Go Ahead…Get Mad

Much hay has been made of how exclusive the GOP is, how unfriendly conservatives are toward women’s rights, how repressive they are toward women’s freedoms.  There are graphics flying around Facebook and other social media that “remind” women time and again that Republicans are not a party that embraces women, that they are a party that seeks to set women back 50 years.

Perhaps so, but is that really such a bad thing?  Really?

50 years ago, women:

  • Were guaranteed the right to vote (Constitutional Amendment XIX, 1920)
  • Were entitled to equal pay (Equal Pay Act of 1963)
  • Were protected by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employment discrimination
  • Had a much lower percentage of out of wedlock birth, which likely meant…
  • A much lower percentage of premarital sex
  • Did not have abortion on demand
  • Were more likely to get married and stay married
  • (Most) were more discreet
  • (Most) were more modest
  • Felt an appropriate level of shame when engaging in unethical or immoral behavior, because…
  • Society’s standards against immorality and shady ethics were (generally) higher

This is not a comprehensive list, by any means, but it is representative of a time when people (generally) took more responsibility for their personal behavior, and when women (generally) valued themselves enough to conduct themselves with more propriety.

Fast forward to 2012, where I look around and see women who are “free” to do anything, say anything, wear anything, promote anything, criticize anything – all under the guise of freedom and diversity – and it has resulted in gutter morality, vulgar behavior, slutty apparel, and shamelessness in areas where we, as women, should be blanching with embarrassment & humiliation.

So go ahead…get mad.  I am.  I’m mad that so many women have dishonored and degraded themselves to such a degree that they shriek in protest if someone passes judgment against them, never once considering that they need to examine their own pitiful behavior.  I’m mad that so much of politics involves insuring that abortion remains available upon demand.  I’m mad that so many women think that tax payers should provide all of the money for their reproductive choices, and that they feel they bear no responsibility other than shrieking about unfairness and discrimination should there be any objections.  I’m mad that conservatives get made fun of and called hypocrites for having less permissive standards.  I think it’s high time that respect for women be earned by respectable behavior rather than demanded in the name of freedom.

We, as women, should require much better than the moral and ethical depravities of 2012.  We should require it of ourselves first, and then of those around us.  If we are to have respect, we must behave in a way that commands it…from everyone.  I’m starting with me, and with my vote in November.

“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.” –The Help

This picture was posted on FB this morning, and it reminded me of perhaps my favorite quote from The Help, said by Aibilene Clark to Mae Mobley in a loving and sincere attempt to counter the criticism and lack of love Mae Mobley received constantly from her mother.  I thought this was some of the best advice — especially parenting advice — that anyone could get.  If we could remember only the last point – to speak kindly – we would be far, far ahead of the game in almost every circumstance.

The biggest disservice any parent can perpetrate on their children is the act of criticizing them, vilifying them, relentlessly point out their faults, speaking to them disrespectfully and unkindly, in the name of love.  The attitude that “I only say this to you because I love you” is a poor excuse for deliberately hurting our kids with our words.  To ask “Who will tell you if I don’t” presupposes that even as young people, we are not our own worst critics.  It assumes that even as children, we do not hear and internalize the unkind words directed at us in the name of love.

How can we believe that??  How can we forget how we were ourselves as children…hurting when spoken to unkindly, believing what we were told because a person in authority had said it, thinking our faults are huge and glaring because they have been pointed out so often, gradually learning that a raised voice and harsh words are part of what love is?  How can I forget this and perpetrate these behaviors on my own child?

I am choked with remorse at the thought that I might have done these very things, because I became short-tempered and annoyed with my child’s failure to listen until I yell.  I have taught him that.  I have, by my own words and actions, let him know that he can ignore me repeatedly until I finally raise my voice.  It’s my fault.  I am the parent.  I am the adult.  I am the one that is supposed to love him, guide him, train him, and mold him into a responsible member of society, and more importantly, into a man who loves God and puts Him at the center of his life.

I don’t want to be that person, that kind of parent.  Not only am I failing myself, I am failing my son, and I am failing to fulfill the most important job of my life, to train up my child “in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.”  I don’t know how to parent in a way that will show Christ to my child…every day.  I don’t know how to reflect Him properly, and it grieves me…desperately.

I feel like a lazy, shiftless, poor excuse for a parent.  I am not qualified for this job…this responsibility.  I thank the Lord that he has gifted me with a husband who is a wonderful and involved father, who buoys me up when I fail, and who encourages me to strive to be the person God created me to be, not only as a woman, but particularly as a wife and mother.  That is the greatest calling of my life…the calling to which I come willingly…the calling at which I fail repeatedly and magnificently…but my calling nonetheless, and God has promised to faithfully provide the ability and the means to fulfill it.  I know that in the twilight of my life, I will be able to look back and see that he has been faithful to that promise.  It is my job now to (with God’s help) commit to being the wife and mother He has envisioned.  I know I can’t do this adequately…not even close…but even through the gigantic failures that are sure to propagate my attempt, I hope to (once in a while) be the reflection of Christ that my son needs to see.

Revamping the "To Do" List

My “To Do” List looks a little something like this:

1. Pack, pack, pack, pack.
2. blood work – procrastinating…
3. Mammogram – again, procrastinating…
4. Haircut / color – this short hair is awesome, but the haircuts come much more frequently.
5. Did I mention packing?
6. Fold / put away laundry (or perhaps pack it…)
7. Clean as I pack (yay…so fun) –> Today’s job!  BLECH!!
8. Do some fun things with the young man.
9. Get my coupons in order – and continue collecting – so I can start using them the “right” way. 😉
10. Pack the house up so we can move.  Have I mentioned that?
11. Exercise – more? again? regularly?  Lifetime Fitness IS cool…
12. Take my computer back to the repair shop to fix the power plug AGAIN.
13. Get the young man signed up for swim lessons at the Verrado pool (since Lifetime has a wait list).
14. Cook and freeze spaghetti sauce. Rescheduled…yay!
15. We moved to our new house on July 16.  UNpacking has commenced…and will continue until everything has a place, or a new owner, or a price on it for our upcoming (and very necessary) garage sale.  We have too much stuff!


WHERE is my motivation today.

Pfffffftttt…

Oooooooohhhhhhhhh….there’s a good book to read! EXCEPT THAT I’VE LOST IT!  {found it under the newspapers when I was packing)

(REALLY easily distracted)