Friday, November 30, 2012

Taking Time!

I am hairy! There I admit it!  While I was removing all the wild hairs on my body either by way of tweezer or razor for oh--- about 30 minutes or longer  it made me think of my friends.  [sorry girls I will explain]  I have very dark hair and the hair on my body is equally as dark, therefore, I have to shave and tweeze daily.  I don't feel I am alone in this endeavor because I have heard stories of other women who carry tweezers in their cars and pluck and pull out hairs all day.  Once I even had the pleasure of watching someone pluck hairs with a tweezer by a pool [ what the curse is that about you ask? Well, don't ask realize strange things happen to me all the time.  Enough said! ]  Anyway, I was cursing the [curse] out of my hairs [In the privacy of my home not in public...]  when I remembered something about my past.

When I was in about 8th or 9th grade I decided I would be a "hippie", I stopped shaving, stopped eating meat, pierced my nose [and for the record that was WAY before every girl had a diamond stud on the side of her nose! The principal of my school called my mother to have me sent home because it was "causing a distraction". Yeah, I was a rebel!]  I only listened to Freedom Rock, Hendrix, The Who, Led Zeppelin and The Grateful Dead and most importantly I told everyone I was a "hippie" therefore I was! 

Meanwhile, my best friends rode the wave.  They didn't follow [thank GOD] but they stood behind my strange ways.  They tolerated my music and my hair -- well...the locker room was a bit tough and they did complain a bit about the hair but none the less they still stood by me.

Years passed and thankfully I outgrew my "hippie" ways.  I welcomed back the 90's [ "Hello Salt n'Peppa!"]  And good news! I welcomed back my razor, granted they didn't have the awesome 6 blade babies I use today but nonetheless my Daisy freed me from looking like a version of cousin IT from the Adam's Family.  Moving forward I went through many, many more changes.  And guess what?  My friends were still there.

The other day a certain situation came up involving someone from my past.  Once again my friend was there!  Before she made a decision she asked me first.  Once again proving how important our friendship is. I can't really go into a lot of detail here I can only say that one text message made me realize again my friends are always there!  [thank you Clancy] 

Once again all of this makes me realize how the ordinary things in life could strike a memory within making us aware of something so important.  During your busy days take some time to appreciate your ordinary things in life.  They just might mean something.  And take a minute to give a compliment and/or say "thank you!" Even if it's to yourself.  It feels good.   

Today I am grateful for those wild hairs because they reminded me of my friends and how many things we have all been through together.  I am grateful to have a circle of girls for the last 20 to 30 years that know me better than I know myself sometimes!  [Raise a glass...]  Thank you all...for understanding my hair, for putting up with my ever changing world and for being the best friends anyone could have. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Bieber, Obama and T-shirts

Okay, what do Justin Beiber, Barack Obama and a t-shirt have in common?  First I will address the Bieb.  Two weeks ago my niece, my sister, my son and I attended the Justin Beiber concert in Philadelphia.  And let me just say that boy is so talented!  We were at this concert and my son asked me for cotton candy I went to get it with him.  My niece and my sister stood in a line at least 75 people deep to  buy a $35.00 dollar t-shirt [what the curse is wrong with these people?] While my poor sister waited and pushed and got pushed in this line she yelled to me across the crowd asking if my son wanted a shirt also.  Of course the heat of the moment led to him saying "YES" [At which time I am thinking, OH curse, I do not see this as a good thing and OMG we are a part of these  people spending our money on 35.00 t-shirts!].  Next he immediately removed his cool shirt (the one I picked out specifically for the concert) and put on his t-shirt [now I am looking at my 8 year old boy in a shirt with a another Male's face on it.  And it isn't Jerry Garcia, Jimi Hendrix or Mick Jagger! I immediately worried what others would think of him] .

 We had a great time, we danced, we sang, we watched  Justin fly on stage with wings, swim underwater off a ship, we saw fireworks and fire on stage!  It really was a great concert.  My sister did a great job getting us through traffic and we got home around 1:30 AM.  Monday morning, my son was aloud to stay home from school due to the late hour we got home and my sister and niece staying over.  Monday morning my son immediately put the shirt back on.  Wore it all day. And asked to wear it to school on Tuesday.  I washed it and discussed the following with him:  Kids are mean.  Kids might make fun of you for wearing this shirt.  Are you prepared to deal with what other kids might say to you for wearing this shirt?  Are you sure you want to wear this shirt?  His response, " Mom, I like his music.  I am proud that I went to the concert.  Some people like rap, some people like country, some people like pop."  That is a quote.  I stood behind his decision.  And after school he said only one "4th grader" said " Justin Beiber is gay".  I have no idea of knowing if anyone else said anything and I am not sure if he knows either [mostly because he truly didn't care] but what courage this boy had!  Even with all my negative talk about the potential teasing he stood by his decision.  How could I not be proud of that?  How could I not admire that?  What a cool kid!

That same week the next day was election day.  I NEVER discuss politics at work or with co-workers and because my fiance and I agree for the most part on our political views we rarely discuss opinions and views at home.  We do encourage being informed and we do encourage the democratic process.  Some people mentioned the election on Monday and Tuesday and then on Wednesday the results to me I found myself worried to state my own political views.  I felt ashamed in front of some people and I felt worried to voice my opinion in front of others due to either lack of knowledge or fear that I would say the wrong thing.  As most people know I often have little difficulties voicing my opinion [I have a blog for God's sake].  Anyway, my son and his Bieber shirt came to mind on my ride home from work that day.  If only I could have that same carefree attitude as he did.  If only I wasn't afraid to speak my mind as he did.  Then it made me wonder if I was like him one day? Fearless of others opinions, fearless to speak my mind, and what happened?  And then I began to think of all the things I am afraid to speak up about and I thought "WOW I am a coward"[curse]!  And I realized how worried about appearances I am.  And how often I tell my children to make a good impression and to think about how others will judge them!

Leading me to this next point [sorry I am getting there] Who the [curse] am I to put the idea in my son's head that everyone will laugh at him over a t-shirt?  Who am I to pre-judge people and assume they will feel a certain way about me for voicing my opinion?  Who am I to underestimate myself and others so much that I am afraid? [ WOW I am pompous, self-centered, egotistical and afraid]

And here is what Bieber, Obama and t-shirts have in common, no matter what we can't control what others say or think about us and we will never know what others feel if we just "go with the flow" and maybe by standing up and being ourselves we can help others to feel confident to do the same.  I guess what I am saying is that it's ok to be different.  I know that sounds redundant we all here it all the time.  But really think about it.  As parent's how many times have you told your kids they couldn't wear certain things, or do their hair a certain way, or purchased things for them just because they had to have it because every other child in their class had it?  As adults how many times do you refrain from voicing your opinion in work or with your friends or your family?  How many times do you stop and think about how you will impact others by saying or doing certain things?  I am not saying we need to cause controversy or chaos wherever we go or disregard other's feelings or opinions.  Actually I am asking that we all do the opposite, we accept others and their differences, we accept and listen to differences in opinions and we stand by our own points of views. 

 I will continue to tell my boys they need to dress appropriately for certain events and they have to look clean and be polite and courteous to others.  I will also remember to tell them to respect others differences and to keep their own views but to listen to what others have to say. Maybe all of us need to accept other's perspectives and make the effort not to discourage self-expression.  And that is where the "it's ok to be different" thing really starts to make sense.  [to me anyway] 

"We want everybody to act like adults, quit playing games, realize that it's not just my way or the highway."
Barack Obama

“Two people can look at the same thing and see it differently..”
   Justin Bieber

"Some people like rap, some people like country, some people like pop."
  Grant Smith