscathed by the knowledge of all the things that went on around you in the 52 years you were here. That gives me peace.

In my heart, you will never be ...  

Gone.

Your Sis

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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

How's your day?

Hey, How's your day? 

That's a question we all ask and get asked way too little. We can be walking with a storm in our heads, emotions that are exhausted and with life's twists and turns that have left us limp. On top of that, we can be lonely in any given moment.

So that's our side, but what about the other people that cross our paths? The people who wait on us, the people we live with, those we work with, for and against. What about that stranger who's moving slow or without intention. Are they just slow? 

No. 

It just may be that they have nowhere to go or if they did, they don't want to make it there anytime soon. There are those things in life that we wish would be gone by the time we get there.

This week I was at an appointment and the person who I encountered was harsh. Maybe she was having a bad day, maybe that was just her authentic self. Either way, I was having the kind of month day that left little room for harsh. After the appointment, I went to the parking structure and I sat in my car for about an hour staring at the rain ... 

I really don't know why I did that other than I was deflated and could not bring myself to start the car. You see, I've been going through some very difficult things and the way the person acted set me into a sort of paralysis that I don't experience too often.

So ...

Since then, I've put some thought into this. What was it? Was it that she was harsh or was it that I was sensitive? She was harsh. Was it that she made a spectacle in front of other people?

No.

It was because she never ever took me into account. She was so busy and in such a hurry that she was larger than the room. The truth of that is she didn't even see me.

She didn't know that if she had,  she might have been prompted to ask me how my day was going. I would of told her, "Not so good." Maybe then we could have slow danced and there would have been some give and take. Maybe then I could have breathed. 

We've all been on both sides of this equation. We all know how bad it feels to be invisible when we really need to be seen. This is just a reminder that we should pause and look at who we're with. See their eyes, their expression, their spirit and add these three simple words ...

 How's your day?





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Thursday, April 30, 2015

Dog Blog ... A chewy.com review


 Hooray!

Last month we had the honor to receive a free package from Chewy.com and the girls loved it! So when we were contacted again to review some more items, we were so excited!

This month we are reviewing a grooming tool called a FURminator Dual Brush that you can find  Here and Primal Turkey Liver Munchies that you can find Here.

We are no strangers to FURminator products.  Both girls get groomed with a FURminator at home. We were thrilled to try the brush and the girls loved it!

The Primal Turkey Liver Munched were a double hit! I cannot say enough about our experience as Blog reviewers for Chewy.com. The Golden Girls are so excited to get their box and the products are of the highest quality.

Here's what the girls thought about the experience ... A happy dog is a chewy dog!




Ding-Dong ...

It's a Chewy.com box !!!

Bailey, "I've got the prize!"

 
"Mine!"
"Also, Mine!"
"Not anymore, Sister!"

Dad trying to trade ...
Bailey likes it!
Bella, so sweet ...
Thanks, Chewy!





THANKS, Chewy.com!


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Monday, April 27, 2015

Life, Lemons and Lemonade ...

Life ...

All the good stuff that makes us happy. The things we feel accomplished from. The times we turn things around and the gratitude we feel when everything is alright.

That's the promise of life's lemons ... we can make lemonade out of them and that can be soooooo good!

Wait ... What happens to the rotten lemons? The lemons that can't even squeeze out a decent drop ... Do they just "roll on by" and go to some rotten lemon place?

No.

Lemons ...

Here's the truth. Some of us get rotten lemons. Not fit for consumption, not fit for lemonade and not full of any promises. Those of us with rotten lemons in our lives can feel isolated, unseen and hopeless. It's not about having a bad day, it's about something in your life that is so sour fucked-up that you can't even find words to describe how it makes you feel.

How about when we get rotten lemons for family? When we're young, we don't know what to do. We feel hurt, we feel pain and we feel shame. The journey through shame as a child can be crippling. It feels unfair, it feels heavy and it definitely feels rotten.

So what can we do? 

Try sorting your lemons. Find a place to separate those rotten lemons in your life. Most likely they have been so powerful  that they even have a voice that you replay in your head. "Why did I get a bad father?" "Why didn't my mom care?" "Why didn't I matter?" "I wish I was special." "I wish I had a family."

Lemonade ...

The truth about this "lemon thing" is ... you can have a good father by being one or marrying a man who is a good father to your children. You can have a mom that cares through who you marry or being one yourself. You are special and you do matter if you can find a way to love yourself. And ... go ahead and create the family you deserve.

Life, Lemons and Lemonade ... You get to choose.


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