Posts tagged ‘hope’

September 7, 2012

What measures a man

ImageIt been a couple years that I told a 17 years old kid, “What measures man is his actions, not his thought, not  his beliefs. ”

I believe this to be a true statement for all humans. It is our actions that make us who we are. It is our beliefs, opinions, values, morals that help guide our actions.

My son is 11. He is not yet a man, but still not a child. Life here is that of a vast labyrith. There are many twists and turns that lead to great black holes and dead ends. These children’s minds wonder in all directions, but down no road is there a sign that points, “This is the right way my dear child. Please take my hand and I will guide you.” The voices scream from every direction calling to the innocence of youth, making demands, challenging the very virtue of the child.

If I let my son do as he please eventually these voices screaming become reason, justification.  I see this happen all the time. Kids 15 years old stealing cars, doing drugs, having sex. Even the 17 year old had a child at 18.

My expectations are high, not because I expect them to meet them, but rather reach for them.  Everywhere in society kids are getting participation awards, feel good moments. If that’s the case then why do we even bother to educate when, in fact, all we need is a babysitter. There cheaper. Kids need to be challenged, expected to seek accomplishment.

It dawned on me the other day that my son could not cook a simple egg, because I have always made breakfast; I like cooking. He can now. Now he can make his own breakfast everyday, and he will.

I dawned on me that my son just expects me to do his laundry. Not anymore.
I will not feed or walk the dog. I will not check his math homework. They have an app for that. I will not do his chores because he wants to go play. Today he will become the man I want him to be.

He will make decisions. He will provide intelligent anwsers based on his participation in education. He will use critical thinking, and form opinions. He will change his mind when appropriate and seek truths where falacies lie. he will stand up for what he believes in and fight for beliefs where warrented. He will be kind, and do the right thing. And most of all before he leaves this house he will be judged harshly, and critically by the actions he chooses to make.

I will always be there to watch him stumble, to make mistakes and learn lifes lessons. I will catch him when he falls, and place punishment when needed. I will be firm and leave no rock left unturned.

Every failure, every one will lead him to success in life. Each and every achievement much greater than any feel good moment can provide.

Men are great when life is earned. You don’t get an award because your breathing.

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June 9, 2011

You should be superman

When is it our responsibility?

I’m currently watching Waiting for Superman while I run on my treadmill. I haven’t seen the whole movie so my opinion may be bit premature. I doubt it. Realizing that the movie is about our tax dollars, unions, and government. Its failing the people. It’s failing our children. Out of this failure lottery, charter,and private schools have arisen. I send my kids to charter school. The school is currently full. Every year there are more and more charter schools popping up. Two elementary schools in my district have closed. With great hope the union will collapse here.

I am no different than parents that live in poverty, or wealthy areas. I want my kids to have a decent education. I want my kids to have better, be better off. We all do.

The statistics are frightening. http://movies.nytimes.com/2010/09/24/movies/24waiting.html

Consider the following statistics cited in the film: the annual cost of prison for an inmate is more than double what is spent on an individual public school student. Eight years after Congress passed the No Child Left Behind act, with the goal of 100 percent proficiency in math and reading, most states hovered between 20 and 30 percent proficiency, and 70 percent of eighth graders could not read at grade level. By 2020, only an estimated 50 million Americans will be qualified to fill 123 million highly skilled, highly paid jobs. Among 30 developed countries, the United States ranks 25th in math and 21st in science.

Just consider the last sentence. 25th and 21st does not make us pioneers. It makes us lazy, complacent. Every parent no matter how poor or wealthy can afford pen and paper. We have resources: library’s, Internet, Discovery channel. We have the power to educate our kids. We have the power to change. We have the right to expect more, demand it.

Its summer and my kids last day of school is Friday. Their education doesn’t stop there. I provide summer school. They write their times tables, division, and this summer algebra. They read, take comprehension tests, write book reports, write stories, work on computers, take field trips. If money allows work a little magic with Lego mind-storm. They learn what the school has failed to teach. I hope.

Our society is passive. We have let the unions, the government, the powers that be use our tax dollars inappropriately in every possible way. We are being bullied into a socialist system. Dependent on the power. But………

We can make a change. Have your children write, read, do math instead of watch tv. Watch educational programs about science, the universe, cooking, animals. We the people can make the change. Together we can demand accountability. Take your children out of public schools. If there is not room demand more charter.

If second place is the first loser then what is twenty fifth place. This is what I see from where I sit. Mommies coddling their children. Poor Johnny’s work is to hard. Poor Johnny needs a trophy for second place. Teachers expect to much. Mommies don’t expect enough. Dude, man up! This is what I see. I say it over and over. I know to many mom like this. I had a mom once tell me I needed to put my mommy hat on. Are you kidding me. How can you achieve great things if your expectations are so low or swaddled in a baby blanket.

May 17, 2011

Blogs

I read so many blogs tonight from all over the United States. I really search out the most unread blogs and found so much life that was incredible. Kids typing to make sense of there life. Parents trying to find the right way to raise there children. People dealing with everyday life. We hangout in our own little world most of the time and forget that there are millions of others that are just like us. They deal with the same thing. The work for the same things. The one thing that makes us all unique is that we perceive the world differently. A simple tree can represent so many things. Things I would never even think of.

May 16, 2011

Perspective on raising girls

I often talk to parents about how they raise their children, daughters mostly. Mine has been a little more difficult than my son. In terms of raising her I tend to think psychologically as I wanted her to be balanced, and well adjusted.

When my daughter was two I was very new to the study of children. I should have known when she cried the first three months of her life she would be a challenge. I should have known when she skipped over the crawling and went straight to running I was in for it, but I didn’t.

When she was two and getting in trouble one day I sat her in a chair and told her to stay, like a dog I suppose. I told her if she got out of the chair I would spank her. I don’t know why. Spanking serves no other purpose than to hurt my hand, but that’s what I said. This played itself out several times and the only thing it got me was a sore hand. She never cried because her butt was covered with a diaper, but she did have fun tormenting me.

As the years passed the same situation presented itself over and over again in different scenarios mostly in the form of us screaming at each other. I never quite understood why until now that she would do anything her father said but fight me tooth and nail over the smallest thing.

Never does she have conflict with her father. If he asked her to do anything she does without complaint, because she knows this will pit him against her mother. If she severs their bond then she can becomes the leader. This can be her tribe. Dad always sides with mom but as a young child she never stops trying.

It’s just recently I hear people referring to their families as a tribes. It is the most accurate statement that can be made about the family unit. We are tribes. Preindustrialization, and modern man both men and women had roles to play. Although in the fifties era,  the Beaver Cleavers showed great signs of the separation of men and women in the home. Men went to work, they were hunters of food, protectors of the home. They were builders. The foundation of the very tribe in which they belonged. Women were the gatherers, the ones that nurtured the children into their appropriate place within the tribe. Women supplied the essence of tribes very life. Everybody has a job and they were clearly defined.

In the case of a mother and daughter. A daughter is meant for these things. I believe genetically. She is born to nurture, to supply the very essence of leadership that will one day support and guide her own tribe. Without her no tribe can exist. Now that’s not to say that boys and men do not serve the same functions in their roles but it’s clearly another essay. Females no matter the age are meant to do great things and conflict arises when there are two making the same soup.

My daughter from birth genetically, I believe, is a leader. All girls are. She wants to lead to take control of the tribe. She fights for this. She wants to make the decisions, and tells me no when she doesn’t like mine. It creates conflict, fights, a struggle between her very nature to be a leader and her age. This explains a lot about why little girls like dolls. They are playing the role of leader. Preparing for the day when she posses her own tribe.

When my daughter was three or four she wanted to pick her own clothes to wear. She wanted to make decisions, chose what she wore, what she ate, what cup she drank out of. These were all critical decisions that prepare her for life ahead. I let her do all these things. It actually makes my life easier. Now her choice is clothing hasn’t always been the best but it covered the parts of her body that needed to be covered so it was fine with me Because it is her peers that will judge her new look with blatant truth, I do not have to be the bad guy. It is her peers that become my greatest ally. They judge harshly and allow me to play the role of nurturer instead of dictator. They hurt her feelings when they say her outfit is ugly, or she’s fat, stupid, etc. To resolve this I get to tell her she is an individual, beautiful, brilliant. I get to educate her on proper nutrition, fashion, the three R’s of education. She turns to me and I become the hero, the caretaker, the wise one. It works in my favor every time.

As my daughter got older she found new ways to assert her leadership. She got bossy with everybody. The kids on the playground, our son, nana, papa, but never dad. She would tell her brother he was sick and he needed to stay in bed and home from school. She would command him to eat his veggies. Don’t throw sand at the playground someone could get hurt. Don’t go up the slide that way it’s not safe. She was being a mother and rightfully so. She is born to do this genetically, nurture, care for, emotionally tend to. We praise our daughters for these traits. We encourage these traits. This is her way of learning how to prepare for the future. How to be a mother. She immolates us because genetically that is what she is supposed to be learning in these early years.

As my daughter moves into the teen years she is afford more freedom to make tougher choices, more responsibility. She recently had to research a new school and find out if its a fit for her. She made the final decision and it coincided with mine. It worked naturally the way it’s supposed to. We have fewer fights because we work together for the greater good. I encourage her to make mistakes, take risks. She need only hear about my experiences but learn her own lessons.

I know a women that has three girls the oldest the same age as mine. She tells them how to dress everyday How to wear their hair. In fact she does it for them. They make no choices. None. They are told what sports they can play. The mother rules every aspect of their life. They have no freedoms. They are servants to their mothers will. Now this is extreme, but look forward ten years and picture what I see….rebellion and lots of it. Their mother has told me great, fantastical stories of her own rebellion but had not learned a single lesson from it.

There is not need to cuddle your child. The dress them, feed them, or rule with a heavy hand. Children by design know their path and are willing to tell us if we would only listen.

May 14, 2011

Schools

When we bought our house my kids were three and four, so my daughter would be stating school in the fall. I either didn’t think to at the time or didn’t care to check into the local schools. I wasn’t concerned about the districts grade point average, or the income level of families that attended. Those things are important to me now, although I’m not moving or selling my house.

Public education in California is a joke just like most state run agencies here. You can get free lunches, free bus passes, free everything if you just smear the truth a little bit. People do, and I don’t blame them because this is a tough economy to live in. California is expensive.

My daughter went to public school through fifth grade. I had complaints the whole way. The amount of teaching time that was taken away from the English speaking students to tutor and teach the none English speaking kids, even if they are illegal immigrants. The lack of homework, my daughter has been threatened, degraded, and insulted by a teacher.

The federal government says ever kid has the right to an education even if they are illegal. Ok, then teach my child Spanish in kindergarten. Instead my child has playtime while Spanish speaking get tutored in English. My daughters fifth grade teacher has tenure so he could threaten and insult the kids all he wanted to. The school board does nothing. I told her if his behavior was inappropriate to walk out and call me, she did. Still nothing was done. The school wouldn’t even put her in another class, because changing classes was against policy. My hands were tied. I took her out of the state funded public school system.

Charter schools.

I drive my kids fifteen miles one way to take them to a charter school. There first year there is almost over and it has been the best thing that ever happened to my daughter. My son could care less, school is school and he easy going so he makes friends everywhere. Now my daughter is the smart one. If her mind isn’t challenged she is a raging bitch. She fights, slams doors, is mean, won’t do anything you ask her. She’s out of control. She needs the challenge, and when she gets it she in perfect, amazing, incredible. My son on the other hand needs motocross. Without it he’s just sad. He withdrawals from the world.

It’s the end of the year and time for re-enrollment. Most of my daughters friends a going to a new charter school. She bummed. I told her I would consider it but she had to do the ground work which meant writing emails and calling the school for information. Now the charter school is sponsored by fender guitars for music and vans for the uniforms. Sounds good. The guitar lessons which are not part of the academics but rather an after school program are affordable but my daughter is not nor does she want to be a musician. I’m not sold. The tutoring programs are only available for a price, but there free at the school she attends now. Still not sold.

I don’t want to burst her bubble. I don’t want to let her down. She deserves a lot and works for it. What about science, math, English, history I asked her. You gather information on that and we will discuss it. She emailed the school a very professional letter questioning their academics. We haven’t gotten a reply and I don’t suspect we will. Her friend that is going there invited her to the orientation. She went and questionedthe teachers on the topics of academics. The blew her off. The only thing that the website talks about is farming. It’s an agricultural middle school. That’s all you get from the website besides the music after school program. My daughter came home disappointed and made the decision she didn’t want to go. She would rather make new friends than follow her current friends to a school that had no academic programs. Funny, she has the goal of taking trigonometry by the eighth grade. Im proud of her.

The lesson learned here is that not matter how beautiful the website. No matter how enticing the words like, academic, knowledge based, state certified, award winning programs are they are still words and prove nothing. I didn’t have to tell her no she came to that conclusion herself. Again I am proud of her for being the woman I know she is becoming.

May 14, 2011

Drama

Let the drama begin said the conductor to the audience. Just like that the orchestra begins and every player has their part. That’s how it goes. There is one conductor and everyone else has a role to play.

My daughter is eleven and has hit the age of drama. I consider myself lucky that she’s not the causing it. I would like to think that a healthy childhood leads to less drama. I have always told my daughter she is beautiful inside and out. She’s a little vain. I have always told her she is intelligent. Home and public schooled her. I have always kept it real. If she was being a bitch. I told her she was. If she wronged someone I made her apologize even if it was a small indiscretion. When someone was taking her lunch I made her stand up for herself. She did. When she got in a fight. I praised her for defending herself. She was in the right to do so. When her feelings were hurt we talked about it. I explained how life works and she is not now or will ever be the center of attention for everybody all the time. And, when it comes to drama I just won’t tolerate it. Jealousy, controlling, anger, bossy, you know all those things that wrap drama up in a nice little package agitate me to no end.

Now that my daughter is a little older, boys and drama are beginning to be an issue. She comes home from school and always tells me the latest. She bosses him around; he wants to break up with her; she not happy with him; he’s talking to another girl. Your getting the picture…right. We laugh about it quite a bit. My daughter always get caught in the middle between her friend and her friends new boyfriend of the week. She to is part of the orchestra.

Drama is nothing more than low self worth, self esteem, self value, however you wish to say it. I wonder how a perfectly normal, cute girl ends up this way. I could speculate that either her parents were to busy with their life or jobs to attend to her emotionally, or that they were just not educated enough on the matter to do so. Either way her she is causing drama and heartache for herself that will last a lifetime.

Being jealous and controlling is like taking flowers away from bees. You will never get any honey. The only person that suffers is you. Everybody else leaves, moves on. It defiantly sends you spiraling down further into you self loathing pit. Then where are you at. Alone in your room crying, eating ice cream which will make you fat not to mention feel that much worse about yourself. Why? Why go down that road? Don’t get me wrong it’s entertaining the daily gossip. It is.

I heard Jillian Michael’s say “Why chose failure when success is an option.” it’s a good question and applies to everything. Now I can’t stand Jillian Michaels for no other reason than I just don’t like the sound of her voice, but the statement holds true.

So the moral, why be jealous, controlling, bossy, you know. When you could just be happy. Why self loathe when you could be beautiful. Why cry when you could laugh? Why choose failure when you can be a success and not a psychological mess?

May 13, 2011

Genetics

Have you ever thought about who you are? The person you were born to be. There’s a code that makes you just like the code that makes the program I write on. That code is obvious when you have your fathers nose, or your mothers eyes. Your personality comes out in the code when your mom says, “Your just like your father.” It’s true you are. This is a story about one kids code.

A boy seven years old was not allowed to see his father anymore. The mom had grown to hate the dad for whatever reason. The court ordered visitation but she refused. She was mean and vicious. I know a lot of women like her. At this point she had moved out of state, remarried and wanted to leave the past in the past which meant not contact for the son with his dad. How does this benefit anyone?

As the years went by, and there has been ten, the boy grew out of control. He learned to speak his mind. He did crazy insane things unlike his stepdad who liked fishing, watching tv, being mellow. They couldn’t understand how the boy had gone down this road. They had tried to be good parents. What they didn’t get was that genetically the boy was extreme, crazy, was ready and willing to meet everyday at 110 mph. She couldn’t handle him anymore.

The phone call came. I’m sending the boy to visit. I can’t handle him. He’s out of control. I laughed when I heard this. The stories perfectly represented my husband and my son. Both extreme. Both crazy. That’s what I love about them. They are willing to take the world on at a 110 mph. It’s who they are genetically. It who the boy is.

My son with with same father. Before my son rode motocross he didn’t participate in school. In the first grade he was failing. I didn’t make the connection until after motorcycles came into his life. His teacher called and asked why he was participating. He grades were improving over night. He was 7 then. When he was 8 he told me, “it’s ok if I die out there mom.” He meant that every word. He’s 10 now and not only is he a great rider, but a great student. He takes responsibility for his actions and he has earned the respect of many. He’s a great kid.

Because me and his dad get along so well we have stayed together over the years. We have a great marriage. My son gets to do all these things because he is genetically just like the man that’s raising him. If my son had to hangout with a guy that liked fishing he would be a trouble maker. He would find some negative way to vent. He would have no choice.

I’m just a little curious what’s with moms. First, the only one it hurts is the kid 100% of the time. You slept with the guy, and got knocked up now be responsible. Boys need men. Men should raise boys. They need their genetic fathers regardless of your pissed off attitude. I know this doesn’t apply in every case, men who abuse. You get the point.

How do boys learn to be men? My son called his friend a pussy little cry baby the other day. I’m not sure I agree with his verbiage, but it was the truth. I let it go. One day my son was training for a race he crashed. We were all there, me, the EMT, other riders. He was screaming. i asked him several times if he was ok. He couldn’t hear me. I screamed at him, “Stop your damn crying, be a man and tell us where the he’ll it hurts.” he did, and he has ever since.

The 17 year old was out he for three weeks. I think he thought it was going to be all California sun and fun. Not at my house. If it ain’t motocross I ain’t going and that includes the beach. Thats what we did. We had our toy hauler then and lived in it on the weekends. My son doesn’t take weekends off. He serious about his business. He doesn’t screw around. I respect that and he has earned my respect and the right to dictate what we do on the weekends.

My son will be a great man someday. Not because he is my son but because he is with his genetic father. They have a lot in common. They are meant to be together for life. They are meant to learn from one another.

I’m not saying that step parents can’t get the job done. They can. What I’m saying is that holding you child to punish a parent on damages the child genetically. Man up. Be a responsible human. Quit being a cry baby.

May 13, 2011

God

I’m going to venture out on a limb today and talk about God. My mom told when I was little that you don’t talk about religion or politics. I don’t. I rarely ever bring it up. Not even with my husband. Politics sends him on a rampage. He’s that guy. He listens to talk radio all day, so he is pretty well informed and has a strong opinion. I respect that, though our opinions differ on a lot of topics. Like most of us he sees the world his way, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I see the world mine, and we both agree to disagree. It keeps the peace.

God is something we both agree very strongly about. Not in the general go to church every Sunday sort of way though, and I am going to apologize right now if I offend you. Stop reading at any time.

When I was little I went to church most Sunday’s. We got dressed up and after church my mom would cook a feast. We all sat down at the table and made a picture perfect family. Nothing bad happened to me at church so it’s not where my opinion comes from. My opinion is based solely on the crazies out there.

The other day when I was at jury duty a man approached my in the parking lot. There was about a hundred people waiting to get in the building so I wasn’t intimidated. He wanted to talk to me about God. He was in his mid 20’s and was wearing a nice suit, and got one sentence out, before I went off.

First, (and I pause because I want to make sure he is listening.) you are not old enough to preach to me about god. I seriously doubt you have any worldly knowledge on the topic. With that I walked away. I’m sure he is a fine young man, but that’s the point he’s a man.

The bible is a book and like any other book it is left to ones interpretation. That’s the problem. Interpretation has lead us to war, rape, pillage, destruction, brain washing, etc. Interpretation is opinion. You have one and so do I. There is no other topic where interpretation enrages me as much as it does here.

I believe in god. I pray. What’s not to like about it. I have done the just this time god. I promise I will never do it again, until I do. It makes me human. I don’t pretend to be better than other people, I’m not. I follow the ten commandments especially the not killing people part. I try to do nice things and see other peoples side of the story. I’m a decent person I think. I might be wrong.

God is not the problem. Man is, and he’s frickin crazy, nuts, insane. I know that this may not apply to you, but it does apply to those who are. Take this war in Afghanistan, Palestine, Egypt all in the name of god. What about those catholic priests raping boys. God there to. What about the Mormons. Multiple wives, compounds, throwing young men out on the streets. God. Now I know Catholics and Mormons who are great people. In fact they are awesome and I am proud to know them. Only the nut jobs apply here, but there are enough of them to make me stay out of the churches and away from the cloth.

Who am I to judge you on your life. You have to do whats right for you. Make opinion where you have none. Follow your heart where ever it leads, but if it leads you into a church I’m not coming. When my dad retired he ran right to the church and became a pastor. He took some classes and boom he’s a pastor. Nothing wrong with that. He always wanted to go to seminary school. My grandma is the same. She’s 94 and watches the God channel all day. That’s fine. I have a client who’s a youth pastor. He’s awesome. I dig that that guy. None of this offends me, but I am not now and will never be willing to have a conversation about your interpretation of the bible. Nope never. God makes people do and say crazy things. Im not getting sucked into that.

Now that I’m thinking about I dated a guy when I was about 20. Everything was fine till he found God. We broke up. He wanted me to go to church with him every night, nope not doing it. He wanted me to take of Sunday’s from my job, nope not doing it. He turned crazy preaching all the time. I left. It’s simple. There is no other thing on this planet besides mother nature that has wrecked more havoc than mans interpretation of god. I want no part of it.

If all this means I am going to hell well then I hear they serve beer, sign me up. I don’t mean to make light of the situation. I respect your beliefs. I took a couple of classes on world religions in college. They were fascinating, and people are crazy.

May 11, 2011

Write about a mistake you can learn from?

There are so many to chose from. When I read this I thought it would be easy. A huge mistake I learned a lesson from. I guess all the little mistakes add up after a while.

I watch parents. I listen to what they have to say. I respect the fact that most try to be the best parent they can. Kids don’t come with handbooks. We all heard this from our mothers. Now that we are parents we understand. There is one thing that I find I learn the most from my kids. I say I’m sorry when I’m wrong.

When my parents were wrong and they were a great deal of the time. They never apologized. There word was law regardless. We had no voice and even if we did it meant very little. I see kids that face this situation all the time.

Kids have opinions, ideas about the world. They see through fresh lenses. They learn from us and god willing they learn something decent. I have bad habits. I say stupid things and pretend to know things I don’t. I don’t pretend to be a good mom, but I try.

Over the years I have apologized with tears in my eyes for being wrong. I didn’t listen. I jumped to conclusions. I got mad. I punished when I should have been praised. I wanted it my way, and I didn’t want them to see my shame. I was and am superior to them. I’m not.

Being wrong is part of life. It’s who we are. I don’t mind being wrong these day. In fact I cherish the moments when I can show humility. I have learned that this is not a dictatorship. It is a relationship and like a marriage or a friendship, and it has to be treated as such. I have to let my children make the wrong choices so they can make the right decisions. I am only here to help guide them down a decent path. Open their eyes to my experiences and let them make their choice based on that.

Children have a voice that should be heard. They are individuals who are nothing like us. It doesn’t always have to be done my way. There way might be better. Apologize it will bring a world of gifts. Children forgive like dogs. Lol.

For the mistakes I’ve made I have learned to apologize. I have learned to let go and move on. My children are great teachers.

May 11, 2011

Walk a mile

Walk a mile in my shoes

I was listening to pandora last night, Everlast. There is nothing I don’t like about his music. It has a southern soulful sound to it. It has a sense of meaning to me. I can relate. A song from Eminem came on, beautiful. I’m not a huge fan of his music but this particular song influenced me. If you get a chance listen.

I don’t pretend to know anything, no nothing at all.
I don’t pretend to be smart
I don’t pretend to be tall

Life has afforded me great things
But great things need life
I have failed them all

I’ve tried so hard
The tears I have wept
The promises I’ve made
The lies I’ve kept

I suppose this sums up the life each one of us has had to lead at one time or another. Those are not the words from is song. I didn’t want to copy. From the very poor to the very rich life is complicated. Money doesn’t change that or make it better. Emotionally it is the about the same, extracting the from the equation those who are insane, mental, you get the point. No matter who you are or what you do you have to dealt with the human plight of emotions. Walk a mile in sorrow, happiness, fear. I know there are you’s out there that can’t relate, can’t feel another’s pain because you have never faced the tragedy. You will in one way or another. You have in your on way.

When I was little I lived on the outskirts of tornado alley. I grew up in segregation and I’m not that old. I have seen devastation. I have had a friend die at the hands of a bomb in Afghanistan, been addicted to drugs, lied for the benefit of me, and never made amends for the things I did to another. I have been made the fool, made a fool of you. I have cheated; I have deceived. I have done terrible things as part of my life.

I have help a friend, showed kindness where there was none. I have cared about issues, stood my ground in the defense of others. I have brought two beautiful children into this world. I have cried for your pain, and lent a hand to the fallen. I have apologized for the feelings I hurt, and felt compassion for the wrong doings of others. I have brought happiness, love and joy where there was sorrow. I have done good things.

That should be about a mile if indeed it can’t be measured. You know me better, but there isn’t much there that is different from you. Maybe you weren’t addicted to drugs or seen a disaster first hand. Both are unique, tragic. The disaster is an act of mother nature. Tornados are amazing, incredible things until they destroy your home. Drugs. I loved them, but they destroy your life. Most who used will agree in one aspect or another. Segregation afforded me perspective. A mile in the shoes.

Nothing I have done that follows me down the road I am on serves regret. I don’t hide from the past. It doesn’t torment me. I don’t let it. My miles have been long. It’s been a dusty road. One that feels no sorrow for my pains. I don’t want it to. I made all my choices. I stand by all my decisions, every one no matter how stupid they were.

Walk a mile in anyones shoes and you will see that they are much like you. Every emotion we have is called the same. Everyday begins and ends the same. Every mile is measured the same. It’s what we do with those emotions that make us different.