Thursday, August 6, 2015

Wow! She Did What?

I have had a few eye-opening experiences in my lifetime. None has hit me as hard as the experiences with my husbands daughter. This wisp of a young woman single-handedly destroyed a bedroom, ripping off the closet door, putting holes in the bedroom door, writing inappropriate things all over the walls, using a staple gun to put hundreds of staples in the wall, removing security alarm pads, destroying the window screen, and I could go on and on. 
All this property damage was done because her girlfriend broke up with her.

When she moved out of our home in January 2015, it was because we put our foot down on her behaviors in our home. We gave her the choice to change them or feel free to leave, so she made the choice to go. Then, just as people who blame others for their own issues do, she told everyone we threw her out onto the streets six-months pregnant. Just as we knew she wouldn't, she didn't spend a single night "on the street." She moved in to someone else's home that same day.  

We had to use 2 gallons of white paint to cover the racist slurs we found on our bedroom walls. This being the walls of a home that gladly and happily fosters children of all colors. (We closed our foster home while this young woman lived here by the way, she was not appropriate!) And two gallons of white paint didn't cover it all. 

Daily living with that insanity was horrendous,and constant stress for a year and a half. This is in addition to the guys and weird people she brought into our home, the guys she was caught in our bathroom showering in front of with our younger children here. The list of inappropriate and outrageous behaviors go on and on. This what happens when there are no boundaries taught, or excuses for bad behavior are always provided. Someone seems to always give excuses as to why this should be tolerated or overlooked, and it's been that way this girls entire life. 

Did we break-up with her, no! Yet we were left with all the damage which she completely dismissed as someone else's fault. Her vocabulary rivaled that of the biggest potty mouth you'd ever have to suffer through, language she did not learn from her Dad's side of her family I might add. The Sizemore's have manners and don't speak to or around children in that manner! This girl used the "f" word and the "b" word in nearly every sentence and it was a constant struggle to get her to stop! It was a constant source of stress. When you have younger children in the home it adds a deeper importance in snuffing it out!! By the way, this girl is the product of what experts have said is the worst case of parental alienation they've ever in their careers experienced. After years of not wanting anything to do with Daddy because of Mom's alienating behaviors and negative discussion of dad with the children and in front of the children, she showed up one day after she turned 8 and moved out of Mom's house at 12:01am on her birthdate. 

This week another incident occurred that reminded me of how out of control people like this do damage to others with no remorse or thought, like their firs of rage is an entitlement and it's not their responsibility to own up to the damage or fix it. It's actually criminal!

Two days ago a young lady, a single mom, was at a friends house when another young woman showed up and broke out all the windows in her car. She is working, trying to support herself and her child and now the only means of transportation has no windows, not to mention the body damage done. A witness to the event tells me the alleged perpetrator later said she'd pay for the windows when she can! My experience with the step-daughter tells me that will never happen, it never does with these people. They feel entitled to do whatever they want and if other people are damaged in the process then it's just too bad because it wasn't their fault. Someone else is always to blame.

Now I don't know what led up to this incident but it really doesn't matter because there is just no reason for turning your emotions, disappointment, or anger into criminal activity. This little boy has to ride in this car. Liability insurance doesn't pay to fix this damage either. 

Why do people act this way? I think a lot of times it's mental health issues. Drugs are also a culprit. In our situation both were a factor. Regardless of the issues this behavior, criminal behavior, is not excusable or tolerated in a realistic society. Society doesn't care that you're little girl or boy has mental health issues. They do care that their mental health issues have turned violent and is destroying property and lives.

There is help out there for mental health and drugs. Go get it and stop making excuses for behaviors that are not within the realms of acceptable behaviors. This behavior is why relationships with these types of individuals don't ever last. It's why divorce happens, and remarriages  for these types of people are usually very volatile. 

If you would like to help this young mother replace the windows in this car in which her young son must be transported to school and/or daycare, there is a GoFundMe site:

Friday, July 17, 2015

The Fiddle & The Tuba

Back in the days of being a Country Music Artist, my band was looking to expand and our drummer, Jeff Lee, found us a fiddle player to sit in on one of our practice sessions to try out. Jeff prefaced Homer Goodner’s sit-in by explaining to us that Homer was a bit older than us. Actually, Homer was in his 80’s. In addition, Homer had two artificial legs. As someone in my early 30’s I was taken aback by the age and frailness of this “old guy.” My exact words were “Jeff, are you nuts? I don’t want some guy dying on us out on the road somewhere.” Then entered Homer. Homer was a man of small stature, with white hair, and he came into the room on artificial limbs and those metal arm braces/crutches. But, when this man entered the room he filled it!

Homer Goodner was the kind of guy that made you feel young. In fact, his exact words the first time we met was “always hang around with the young folks and you’ll always feel young.” He was an inspirational man in every way. He didn’t complain and always had a smile on his face even after we’d run through a song a couple of times and I’d say, “well, that was good but I think we can do it better, so let’s try it again!” Everyone else would sigh and say okay because above just being musical partners we also cared about and loved each other like family. Like every family we’d sometimes experience differences but at the end of the day we knew we could count on each other.

I remember sitting in David O’Neal’s music room practicing in Tulsa, Oklahoma one afternoon and Jeff Lee coming in with a broken leg. Jeff seemed to always have a colorful life wrought full of “you won’t believe this” stories. Jeff was even struck by lightning twice and lived to tell about it. For that reason, he refused to play outdoor venues if there was a cloud in the sky. I can’t say that I blame him much for that either.

As Jeff began to tell us about breaking his leg and having to go to the hospital Homer sat and listened. Then he said, “You guys get your leg broken and you go to a sanitary hospital to get it fixed. When I break my leg and go to get it fixed I’m sitting in a welding shop on a dirty 55 gallon drum!” 

Homer also made me think differently about all those handicapped spaces in parking lots. Time and time again I would see Homer struggle walking from far off spaces because people without handicapped parking tags or placards would take the handicapped spots from someone who truly needed and deserved to use it.  However, I never heard one single complaint from Homer. Instead he would say, “well, I probably was getting too fat and needed the exercise.”

When I think of Homer Goodner I can’t help but smile. This man that played with the likes of Patsy Cline and other great singers, a man whom I thought was “too old” to be in our band, taught me so much that will remain with me the rest of my days. He taught me that there are people who are inherently good. He also taught me that no matter what life brings our attitude rules our destiny.

Homer was a man that went way out of his way to enrich someone’s life. My son, Austen, loved Homer and Homer loved Austen. Austen played tuba in the school band and Homer and Austen began practicing together to do a special performance at our church one Sunday. You wouldn’t think of a fiddle and a tuba making beautiful harmony, but they do! I loved hearing it and seeing this 14 year old kid and this 80 something year old man entranced in the music together. It was nothing short of amazing and glorious. 

As I have been on my weight loss and exercise journey I think of Homer every day as I’m riding my exercise bike or walking on my treadmill. I find myself feeling exhausted and thinking I can’t push until the end of the workout. Then I hear Homer’s voice in my head and think if Homer were here he’d tell me to keep moving. “It’s when you slow-down that you get tired kid! Keep on keeping on.” And… I shall.

Homer is gone now but his memory will live on forever in my band mates and me. Kevin Dunegan, Jerry Ogden, David O’Neal and Janice Beesley (now Sizemore) were touched by this wonderful human being. The lessons he taught will never be forgotten because this man was larger than life! His outlook on life is a lesson we all could use and we were blessed to have had the privilege of making some beautiful music with Homer!

As you go through the trials and trouble that comes into your life I hope you will remember Homer Goodner too. Go out into the world and make a difference in someone’s life by the way you conduct yourself, just like Homer did. Reach inside yourself and find that inner strength that lies within you. It’s there I promise!

There's also another lesson in this, never judge a book by its cover!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Assumption Bites Back.

Do you ever just get tired of people? Today was a day of reflection for me. I was reminded of some of the moments over the last three or four years of having everything I said judged by people who seemed to want to see negativity. I thought it was cowardly at the time. Now, I just think it was sad. Today, I was reminded that life goes full circle. You never know who you’re going to need help from at some point in the future so it’s foolish to bite people’s heads off with insinuation and judgment about their intentions. We are never inside someone else’s head to know motives or even inflection of their statements. Yet people seem to think they know everything about us sometimes. Regardless of how people treated me, I can say that no matter how much hurt it caused me at the time, and still stings to this day, I would certainly help anyone if they need my help. Today, was THAT day even though apologies never came when in reality they are due.

That said, it reminded me of a conversation I had with one of my kids two weeks ago. He told his sister that I was really mad at them and they were probably in BIG trouble when I got home. However, I hadn’t talked to the child either by telephone, in person, or by text message that day so I didn’t understand where he got that impression. Come to find out, I had asked him a simple question the day before, “who said you could go get snow cones with your friend and his mom?” This question came after a text asking him his location as he wasn’t at home when I got there from a day of work.

From his perspective, he had made the judgment somehow that I was mad. It was a simple question. You see, we try to drill into our children that if plans change they need to simply pick up the phone and call or text parents to let us know. We feel it’s important to know where your children are and with whom they are congregating. If an emergency was to happen you would need to know how to get to your child. Or, if something catastrophic were to happen like a bomb, shooting, or building collapse, it’s important to know your child is NOT in that particular place at that time.

Getting our children to follow this basic rule has been like pulling teeth! It started with the oldest child and has been the case all the way down to the youngest. I can’t really fathom what is so difficult about sending a text or dialing those 11 digits to check in when plans change. I also believe it is a parent’s job to make sure their children are hanging with people who are upstanding, decent, and well behaved. My mother always had the saying, “birds of a feather flock together.” She also drilled into us that if you hang with the wrong element then you get the same reputation. In other words, if you hang out with thugs then you’re viewed as a thug by others. Another good example is if you hang out with people who are constantly intermingled in drama, drama, drama, then you’re seen as a drama queen as well. I don’t know about you but I don’t want my children to hang with either of these groups as well as a few others. I want my children to associate with children whose parents teach their children manners, morals and to use language that is appropriate. I’m of the belief that if you wouldn’t say it in front of Grandma & Grandpa, then kids shouldn’t say it at all.

I’ve also had my child befriend someone who is allowed to curse at and in front of their parents. How on Earth is that EVER appropriate? This child creates drama every chance. She is allowed to date men although she is a teen, and I’m not talking about 16-18 year old teen either. This child is the type of child I do NOT allow my child to hang with at all. I encourage my child to be polite to the girl, to not be mean or rude, but to stay an arms-length away from her to avoid being entangled in her dysfunction. When we as parents fail to limit our children’s exposure to people who are going to lead them down the wrong path, then we are failing as parents.

I also tell my children that it is not my job to be their friend. Kids will have plenty of friends throughout their lives. Instead, it is my job to parent them and bring them up in a way that is not only pleasing to God but also creating a socially responsible human being. Parenting is not a popularity contest with our children’s affections or votes. It’s serious business that requires work.

On another note;

I’ve been using the skin-tightening cream from Beverly Hills MD and I have to admit that I love the way it makes my skin feel. I can’t tell yet if it’s tightening things up, but it sure is relaxing to put it on and it smells nice. I’ll certainly keep you posted on this test experience as the month goes on.Do you

Monday, July 13, 2015

Momma's Boy

Today I’m sitting at work, working like crazy, (of course) when I begin to receive texts from my 15 year old son. The texts were as follows;


Irwin: Yo Janet (although my name is Janice)

Me: What Irvin?

Irwin:       I was wondering

Me: I hope thinking doesn’t hurt your head.

Irwin:Oh haha btw (by the way) you look nice today.

Me: You haven’t seen me today!

Irwin:Yeah, but I bet you dressed good today.

Me:What are you wanting?

Irwin:Can I not have a conversation without me wanting something?

Me:Not a conversation telling me I look good. Come on son spit it out, what are you working up the nerve to ask?

Irwin:Well, you see, Rico wanted to know if I could hang out with him today, youno what I’m saying homie?

Me:Isn’t Dad home? Are all your chores completed, your room clean, are you wearing clean underwear?

Irwin: We are about to clean the kitchen and I’m washing my sheets. Clean underwear, Get out of here!

Me:If that stuff is done then I don’t care if Dad doesn’t care. He may even take you over to Rico’s if you ask him to do so.

Irwin: Ight thanks homie G.


Who is Homie G? And why is my son texting me when he has a perfectly good parent at home? I shared this conversation with my coworkers and was told it was because I’m the easier mark for Irwin to get what he was wanting. That’s probably true too! Pamela is a daddy’s girl so she goes to David while Irwin comes to me. However, if I call him a “Momma’s Boy” he seems to think that’s a bad thing as if it makes him a powder puff or something. Why is that?


I raised four older sons and they didn’t seem to mind being Momma’s Boys. What is it about this generation that they don’t want to admit the obvious? From the beginning of time there has always been a special kind of bond between moms and sons. My sister and I would always ask our Dad if we wanted to do stuff. We felt he would be more likely to say yes than our mother would have. However, our brothers were just the opposite. We were definitely Daddy’s Girls and we didn’t mind that at all.


There was no question that Mom and Dad loved us equally. They loved both their sons just as much as they loved their daughters. The same way goes for me and David. We love our children. Although there are times as a parent when your children, at home or grown, do things that doesn’t make you like their behaviors very much. As parents we tend to think people are judging us by the behaviors of our children, even as adults and living away from home for many years. Why is that?



I loved raising sons when my three older sons were little. I remember sitting in my hospital bed after I gave birth to Austen on Super Bowl Sunday after 16 hours of hard labor. We didn’t have epidurals then and so labor was wrought with severe pain. It wasn’t like it is today where you get a shot and actually feel no pain during the delivery. I remember holding him in my arms and realizing that I was now responsible for a human life. I was his only source of food, shelter, clothing, and emotional support. The very life of this little guy rested upon my shoulders. Then along came his brother, Jorden just two years later. Another two years passed and here came sweet Dalten. Two years after Dalten’s arrival Gordo showed up. These boys were my world! 


As a single Mom I saw my boys hit high school. I remembered the old ladies saying, “enjoy them now honey because they’ll be grown before you know it!” And sure enough…it happened. One day Dalten looked at me and said, “Mom, what are you going to do when you are all by yourself? Ouch! That hit me like a ton of bricks.


First Austen went off to Oklahoma State University and I tried to remember that to give him wings I had to release him. I did give him some advice however, and told him that “Mom’s don’t need to know everything!”  Jorden graduated and joined the Air Force and was stationed in Guam, which seemed like a million miles away from Oklahoma. At one point I was forced to not see him for 18 LONG months. Being a military mom wasn’t something I relished because I was not used to being away from my son. But, he was teaching me something that I would have to learn well because Dalten and Gordo both joined the military and there have been several deployments since my experience with Jorden. 


I’ll also never forget Jorden coming into my office when I was a Paralegal at Stephen P. Gray & Associates. It was an afternoon and I thought perhaps he was coming to beg lunch from mom. However, that was not what was on his agenda. This handsome blonde young man looked at me through those gorgeous baby blue eyes and said, “Mom, I joined the Air Force!”  My answer was a question, “Why the Air Force?” My son gave me an answer I really wasn’t expecting but was not at all surprised to hear, “because the Air Force has better looking women!” 


That same office is where my son, Austen, gave me a large manila envelope one day. I opened it and it was a bib that said, “Grandma’s Girl.” Abileyne has since taught me to be a grandma, with Ashlyn to follow, then Sophie, and now Jasmine and JJ. Being a grandma is the greatest gift God bestows, I really believe that. I also think that if you truly love your child, and you have parents that aren’t drug addicts or criminals, you would be very selfish to not allow that child to have a relationship with a grandparent. Grandparents are God’s way of giving us extra special treatment while still knowing there is a place where we have to learn to behave and do our chores (Mom & Dad’s house).


Our adult children sometimes disappoint us with the decisions or choices they make in life. Sometimes their choice of inappropriate language, tattoos, piercings, and behaviors land far from the tree known as the parent.However, just because they make choices that are different from ours, or choices we wouldn’t make, it doesn’t mean we don’t love them, after all, we spent those years when we were young and energetic and poured our time and hearts into raising them.  I love my children, everyone of them and I’m glad God allowed me to raise them, even if the child didn’t always appreciate the sacrifices and hardships we faced along the way.  

I have also noticed that sometimes our adult children like to blame Mom for self-created issues. For instance, "mom is always in my business" yet they bring their problems to mom to help fix. Don't take mom your issues if you're going to go right back to that that caused the problem, then blame your mother. Also, don't blame mom for your inappropriate behaviors or habits which are NOT what she taught you. Those behaviors were your own doing, not mom's doing. And lastly, when you're an adult, stop telling mom she is no longer your mom because she spends what little time she has among a lot of people and responsibilities. Everything is NOT about one person in this life. 

Moms also deserve happiness, tranquility, and respect because she raised you to be a good human being. Try to remember you are here because of her. 







Sunday, July 12, 2015

Celebration & Mom Time

Today I received a gift of sorts, a photo of our children Irwin & Pamela. As birth parents having photos of our children through the years is a common happening. However, as adoptive parents we don't have those. 

Moms do so much for our children that we tend to push ourselves to the back of the pack. We spend our money on our children as opposed to ourselves and we also make sure our children have everything they need, We also make sure they have things they simply want all prior to our caring for our own needs. I know as a single Mom many years ago I never had anything left for myself, not even time.  I was so tired at the end of the day from making a living for my sons and me, that at the end of the day there was no time or strength left for myself.

As many of my readers know, I have had some pretty serious medical issues over the last several years. I fought a battle with cancer several times and cancer was definitely out to get me. But....CANCER DIDN'T WIN! In addition, I also found out that my esophagus was in pretty bad shape and if something drastic wasn't done I would be looking as esophageal cancer within the next 1-3 years.  In addition, being extremely overweight added additional issues to my health such as Sleep Apnea, Diabetes, and high blood pressure. Along with Diabetes I also suffered greatly from Neuropathy. My body hurt so bad at night that I barely slept. Not sleeping then affected me during the day. It became misery on top of misery.

I had often thought about getting lap band surgery and in January 2013 I began seeing a doctor to do so.   However, my insurance required I go to the doctor every month for a year. It became a drugery and required I take time off work to do so. In addition, there would be times when I'd have a 1 p.m. appointment and still be in the waiting room waiting to see this doctor at 3:30 p.m. Once, I was there past 5:00 p.m. I realize doctors can get busy, but this was not a surgeon nor anyone that did rounds at the hospital. Why on earth should I wait for this long? If doctors had to pay for our time the way we have to pay for theirs, they would keep to their schedules. I realize that things come up or happen medically. However, waiting hour after hour is too much!

I had decided not to have the lap band after a surgical nurse told me that some people have problems with the band, or end up having a different procedure later because the weight loss was not very significant for them. I actually decided I just didn't have the time available off work to do any surgery. Then entered the fabulous Sharyn Roberts!

I met Sharyn Roberts on a cruise in 2013. We had a big adoption ceremony for Pamela & Irwin and then took them on a "familymoon" cruise. We ended up meeting a group of people on the same cruise from all over the world. Sharyn Roberts from Melbourne, Australia, was one of those wonderful people. Sharyn is a gorgous lady from the other side of the world. She was petite and had such a glow about her. As a result of this cruise we started communicating and became like family. This group of people just had that fit together. The bond has grown into something absolutely heavenly! In fact, I don't believe I could have kept my head up during my last round of cancer treatments had it not been for my NCL Family. They are so precious to me.

We met Sharyn & Andrew Roberts, along with Warren & Linda Smith for a second cruise in 2014. However, we didn't take the kids on this cruise so we could have adult time so desperately needed. On this cruise while I was getting a wonderful, and cheap massage, at a glorious beach side resort, David was sitting at our table with Sharyn, Andrew, Linda & Warren. While I was enjoying my massage, Sharyn shared a photo of herself prior to her having had weight loss surgery. When I got back to the table David looked at me and said, "Sharyn showed us a photo that will change your life." Wow, looking at the photo she was sharing was a huge contrast from the small, gorgeous blonde standing under that shelter on the beach in Honduras. Sharyn sharing her past opened up the window to my future in a way nobody could even imagine.
( Me & the lovely Sharyn, in December, 2014) 

When we arrived back home from that cruise I was determined to have the surgery. Once I saw the surgeon and some pre-surgery testing was done, I learned that if I didn't do something drastic, and QUICKLY, I wouldn't be around to see my youngest Granddaughter, Sophie, begin Kindergarten in a couple of years. I have adorable grandchildren, and two teens still at home, and the surgeon made it quite clear that I was standing on the edge of life. I could do nothing and go over the cliff or I could bite the bullet and live a life that I would find had much more meaning and happiness. Not to say I was unhappy but just incredible unhealthy.

The type of surgery I was going to have was now the question. Sharyn had the lap band, but there were also other types. The Roux-N-Y is what I chose because I'm one of those people who has little or no will power. As such, I knew I needed to have consequences if I pushed the envelope too far. The recovery time was the same for each of these surgeries so I went for the Cadillac of weight loss surgeries. As it turned out, someone from the office donated me all the extra paid time off I needed beyond what I already had, which was a huge blessing.  I took off work on February 17, 2015 to get things together for what I felt would be a difficult recovery. Surgery was on February 18, 2015, and for some reason I was truly afraid I was going to die during surgery. I was only off for 9 days, then returned for half days on March 1, 2015.

People tend to think that weigh-loss surgery is an easy out. Don't be so quick to make those judgments! Its the hardest work I've ever done. It is very difficult to cook for a family when the very food you're cooking may not be among the items you can consume. My husband, David, and youngest son, Irwin loves Fettuccine Alfredo. However, pasta is not immediately back on the menu for me. It takes months before someone having had this surgery can consume such things. I learned to endure Tuna, Salmon, Basa, low-fat Cottage Cheese, Refried Beans, and protein shakes.

In addition, as a mom we can't just remove everything we can't eat from our lives because our children and/or spouse still wants those items. It is darn difficult to drive up to Sonic and watch as your teens and spouse devour Oreo Cookie Blasts. I have removed a lot of junk food from my pantry. Instead, when I get the kids some cookies I make them take them to their room, or get them out of my sight. I may have had the surgery but I still have the will-power issues.  Surgery is not a cure-all from our learned behaviors.

Today is a day of celebration in our home. In five months I have gone from a size 5X to a size 16. I hit my first BIG goal today, 100 pounds lost. It didn't come easily either. I workout every day except Sunday. When I hit the wall a few weeks ago, and the weight loss stopped, I called on my cousin, Danna Spohn, That girl should truly be a fitness trainer. She has helped me so much to get over the hurdles that have stood between me and the scales.

( Me & my beautiful sister, Joyce, last weekend at her wedding. She's been my daily cheerleader on this journey!)

It just amazes me the people God puts into our lives from places we don't really think about. I've had several people become very important in my journey. Having lost 100 pounds brings with it other issues, such as sagging skin, LOTS OF SAGGING!! My daughter-in-law, Shelby, has helped me greatly with that issue. She advised that I needed to exfoliate my skin then apply a moisturizer so the skin could get back some of its elasticity. I did so and it has made a difference. Then, I began researching skin tightening. I came across a video of a plastic surgeon in Beverly Hills who has developed such a cream.  I've also received advise and help from sweet Shelby with my hair. When the body experiences these changes hair loss can become a problem. Shelby has been extremely helpful. Those of you in the Tulsa area; Shelby can help you look beautiful at Ihloff Salon & Day Spa. Call for an appointment and you won't be sorry you did. You'll feel amazing!

I watched the video twice. It really got my attention and the way this plastic surgeon educated during the video kept my attention. The cream costs $75 a 1.69 ounce jar. Wow! I had just gone through Fat Girl Thin at a cost of around $35 and it didn't last me two weeks. Now, this jar was even smaller and at twice the cost. Would it be worth it? If you could see all the sagging of my body, you would understand that this is a very important issue to someone who has lost a lot of weight in such a short time.

Thinking about how quickly the Fat Girl Thin cream was used I carefully considered whether or not this cream world do anything for me. It would be terrible to loose all this weight and then have a face with so much sag I looked like I was old! 

I had a brainstorm! Why not use my blog to test out some of these products then share the results with my readers? I wrote a letter to two surgeons of Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery and was shocked and excited when two days ago they gifted me with not one, but two jars of the skin tightening cream I was so impressed and curious after watching their video. I was so excited opening the package.

So, I have been using this cream for the past three days. The instructions are to use a dime size amount twice a day to clean skin on the face and neck. I'm also trying it on my bat flaps, you know ladies, that skin under your upper arms! I'll let you all know how it works for me. If you'd like to see the video here's the link.

I'm not nearly at my final goal and an making strides toward several short term goals in order to reach my ultimate goal. It's work but so worth all I've achieved. Along with the weight loss has come a true sense of accomplishment and self-worth. Don't wait until you're on death's doorstep to make the move toward good health. Take time Moms for yourselves and your family will win also. I wish I would have realized that 30 years ago! 

Last but certainly never least is the realization of how blessed I am to have a supportive husband. David Sizemore is the bomb and now that I'm able to walk for any amount of time without being winded, we are able to do so much more together. That alone has made this journey worthwhile.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Parenting 101, Teaching Manners & Common Courtesy

Summertime can be difficult with teens wanting to stay up late. However, they still need to understand that just because they don’t have to be up for school, parents still have to be up for work. Therefore, allowing them to stay up all night is rather ridiculous and truly is not what kids at any age need to be doing. Sleep is important and that means sleep for everyone in the household.


Sometimes I think other parents have lost their minds. They allow their children to stay up all night and then sleep away the next day. Seriously, these are the types of parents that make it darn difficult for those of us who are seriously trying to be parents, instead of merely our children’s friends. In what world is it in a child’s best interest to have a normal sleep pattern completely reversed?


In addition to the sleep pattern problem, there’s also the issue of common courtesy. Mom and Dad work so why then is it okay for kids to stay up all night disturbing sleep for them? Allowing a child to disregard common courtesy to others is not doing your child any favors. This has become a generation of entitled teens and it is because parents just don’t teach their children common courtesy or respectful behaviors.


We allowed a girl to live with us from the time she was 18 years of age, through her last full year of high school, and until she was nineteen and a half. Her step-father had allegedly raped her and according to the young lady her Mother absolutely refused to believe it. A fact was that this same mom had began a relationship with a man she herself accused of raping her while still married to this girl's dad. It was never really clear if the allegation was truth or just a lie to cover up moms infidelity. But, either way, the daughter swore, and still does to this day, that step dad had sexually abused her, and therefore she spewed hateful, vulgar statements about her mother. We had to constantly be addressing her foul language and the respect issue. She didn't care how she spoke in front of other people or children either. It was horrible and embarrassing behavior.

This girl constantly disrupted our sleep on work nights. Her behavior was unreasonable and she had no manners or courtesy whatsoever. We would even have to tell her not to text our cellphones after 10 pm and she NEVER respected that request at all. Furthermore, she didn’t care that we’d ask and ask her to please be respectful of what others in the household had to do the next day. She was truly a product of how momma had raised her. This child was allowed, and encouraged, to speak to the other parent (dad) in a disrespectful manner. In fact, the more disrespectful the more Momma liked it! It was as if she’d get off on it. The child was even told “that’s my girl, that’s my good girl!” This parent however didn’t seem to get it that once a child is encouraged to talk about, or speak to a parent in that manner, it is just a matter of time until both parents, and anyone else that comes into contact with that child, is shown little or no respect whatsoever. Then, the child grows up into an adult that nobody can stand for very long. Their relationships end abruptly or are rarely long term. But, that’s what this child was taught and therefore that’s what everyone now has to deal with or be forced to stir clear of the young, disrespectful, foul mouthed, young adult. 


While this girl could sleep until noon, and did, the rest of us had to be up at the crack of dawn. When we’d address the issue we were spoken to as if we were just completely unreasonable. We set the rules of our house and made sure they were clear. Even doing so did not phase this out of control teen. She wanted what she wanted and that was THAT! We would explain over and again why there were bedtimes that needed to be kept and the common courtesy to be quiet at night allowing other people, especially those with sleep disorders, to get some rest without being awakened. Meanwhile, the adults would drag themselves through the day just exhausted from the teen antic of the prior night. Being 18 doesn't mean someone has matured. In this case  she was old enough to take care of herself but was raised to feel so entitled she would simply not show up for a job and then it was all the employers fault. I saw this girl blow through MANY jobs in this manner as well as beauty school after high school. I've never known anyone before that's been thrown out of beauty school!


Once school was out for the summer for Irwin and Pamela, we again found ourselves addressing this issue. Their reasoning is that “everyone does it” or “school is out for the summer” or “we are on summer vacation.” SO WHAT!! The adults are NOT on summer vacation and respectful behavior, common courtesy, is expected at ALL TIMES. I don’t care what other people allow in their homes, this is our home and WE make the rules here. I don’t care what other kids do or don’t do, I do care what MY kids do. It’s just that simple.


Now that we’re on the subject lets also discuss children calling or texting into other people’s homes late at night or in the early am hours. Again, common courtesy seems to have gone out the window with a lot of today’s parents. For example; last summer there was a boy calling our teen daughter at 2 a.m. We had parental controls on our phone plan and use them devoutly. However, with Wifi Facetime can still be used as can imessage. We finally had to put a password on our Wifi server to stop this. We tried talking to his mother and her response when we told her that her son was Facetiming our 13 year old at 2 a.m. was “well, he’s like me, he’s a night owl!” There was not one redeeming quality about that response. Instead, it showed us why the child felt entitled, bad parenting! The parent simply had not done her God given job in teaching this child about common courtesy or even manners. This type of parent makes it so hard on those of us who want to instill courtesy, respect, and common manners into our children. These types of parents make good parents the bad guy to our children while adding to the entitlement of their own children to do whatever they want no matter who it affects. This is bad-parenting 101.


I’m not saying I’m the perfect parent. I’d never make such a statement. But what I am saying is that I want “those” parents to teach their children simple phone manners and common courtesy. Good manners goes a long way. Bad manners, or no manners at all, foul mouths and disrespectful behaviors will get your child nowhere in this life. I’m tired of kids that think life is only about them and nobody else’s wants, needs, or desires matter. Again, bad parenting! If you’re going to have children, do society a favor and teach them common courtesy and manners. It is basic parenting that many are failing at doing.

My two teens tried the all night think last night. I kept getting woke up by noise and laughing. At 4:30 am I dragged my tired body out of bed, through the house, and down their hallway. Lights were on in both rooms. I turned the lights out and told them that being up at that hour was absolutely ridiculous and there would be no sleeping in for them. At 7:40 they were woken up and told to do the lawn. By 9:00 the lawn was done and it was on to more chores. They will be so tired tonight that them sleeping won't be a problem at all. Then, we will ALL sleep! 

Monday, June 29, 2015


On February 2, 1992 my world was forever changed. As the Mother of three sons, ages 4, 7, and 9 years of age, I was devastated when my husband of nearly twelve years announced he'd been living a lie. He was unhappy and miserable living a life as a heterosexual man when he was secretly gay. 

I was so devastated I didn't want to see or talk to anyone. I was lost and deeply hurt. I felt worthless and like an idiot. How could a man I trusted and loved betray my trust to such a degree? Religious family members told me, or rather preached at me, that regardless of the issue he was still my husband until the day I die, even if we don't live as husband and wife. I was told divorce is a sin and unforgivable. It's interesting that some of the same family members who shoved their philosophy down my throat have now experienced divorce either themselves or through their adult children. It Suddenly wasn't so black and white when the pain was theirs to bear.

It was kind of like telling a child they can't be removed from an abusive home or an abused wife being told she must continue to be beat everyday for the rest of her life? It was victimization of a victim and somehow they appeared to enjoy pointing that finger in my direction.

For over 23 years I've been dealing with the backlash of the gay issue. Now, this week with the U.S. Supreme Court's decision on gay marriage, the comments on Facebook and by people directly have just been overwhelming. People are mean and much of what I see is hatred at its worst. Maybe this is a new issue for some of these people, but not for me. It's been 23 years of learning and handling it for me. And I might also add....putting up with people's very boisterous opinions.

I was blown away and left emotionally in shreds! Not to mention the financial aspects of divorce and raising sons virtually alone. I spent agonizing years building up my sons who were also dealing with a dad who had opened up about being gay. I raised three sons  and it was very difficult many times with the homophobic chatter among the masses as well as within my own family. You know, those who are supposed to love us unconditionally. The Church wasn't much better helping me through the crisis either. I was treated as though I had done something wrong. I was even told by a very rude and hateful woman that if I'd been a better lover he wouldn't have "turned gay." 

I did everything a mom could possibly do to raise my sons to be okay. People just didn't care what they said in front of them or behind our backs. People didn't care that 1/2 of the child is made up of their Father. A Father whom I still hold dear as a friend and love as a fellow human being.

It was more than difficult watching the person we cared about being treated so badly. Beatings, being spat upon, and even people saying hateful, rude things to him. That doesn't sound to me like a life easy to choose. 

Today, it was thrown in my face yet again, yes it was!!  I just don't think the person really thought about what was said. But, 23 years later, and I was actually called a lesbian because the husband I trusted with my very life betrayed me. And, by a family member to boot!  And people wonder why I have distanced myself from some of my family members. It shouldn't be a shock if they had been in the emotionally devastating trenches I've endured only to be treated like that! It seems to be okay for them to state their opinions in very harsh ways, but when a differing opinion is spoken they come out swinging like they were the injured party. I refrained from telling this person the definition of Lesbian. I had to use a lot of self-control to not remind this individual of his own life issues that are less than commendable. Few people have spotless pasts! 

Why is it people want to push their desires and beliefs in your face but when you stand up to them you're the bully? Why do people want to pick and choose what constitutes sin or what each of us, individually want in our lives? I've literally been forced to stay an arms leant gateau from certain people because of all the crap they've brought into my life, or allowed someone else to do so, which has left scars that may never be healed. Yet it's okay because their choices are the only "right" choices. People make choices very selfishly at times, but nonetheless, it's their choice to make. We, for ourselves, often are forced to make our own choices based on trying to heal ourselves from the choices others have made also. 

I don't care if your for or against gay marriage. I love straight people and gay people. I don't have to agree with everyone to love them. Because I love them doesn't mean I approve either, it's called mutual respect. God gave us all free choice. I believe in God and I follow the Bible. But that's my choice. That's also a question isn't it? Is this a choice or a genetic predetermination? I don't have that answer myself! 

Everyone is entitled to their opinion and beliefs. I see so many talking from a place of hatred while also using the Bible as a base for the horrible things being thrown around. I've also seen people who haven't been to church for years now talking as if they are dedicated Christians against Homosexuality from a religious place. 

However, we are ALL. imperfect humans. I dare to say there are very few days that MOST people don't sin in some way. It could be exceeding the speed limit when they are running late, driving with out of date tags, not paying your taxes by April 15th, gossiping, telling a little white lie, throwing someone under the proverbial bus to save face or your own skin, not honoring your parents, having sex without marriage, drinking, carrying grudges, judging people before you know the WHOLE story, and on and on! 

The Bible doesn't say one sin is any better or worse than another. don't degrade other human beings about how wrong something is unless your living a spotless life and have nothing in your own life and past that can be judged as harshly as you are judging others. 
God gave us all free choice. That choice is between the person and God, only! It's God's opinion that counts in the end. 

God wants us to love people not hate them. If you don't choose the gay lifestyle then there you go! But don't throw stones while you're picking and choosing what YOU consider to be a sin while disregarding sin that may be in your own life. 

I am not gay! I have gay friends. Many gay friends in fact! They know how I conduct my life and my Christian beliefs. They also know without a doubt that I love them. But they also know I respect God enough to leave it in his hands. They are intelligent human beings with Bibles too. It's between them and God.

Nobody has ever won anybody over to their way of thinking by being hateful and mean. There's so much hatered being thrown around by people that have absolutely no right or business throwing stones. Glass houses break!