Tuesday, February 25, 2014

No class for me!

Welp, this post title says it all. I simply will not be in class today. We had quite an eventful evening in addition to an eventful morning. This morning, we slept 10 minutes past our alarm and had eight minutes to get out the door to catch the bus - that was a first. However, last night was the real adventure. My husband and I were on the bus home and we were about to go down the mountain into Pendleton. We had a temporary driver who was filling in for our regular driver, so he did things a bit differently. One thing was that he kept the inside lights on all the way back to Pendleton, which made it difficult for passengers to see outside of the bus. As we reached the peak of Cabbage hill, I heard the bus driver mumble something. I looked up to catch what he said and I saw our bus being engulfed by tons of brake lights. No one around us was moving. Then, I heard 7 loud bangs and a couple choice words from the driver. I was in shock and I had no idea what was going on, but I soon figured out that we had just gotten into a fender - bender. "BAM!" Another loud crash behind us had occurred. The best way I could describe our accident was that we were like a pinball going through a pinball machine. Our bus was going through a tunnel of cars and hitting nearly each one on the way through. Our outside mirrors were gone and the side of the bus was thoroughly scraped. Firefighters and cops eventually made their way through the accumulated pile - up of cars to check on everyone involved in the scene. We waited on the mountain for two hours until we were finally able to go down at a fast rate of 5 mph. As we began to move, we came across the accident that had caused the pile - up/traffic jam. There were 2 semi trucks that had slid and were skewed on the highway and there was one that had almost gone completely over the mountain with just its tail end sticking up, clinging to the edge of the guardrail. Just beyond that (a few feet) there was a small car that had been totaled in the front with a large, shattered hole in the windshield on the passenger side, which meant that someone's head had gone through the window. Everyone on the bus seemed speechless. Then, just a few more feet ahead, we came across another accident. This one was quite a pile - up. Starting at the back, there was a minivan that had its front go under the back of a semi truck, then the semi truck with its back and front bent up, then a small Jeep Cherokee compacted in the middle, and another semi in front of the Jeep that had been crunched together in the back. It was awful to witness and I'm sure we only saw half of it since we heard some disturbing noises behind us when we first came to a stop after our pinball - like adventure. Most of the passengers on the bus were a bit impatient since they just wanted to go home and I did too, but I quickly realized how lucky we were after we passed the accident scenes. The accidents were only a few short feet in front of us, even though we couldn't see them from where we were due to the dense fog. I prayed for the individuals who were taken away by ambulance, in hopes that they were not fatally injured. We were in a small fender - bender and were restless, but not a lot of us kept in mind how the victims must have felt. We were very fortunate, and now, we are down in Pendleton, playing it safe. Our bus was delayed an hour this morning and then they decided not to go up since there had already been about 12 wrecks throughout last night and this morning. We too decided to play it safe and not drive up ourselves. That black ice/freezing fog is quite sneaky! Happy last posting day. I'm actually going to miss it; reading everyone's posts and writing my own. Bravo, everyone.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

What we REALLY teach kids

You have to go to college. You shouldn't do that. That's in style. That's not in style. Are you sure you want to do that? No one's looking, so do it anyway. It's too much work. That's easy. That's what kids your age do. That's what successful people do. Why wait? That's dumb. This is ridiculous. Why do I have to do it? She's not doing it. Don't talk to them, they're weird...Victoria's Secret, Cosmopolitan, Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, Playboy, McDonald's, Assassin's Creed, explicit music, cleavage, partying, degrading language towards opposite the opposite sex, junk food, spending money...Things we've heard, learned, practiced, and taught. Kids are sponges; they'll absorb anything, good AND bad. If we, as adults, don't want kids doing bad things, then why do we do them ourselves? We don't want kids doing drugs, listening to explicit music, talking bad about their peers, dancing dirty at school dances, making inappropriate references, etc., etc. Even though we may not or have not done every one of those things, we model it to younger generations in a different way. We don't want kids doing drugs, yet we insist on NEEDING that drink or two. Or four. We don't want kids listening to explicit music, yet we secretly let it flow through our headphones so no one else can hear it. We don't want kids talking bad about their peers, yet we talk about our own peers behind their backs. We don't want kids dirty dancing, yet, for some reason, that's all the dancing we know. We don't want kids making inappropriate references, yet we take others' words and twist them to make it seem like an inappropriate reference. We've all done things in the past or currently that we don't want kids to do, but we still model it to them in some way. I think it's safe to say that it should stop. We should stop modeling bad habits to kids, because all we're doing is raising the next generation. I mean, that should be a bigger deal than people make it out to be. Kids are sponges. Don't let sponges soak up that nasty dish water, because it'll reek before you know it.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Young & married

People often think that being young and married is not the best way to do things. I don’t really know what “things” they mean, but if they mean supporting each other, being a team, making food for each other, falling asleep on each other’s chest, and sharing a bathroom with each other, then I think I’d beg to differ. I mean our marriage rocks to say the least. We have always got each other’s back; we share our thoughts and ideas with each other, take care of each other when we are sick, learn to accept each other’s flaws, make fun of each other, tell each other what the other is doing that bothers us, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. I have known my husband for five years and this year in August, we will have been married for two years. We have grown so much with each other that it is hard to believe sometimes. We are such a strong team, that nothing could ever break us down and our love and trust is everlasting. However, I have also learned that marriage is not what everyone says it is, but in contrast, it is exactly what everyone said it would be, but we always prove people wrong. Let me explain myself…1. Lots of people say marriage is hard. True. When you get married, you are not alone anymore. Meaning, you have a co-pilot; another person you must consider in all of your big decisions; a person that must be put before yourself, at times. False. People who say marriage is hard CHOOSE to make it hard. Marriage is a beautiful thing and it, in no way, has to be difficult. You can have a positive attitude/outlook about situations in your marriage and grow, or you can have a negative attitude/outlook and stay put. Choose the day old bread for a better deal, or choose the most expensive bread because it only looks healthy. It’s up to you. 2. People think you won’t be as successful in your future if you get married young, True. If you make decisions that don’t benefit you, your spouse, your future children, your spiritual relationship, or your wallet, then, they might be right. MIGHT. False. We are both in college, working part – time, debt – free, getting up at 5 am to commute, doing homework on the bus (currently), and getting after each other if we don’t get enough sleep. Self – explanatory. 3. Your spouse should be the same religion as you. This one just irks me in so many ways. True. If you want your religious views to align and your mind at ease since you know what you’ll raise your children as, then yes. You should marry someone who shares your religious views, False. I am a Christian and my husband is Catholic. One Sunday at church, a member came up to me and asked, “So when are you going to change your husband?” I was so mad. Who does that? First, it’s not a very Christian – like thing to do, second, I’ll never change my husband. What he believes is up to him. We go to different churches every Sunday and on rare occasion, we attend each other’s church. Are we a house divided? No. Not. At. All. We both believe in God, we both pray, share different views that expand our minds, and to us, that is all that matters. Yes, it might be difficult deciding on the religion which we prefer our children to be raised, but we want them to be a part of the decision too, so we’ll cross that bridge when we reach it. 4. You have to have kids within a few years of being married. If I had a nickel for every time someone asked us when we are going to have kids, I’d buy myself a meal. False. When you get married young, people either think you’re already pregnant or you are going to be really soon. That’s not the case for us. We want kids someday, but we want to be somewhat stable in many ways first. “Well, you can never really be financially stable/ready when you have kids.” Sure, I believe that. Although, we want to be financially stable to the point where we don’t always have to work so we can be with our kids more and so we have the ability to have income even when we are not working. We want to build a dream home, start a business, travel, and so much more. With that being said, we will have to work hard for a while. We want to allow our kids to have the freedom to do as they please; to be supported by us without financial struggle. We already have our kids’ names in mind, so every time I think about them and imagine their faces, it encourages me to strive for my goals so I can easily provide for them. Kids will come a ways down the road in our future. True. There seems to be no truth to this unless medical reasons say otherwise. 5. Happy wife, happy life. A.k.a., you’re going to argue, a lot. True. We have differing ideas about a lot of things, but we usually see the other’s point of view too, in which we choose to learn and understand rather than battle it out for our own side. We have never ever yelled at each other. I will never let it get that far. It’s ridiculous. Raising your voice won’t make your spouse be on your side any more. Work it out. False. Both the wife AND husband should be happy. It’s not a one – way street. Want to be a strong team? Stop being stubborn and put yourself in your spouse’s shoes. Learn about each other, find what makes the other happy; divorcing shouldn't be an option. To sum it all up, beat the stereotypes, whenever you get married. Be a team, don’t give up, communicate, trust, give more than take, share your dreams, and be each other’s BFF.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

All the same

Rich vs. poor. Mac vs. HP. Brown vs. blonde. Slim vs. large. Black vs. white. Pale vs. tan. Popular vs. unpopular. Trailer vs. mansion. Fast food vs. gourmet. Fast vs. slow. Intelligent vs. unintelligent. Educated vs. uneducated. Disabled vs. stable. Homeless vs. sheltered. Kind vs. unkind. Thoughtful vs. selfish. Giver vs. taker. Talkative vs. quiet. Negative vs. positive. Complainers vs. "keep-it-in-ers". Dreamer vs. do-er. differences are what make you unique; what others know you by. If differences are supposed to be a good characteristic, why do we see them as negative differences? "Oh, she talks too much. I don't like that." "He's a little on the heavy side." "They live in a trailer? That's too bad." None of these things are bad, just things that are part of who we are. Sometimes I'm quiet, but sometimes I'm talkative. Sometimes I'm thoughtful, but other times, I'm selfish. Why do we judge others negatively, based on their differences? Differences are the best characteristic that makes someone memorable, whether you remember them in a good way or a bad way. I'm not rich, but I'm rich in love and support. I'm more slow than fast. I grew up in a trailer, not a mansion. BUT, I'm not disabled, homeless, nor unintelligent because I've had the advantage not to be all of those things. However, if I were all of those things, would I be seen differently? Maybe. Would I be judged? Definitely. Why do we do that? I don't like that. It leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. We SHOULDN'T do that. In the end, take away everything you own, and you are no better than the homeless man panhandling on the sidewalk. We're all the same.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

What on EARTH am I doing?!

Do you ever feel like a plastic bag? Drifting through the wind? Wanting to start again? Just kidding...but seriously, admit it. Sometimes you just feel like dirt. Not the pretty red dirt that could be turned into clay, not the soil that fertilizes the beautiful plants, but the dirt that lies with fossils; dirt that lies with the dead, like I'm at a dead - end. I can feel so lost sometimes, but not often because I'm too busy focusing on a degree that has nothing to do with my dreams, or so I think. Lately, I've been having a pain in my chest (figuratively speaking...somewhat) that feels like a gut feeling. It's a feeling that people tend to act upon because they know it'd lead to something positive/negative; a serious consequence. **Side note: a gut feeling occurs due to sharing the same emotional chemical produced in your brain with you stomach. So, you're actually FEELING you're emotions. Yay for college education! Anyway, I have been praying a lot about things that probably aren't necessary. A.K.A. selfish praying (or at least I think it is). I've been praying for guidance, but more like "PLEASE JUST GIVE ME SOME SORT OF SIGN BECAUSE THINGS AREN'T GOING SO HOT DOWN HERE AND I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO." With that thought, the past week, I have been realizing that I have absolutely NO way of knowing what will happen next in my life. None. Even if I do have my planner laid out in front of me, things could change in a second. I can't keep worrying about what I should be doing or what others think I should do because it's not up to me, and let me tell you, that DRIVES. ME. NUTS. I always feel like I NEED to know everything; what I should do, where I should go, what I need to prepare, etc. But, in reality, I don't need to worry about SQUAT. Even though I might not enjoy what I'm doing now (I'm talking like I like it 30% of the time), maybe it's in my will; maybe it's what I'm supposed to be doing. It could be a part of my ultimate goal; my will in His plan, even though I'd rather run 10 miles than continue to do what I'm doing. And you know what? The past month or so, I swear, EVERY sermon at my Church has been giving me hints. Basically, the hint has been, "Chill out, be true, and let me do my work. - God" So, I'm doing my best to just relax and let things fall where they may, which has been challenging, but interesting at the same time. I can't recall each one specifically, but I remember 2 that stood out to me... 1. Stop waiting for Him, because He is waiting for you. 2. Don't be like the rest of the world. Clear your mind. When you do, you'll know what to do. My husband and I talked a lot about this topic last night, lying in bed, wondering why we were given such plans. He concluded with, "Seek and ye shall find." I concluded with, "Knock and the door shall be opened unto you." Let it be, let it be Let it be, let it be Whisper words of wisdom Let it be. -The Beatles

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The little things: good things, bad things; things that mean everything

The Balloon: I went to my favorite restaurant on Friday night with my husband and we enjoyed some great food and music. It must have been someone’s birthday because a woman had a bunch of latex balloons in tow. Near the end of the musician’s set, one of the balloons had been set free from its leash and it had also lost its perkiness due to stale helium. Once the balloon had been set free, it began to happily bounce through the crowd of merry people, hitting everyone’s volleyball spike with joy. I watched as the balloon traveled through the half drunken crowd and I thought, “Wow. It’s amazing how helium – filled latex can connect such a joyous crowd on a Friday night. That’s awesome.” The Purple Chair: I watched a rented movie late one night over the weekend about two families who went through great lengths together to find their kidnapped daughters. The fathers of both daughters had captured the kidnapper and tortured him in order to get information out of him, since he was an accomplice to the lead criminal. Near the end, the case had been blown open by a lead provided by a supermarket clerk. Once the lead had been investigated, they held a man in custody who had been a prime suspect in the kidnapping. They captured him at a house whose walls had been covered in drawings of a maze; another clue. The house also contained large, black toolboxes that contained numbers of different kinds of snakes in addition to bloody children’s clothing. The clothing had been photographed piece by piece by investigators, which were then shown to each family in a private office. The first family stormed out of the office, emotionally destroyed by the assumed fact that their daughter was killed. The second family only consisted of the father since the mother was too emotionally distraught to leave her bed. The father entered the office, which was full of office furniture; a long meeting table and numerous, cushioned, mobile, purple chairs. The father sat in one of the chairs and examined the photos. One photo struck him when he noticed that the piece of clothing in the photo belonged to his daughter, which was covered in blood. A bullet of emotions struck his body while that purple chair supported everything; his physical weight, weight of emotions, everything. That’s the purple chair’s job. It supports many emotions each time it has an occupant. It’s the occupant’s world in the moment; the only support, comfort, and unforgettable piece in an occupant’s mind during a brief moment of heartbreak. Purple chair = a world in itself. Walking to the mailbox: I live in an RV and commute to school every day via a free commuter bus. Over the weekend, I was sitting at a makeshift table/bed, looking out the window and I spotted a man wearing a red coat and forest green pants off in the distance. He was walking a long walk down the lane (I live on a ranch…gravel and dirt only) and he crossed a highway to reach his mailbox. Looking up from my work very now and then, I watched him make the trek back down the lane with his mail clenched in his gloved hand. It made me think how hard he works to keep his ranch up and running all while volunteering at Church, being the head of the Church board, Search and Rescue, the Main Street Cowboy organization, visiting people in need, taking care of his family, and so much more. The walk he took out to the mailbox, reminded me of how relaxing and mind - clearing a simple walk can be, especially in the midst of such a hectic and focused schedule. Sometimes taking a break to enjoy some fresh air and nature’s beauty is all it takes to get back up and at it. I mean, at 74, with diabetes, naively keeping up his reputation as my hero, he is one hard – working grandpa.

Monday, January 13, 2014

1/13/2014: thought for the day

I often compare myself too much to others in many ways: my style, hair, makeup, figure, grade point average, skills, progress, success, you name it! One thing that I will never seem to get over (anytime soon) is how smart I am. the word "smart" holds many definitions, so it depends on the eye of the beholder as to what "smart" really means. I would define smart as a characteristic that a person has gained through past experiences and studies, but who can then outshine every person in the room when it comes to scoring well on a test. I, on the other hand, was not the best test - taker in high school. Actually, tests stressed me out; tests were my enemy. The only tests that I was not afraid to take were my Spanish tests because I liked Spanish. I always wanted to do well and when I didn't, I would beat myself up over it. In honors biology, when my name wouldn't make it up on the board for a ninety percent or above, I felt humiliated because then everyone would know that you got a B, or worse, an F. To this day, I constantly ask myself why I am not succeeding as well or as fast as others, or why I am not able to perform the same tasks that another person is. I've come to a simple conclusion: I can. We seem to grow up in a society that tells us we can do anything we want when we grow up, yet the question contains doubt that we could be anything we want. So, instead of comparing myself to so many others, I've realized that there's nothing stopping me (just my occasional self-doubt) from doing just as well as they seem to be doing.