Monday, February 6, 2012

That Smile!

Asher has this certain smile. It only appears when he's really pleased with himself. I saw it a few weeks ago when he made his first basketball goal of the season. And, I just saw it again. This time it was after transferring a significant amount of money out of his bank account into mine.

Asher has always been a "saver." He has saved almost every cent of his birthday money, Christmas money, or money he has earned for the past five years. He loves to watch his bank account grow and has decided against a few large purchases when he analyzed the cost.

He decided last week he wanted a new Itouch. His "old one" didn't have a camera and he really wanted that feature. So, he decided to dig deep and spend some of his savings. I didn't make him transfer his money until his purchase came in the mail. He tracked his purchase for almost a week. He was so excited when it finally landed in Anchorage, Alaska!

After we made the transfer and he had the teller give him his remaining balance, he was already talking about starting to save again to "pay himself back." I asked him, "Well, did that feel good to be able to save your money and have it to spend on something you really wanted?" I saw "the smile" and he answered with an emphatic "yes!"

Now, that's empowerment.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Dear Pissed-Off

The following quotes are from a self-labeled "pissed-off black woman" who spoke at a recent pro-choice rally on the steps of my state Capitol...

"We should not, almost 40 years after the passage of Roe v. Wade, still be standing out here, freezing our butts off, for something that should've been decided a long time ago," she said. "I mean, will these people get a life and stop trying to take over mine?"
"We're on the 39th anniversary of Roe v. Wade and people act like we're in the 19th century and not the 21st," she said. "I tell ya, it pisses me off."
"In 1968, I had a baby through incest because I didn't have a choice," she said. "So, I'm not talking theory, I'm talking as a pissed-off black woman who's going to make sure that other girls don't go through what I went through when I was a teenager."
"I am not impressed by your sanctimonious belief that every pregnancy should be forced, that women should not have control over their bodies and their lives because I also understand that you are not there when the baby is born," she said.
"Once we are there raising these children based on rape and incest and all these bad circumstances, all I can find you doing is standing around preaching over me, judging me, but not actually helping me... and I am not fooled," she said to applause.

I read these words several times and contemplated their meaning. I determined this woman is not pissed off at pro-life advocates. She is pissed off at the abuse she endured as a child because she wasn't protected by her own family. Her "choice" was taken away when she was raped as a teenager.

I feel sad for her. Sad she has been taught to direct her hate at the wrong people. Sad she has been used and abused again by an agenda that preaches sexual freedom yet forgets to look at the reality of murdering children for a few moments of pleasure. Sad she was abused by a man who felt it was okay to rape a young girl for his own gratification.

She says, "these people (should) get a life and stop trying to take over mine." She also says, "...all I can find you doing is standing around preaching over me, judging me, but not actually helping me..." Does she want others to leave her alone and stay out of her business? Or does she want them to help her? Her anger should be directed at those family members who abandoned her to abuse... those family members and those in her own community who took away her choice of whether or not she wanted to become a mother by not protecting her innocence... those who share her pro-choice views and teach a utopia of multiple sexual partners with no responsibility for the result of their sexual unions.

"I am not impressed by your sanctimonious belief that every pregnancy should be forced..." is an interesting statement that I will counteract with... I am not impressed by your belief that your pregnancy is my responsibility and I should be forced to subsidize your abortion which I believe is wrong.

I feel for girls and women who are abused. However, I don't feel responsible for their abuse. I don't abuse them and I don't promote ideas that lead to their abuse. I help where I can. I don't believe funding abortions is helpful to abused women. It's a fact there are many married couples who would be ecstatic to adopt an unwanted newborn. There are also many organizations wanting to help women who find themselves unexpectedly expecting.

I have two daughters of my own. They are under my care. My responsibility is to provide them with a safe environment, to teach them how to care for their bodies, and to advise them on the benefits of wise sexual choices. Additionally, I am teaching them through the example of my own life. It will be their choice to follow my teachings or to totally reject them. They will have to live with the consequences of their actions. Freedom is making choices and dealing with the consequences.

The two sides of this issue will never agree. The two sides come from two totally different realities. My reality is I refuse to abuse my body with irresponsible sexual activity. I refuse to allow my daughters to believe in a system called liberating that will just enslave them in confusion. I refuse to feel responsible for women who want to live their own version of freedom yet don't want to be responsible for their choices.

Other women feel it is their "right" to have multiple sexual partners, have access to medical care to treat STDs, and have access to abortions to get rid of unwanted children. Okay. I don't want to fund those activities. So, quit whining. Go and live your liberated lifestyle. Stand by your sisters who choose the same path. Find your own funding for abortions from your own sisterhood.

I am thankful and forever grateful to my mother who taught me the realities of being a woman. She told me about my choices and advised me to the best ones for my physical, mental, and spiritual health. She was exactly right. I've chosen a better way and I have a life well-lived to prove it. I'll continue to live in the sisterhood of truth and genuine sexual freedom. Now, get a life and stop trying to take over mine.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Returning home from our date last Saturday evening, Aunt Martie informed me I needed to have another talk about sex with Lillian. She had asked my sister, "How did you get pregnant?" Martie said she didn't feel prepared to answer her and told her to ask "your mama."

So, I obviously didn't fill Lillian in enough on what sex is when we had the initial "talk" a few months ago. She seemed satisfied with my answer at the time so I stopped before the phrase "penis in the vagina" came into the conversation.

Unlike many other modern moms (who get embarrassed just thinking about "the sex talk"), I have no problem telling my kids about the birds and the bees. In fact, I want my kids to hear about sex from me. (I am an incredibly reliable source. Reliable = disease free, satisfied, and "no regrets".)

I found the perfect time to talk to Lil last Sunday afternoon on our drive over to Oma's house.

Me: "So, Aunt Martie said you had some questions about how she got pregnant with Jemma?"

Lilli: "Yes."

Me: "Remember when we talked about sex a few months ago."

Lilli: "Not really..."

Me: "Well, we've talked about the differences between boys/men/males and girls/women/females before... what are the differences?"

Lilli: "Boys have wieners."

Me: "We don't call them wieners..."

Lilli: "Penises! I know it's called a penis! And girls have a vagina."

Me: "Yes. And inside your body you have something that makes babies..."

Lilli: "Eggs! Oh, I remember this... What do the boys have?"

Me: "Sperm..."

Lilli: "Yes. Inside their balls."

Me: "Yes. Their testicles. (Pause) So, the sperm has to get to the egg. The sperm travels through the penis and goes into the vagina to reach the egg. This is called sex and sex makes a baby."

Lilli: "How does the sperm get into the vagina?"

Me: "The penis fits into the vagina."

Lilli: "How? (Pause) (Thinking face.) Oh... that's when you get naked and wiggle around..." (Pause) (Slight horror on her face beginning to show...) Martie and Ross? Did that?"

Me: "Yes."

Lilli: (More horror on her face...) "You and Daddy?"

Me: "Yes."

Lilli: (Ultimate horror now...) "Grammy and Grandy?!?!? Oh, gross! Nasty! I'm never having a baby! I'm never doing that!"

Me: "Okay. But you will probably want to some day when you fall in love."

We pulled up to Oma's house and I put the car in park.

Lilli: "Do you have sex with your boyfriend?"

Me: "No. Your sex is a gift you give your husband."

Lilli: "Oh. Good."

And, that was that.

Two down. One to go...

~ "I don't care about sex. I just want a pony." -Lillian ~


Today we celebrate Lillian's 9th birthday! Lil is my child of contrasts... very organized, always prepared, unbelievable memory, highly confident... always asking, "Where are my shoes?" I have decided she thinks the car is her second closet.

Socially, she is amazingly adept. Her friends are an interesting mix... a motley crew of girls and boys. She understands the "ins and outs" of friendship, treats others with respect, and is known and loved by all... except her one and only sister. (I suppose fighting is just a part of having to share a room with a little sister. I'm hoping the sibling rivalry stays in check...)

She is smart, loves her teacher, works hard at learning, and does her school work to perfection... yet doubts herself in math and often "forgets" her homework until remembering... right before bedtime.

She learns her many sports by paying attention to detail. She enjoys goal-keeping in soccer. She is an expert dribbler in basketball. Her arabesque in ballet is done with precision. She swims with flawless strokes... not worried about winning. She's all about the socializing with her teammates!

She loves monkeys. She never forgets to feed her fish. She organizes her clutter. 

I wish she wouldn't talk back. I wish she would be kinder to her sister. I wish she wouldn't find blame elsewhere when it was obviously her fault. I see in her so much potential. I suppose it's the way my Creator looks at me. I love having a daughter who strives to be her best. I pray I am always here (and there) to give her good advice and to support and love her in her life's work.

Happy 9th, my sweet Lillian. I love you.