Waking Up Jewish This Morning

I am Jewish. I read an article last night that said while aggression against Jews is nothing new in this country, that Saturday’s mass shooting was the largest anti-semantic attack to bring about death since the inception of our country began. I’m not sure if this is accurate. I didn’t research the numbers myself. However, that actually shocked me.

What it actually made me realize is that this isn’t about Jews or Muslims, or blacks or Illegals. Its about Americans. The problem is that Americans have learned to hate. Not all of us, but too many of us. And not enough of us have learned to stand up and say enough is enough. Sir Edmund Burke said “The thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men should do nothing.” We have to do something. And attending vigils or discussions isn’t enough. Posting armed guards outside synagogues and mosques is not enough.

Yes I carry a sidearm, and I pray I never have to use it. It is not a popular position amongst many Jews. In fact, I remember once sitting in my seat as my Rabbi spoke from the bimah (sanctuary platform) against the carrying of sidearms because more violence does not help the situation. I felt like he was staring straight at me. I felt like everyone knew I was wearing my sidearm right where I sat. Of course that was ridiculous. In point I agree with the premise of what he was saying. Just not about disarmament. I guess that’s how it will always be for people on each side of gun rights. We will probably never see eye to eye. And that’s okay. I won’t disagree with everything a person says just because I don’t agree with one thing a person says. It’s what makes me the most complicated person you may ever meet.

What I did agree with his is this; When hate and violence is perpetrated, more hate is not the answer. We have to be part of the solution, not the problem. In fact I just had this discussion with my daughters last night. As their Jewish class mates often speak out against our President, I encourage them to remind their friends that we have to come together in unity. That more hate will not solve the problem. I encourage my daughters not to argue with their friends, as that will only encourage more divisiveness. I don’t even tell them to use words like love, because in the face of hatred and tragedy, many people have a hard time loving aggressors. But offering to be part of the solution instead of being another problem is something we can all accomplish by coming together. And we won’t do that by throwing more hatred into the world.

However, I disagree that arming myself “just-in-case” is not an act of hate. It is just good business. And coming from a family of farmers and people who live and the back woods, I have learned that having a sidearm is just smart. When I go trekking in bear country I also pack bear bells and snake kits, and other counter measures to protect myself. I take precautions to warn predators I am in their area so as not to sneak up on them, and in the event I encounter them (which has happened) I know how to handle the situation, so as to not have to harm the animal. Remember, I am in their territory. But I am also trained to protect myself, and my family if the animal were to aggress me. Luckily that has not ever been the case.

Unfortunately we live in a world where humans are sometimes predators. So, living near the populous, I have also learned, and yes, I have learned, how to protect myself from them. I sincerely hope that like natures predators I will never have to use those learned skills. However, for a Rabbi to tell me that it is wrong to conceal carry because I am perpetrating hate by doing so, I think he is mistaken. All those *un*armed guards he hired to protect us were sitting in their vehicles in the parking lot while we were inside. A predatorial armed gunman could kill many before they could help us. There were no security checks entering the building. Just off duty, unarmed cops in the car. If I could save one individual, my life would be worth it. I would gladly (armed or not) put my life on the line to save another.

I think it was a WordPress article I was reading where the congregant of another synagogue received the news of the shooting while they were in services themselves, and they all looked around to each other, realizing that they were all surrounded by equally unarmed friends. Exposed, vulnerable, naked!

I am not saying that we all need to leave our vigils this week and go buy guns. In fact I don’t think that would solve the problem. While I do think an armed America makes armed individuals think twice before acts of violence. I do not think it is the answer to our problems. I think that would just create mass hysteria during times of crisis. In times off extreme crisis, I think an armed public can actually be its own worst enemy as its turns on itself as every shadow could be a perceived threat. But I say extreme crisis.

But I did start out with a call to action. Saying that merely attending vigil and discussions are not enough. So what is enough?

I think we need to look at the roots. We need to look at why this is even happening in the first place. In my last post, which had nothing to do with this, I said I am a study of people. I look at the gunman, and I don’t see a gunman. I don’t see evil. Our Rabbi this week said a “disturbed man” chose to make an “evil” decision. I just wanted to scream “NO NO NO!!!” Why do people treat everything so black and white? Yes this is tragedy. But when my oldest asked me why someone would do such a thing, I told her that he was hurting and broken. And reminded her that some people haven’t be able to get the healing in life that they need to gain balance in their mind, either because they couldn’t forgive or they were never afforded the opportunities. Some people were so broken in childhood that they were broken beyond repair, but we can’t automatically assume that their families caused it out of spite, because remember that hurting people, hurt people. They do the best they can and often don’t realize the damage they are causing.

She responded saying we needed to remember the families through everything. I reminded her that we needed to remember the gunman’s family too, because a lot of people were going to blame them as well. She asked what the gunman’s name was, I told her that didn’t matter, we just needed to remembered those who were lost.

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Later she came to me and told me that they were already in a better place. We needed to remember him too, because he is in a living hell on earth. Somebody has to remember his struggle.

If an 11 year old can remember to show love and compassion for the man who committed the largest attack against her people in American History, why can’t adults learn not to hate? Why can’t we learn to show grace and mercy?

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Static Existence

I asked myself last night “Do you ever wonder about people, and wonder if in the end you mattered enough to them to ever cross their minds now?”

This is something I have often speculated. Its a bit disconsolate, but I usually decide that I didn’t. I do not think that I have impacted people’s lives that much. Not because I haven’t done enough, or because I haven’t tried.  Or even because I,  as an individual, do not matter. It is simply because people are shallow and floating through worthless, meaningless lives, getting to death in no substantial rush.

This makes me really pensive, about a great many things.  Mostly about others and their lives.  What meaning that their lives have.  Why they do the things they do, or don’t do.  What motivates them.  Why they interact with others the way they do.  What meaning I held in their life.  Unfortunately that means I was simply Continue reading “Static Existence”

abandoned

Hey guys,  I haven’t abandoned you, well….. at least not permanently.  I promise.  I have just been going through some tough shit.  And honestly, I don’t know how to deal with it.images (3)  Normally I would talk about it, but I don’t even feel like I can do that until I sort it out, and I have just taken to going internal the past few years as it just gets too be too burdensome. Talking about it, even on my blog almost makes it too real.  I know that seems silly.  Especially since, in life, I’m not quiet about it at all, and I’m not going down without a fight.

On top of it all, I tend to throw myself, and every last ounce of energy at my kids when life gets like this because I just don’t want them to feel neglected when their lives are falling apart around them. As a result, I tend to minimize all screen time.

 

I’m not one for much screen time in the first place other than Netflix, but now emails and WordPress really go the way of the Do-do.  Sorry for all of you who started to find me interesting.  I will be back.  I even have several blogs in process.

 

Just bear with me as I work my shit out!!!

 

The child within

As I have discussed in past posts, I am working on healing from child abuse from my victimized, covert narcissist mother. Currently, I am working my way through a book written by Karyl McBride, Ph.D. called Will I Ever Be Good Enough?: Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers.  So far the healing has been in little bites and steps, as it has been overwhelming.  And once I settle down from this move I plan to seek couseling to help me not only further process some of this, but also go back and heal from the death of my father from 17 years ago, as well as some abuse I have withstood in my marriage.  While I love my husband dearly and am committed to him, we both came from damaged, and abusive upbringings, and he turned around and abused me.  Being the strong-willed feminist that I was, I never thought it could happen to me, so I never saw the signs.  Funny how that works.  And being that he loved me, I think he never thought he could ever hurt me, but I was the one woman he could hurt without too much consequence.  Again, funny how things work out.  We both have a lot of healing, and are working through our own journeys both together and alone as we strive to be better versions of ourselves, both for ourselves, each other, and our children.  If you wish to read his journey through self-expression and healing he is blogging over at External Articulation.

Anyways, my current “homework” for where I am at in this book is asking me to grieve for the child that I didn’t get to be because I had to grow up too quickly, or because I had to be my mother’s caretaker, or ever because I had to be the caretaker for my entire family.  I am supposed to write down or draw what it would have been like if I would have been able to just be a child, instead of having to take care of myself or others.  To write down what it was like when my mother wasn’t there for me when she should have been a mother.  To write down what it was supposed to be like if I had a mother.  Im sure this will be an ongoing theme as things come up, but this is a start.  I can’t possibly hash out an entire childhood, and life in one blog, but I have to start somewhere.  So I will start here, today….

 

 

She tell me “next time ill believe you when you”  when I get these get red flags, these prickles on the back of my neck about people (i am ALWAYS RIGHT), and yet she never believes me.  This has been going on since I was 2 maybe 3 years old.  And we are talking serious shit.  Like the guys that raped me!!!!!

i had to raise myself after dad died.  I shouldn’t have had to do that.  She should have been there for me.

i had to take care of her when she was pregnant with my brother.  I wasn’t even 3 years old yet.  That wasn’t fair to a toddler me!  And by the way, Where was my dad?

I even made her made her meals,  and later she told me she would stuff the food in a drawer (so even that wasnt good enough).  It doesn’t matter that I was 2, I get this message in my head all my life of how I wasn’t good enough!

I had to buy my own clothes and gas and bills as soon as dad died bc he left me college money and she felt slighted bc it was all hers.  Yes, she actually told me that I stole her money.  NO I DIDN’T, He changed his will, and life insurance.  Probably because he didn’t trust her not to blow it all in the first year, exactly like she did.  Yet she riminded me over and over again that it was gone because I stole from her!

when i have been on the verge of depressive meltdown she tells me, just put one foot in front of the other.  Sometimes I have been doing it for so long I just can’t anymore.  And to be told to keep going when you are at the edge of a cliff JUST.ISN’T.HELPFUL!

all my life i was told I wasn’t allowed to cry.  It was a sign of weakness.  Yet she help and comforted my brother when he cried.  She coddled him.

she tells me i wouldn’t cuddle or let her hold me when I was a child, but she also says she always wanted a son, and my dad wanted a daughter, so I wonder if it was she who wouldn’t hold me.  I never felt she wanted me.  I always felt lake she was always waiting for my brother.  And that them almost dying when he was born bonded them together forever, and she ever let me forgether the special bond they had, and that I could never share.

when I would come in crying she would ask me if I was bleeding and tell me to move to the kitchen because she didn’t want me dripping blood on the floor, this was all the time.  As a left brain thinker, I can remember how logical this was.  As a mother now myself I realize how heartless this was!

She always made me feel so indebted to her because I didn’t have the hard life she had, with her mom kicking her out at 14, and trying to marry her off by 16 to every available suiter. the problem is that her stories changed, and I shouldn’t feel guilty for my life not being as misserable as hers, and certainly I shouldn’t be indebted to her for her doing what a mother ought to do in the first place, protect their children.  It was never a competition (well to her it always was, and I was losing bc I hadn’t been raped or abused as much).  Oh boy,  Just wow! I had it way worse than I realized it.

She always villified my grandmother, her mother-in-law, who in her own right was an aweful bitch, but my dad never was confrontational, so he never stood up to my mom.  My momwas always the victim, and then she reminded me my whole life how I was just like my grandma.  When I tried to confront her she just told me i was being too sensitive and she meant it in a positive way.  Which was utter Bullshit

Once I tried to make a neighing sound like a horse.  She laughed and told me I sounded lake on old which laughing.  I never tried to neigh again.  I was too ashamed.

 

Why your Love Affair with Chocolate is Really Something Else

I don’t love my 100% cacao, but I can’t stand milk chocolate the way I used to crave it. It’s just sugar to me anymore. But give me a 70-80% cacao bar, no milk, and that is my perfect sweet spot!

Sugar in my morning coffee though. That is my indulgence that I just haven’t been able to kick. I know it’s bad for me. I know it’s my own personal drug addiction, but nothing quite does it the same for me.

Other than that, if I crave sweets, I go for 5 or 6 dates, or carob pods.

Yogibanker

Those of you who are from or have worked in the UK will be familiar with the tradition of bringing sweets and chocolates into the office after returning from trips overseas. London after all is the global hub for travel.

To my not-so-surprise, my recent contribution of some Lindt ‘premium’ chocolates from Geneva airport were demolished in the blink of an eye. I remember looking at the empty tray saying, “what happened there? That was quick!” There were a few potential suspects sitting around the ‘chocolate contribution’ desk, but I thought nothing of it… until later.

Sugar. If it’s not plastic the world is obsessed with, it’s definitely sugar. Diabetes, heart disease, even cancer are all implicated with a diet high in sugar. I even read recently that sugar is more addictive than heroin or cocaine! It was only my local cafe Beanys in the City last Monday morning, where…

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The death of the dream

The Narcissist Daughter has so eloquently written what could have been my own words. I have often found myself in shame as I have thought that maybe G!d took the wrong parent from us when my father died 17 years ago. I have found myself wishing her death. Not because I wish any harm on her, but because I just want to grieve for a final time and move on with my life. These are shameful thoughts, I know. However, there is closure in death. I want to honor my parents. It’s important to me. My mom makes it impossible to honor my father. And only through distance can I honor my mother. It’s still hard to be a child who loves a parent who doesn’t know how to love you back, and to wish they would die so you can be done with grieving them. I just want peace. In my life, but more so in my soul!

The Narcissist's Daughter

When you are the child of narcissistic parents you grieve many times. Most people grieve when their parent dies, but for those of us who have been black listed multiple times, treated as though we failed to exist, we have lost our parents many times over.

Most of all we grieve when we realise the parent we have is never going to be the parent we hoped for. They don’t exist. And generally as a narcissist ages they become more stuborn and set in their ways, any glimmer of home in a happily connection with them shatters and dies.

I have cried a lot for the death of my dreams and ideals.

Last week my husband and I reached out to my mother once again via text, as Christians we feel a large burden of responsibility to care for her. Because of that love and care, we keep trying to…

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