Practice What You Preach…Or Not?

It has been said that we don’t truly know someone until we live with them.  I disagree.  I think we truly get to know a person once we discuss politics.  As a rule, I avoid political discussions like the plague.  No good ever comes from a conversation about politics.

A few days ago I lost a friend.  To be fair, it was my choice to end the friendship.  Oddly enough, while it was his political post that started our conversation, it was not politics that caused me to let him go.

To give you some background…I’ve been friends on Facebook with this person for several years.  He and I had grown fairly close or as close as you can get to someone over social media.  We’ve had many late night chats about various topics, most of a personal nature.  He was someone I’d grown to trust, love as a friend and respect.  I’ve known his views on politics for quite some time and while he’d tried to get me to open up about my views, I chose to not get into that debate.  He’s been someone I’ve thought of as kind, gentle, loving and caring.  A person virtually incapable of hate.  This is why when I read his Facebook post I was so shocked.  I immediately felt the need to respond.  I was so utterly confused by his attitude.

I’m sharing our conversation with you here.  Maybe my response was wrong.  Maybe I’m missing something.  Maybe his hate is justified and I simply don’t see it.  I’ve long felt there is no good reason to hate (as he states) but possibly there is and I’m unaware.  People do hate but is there ever an actually GOOD reason for it?  I don’t know.  Regardless, what I’m sharing with you is verbatim, grammatical/spelling mistakes and all.  To respect his privacy, I’ll refer to him as “X.”

HIS ORIGINAL POST:  Just a shout out to all trump supporters out there if you post onto your timeline that you support Trump for president…I will remove you from my friends list without explanation or notice…I only have a certain amount of time in my life and I am definitely not wasting it on haters…this is your only warning and I don’t care how good of a friend you are I will not waiver or give second chances…hate it not great and I won’t waste time on you, you are gone…so please take this opportunity to remove yourself my feelings will not be hurt…I can then spend my time loving my friends who are not haters…

ME:  X, I love you.  I respect you.  Always have.  I’m not at all trying to start an argument but isn’t this a form of hate?   This is another reason why I do not like to discuss politics.  It breaks up friendships and causes problems when people can’t or won’t agree.  It shouldn’t be this way.  Ever.  To each his own but I simply can not understand choosing politics over people we care about.  In my head that makes no sense.

HIM:  it is a hate, yes…it’s a hate of racists…I don’t understand them nor do I want to…I am part of the people he is supporting hate towards…I am not willing to point a loaded gun at my own head for the sake of supporting everyone’s personal opinions…

ME:  Discrimination is also hate and by definition singling out and rejecting people because of their differences.  Your opinion seems somewhat hypocritical.  You do not support a candidate who condones racisim/discrimination but you are willing to discriminate based on a friend’s differing opinion.  I’m sorry.  This just confuses me terribly.  I must be honest with you and say attitudes like this are the very reason people like me do not want to get involved politically.  There is absolutely NO respect at all for differing opinions or life choices.  Why would anyone deliberately set themselves up to be hated simply because of a ridiculous political disagreement?  This is the very cause of wars and general violence between humans.  I’m with your friend who said she was shocked this would come from someone as loving as you.  I also am quite shocked and am very sorry you feel that way.

HIM:  I’m sorry you feel this was…this refusing to interact with people who have hate towards me because of my race have no business in my life…I will surround myself with people that love me and not tolerate those who would support someone who hates me…I am not budging on this and if people are calling me a hater myself I can at least say I have good reason…I don’t wish to interact with haters…I am a hater of haters (people who hate for absolutely no reason)…

THEN THIS GUY (Patrick G.) PIPES IN WITH THIS (I do not know him at all):  Lisa Summerlin what X is trying to say is if you are stupid enough to buy into Trump…good people just don’t have time for your dumbass.

ME:  Patrick G., I’ve not once said I buy into Trump.  The dumbass comment was uncessary.

ME:  X, there is no GOOD reason to hate.  

That was the end of our public conversation.  I’ll note here that several of his friends agreed with me and were shocked by his attitude.

In private I sent him this message:  Letting you go.  I can handle a lot and your political opinions and decisions are yours and I respect that but the hypocritical attitude?  That I can’t respect.  So please, when you post about losing friends over your status, do not lump me in with a group of Trump followers.  Let it be known that my reason for choosing to let you go was a human issue.  I can’t be friends with a hypocrite and unfortunately that’s exactly how you’ve come across.  Good luck to you & take care.

All of this came from someone who has always preached about loving our fellow human, accepting all differences, being kind and compassionate.  So, I ask you all:  what did I miss?  Is his reason to hate justifiable?  Does what he said make sense?  Is ANY reason to hate justifiable?  I go through life hating a lot of things – the unbearably hot weather during Summer in Georgia, how expensive groceries have become, when the sheets on my bed get tangled, rap music, when people do things only half-assed, dudes who won’t pull up their pants, when cats tear up my curtains, and Mexican food but are my reasons GOOD reasons?  Not really.  They just are what they are but choosing to hate a person – A FRIEND – because of politics?  Because they don’t believe EXACTLY the way you believe?  That I can’t get my head around.

I’m going out on a limb here and saying this.  Politics makes people hate.  There is no acceptance in the world of politics.  It makes people angry.  It has become ugly, violent, close-minded and quite frankly dangerous for anyone to speak their mind anymore.  It’s about brain-washing – “believe what I believe or you’re wrong and ignorant!”  I would bet my very life there is not one single politician in this world losing sleep over families and relationships being torn apart because of his or her views. When you choose something as volatile and convoluted as our government over friends and family, THAT is a problem.  Examine yourself for a moment and contemplate whether or not you are too caught up in a matter that will NEVER give you or even offer the love, support, encouragement and friendship of your loved ones.  Then I suggest you choose wisely.

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Remembering…

I recently lost someone very special to me.  I wanted to take a moment to remember him.

He literally made me smile every single day.  He was a bright light in a dark world that desperately needs more people like him.  He was kind.  He was courageous.  He was a fighter.

Since his passing, his Facebook Timeline has been filled with comments and posts from people he’s touched in some way.  It’s almost overwhelming.  He was clearly loved by everyone who was lucky enough to know him.

I will NEVER forget you, My Favorite Wolf.

Thank you for your love and friendship.

Rest in Peace my friend.  I love you.

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A Halloween Poem

(I saw this photo and these words came to me…please keep in mind I’m no Shakespeare!)

Shadow hides in the full moon
Into the darkness, it’s gone too soon.

Swift as a blink
This creatures does slink

Further into the dark
The distant cry of a lark

Be not afraid
His greeting we’re bade

Be not wings of a bat
It is a sneaky cat!

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The Day I Woke Up a Diabetic

We’ve all heard the saying, “I love you like a fat girl loves cake.”  Allow me to introduce myself.  I am that fat girl.  I am that fat girl who has had a lifelong love affair with cake.  In fact, I’ve cheated on cake with candy, pies and sodas.  I’m a Cake Whore.

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Last Friday night I went to the ER for chest pains.  Understand I have to be completely freaked out in order to go to the ER.  Or to visit a doctor for that matter.  I’m not a fan of the whole medical/needle/medication process.  Friday night I was scared.  I was in tremendous pain.  My chest, shoulders, left arm and left hand felt as if they were on fire.  On Thursday that same pain came and went rather quickly.  Friday afternoon it began again and wouldn’t let up so after much debate, my boyfriend said “You’re going.”  I went.

I was promptly taken back and the usual tests were conducted.  An EKG, cardiac enzymes were tested and I was hooked up to machines then taken for x-rays.  It was not long before the ER doctor came in and said, “Your heart is fine but I strongly suspect you are diabetic.”  My fasting blood sugar was way too high.  This coupled with a myriad of health issues I’ve been dealing with led him to this conclusion.  The “official” diagnosis when I left the hospital was Type II Diabetes and I was given instructions to find a primary care physician immediately.  Saturday morning I woke up a diabetic.

Now it’s confession time.  I’ve not gone to the doctor in a lot of years.  I won’t give an exact date here because it is, quite frankly, embarrassing.  The truth is my health has not been priority.  EVER.  The other truth is I simply haven’t cared until I started getting older.  I think a lot of us have that moment of clarity when we realize that we’re not young anymore and we certainly aren’t going to get younger.  It’s a rather shocking moment.  A minute ago I was 20.  Now I’m 47.  Where exactly did that time go?

I realize an actual official diagnosis will hinge on what my new primary care physician says but I will not be at all shocked if the ER doctor was spot on.  This means change.  Have I mentioned how much I abhor change?  I am bad with it.  Seriously bad with it.

As I write this, my attitude is quite positive.  My logical self understands it is treatable with diet, exercise and medication.  My logical self knows precisely what needs to change and how to go about that change but my illogical self?  She’s a real pain in the ass.  Do not be surprised if one day you find me chained to a bakery with explosives strapped to my waist because I’ve lost my mind and that sneaky little bitch has driven me over the edge.

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However, until that day comes I will work on a new lifestyle.  I’ll take it one day at a time.  I’ll do my best and if I fail, I’ll begin again.  I know it won’t be easy but onward and upward, right?

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Have You Met Yourself?

Lately, I’ve been obsessed with my age.  I will be 47 in May.  This is way…WAY too close to 50.  I don’t care what anyone says.  50 is a big number and I’m not happy with it; however, I want to be.

I want to be excited about getting older.  I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling like aging can mean life is over.  We think a lot about our younger firsts – first time we ride a bike without help from Mom and Dad, our first kiss, our first date, our first home on our own and we wonder what’s left.  Somehow along the way I became convinced I would have no more firsts after a certain age.  I was wrong.

This recent (and disturbing) obsession I have with getting older is on the heels of my Daddy being diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure.  My rational self knows people live for years with CHF.  My irrational self will freak out and tell you this is MY Daddy and losing him isn’t an option.  Losing either of my parents is a thing that honestly is beyond my realm of comprehension but the truth is they are older, I’m getting older and I need to get gripped.

Our parents get older and drag us right along with them.  Unfair all over the place, isn’t it?   All of this obsessing over aging has got me thinking…more.

I’ve not been pleased with myself.  I waste a great deal of time wishing instead of doing.  I waste too much time dreading instead of embracing.  I also waste time wanting instead of getting.  This all MUST change.

Having had some time to contemplate what all of this might mean, I realized something.  We go through life growing up and changing…we’re children, teenagers, young adults and through all of this we meet new people.  We put an effort in getting to know people.  We talk to them, ask questions and want to understand what they’re about but how many of us have truly gotten to know ourselves?  How many of us have thought about or brushed off our own quirks, delved deep into our own psyche, paid clear attention to our own habits – good or bad or explored our own dreams and desires?

I’m wondering if you’ve met yourself?

Until recently, I don’t think I had.

Humans are a constant work-in-progress which, I feel, is as it should be.  To sit still and do nothing is a shameful crime we commit to ourselves.   I met myself and realized I’m a criminal. I’ve concluded I’m robbing myself completely blind and I’m ALLOWING myself to be blinded by fear, doubt and if I’m being honest (which is how I roll) sheer laziness has also gotten the best of me.

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I don’t hate myself.  Overall I think I’m a decent person and I have qualities that I truly love so my focus from this point on needs to be – WILL BE – reminding myself daily of the things I do love while changing what I don’t love and there is where I’ll find more firsts.  If I continue to move forward and continue to evolve there will always be new first moments.   There, in the midst of personal transformation I will find happiness and ultimately peace.

Today, I met myself and I don’t think I’ve ever been happier to meet someone in my life.