There are no jobs on a dead planet

Well, another week and another round of the accustomed shock in reaction to the current administration. We can all assume at this point that our president is going to dismantle any policy that doesn’t directly bring America (or more specifically, “his people”) monetary gains. You know, because it’s only important that we work to become the most rich and powerful—to hell with the future generations.

I just do not understand. Well, maybe I do, but I don’t want to. How can our leaders choose corporate kickbacks and financial gains over the future of our planet? Do we really have a party that exists to deny science and essentially MOE (money over everything) it up in our government? It definitely appears so. Message for all of those narrow-minded, not-working-for-the-people jack-wagons working in our government, seated in the pockets of Trump’s made-in-China suits: Money cannot buy you a clean planet and THERE ARE NO JOBS ON A DEAD ONE.

I heard the address Trump made when he declared the U.S. was abandoning the Paris Climate Agreement. It was a whole lot of excuses. “The people in other countries around the world were cheering after we signed the agreement, because they were so happy they could take more of our jobs”—You kidding me? We have now joined Syria and Nicaragua as being the ONLY three countries not a part of the Paris Agreement. Were those—two—the countries applauding us because they would have something to gain from our agreement? Or was it all of the countries because I’m pretty sure they were applauding the fact that the agreement would ensure a global dedication to a sustainable future.

I heard Trump complain about the agreement’s impact on American workers and the threat that the agreement would send more jobs overseas. Pathetic. I am SOOOO tired about hearing about the jobs issue. You talk to those coal miners in the Pennsylvania whom Trump was promising to bring back jobs for. He hasn’t and I don’t see how he himself can. It is not in Trump’s power (or is it?) to tell power plants what energy to use. Fact is, more power plants have adapted to other sources of energy instead of coal (as they should). To bring miners their jobs back, maybe those companies should be expanding their realm of energy to other sources such as wind-power, waterpower, and solar. Also, those miners are likely to lose their health benefits under Trump’s healthcare repeal.

It’s painfully comedic to me to see these things happen and not even feel bad for those people that believed in his campaign; those people that actually thought that Trump would work for them. I think of the woman who voted for Trump because she wanted immigration reform. And then she was shocked that ICE arrested and deported her husband (whom of which was an illegal immigrant), saying that she thought Trump would only deport criminals. Well lady, under law, your husband is a criminal. It’s sad, I feel terrible for her family that now is torn apart, but the irony is worth noting.

I am still calling my senators and my representatives–asking that they consider the facts backed by science; asking that they see through the lies of our president; asking that they they work for the people and not for their pocketbooks.

I could seriously go on and on about how fucked up this state of affairs is. For that, I am going to keep this short. As I feel my point has been clearly made again and again throughout my blog that I am disheartened by the current state of affairs. I really hope that we can get an objective investigation into the Russian hacking ordeal and some more transparency in our government. Right now, I’m afraid we are in for a long, long term of lying, propaganda, ignorance, and entitlement. It’s getting old—already. The only good thing to come out of this mess is SNL. There are some people I am OK with making money at the expense of the taxpayers—not the politicians—the comedians.

 

Stay woke, people.

 

Image Credit: Union of Concerned Scientists

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Weekend Plans (and not plans)

This past weekend was an eventful one. My sister-in-law and I went to our second march together. This time at our nation’s capitol! I cannot get over how great it feels to be around so many people with my same political values and beliefs. I’m still reeling from the experience.

 

DC has been a hopping place almost every weekend since commander dumbass was elected. The weekend before last was the “Science March”, the weekend before that, the “Tax March” and on and on. A few things have changed in the 7 years since I have visited DC, and not just the president. The museum of American African History opened this past year and we were REALLY looking forward to visiting it, but they have been so busy that visitors must buy the tickets in advance for an allotted time only. We didn’t think about that, or that far ahead, so we only visited the Holocaust museum. Which is just as I remember it. Maybe a bit more emotional for me this time around now that I am a mom and have all of these hormones raging about me. I will always tear up reading about the extermination of children with disabilities whom were housed in the state asylums. I will always tear up reading the quote on the wall:

 

“We are the shoes. We are the last witnesses.

We are shoes from grandchildren and grandfathers

From Prague, Paris and Amsterdam.

And because we are only made of fabric and leather

And not of blood and flesh,

Each one of us avoided the Hellfire.”

-Moses Schulstein

 

Aside from opposing the current administration and marching on Washington, the signs were also a benefit of the trip. Progressives are creative.

 

Here are some snaps of the signs we saw:

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Coming home was bittersweet. It was wonderful to be reunited with my daughter again (not that she was affected by my absence or figured out I was gone, bless her cute self). But after my mom picked us up from the airport, she said that my childhood cat was dying or may have already died while she was gone to get us.

 

Upon arriving home, we discovered that she had passed. 16 years she had lived. At about the onset of my anxiety disorder and panic attacks she entered my life. She was alive when my dad was; a reminder that I am just getting that much further away from those years.

 

I wasn’t the best owner, although I think some inbreeding had occurred in her gene pool so she wasn’t a very friendly cat. But she was my cat nonetheless and I feel bad for our other cat that is now alone and howls and wails in mourning at my mom’s house. I’ve been more appreciative of our three cats since yesterday morning. It made me think of how much I will miss them–they are much friendlier and sweeter. It also reminds me that we are only promised a lifetime—but the fine print doesn’t guarantee it will be a long one.

Forming a Political Backbone

Watch out, I’m honing my political compass!

This past election has stirred a dormant, but passionate, activism within me.  I am disgusted with myself that I haven’t been politically active sooner (Although, I can say that I have voted in ever primary election I was able).  I am shocked everyday (but not so much anymore) by what I am seeing out of D.C. and Commander-in-Chief Dumbass.  So, I’ve been getting to work in my downtime (which is unfortunately few and far between) harassing my senators, our governor, and attending as many marches as I can.  In fact, I’ll even be going to a march in D.C. in a couple of weeks!

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Women’s March.  Des Moines, IA

I’m struggling with the feeling of retro activism–that by this point, there is little we can do but hold on for the ride.  I feel discouraged by what I hear on the news everyday but I will keep persisting nonetheless.  I am a stubborn woman, and this is not an exception.

I’ve been sending e-mails, leaving voicemails, typing up things that I should be sending into the opinion sections of local papers..  At work, I have been an advocate for programs like Meals on Wheels and Section 8 housing–I see programs like these keep people in their homes and out of the hospital everyday.  But the Trump Administration would have us believe that these programs are not working and are too expensive.  Well, simple math, one day in the hospital for a senior on medicare is waaaaaaay more costly to the taxpayer than a $9 meal and <$20 for rent each day.

I’ve digressed a bit.  I am equally passionate about what I do for work, though.

Email 6 of 7:

Senator Joni Ernst,
I would like to offer you some advice, in contrast to that of our president—IF the senators of Iowa choose to approve the President’s new American Health Care act to replace the Affordable Care Act, without seeking revisions, I will do my upmost to ensure that you, and your fellow senator representing the people of this state, are not re-elected.
In addition to my fears of losing medical care for our most vulnerable, I am in great free of the President’s plan to defund programs such as Meals on Wheels. Please, show the President local statistics that disprove his assertion that these programs have no benefit.. This program keeps our seniors in their homes, and out of nursing facilities, healthy, and out of hospitals, and connected with people in our community who check in on them and will direct them to other various resources as needed.
Senator Ernst, I have no problem paying taxes to pay for the care of the proportions of our most vulnerable. I do, however, have a problem paying taxes paying for the salaries of our elected officials who are not standing up to this circus President.
Thank you for your time,

In closing, I am a happy progressive.  And the more I think about what it means to other people (bleeding-heart-liberal, hippy, uninformed, etc.) and to me (forward-thinking, open-minded, all-inclusive) the more I see how deeply divided we as a people are.  We have those that want “the good old days” back.  And those, like me, who see “the good old days” and cringe.  Which is why I’ve been saying how irrevocably cyclical history is.  Can the cycle be broken?

“We really need to stop seeing each other like this”

It’s been a rough week—two weeks. Rough is probably an understatement. It’s been a week of little sleep, mind wandering, dark thoughts, bad dreams, and grief. I’ve got this little habit of making one thing into a million and these circumstances are no exception. When someone leaves my life, it serves as a reminder of every precedent. I work myself into a depression and that is always tough to pull out of. But I am getting along.

 
So, I was really thankful it worked out that I could attend a memorial for a friend Sunday. The first hour or so was pretty difficult being there. I was overwhelmed by the extent of his reach in the community. I went in there very sad—sad that he chose to leave, sad about the method of which his chose to leave, sad that it had been so long since I’d talked to him. I opted to drink my courage and hold myself together. I drank more than I intended to. I stayed out longer than I intended to. But I sort of had a symbolic evening of hugging and chatting with the people that Chaz loved most and I was really honored to be around people that loved him so much. I may not remember much from Sunday night but I will never forget it.

 
Now that I’ve got a family, I realize that I am not as available to my friends as I would like to be. In fact, Sunday night was the first time I’d seen many friends from High School (that still live in Ames, mind you) since Georgie’s memorial. What the fuck…

 

To make a tragedy into something of positivity, I am vowing to have more of a social life. I need to be present. I need to be better about approaching people and putting my heart on my sleeve and telling someone that I might not know very well, “Hey, this shit really sucks, I’m here for you, let’s get together again.”

 
Especially in light of the current political climate.  I think we could all use some like-minded conversation and support nowadays.

“You don’t know what you got–til it’s gone”

The title of this post alludes to having to do with a sensitive matter.  A longing for something that is no longer present.  With the cold, has come a nostalgia for something I have lost.

My long hair.

Don’t get me wrong, I am totally enjoying the easy hair styling that comes with short hair (now I can dedicate more of my time to make-up, whereas before, it was reversed). But there’s something wholesome about having long hair. I wore it like a trophy.  I was proud of it (even if my ends were VERY damaged). But I took it for granted–like I always do.

I was looking at some old pictures capturing the many different styles I’ve embraced over the years.. Hippy-chic, rock girl, lazy college student, athletic, etc. But something seems to have remained a constant for me.. I’ve always had long hair.  Now that it’s cold, I miss it even more than losing the hassle of tangles and care.

So here’s a little throwback in honor of my long locks.  And a little trip down memory lane.

I used to joke about growing my hair long enough to wear it.  That I’d tie a string around my hair beneath my chest, to keep my hair in place and to cover up the lady bits, as to make a “hair halter top”. I don’t know that I will ever be that bold, even in joking..  But I sure hope Sylvia can let this mama enjoy having long hair again.  Even if I am only able to wear it down every once in a blue moon.

Then I’ll have to buy a “Long hair, don’t care” shirt.
(sighhhh)

Pardon my Progress

I realize I am doing a terrible job at keeping up with my blog. I’m so sorry! All for good reason, though. I was offered a position (one that is FINALLY utilizing my college degree) and I took it and I LOVE it! I love my co-workers, the clients, the vibe, and the company—all of it. I have finally found a place that I can ethically align myself with. I have struggled a lot in my field working at places that I feel don’t live up to their mission and value statements. So this is a really big deal for me!

 

Not long after I accepted the job, the school I applied to for graduate school told me I was accepted. But I had sort of already made up my mind a couple of months back when the hubs was doing Army stuff full-time for a couple of months. It’s just not a good time for me to go back to school, that and with an upcoming deployment. It’s just too much to take on for the next year. I declined the acceptance. Maybe someday it will be financially reasonable, but definitely not right now. Not to mention that they offered me a part-time track that would take me four years to complete (and would also cost more than the full-time program). Sad that seemingly everything is driven by profit these days. I am absolutely feeling like my character is clashing with all that is around me in that respect (job-wise, college-wise, house-wise, etc. etc.)

 
Our house went sale pending over the past weekend. We are one step closer to obtaining our dream, forever home! I am very optimistic at this point; just have to wait on the underwriting and everything to go through. I am hoping we will be able to move in the last week of December. Before X-mas would be ideal, as I would love to celebrate X-mas and put up our tree at the new place. But, I s’pose I can’t be in control of this part of the process. I must learn to better accept things I have no power to sway. Always working on that. Anyway, I should be packing and preparing our house for the sale but I am going to enjoy myself and bask in this fucking happiness for awhile longer.

 
The new job means that Sylvia has been spending the mornings I work with a sitter. It seems to have been a very smooth transition and I am further encouraged that I’ve made some good decisions in our lives because of it. I am always second-guessing my decisions and myself so it feels really good to feel very absolute in something for a change. I am so much more appreciative of the time that I spend with Sylvia now and I do a much better time being present for her (whereas before I spent a lot of time contemplating life, work, school, house, everything. Essentially daydreaming my days away.)

 
Hopefully all of these changes will bring us some calm and peace for years to come. I never seem to be able to keep serenity grounded around me for long but, again, I am optimistic.
I’m also sorry if this post is happy gluttony to the ears. I’m just feeling like all the hard work is finally starting to pay off. Feels damn good.

Despite Everything..

Things are on the up and up at my house.

I’m still working on a post about my many thoughts regarding the recent election. But that’s proven to be more time consuming than I’d intended it to be when I first started it the night after. Needless to say, I’ve been in a funk for awhile now. I’ve had to take a break from my beloved IPR (that normally runs as background noise throughout the day) because I couldn’t handle how alien the rest of my country’s people are to me. I’m still having a hard time coming to terms with it. Politics aside, I’ve struggled (as you may have figured out from reading my previous blogs) with finding a balance between being a mom and being myself. But, I can tell you I’m making progress! So here’s an uplifting update from my household to yours. Because honestly I need some uplifting shit in my life right now and maybe you do too.

 
Our “contingency to sale” process is coming along, slowly, but surely. We’ve gotten the appraisal cleared and so we are another step closer to obtaining our forever home. I’m very much looking forward to being back in my hometown and closer to groceries, our family, and work. Now to just sell the house we’re in now. Time is ticking away as winter encroaches and I can only hope we have some luck here soon. Of course I am mostly looking forward to settling into the new house. It is just—perfection. Can’t. Wait. I hope it works out.

 
My application for graduate school has been completed and all letters of recommendation have been submitted. I am anxious to find out if graduate school is even a possibility for me at this point. It will prove to be difficult if I’m accepted now that I have accepted a position in my field part-time. I’m not sure if I am in a place to continue my education with the opportunities I have at the moment. Part-time work is really the best of both worlds for me, as I have 3 days at home with Sylvia. And that’s hard to beat work-wise. This is probably a better situation than I could have planned for, honestly. Until Sylvia’s in school, I will probably stay part-time unless I have found something that I love that pays enough to be worth it.

 
I think I have found a sitter for Sylvia for the mornings that I will be at work and what a relief that has been. Finding childcare is a full-time job, apparently. Most places have waiting lists, and many places have a flat weekly rate. Which isn’t cool since I’ll just need daycare 3 days a week. This gal has 2 kids herself and a dog (Sylvia LOVES dogs and animals in general). Sylvia should be a happy camper. I’m not looking forward to that first day though. I just need to think of it like my mom watching her. And I hope it all works out and I can truly enjoy my workdays knowing that she is happy and safe.

 

Generally, I am trying to keep focused on the positive things going on for us. I’m looking forward to my new job and that the organization is one that I can ethically align myself with. The hours are great. I love my co-workers I have met so far. The flexibility is going to be great. I’ll still be able to deliver packages on Sunday. I’ll have three days open to do activities with Sylvia and get things done around the house. The weather has been unusually nice for this late into fall here in Iowa. I’m looking forward to getting all of our leaves bagged and taken to the yard waste site in time for winter. That’s my project for the next couple days during naptime now that it’s dark by 5pm.