Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Rock Your Red

This is no doubt about to be a controversial post, so let me preface it by saying this:

I support gays and marriage equality.
I believe in God.

If you disagree with me, but believe that everybody is entitled to their own beliefs and thoughts, then please, feel free to continue reading.

If you disagree with me, and believe that I am an advocate for the devil's work and am spreading sin, then please click out of this window right now. We have nothing else to discuss.

I have a friend. My first friend in this world. A boy. Believes in God. Liked to give me scars and beat up on me. Always had my back. Would play the husband when we played house, and on one of my all time favorite home videos, says the words, "Honey....will you please hand me the coffee cup?". Would have wars with me in my basement with our cassette players: his playing Michael Bolton, mine playing Barry Manilow (hey....we were children of the 80's). Would also fight with me over who got to carry the hot pink purse when we played dress up.

In high school, my friend confirmed what most of us had long believed; he is gay. And that day, I knew that I had a job to support him and love him more than ever. That was also the day that I formed a belief system on the entire "gay topic", that I refuse to waiver from.

Do I believe, for even a second, that at 5 years old, he had the mind set to "choose" to have a natural inclination to want to the hot pink purse? Do I think that at 16, he "chose" to be ridiculed, criticized, taunted, bullied, hated? Do I think that today, at 28, he wakes up every morning and "chooses" to go against what society says is "right"? No. Not for even a millisecond do I believe any of those things.

Instead, I believe that the God that both him and I believe in, made him exactly how he wanted him. And HE chose to make him gay. And by doing that, he gave me a person that I admire, love, and respect more than most straight people in this world. My friend is a beautiful, amazing person. So is his boyfriend. And they have a relationship that is more solid, loving and REAL, than so many of the "conventional" relationships I know. And it really, really drives me insane, when I hear anybody tell me that they aren't entitled to that relationship.

I go to church. I read the Bible. I love and trust God. And just like I believe that God made my friend the way he is, I believe He made me to love and support him. I don't think God makes mistakes. And I certainly don't believe my friend is one.

You don't have to agree with me, you don't have to believe the same things I believe. But, if you are as Christian as some of you claim to be, you will listen and respect me. My own husband and parents don't share my same set of beliefs. But....my parents watched me and my friend grow up together, and they love him. My husband knows how strongly I feel, and welcomed my friend into our wedding party....because he likes HIM.

My question is this.....so you believe in marriage being solely for a man and a woman. How does the marriage of two men REALLY effect YOU? It doesn't. You still get to marry YOUR choice of human. Nobody is taking that away from you. You still get to believe exactly what you want, nobody is taking THAT away from you. What I would LOVE to take away from you is your pure and utter hatred, because THAT isn't ok.

Do you hate that man because he's black? No, because he didn't choose to be born black, and then you'd be racist. Do you hate that woman because she has cancer and can't pay her bills? No, because she didn't choose either of those things, and you'd be a pretty evil person. So why does being "christian" allow you to hate my friend for loving another man? For the life of me, I can't see how it does.

I know a few people who will read this, probably "de-friend" me, and for the rest of their lives, look down on me. That's ok. If that's how you feel because I love without boundaries and exceptions, then I don't really need your approval anyway. And I don't need my son knowing that kind of hate. Because I am raising him to see the world as a beautiful place. Where people can be whoever they are, without shame or guilt.

I also know a few people who have chosen to just not discuss this topic with me, my father included. Because we will never see eye to eye. And I will NEVER back down on how I feel. And those same people know that if they make a rude, uneducated, hateful remark, I WILL blow. I don't sit back and let that slide, and I DO get angry. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and beliefs, absolutely, but that doesn't entitle ANYONE to harbor hate.

After a particularly ugly episode with my father and husband on this subject, I asked my counselor why I get SO heated. I believe a LOT of things, but they don't drive me to such anger, and tears, when someone disagrees with me. And she hit the nail on the head. I sat back and listened to people say things when my friend came out. I let them say evil, hurtful things. And for the most part, I didn't say a damn thing. Because I didn't want them to think I was gay. I didn't want them to hate me. I never joined in on the rude remarks, but I never stopped them either. I realize I was young, and a high schooler, and it was probably a natural reaction at 15. But now, it doesn't seem natural at all. And it kills me. Kills me that I didn't stand up and tell them all how absolutely ridiculous they are. How wonderful of a person he is. Kills me that I just let it all go because I was afraid of how I would look, while one of my very best friends was hurting. Makes me sick, actually. And now, I refuse to EVER let someone make me feel bad about supporting him, or for believing what I believe. I owe it to the person who would walk through fire for me, to do the same for him.

At the end of the day, I could sit here and rant for hours. Fill this post with studies and statistics, but I don't need to. Because I believe what I believe. And I'm not here to force you to feel the same way. I'm just here to say that today, and every day, I support marriage equality, and I pray (to GOD) every night, that one day, I'll be able to watch my dear friend marry the love of his life, and that I'll get to watch them have a family (oh yeah, I'm totally cool with that too, if you hadn't already guessed). Why? Because they deserve it. More than most. They have a love that deserves to be celebrated every day. They are PEOPLE that deserve to be celebrated every day. Just like you. Just like me.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Drama, Drama, Drama

Once again, no, I haven't not given up on this little blog. Life has just been insanely hectic, and sitting down to type something longer than a quick response to an email has been...well....impossible.

So what's been happening?

Well....our entire house got an overhaul. We were expecting none of it to start until probably mid-March, and yet, it's already entirely done. We lucked out! Our tile guy got us in one day after coming to give us a quote, and our painter had an opening and got us in 2 weeks ahead of schedule. And let me tell ya....thank God they did.

It was mass chaos around here for the entirety of last week, and for two days, Landon and I were locked in my bedroom from 8 am until about 4pm....which is enough to make us both go crazy. The first couple hours on the first day, he thought it was the best thing ever. We got to eat snacks in bed, do our puzzles, color, paint with shaving cream in the shower, eat lunch at his mini table....next to my bed....he was in heaven. By about 12:30 that first day though, he had had enough. And we still had many more hours to go. To say that we both survived is really a huge accomplishment. And the fact that I didn't go absolutely, lock-me-up-in-a-padded-room crazy with the complete and utter disarray of my house for those few days.....THAT is downright amazing.

But we made it through and it was SO worth those few agonizing days! It all looks AMAZING! Everybody keeps asking for pictures, and I'm getting there, but I'm still working on some finishing touches, so I don't want to jump the gun. We have an area rug on order for the kitchen, I still have some pictures to hang, a few projects to make and hang. We're getting there. At least it's all functional. And once it's all entirely complete.....there will be a LOT of pictures!

Aside from our house getting a makeover, Landon got one of his own this weekend. The dreaded hair cut. If anyone has seen my child in person over the last month or so, you know how badly he needed the hair cut. But if you know him, you also know that getting a hair cut is the equivalent of putting him in the electric chair. The kid doesn't deal well. At ALL. It's almost as if he can feel every single hair being cut, which makes me wonder if he has some weird, rare disease. Although, I'm guessing, he's just an average toddler. With a little more than average lung power.

So we tried last weekend.....thought we'd take him to lunch, and then to Carnival Cuts, since that is where everyone has told us to go. Yes, well, the wait was an hour, we were coming up on nap time, and they expected him to sit, strapped in, to that little race car? Sooooo not going to happen. So we resigned and said we'd try again. So Saturday came, and it was time. Nap time had been successful, we had suckers in hand, and we headed out to find someone who could put up with the demon that comes out of him when he's near scissors.

Here is where I must say, I think we have eternally ruined the sweet young girl who unknowingly agreed to cut this angelic boys hair. He came in, all smiles and waves and giggles, and she said "of course!!!". We assured her that he didn't like it, tried to warn her. She assured us it was "fine" and that "we get nervous kids allllll the time". Ooook. If you say so. So we get ourselves into position. Jeremy is caped up, Landon on lap, sucker in hand, Baby Einstein on my phone. Then it happened. She made her first mistake. She picked up a comb, and ran it through his hair. Suddenly, he knew exactly what was happening, and he wasn't cool with it.

Next came the blood curdling screams, the back arching, the pleas, the aggravation. Sweet young girl was trying her hardest to wait for him to calm down. I quickly let her know it wasn't going to happen, just go for it. Just get it over with. And holy hell did she ever. Her first cut.....I'm pretty sure I almost passed out. Let's step back in time for a second and remember his last four hair cuts. We have gone to Jeremy's cousin, who is a perfectionist and goes slowly, taking only a little bit at a time, in case he absolutely refuses to let her continue, at least it will be even. I was good with that. Took forever, but at least it wasn't extreme. This chick....oh no. A solid three inches, one swipe. And that's when I just knew. Nobody was going to be happy when we left.

By the end of the ordeal, the poor girl was shaking, Landon looked like he took a weed whacker to his head, I was traumatized, and Jeremy was exhausted. Annnnd.....everyone else in the salon at the time? They'll never be the same.

Had to come home and try to attempt to clean it up a bit ourselves, which was a whole new war to wage. But we got it a little more even....I think? I must say, the girl did a phenomenal job. She really did. She worked SO fast, and she didn't smack him. It's not her fault. And I do hold extreme guilt for the nightmares she will probably have for the rest of her lifetime. My child is just a special breed when it comes to hair cutting. At least it's so short, we won't have to worry about it for a while again. But eventually....it will need to be cut again. Like before his 2 year pictures. And I think I may have to have a surrogate mommy go. I don't know how much more of that my heart can handle.

Yesterday, seeing as we had traumatized him the day before, we figured we would have a nice little family day. We had errands to run, so we figured we'd add lunch in, some Spring / Summer clothes shopping for the little guy, it'd be perfect. Sun was shining, we didn't need to wear coats, what could go wrong? Everything. Everything could go wrong, of course. First meltdown came in Kohls, when he decided the stroller was no longer doin' it for him, and he was over being held. Fine. Hurry up, finish, got everything we needed, we were good. So let's try lunch. Again.....the people in that restaurant will never be the same. We have officially had to leave our first restaurant, and leave our first delicious meal behind. We tried everything, but it became incredibly obvious that nothing was going to work, so I threw in the towel, and took him to the car. I was mortified, he was STILL screaming, and a huge sense of defeat fell over me.

My kid is that kid. That kid that I swore I would never have. That kid that screams through lunch and throws himself onto store floors when he doesn't get his way. How the hell did this happen? I have worked my tail off this last 21, almost 22, months to ensure that this wouldn't be the outcome. We have taken him to countless restaurants, so he knew how to behave. We take him shopping, so he knows how to behave. And on the average day, he really does do amazing. And no, I'm not just saying that because he's my kid and I want you to think he's perfect. Go back and reread everything I have just written, I have absolutely NO problem owning up to the fact that he can be absolutely insane sometimes. And I have absolutely NO problem owning up to the fact that there are probably things that I am doing as a mother that are contributing to him acting that way. And that stinks. Big time. Because I really am trying my absolute hardest. But I also have to remind myself that NO child is perfect. They all have their moments. This weekend, my child's just all happened to be in public. Which is embarrassing, but it happened, and there's nothing I can do now, except to hopefully stop it from happening again.  Which it probably will. And when it does, I will be back to thinking I am an awful parent because I can't control my kid. And there will be more mommy-tears, and lots more mommy-frustrations. And probably a lot more posts about the insanity. Jeremy tells me these are the stories that one day we'll laugh about. I'm not there yet. Right now I'm still stuck between disappointed (in him AND myself) and embarrassment. And being downright thankful that we will probably never see any of the people that experienced his tornado this weekend, ever again.

Clearly, he wore himself right on out, because he slept until 9:30 this morning. I'd love to credit the time change, but he still went to bed at 8 last night, so it was just a result of being utterly exhausted after all of his shenanigans this weekend. And yes, when I went in to get him at 9:30 today (after getting TWO bathrooms cleaned, and a load of laundry started....whoooo hooooo!), I retrieved my sweet, loving, calm little boy with a crazy hair cut. He was all smiles, hugs and kisses, and for a few moments, I completely forgot about this weekend and all the downs. I was stuck in an "up" with him, and it was exactly what I needed. Here's to hoping the rest of today stays stuck in "up".