The Best For My Family

I need to do what’s best for my family… but what is what’s best?

Option 1: Continue to work doing something that makes me happy.  I love my job!  And I know, given time, I will get more responsibility, more hours, and it will eventually help me support my family a bit more comfortably.  Additionally, for many years I have had social anxiety that has kept me from being able to work for any period of time whatsoever.  My current job is the first one since 2001 that I have kept.  I have been there since June and I am comfortable and happy with it.  The atmosphere is relaxed, and my co-workers are great!  By keeping this job, my children will be able to see me be passionate about my work, and in turn will be more likely to follow their own passions to do what they want to do in life, later on.  The downside to this option is that I’m not quite making enough money to support us at this time.  Within this option there is the option to find a 2nd part-time job to fill the time and money requirement while I wait for more at my main job.

Option 2: Take the 2nd job that has been offered to me.  I’m not passionate about it, but it offers close to full-time hours and a much higher pay rate.  It would cover our necessities and then some.  It would be require me to be a lot more physically active, therefore having a potentially positive impact on my health. The downside is that it would be a lot more demanding of my time, and I would not get to spend near as much time focusing on my kids’ homework needs or after-school activities.  There will be a lot less opportunity to get comfortable with my co-workers because it is a larger group of people to work with.  Also, I’m finding it VERY difficult to find child care for the after-school hours and weekends I would be required to work.

I cannot do both jobs at the same time because hours overlap a little, and even if they didn’t, it would leave me with no days off, ever.  So at this point it absolutely has to be one or the other.  Do I follow my heart and life-long dream?  Or do I follow what will support my family right now?  Why does this decision have to be so difficult?

Sensitive Issue

It seems I never have time to sit down and compose my thoughts lately.  It all started with the suicide of Robin Williams.  Once it was plastered all over the news and social media that he took his own life, people started excusing it.  They started saying suicide was a sad way to go, but its not wrong.  The good that came of it is awareness that mental issues are serious, such as depression, anxiety and addictions.  But the rest of what circulated was bologna.  I was raised with the belief that suicide is a selfish act, and also the cowards way out…. that when you have problems in life, you work them out, and that taking your own life should not be an option.  And I suppose some of the beliefs or theories I’ve held about what happens after you kill yourself in the afterlife are from my Christian upbringing and from media such as “What Dreams May Come.”  Oddly, that ties right back to Robin Williams, as he was the star in the movie adaptation of that story.  So I was already heartbroken that he was gone, disgusted with everyone’s excuses for suicide, and tired of hearing about it.  So I posted my beliefs on Facebook, saying suicide is selfish and solves nothing, and hurts your family members, etc.  The reactions from my friends got very heated real quickly.  I was called insensitive, close minded, irrational, ignorant, and a bunch more very unfriendly names.  The insults didn’t bother me as much as one sentence: “You live life for yourself, not anyone else.”  As that relates back to the topic at hand, the phrase ate at me and ate at me for about 24 hours, and it broke me down, shattering my formerly held beliefs about suicide being selfish.  I have always lived life to please others –  my mom, my friends, my kids.  I do believe the act itself is selfish because it leaves a wake of sadness.  All your family members, friends and loved ones are left mourning your loss and trying to pick up the pieces of their lives without you.  But besides that, if you aren’t happy with your own life, is suicide really the answer?  It honestly doesn’t solve anything.  And we as humans really have no clue what happens after we die.  So how do we know that suicide will end the suffering?  What if the suffering was to learn a lesson, and your consciousness continues to experience the hardship until the lesson has been learned?  Is it truly up to us whether we live or die?  In my opinion we were given a life to live, a body to use to live the life, and options and choices to choose our own path.  If something is causing you to feel miserable, CHANGE IT!  Talk to people, reach out.  Make changes.  Find something that makes you happy and run with it.  Life is hard, there is no doubt about that.  Money is impossible sometimes, sicknesses and injuries make our bodies useless at times.  But there is almost always a way to improve what we have, even if its just a change in our state of mind.

I must say, thinking about this made me reconsider the concept and reality of suicide.  I have been at points in my life when I didn’t feel I could move past grief, or get through being desperately poor and homeless.  I have been at the bottom of life.  But I always kept in my mind that it could have been worse.  Things can always get worse.  So I counted my blessings, realized what I had to be thankful for, and kept on breathing, day in and day out.  And I survived.  And things got better.  And then they got bad again, and then better again.  And I’m sure I will have plenty more ups and downs.  But I have children to live for.  And a mom.  And a sister.  And a fiance.  And friends.  And yes I may live my life for them, but making them happy is what makes me happy.  And that is my reality and no matter what anyone says, that makes life worth living for ME. I live life for them.  And that is what makes life good for me.  And though my views may not have been worded in a way people could understand them, it makes perfect sense to me.  I stand by my former statement.  unnamed

If you are feeling down, like there is no hope left in your life, please reach out!  More people care than you believe.  And if you feel you have no one to turn to, please call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or visit http://www.afsp.org/ to find out who can help you locally.  No one should suffer in silence.

A Hiccup

I am currently without a computer or any way to type out blog posts. I really don’t usually get many likes or comments on my posts, so I’m sure no one else minds that I’m taking a leave of absence. I’m hoping to find a used computer soon, at which point I have a few subjects I’d like to type about. Until then, enjoy the rest of your summer!

Life or Death: An Unpopular Opinion

Recently I posted a controversial video on my personal Facebook page about the topic that most people avoid these days: abortion.  Generally when I post things of that nature, I get a couple comments, but people generally don’t respond much, and certainly not quite as strongly as the responses I got this time.  Mostly I got opposing opinions, and those who agreed with me didn’t dare speak up, they just “liked” my comments.  It was a video of an aborted baby still inside the amniotic sac, still alive, responding to touch.  Personally, I didn’t intend it to be a “shock video” or something to pull at the heart strings – just more an educational look at what you are losing when you choose to have an abortion.  A look at the fact that the fetus is in fact a living human.

Please know that I am fully aware that this is not the way the world works, and that I am stating MY opinion solely.  If you are easily offended by this topic or the pro-life cause, tough!

I have always, since I could first understand the concept in its entirety, been strongly opposed to abortion.  I grew up an only child, with a mom who cried and prayed to have more children throughout my childhood.  She raised me with a very strong appreciation for life, and desire for fertility.  I grew up knowing that as a woman, I was not obligated to have children, but I knew my body was built for it.  I grew up knowing I would one day have children, and I looked forward to it.  I knew I was destined to be a mom, by my own choosing.

During high school I did some research and used abortion as a topic for reports and projects, including art projects.  I learned about the many reasons someone may choose an abortion, such as birth defects, health of the fetus, health or age of the mother, lifestyle, finances, parental relationship issues, rape, incest, etc.  I was open-minded about it during this period of research and learning.

The turning point for me was when I was approached by one of my high school friends, at age 17, and asked to take her to the clinic to terminate her pregnancy.  She went on to tell me that she and her boyfriend knew the risk of pregnancy was there when they had unprotected sex, and they joked that if she got pregnant, they could just get an abortion.  In hindsight, I believe it was one of those “it could never happen to us” situations.  But cruel irony caught up with them, and that ended up being their actual solution.  I lost all respect for the both of them over it.  I took her to her appointment, and while she was there I did a lot of soul-searching.  I thought over all that I knew, and all that I had experienced while growing up.  I knew the world was full of infertile couples dreaming of making a family by adopting.  And being a spiritual Pagan, I knew that all life was sacred, and on this Earth for a reason.

That is what made me decide: 99% of abortions are unnecessary.  I say 99% because I understand there always exists an exception to every set of circumstances.  Extreme situations are the only reasons for this exception, in my opinion.  Such as imminent death or extreme deformities to the point of incapacity for the child and no chance at a good life.

As for all the rest, I believe every life is created for a reason, and all the “reasons” for abortion are just weak excuses from weak women.  If a woman gets pregnant because either they weren’t responsible enough use birth control or birth control failed, that’s not excuse for an abortion.  If a woman gets pregnant from a rape or from incest and just doesn’t want the reminder of that painful event, there are other options such as adoption.  If your relationship falls apart and you can’t imagine being a single mother or you can’t afford a baby, abortion is not the answer.  If the baby has minor to moderate health issues or birth defects, perhaps the medical community could learn from your child to help others with the same issue, or perhaps he or she will enrich your life beyond your wildest dreams – abortion is not the answer.Pro-Life-3-being-pro-life-5715580-500-375 

Life is beautiful, no matter what the situation.  Life is a blessing, a miracle.  If you aren’t ready to receive that miracle, or to be a mom, and you want to have control of your body, then BE EDUCATED, USE BIRTH CONTROL, BE RESPONSIBLE.  Take responsibility for your own actions, don’t turn to drastic measures to “get rid of” your mistake.  Abortion is murder, period.  I don’t care if that is a harsh remark to someone who has some guilt over making that choice at some point in their life.  I don’t care who I offend with this opinion.  You should have chose to be a parent, or adoption – the gift of life and a family.

What I stand for: Pro Responsibility, Pro Education, Pro Birth Control, PRO LIFE

And I will stand by this opinion and this cause until the day I die.

Finding Me

I am in the last couple months of being 33 years old, and I am just now really finding me.  It has taken me this long!!  I am evaluating the sights, sounds, flavors, smells, and sensations around me all seemingly for the first time.  What do I really like compared to what have I accepted as my own preference because it was someone else’s preference?  What kind of music really moves me?  What scents bring back the best memories and comfort?  What are my favorite foods, and how is my favorite way to eat them?  What is my favorite genre of movie or television show?  Do I like reading?  Do I like math, science, writing, animals, nature, electronics, etc? 

When I was in my tweens and teens I was the victim of sexual abuse at least a couple of times.  I grew up being a doormat, and I let boys and men take advantage of me…. and some I didn’t allow but they took anyway.  I was never a good friend to others because I was so inside my own victimized perception, always wanting to please people.  Then in my 20s I spent that entire decade either pregnant, breastfeeding, or just staying at home for the sake of the kids.  It was a fulfilling time for parenting, but also a lonely time because I withdrew from all of my friends and family.  I had post-pardum depression, and my marriage failed.  Then toward the end of my 20s I suffered the very tragic loss of my fiance, Jason. 

Here I am now, in my 30s.  My children are 12, 10 and 8 years old.  Its been 5 years since the passing of Jason.  And I still haven’t done anything for ME!  My kids, the men I’ve dated, my mom and sister, even my friends… they have all ALWAYS come first.  I have always given everything I have to make the people close to me comfortable and happy.  I have very seldom ever given to myself anything of real value.  Not proper education, not new clothes, not a healthy or active lifestyle… really nothing!  And every time I have gotten it into my head to try being healthier or being better to myself, something happens that sets me back into a haze of circumstance, and I am neglected once again.

So lately, little by little, I have been evaluating what it is I really like.  I have been trying to decide where I want to start, and what little steps I can take to make my life feel good for ME.  There has been a lot of stress, so its a slow process.  But that is life.  Always changing, always learning, always growing.

Some of the things so far that I know I want: a body that is stronger and more fit, a diet that is more pure and nourishing, clothes that make me feel more feminine and less poor, and at least a few minutes per day to just smile, laugh and dance around the house even if its for no reason, and a much more positive home environment.  I want security, happiness, and warmth to radiate from me when I am out in public.  I want to be sure of myself, and know that I am doing right by me and my standards.  And I want to care less what other people may think of my life choices, because what they like and don’t like shouldn’t make any difference to me and my path.

I cannot say this is a turning point for me, because just writing about it doesn’t change anything. Its a process.  Its one I am enjoying, and one that will be long… perhaps even for the rest of my life.  But at least now I can do things for me without feeling selfish.  I am a person too, and I should not neglect me just because I feel someone else has a right to my attention or time.  I need to come first.  Because if I am not healthy and truly happy, then I can’t be a good mother, daughter, lover, wife, sister or friend to anyone else.

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Name, graphic design and writings are © 2013-2014 Shauna Lane and sole intellectual property of Shauna Lane unless otherwise credited. Sharing and distribution of content should be through this page's provided methods, or done with permission from the author/creator. Contact information is provided.
E-Mail: hippiemom42@gmail.com

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