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Parents: Get Off Your Phone

 

Have you guys seen this yet?    The daycare that posted a sign telling parents to get off their phone when picking up their children?

Which side of the argument do you fall?   Can you justify the parents behaviour?   Has the daycare overstepped?

I’ll tell you what I think.

Parents, in this particular situation, I think you need to get off your goddamn phone.

Here’s why.   Your child has been waiting for this moment ALL.DAY.LONG.  As much as they love their friends and their school/daycare, they love you the most.   They want so badly to make you proud of them.  They need you to be excited to see them and make them feel like this is the moment YOU have been looking for ALL.DAY.LONG.

When I first pick up my child from daycare/school or a babysitter, those first few minutes are paramount to understanding the behaviour they display throughout the rest of the day.   It is important for you to listen to what they tell you so that you can support them if they need support, congratulate them on something they did that was new, or hug them if they feel sad.  You can’t assess the situation if you aren’t present in the moment.

And what I’ve learned personally, is that if I don’t give my child my full attention when I first see them, they will feel let down.   I will effectively rain on their parade, and set myself up for failure with them afterwards.

Now, hey, I GET IT.

I fuck around on my phone ALL THE TIME at the playground, or while they are entertaining themselves or even when I declare a 30 minute quiet time in the house.

And that’s totally ok.   You don’t need to be up your kid’s ass, entertaining them every step of the way through life.  They need to learn to work out some social  skills on their own too without you interfering.

But not that moment. Not that moment when they first see you after a whole day of being apart.   You need to make them feel like a priority in your life.

Tell your boss you’ll call them back.   Set a boundary that your child comes first.   That from 4:30-5:00 pm every day you are unavailable.

If the call is SO important, take it before going inside with a quick “I’ll call you in 30 minutes” ( unless it is an emergency).  And emergencies aren’t a change in soccer practice venue, by the way.

Let the school leave a message.  Let them call your partner instead.

Ask yourself if you were in a meeting at work, would you answer the phone?

Soccer, your parents, the vet, whomever can just wait a goddamn minute and learn some patience themselves.  We keep saying that we need to teach our children that the world doesn’t revolve them, so we can teach the adults in our lives the same fucking thing.   The world doesn’t have to revolve around your kids, but show them enough love and respect in this situation so that they KNOW they are important to you.

NOW.

TO THE DAYCARE.

Although I support the motivation behind the sign, I can’t tell you how grossly inappropriate the sign on the window is.

It is condescending, lacking respect, and downright fucking rude.   And if any child care worker or teacher dare speak to me about my parenting  in such a manner they would have no further contact with my child in a big hurry.  Because if they are going to speak to ME that way, the hand that is literally feeding them, how are they speaking to my child when I am not around?

Try something like this next time:

Dear Parents,

Please refrain from using your phone while picking up your child (unless in absolute emergency).  They are so excited to see you when you get here, and we feel like you can best support them by giving them your full attention.

The staff would also like the opportunity to speak with you as the need arises regarding any successes or difficulties that may have occurred during the day, illness or other special circumstances.

Thank you for respecting our space, and making yourselves fully available to us.

Have a great day!

Sincerely,

Director

 

Ok Bitches, what do you think?

I Can Only Hope

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Mirror

There is so much hate in the world right now, Bitches.

The actions of the US President over the last 10 days have not only been outrageous, but I think we have yet to realize the full impact of the decisions made by this administration.   I think that the scariest thing is that while many politicians and world leaders are trying to be polite and not provoke any further ridiculously discriminatory actions, many are getting ready for the very big possibility of engaging in conflict with the US.

Look.   Many folks in the Middle East already hate us.   That’s why we have terrorists.  But everything that Trump is doing is just proving them right about Americans and adding fuel to their already out of control fire.   I feel like he is daring countries like the 7 he banned travel from and/or China to come at him.

His behaviour is the not so much unlike the behaviour of the dictators that military forces came together to try and eradicate for the past however many years.  And if I was a veteran of any of those conflicts, I would be super pissed that the very thing I sacrificed my life, time with my family, my health etc etc for was happening right here at home.

This is not the way.  It can’t be the way, or we are the worst hypocrites ever.   We are liars when we tell the people in these war torn countries that we are doing this to preserve human rights and dignity and to try and make their lives better.  We are liars because we can’t even provide them on North American soil.

It would be like a drunk man trying to lead an AA meeting.

And as much as I love Justin Trudeau’s ability to say the *right thing* and hope that he is truly dedicated to making this word a better place, he needs to slap his balls on the table and inform Mr. Trump that Canada will not support these actions, and be crystal clear about the damage his administration has bestowed upon our relationship.   He needs to set a standard for all developed nations and allies of the US that tyranny will not be accepted and that leading your country with the example of fear, ignorance and racism will not be tolerated.

We all need to stop being polite about this.  Because it is bullshit.   It is doing nothing but letting hate reign freely in world already overcome with hate and fear.

I am afraid for the world I am going to leave my children and grandchildren in one day.   Terrified.

I can only hope that maybe, just maybe, all of this will cause the rest of us to rise up louder and stronger against pain and racism and discrimination.  Against the rich getting richer, and the rest of us struggling more and more just to provide a good life for ourselves.

I can only hope that Trumps hidden purpose is that we all finally feel so horrified by this shit that we stand together instead of saying nothing because it doesn’t really affect us closely enough.

I can only hope that from this we will all become inspired to become better humans and treat each other with love.

Because I can’t leave my kids this world.  I can’t.

 

Let’s Talk About Mental Health

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Its January 25th today, the day we are supposed to open our mouths and ears and hearts and acknowledge the millions of people who live with mental illness.

I am one of those people.

Surprised?

Don’t answer that. 

About 16 years ago I started getting these crazy dizzy spells combined with a racing heart.  I would feel cold and tingly in my fingers.   And then I would need to go and lie down after. I felt like I was short of breath all the time, and my heart rate would go so high at the gym that I felt like it might explode out of my chest.

I was convinced I had a heart condition.   I was afraid to go to sleep at night.  The insomnia compounded everything.   I couldn’t concentrate at work, or absorb any new information.  My memory ( which is my ride or die skill) was almost non existent.

I was pretty sure I was going insane at the same time as developing a heart condition.

So I went to my doctor and told him plainly ” I think I’m going nuts” and he said plain as day to me:  Crazy people don’t think they’re crazy.   I think you have an anxiety disorder with panic attacks.  When you start to feel nuts, take a lorazepam and if it makes it go away we’ll know I’m right.  See what happens over the next week or so and come back to see me so we can get you on some medication.”

He also said that the first thing they usually prescribe is regular exercise, but seeing as I was already hitting the gym 5 days a week at the time, we decided I needed more help than that.  So all those “exercise is the cure for everything” memes can just fuck right off.   It helps yes, and today helps me manage my stress, but not always.

So I stayed on medication for about 18 months and was able to gradually wean off of it. I learned some great coping mechanisms and learned how not to feed my anxious mind.  I learned to take the physical cues my body was giving me like sore muscles, insomnia, dizzy spells, headaches and use them as cues to take it easy and focus on self care.

And here’s the thing about mental illness:  You’re never cured.

Although my symptoms are manageable and I function normally most days, some days, my anxiety is a real asshole.  And I have to just let it be, and slow down, and use all the tools I know to keep things in check.

But it will always be there.  So sometimes, when I cancel plans because I don’t feel well, it’s actually because I am feeling kinda nuts and just not able to deal with you or your shit, because my own shit is too heavy a burden that day.

And that’s ok too.

What do you want to talk about today, Bitches?  I’m listening.

 

That Executive Order Is A Crock Of Shit

feminism-definition

Berry College

From Fat Bottom Girl:

Why do so many people feel “feminism” is a terrible word? You know what I think it means? I think it means that I get to choose. I have choices in my life because women who came before me fought for them. I think the woman who chooses to be a stay at home mom might be just as much a feminist as a woman who chooses to work outside the home, and expects to make the same wage a man does for the same job.

I think this nails my feelings about what is going on in America right now, but  abortion has become “THE” topic surrounding feminism, because that is the issue that Team Trump has chosen to resurrect.   I say resurrect because I feel like it that is what has happened….resurrected from its grave of “we already decided about this”.  I feel like in this day and age we should be past talking about it already.

I’ll be perfectly honest with you.  I don’t like abortion.  I feel like there are other options and so many people that would take and care for a child that a young woman in a desperate situation can’t care for herself.   I feel like the morality of such a decision would haunt me forever and that is a price I’m not willing to pay.  I feel like my Christianity prevents me from coming to that conclusion.  I believe, excuse the Walking Dead quote,  ” that all life is precious”.

I was the product of a teen pregnancy.   I could have been an abortion.

For these reasons, I don’t like abortion.

And that, my friends, is a feminist decision.  Because I have the right to weigh my options and question my morality and then do what I feel is best.  I am allowed to make decisions based on my own health and circumstance.   I have access to resources that provide information about those choices.  I have access to health care that will treat complications.

And you, my friends, have the right to use those resources differently.  I cannot assume that what I believe to be right is the only answer for every other woman out there.   I cannot assume that another woman is going to be willing to sacrifice her own body because some rich asshole in a suit and 7 of his friends said she has to.  I support the decisions you make because they are YOURS TO MAKE.  I can confidently say that regardless of my individual stance on the subject, I support a woman’s right to choose this for herself, and don’t judge that decision.

Just like I can support a woman’s decision to practice Islam, and wear a burka, even though I believe in something different.

Yes, I get it that the executive order that was signed yesterday goes back and forth depending what party is in power.   But it feels like so much more than this.   It feels like a response to the millions of women who marched on Saturday to beg that our rights be upheld.  It felt like a counterattack on millions of women standing up and saying that they want and deserve the right to have control over their own bodies.

I don’t like abortion, but I love women.  I love all the girls out there despite what they decide to do with their bodies.   It is a fundamental right and freedom that is being threatened.   No kidding women are mad.

And yeah…..a lot of women voted for Trump.   We have yet to see what kind of President he will be.  But I am worried.

I am worried that because of this presidents fragile ego, he will constantly be attacking any group that shows strength in their unacceptance of tyranny.

I wonder how much money Kellyanne Conway makes in comparison to her male counterparts?  IS that a government standard?  IS it about to change?  IS she ok with that?  IS she ok with having to pay tax on tampons while her male counterparts can go and get Viagra without paying tax?

If President Trump is here to serve all the people ( not just the 63 million that voted for him), he is going to have to start listening to the all the people.  Including the ones he doesn’t agree with.

You can disagree with something and still acknowledge someone’s right to choose it for themselves.

Today Revived Feminism For Me

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Eventbrite

I surprised myself today, Bitches.

I’ve never been one for feminism.   I’ve had the experience and luxury of going after the things I want, putting in the work for them, and coming out on top.

I’ve never let a man intimidate me or sexualize me without hitting back harder.   Not one man has ever be allowed to make me feel like he could one up me just because he was a man.

And I guess I’ve taken it for granted.  Granted that most men I know wouldn’t dare to put their hands on me, or verbally demoralize me or fear of the repercussions.  Societal AND immediate consequences from a half batshit crazy little brunette who would just as soon eat you for dinner as listen to your fucking crap.

But today, as I looked at all the photos and footage of women all over the world marching to maintain our rights to be treated as equals I felt myself becoming increasingly emotional.

I never, ever, in a million years thought that I or my friends, or my daughter would have to come together and remind men that they can’t and won’t treat us like crap and get away with it.  That just because the newly inaugurated President of the United States speaks about and to women and any person who is less powerful than he is in a demeaning way doesn’t give others the right to do it.

I never thought that the leader of the free worlds words would inspire law makers and governments to try and silence the words of so many.  I never ever thought that we would see these types of movements again.

I always felt empowered as a woman.

And I felt emotional today because I feel like when women come together to make a change, there is nothing more powerful on this earth.

I have never, ever, EVER been more proud to be a woman than I was today.

Bitches, you got this.   Stand tall, stand proud, stand strong.

And never shut up.  Stay loud.  Get louder.  Push back.

I’m in.

 

Mariah, Nobody Cares About Your Feelings

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Miami Herald

As I flipped through the news this morning, there was YET ANOTHER article about Mariah Carey and her stupid performance on New Year’s Eve.

This time she is going on and on about how her feelings are hurt.  She’s humiliated. 

Boo fucking hoo.

Can you please just get over yourself, Miss Thang?

Everyone else would just pleasantly forget about it and never talk about it again if you would just shut up and move on.   We get it.  You’re a professional performer who had the unfortunate experience of a technical malfunction at a live televised performance.

It sucked.  You sucked.   But it isn’t indicative of your overall abilities.

What it is appearing to be indicative of is your character.   The more you go on about it, the more I consider you a narcissistic cry baby asshole.   And I don’t want to think that about you because you used to be kinda amazing.

Everybody has a shitty day at the office, you know?  You’re not exempt from that.  You can’t change the past, so just move forward, okay?

What you can change however, is that horrible one piece sparkly bathing suit with feathers you had on and the stupid cheesy non dancing dance moves.   And fire your choreographer.  You looked liked a washed up Barbie whos limbs don’t bend all the way.   You know, those old school ones from the 80’s that only bent like 30 degrees at the knees but who’s arms were stuck at the awkward angle?

Please.  New Year’s Eve was 8 days ago.   Get over it.

 

Getting Rid Of The Guns Won’t Make People Not Assholes Anymore

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Wikimedia Commons

As I’m sure you’ve all seen, yesterday there was yet another shooting in the United States.   This time 5 people were killed, 8 wounded, and thousands traumatized.

I kept thinking to myself what I would have done if I were there with my kids.   My first instinct would be to just to push them to the ground and shield them with my body.  My second would be to try and get behind something and just pray.

How does this keep happening?

I’ll tell you how.

We are broken.  The human race has made hate and judgement our priorities.  We have made our priorities to attack the things that are different from us and to harm the things that we are afraid rather than understand and tolerate them.

We are so, so broken.

And once again, there are cries of “get rid of all the guns”.  But that just isn’t going to happen.  You will never get rid of all the weapons out there, and even if you did, the crazies will always find a way to harm others.

People who intend to do harm will always do harm.

Should everyday civilians have access to assault and fully automatic weapons?   I personally don’t think so.

Should we have access to hunting weapons and recreational firearms used at gun ranges and marksmanship sports?  Yes, I think that’s reasonable.

And it goes without saying that all the checks and security precautions possible go into acquiring these weapons, including safe storage.

What I don’t get is how this man in Florida was permitted to remove his checked bag with his weapon inside while it contained ammunition.   How the fuck does that make any sense?  You go through all these “precautions” and checks to secure your gun in the baggage area, but as soon as the flight lands and you claim your bag you have FULL ACCESS to a firearm with ammunition in a crowded airport.

What the actual fuck is the point of any of the other security measures then?   Great.  He didn’t hijack the plane.  But he still shot up the airport.

We went through a period of time where babies bottles were being checked for explosives but some dude can check his gun and then load it in a bathroom and kill people?

Wouldn’t you have reasonably thought that there would be a rule where you can fly your gun ( for a hunting trip for example) as long as you have no ammunition with you?

Get your shit together, people.   Guns or no guns, nobody will be safe until you:

  1. Get your shit together. Make real rules that actually make things safe.
  2. Start putting resources into healing mental illness
  3. Stop hating each other
  4. Stop the mentality that all problems are solved with conflict and violence
  5. Change the culture

I really believe that guns are not the problem.  Doesn’t mean we should give access to military style weapons to civilians.   But if someone wants to do damage, they will find another way.

Change your hearts.  Educate.   FIX THIS.

The Double Sink Life

If there is any silver lining to the past few days while I have lied in a fever induced near death state, or at least a wish for death state, it is that this is the time of year where tv channels have marathons of all the things.

First it was The Walking Dead.  That on was harder to follow as I made trips back and forth to the bathroom during my stomach flu.  But also “Untold Stories of the ER” in which I got to see a man fall off a roof and land his face on a crowbar.   It made my gastro thing not seem so bad.

BUT, luckily for me, one day after recovering from my annual New Year’s Vomit Fest ( no it wasn’t from drinking, it started before I could even have one glass of wine) I succumbed to a lovely case of strep throat.

And with my new death spiral firmly settled, there was a new marathon:

House Hunters/House Hunters International

And if I learned one thing from watching this show, it’s this:

Americans are completely fucking obsessed with double sinks in the ensuite bathroom.

Why is that, exactly?

I mean, every other person on that show who isn’t from the states could give a single fuck about how many sinks are in the ensuite bathroom.

“Oh that’s just not going to work with both of us getting ready in the morning”

I mean, seriously.   What in the hell are you two doing in the sink in the morning that you can’t wait your fucking turn?  Are you bathing in the goddamn sink? Brushing your teeth lasts 2 minutes.    You can’t go find a pair of socks or start the coffee while your husband gargles some Listerine and wait a minute?   Your life will be ruined?

I mean, what a dealbreaker.

How would you feel if you knew that we are a family of four that has the horrible tribulation of one full bathroom with one sink?  With NO ENSUITE off the “master bedroom”.  With just a half bath off the rec room that also only has one sink.

How did we get here, folks?  How did we become that spoiled and ridiculous and in need of such immediate gratifications that we can’t figure out how to share one fucking sink in the bathroom?

Get a grip.  First World problems, assholes of the universe.   Figure your shit out.

Happy New Years, Sorta, Not Really.

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Pixabay

In keeping with all the New Year’s wishes and sentiments out there, I thought I’d write out a few quick thoughts about it all.

New Year’s doesn’t really mean shit to me.

I know.   For most of you, it’s a time where you reflect on the past year, thinking of all the ups and downs.   Mourning your losses and celebrating your gains.   Thinking about all the things you wish you could get back and all the others you’d like to do over.   Desperately clinging to those happy things that you want to freeze in time.

But  for me, the changing of a calendar is just that.   Changing of the number when I write a cheque or sign my name somewhere.

I stopped believing in New Year’s resolutions because I think it’s just one more way we try to tell ourselves we aren’t enough as we are, and somehow the magic change of the calendar year will give us the strength we need to do better.

I started believing in accepting where I was in the moment and embracing it.   And THEN looking for opportunities for growth.  I stopped believing that a new year was the catalyst I needed to do more for myself and my family.

It’s just a number.

So many people have remarked on how 2016 sucked.   But for me, it was just another year.   There were shitty moments and wonderful ones.  Happy tears and sad ones.   And that is just how it goes.

So anyway, I will take the time to wish you a Happy New Year, but most importantly, I wish you all the very best you are able to give yourselves whether it starts today, or March 3rd, or November 30.

And if it takes you until the very last second to make a positive change in your life, the year is not a bust.  It’s not lost.

Have a happy life, Bitches.   Ride hard and fast, and love all the minutes.  Don’t wait for the calendar to give you permission to be awesome.  Just be awesome whenever.

 

It’s Ok To Remember Carrie Fisher As Beautiful Too.

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Wikimedia Commons

2016 has been a sad year in terms of iconic people we have lost.  *We* as in the world.

Entertainers, philanthropists, activists, artists, good people who not only used their talents to make us laugh and cry, or sing and dance, but who used the fame from that to try and make this world less shitty.

This week we have all been shocked by the unexpected death of everyone’s favourite princess. Carrie Fisher was one of those unforgettable faces and actresses who were timeless.

So, this morning while reading the news online, I came across this article on msn.com  about how New York magazine got their tits in a knot when Steve Martin commented how Carrie Fisher was the most beautiful creature he had ever seen when he was young.

They went on to comment about how she would rather be remembered for her talents blah blah blah blah.

I call bullshit.

Is that what feminism is?  Disallowing any comment about a woman’s beauty?   What a bunch of double standard, hypocritical crap.   How many beauty ads are gracing the pages of every single magazine, online article or newspaper?

Look.  I agree.  Carrie Fisher’s contribution to this world far exceeds the iconic image of her kicking Jabba the Hut’s ass while wearing that gold bikini, but it doesn’t mean that isn’t a part of who she was.  Steve Martin was commenting on how that image of her was imprinted on him as a young man.  It’s one of the most recognizable images of movie history.  Just because he acknowledges that it made an impression on him doesn’t take anything away from her.   It’s his memory, and he just shared it.

For God’s sake people.  Has feminism come so far that to call a woman beautiful and to say that it is memorable is insulting?

Give me a fucking break.

For good or bad, that image of Carrie is part of who she is, and part of what allowed her to become the advocate for addiction and mental health that she did.  I’d like to think that she would like to be remembered for all of that.  I’d like to think that she would want to be remembered as a woman who was able to embrace this world, that likely emphasizes too much on physical beauty and use it for great things.   She WAS beautiful.  It’s not insulting or taking anything else away from her to say so.

Calm the fuck down.

 

AfterOtis

Written by Natalie Louise Oldham.

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