To the Other Woman

mother-and-son

To the other woman in my husband’s life:

I’ve always felt secure in my husband’s love. At the same time, I’ve always known it was a love I shared with another woman – you.

I have seen him smile and laugh when he was with me and I know that many of those smiles and much of that laughter was because of me. I know I make him happy. He and I share a bond that cannot be broken.

I’m aware that you also have a bond with him that cannot be broken. I have seen you, too, make him smile and laugh. But you make him smile and laugh in a way that is far different than when I do. Whenever I see him with you, his smiles shine. His entire face just lights up. In the beginning, when I first saw it, it made me jealous. Jealous that I couldn’t get that same glow out of him, but over time – I learned to appreciate it. I began to look forward to the times when I could observe him with you just so I could see that glow that only you could make appear on his face.

I am so grateful for the time he had with you. That time with you made him who he is now. You, and your husband, taught him to be the person he is. You told him, your husband showed him. Y’all are the reason he is so good to me now.

For years, you nurtured him. You comforted him. You tended to him when he was sick. You did so many things for him, but you didn’t make him come to expect it. The way you were with him didn’t spoil him. It made him want to go out and do the same for others.

Then I came along. You were okay sharing him with me and you let me know it. It made me happy that you did and it made him happy that he had your support. You made it hard for me not to like you. I couldn’t have even if I wanted to. You freely gave him to me, while at the same time, you took me in.

You are the reason I have the life I have.
You are the reason I know true love.
You are the reason my life is happy beyond measure.

You spent 9 months and several hours of labor giving him life and many, often thankless, years after that giving him love. The same day you gave him life, you gave me life. All the years you spent giving him love, you were putting love in a reserve for me. He knows about love because of you. I never had life – on this earth – until I met him. I never knew what love was – until he showed me.

You were always the other woman in his life – and I’m so glad you were. For it to have been any other way, I wouldn’t be who I am.

I am who I am because of him.
He is who he is because of you.

So, thank you.

Thank you for raising him to be the man he is, for without your sacrifice, I wouldn’t know joy.
Without the love you showed him, I would have never experienced love without end.
Without you and your husband setting an example of a loving marriage, I wouldn’t know true love existed.

Without you, I wouldn’t be who I am and the world would be a far different place had you not been in it.

I’m saddened by your passing, but I also rejoice because I know what Heaven has gained…

 

Racist?

A conversation about racism started up on a picture I posted that pointed out how saying “Go ask someone” instead of “Go axe someone” could save lives. It was white stick figures on a black background.

A comment of “racist much?” was left and a conversation ensued.

Guy – “Racist much?”

Me – “It’s interesting, to me, that you’d find this racist…”

[Random silly/joking comments about the white stick figures]

Guy – “It has nothing to do with the figures. It’s the text. Where I’m from, the only people to say “axe” are people of color. And the only time the ask/axe thing is made fun of, is by white people mocking people of color. This cartoon is called a microagression (google it, pretty interesting stuff).
Maybe where other people are from, the use of this word isn’t along racial lines. So maybe it’s not seen as racist. Or it could be that folks have their head in the sand and/or is so wrapped up in their whiteness they don’t see it.

Me – “ That’s what makes you a racist and not me. Pronouncing the word ‘ask’ as ‘axe’ is a lack of proper teaching and correction when growing up and learning language. You say it’s racist because the majority of the people you know who pronounce it that way are black, so you are saying black people are ignorant. Not only do I know black people who do not pronounce it that way, I know white people who do.
This cartoon was making a joke about how ignorant pronouncing that word is because it could lead to death. (Which is ridiculous – that’s why it’s a JOKE.) I saw it and thought only of the ignorance of those who pronounce it that way.
You read it and immediately applied that ignorance to black people.
Now who’s the racist?

Guy – “It’s not racist to acknowledge that some identities are marginalized. The fact that I pointed out that I have only heard black people say ‘axe’ isn’t racist. Rather, I was observing that it’s actually evidence of systematic and institutional racism resulting in poor and inadequate stemming all the way back from the Reconstruction era which hasn’t improved any for minoritized identities. What is racist (though I would call it a microagression rather than racism), is to post a picture mocking the educational disadvantages (what you labeled ignorance) that people of color have had because of institutional racism. Do some studying of Critical Race Theory, it’ll really show you how deep racism and the marginalization of identities goes.

Me – “YOU are the one that called it racism when you said “Racist much?”
You say I’m mocking “educational disadvantages that people of color have had” because I pointed out that it’s ignorance. So, what about the other races with educational disadvantages?
You can say there are none, or you could argue there aren’t as many (I disagree, but I digress), but they exist.
You looked at something I posted for fun, applied your own opinions and bigotries to it and then accused me of racism when race never entered my mind until you brought it up.
You’re projecting your own bias and racism onto pictures and other people when race never once entered their mind…

I’d like to point out that his blowhard statement of “I was observing that it’s actually evidence of systematic and institutional racism resulting in poor and inadequate stemming all the way back from the Reconstruction era which hasn’t improved any for minoritized identities.” could have been shorter and much easier to understand if he’d just said “Southerners are racists that still oppress the black man.”

Idiotic Movement of the Week

My posts, lately, seem to have a theme. Perhaps they always have, but I can’t help but notice that the world thinks down is up and wrong is right. Our world, where bad habits are rewarded and a minor lack of judgement is akin to skinning a baby kitten – alive.

When did this happen?

As if those things weren’t bad enough, trying to explain the lunacy of these things is rarely heard and never understood. Meaning, no one seems to take issue with these things and those that do are excused as intolerant, uncaring or selfish…

The idiotic movement of the week is the movement to keep Shanesha Taylor from prosecution for leaving her children in a car, unattended, and to have Child Protective Services, who took custody of her children, to return her children to her.

On March 20th, in Scottsdale Arizona, a Phoenix woman, Shanesha Taylor parked her SUV in a business parking garage and entered the building for a job interview. When she returned to her vehicle, an hour and a half later, cops were there waiting for her.

Taylor’s Arrest Photo

Taylor had left her children, a two year old and a six month old, in the vehicle while she was being interviewed.

She left them in their car seats, dressed in long sleeves; the 6 month old was also covered in a blanket. She cracked all four windows, about an inch, and left the car fan on, but not the air. The keys were in the ignition and the driver’s side door was unlocked. The fan was blowing hot air into the car.

The children were found by a passerby and cops, based on the heat inside the car, arrived about 30 minutes after she left them. The 6 month old had been crying for some time and was hard to calm.

Taylor returned 45 minutes after the cops arrived. She left her children -alone- in the car for almost an hour and a half. They weren’t actually there that long, but that’s how long she left them – not knowing they’d been removed by the authorities while she was gone. If they’d not arrived, the car battery would have died.

This, however, isn’t the idiotic move I’m referring to. As idiotic
as it was for Taylor to leave her children, the idiocy comes in when you learn about the reactions from, and support of, the community.

Taylor was charged with felony child abuse and there are those who think she is unfairly being charged. The thought there is that because she is homeless and was looking to find a job, she had no other choice. They’ve started an online donation page to help with her legal fees and anything else she may need. The goal was to raise $9,000 by May 1st. The fund, as of April 10, is at a little over $100,000.

Personally, I find this repulsive.

People, in her defense, have said she had no choice. She was trying to get a job to provide for her kids and better herself. She should catch a break.  Well, yes, that’s true and with so many who sit at home mooching off of Welfare, it’s commendable. She’s at least trying to find a job, but she could have made other arrangements for her children.

Even if she has no family in the area, even if the father of the children- or the father’s family- weren’t around, or if they are all incompetent and can’t be trusted with charge of children, she had options. She didn’t have to leave them in the car. One could say that she is incompetent and can’t be trusted with the care of a child.

Leaving them in the car should have been a last resort. A last resort that you never reach. They should have never been left alone in the car. That should never be an option. Never. Even if the car was left on and the air conditioner running – children that age should NEVER be left alone in a car. Children that age shouldn’t even be left in the car while you make a quick run into the 7/11 – much less an hour and a half

First and foremost, she could have explained the situation to whomever was interviewing her. They may have offered to have someone wait with them. She could have explained that once she found a job she would put them in daycare, but until that time she didn’t have the money to put them in daycare and needed help. I think they would have helped her. Perhaps not, but in a city like Scottsdale, or Phoenix, there are tons of options that can, and should be exhausted before resorting to leaving your kids in the car. Especially, kids that young. There’s local churches, play groups, MOPS… It would have taken some doing, but she had options.

We could argue on this point forever. Regardless of your stand on that point, that’s not what gets me about this story… There’s something far more disturbing at play here.

There are thousands of people in support of Taylor and her decision. There are thousands who don’t want her prosecuted for “making a mistake”. Many, most of whom are -or have been- a single mom, state they understand her predicament and don’t think she should be punished.

It’s true that I don’t know what being a single parent is like, but leaving your baby and toddler alone in a car isn’t a ‘mistake’. Running out the door in a hurry and not getting the car seat attached EXACTLY right is a mistake. Leaving to go to the bathroom, not thinking about the hot pot on the stove, is a mistake. Consciously choosing to leave your young children – alone – in a hot car isn’t a ‘mistake’. Is it a poor choice? Sure. Should she be punished and have her children taken away for a poor choice? Depends. It depends on other factors, but I’d sooner take the children away and prosecute her for that than I would a mistake.

Now, let me point out what is so disgusting – quite disturbing – and hard for my mind to reconcile…

All these people, numbered in the thousands, supporting her in making a poor choice.. A poor choice that put her children in mortal danger, compared to the thousands who are calling for the prosecution of Kevin Vicente’s babysitter. What is up with the priorities of people in the Phoenix area??!

Kevin Vicente’s babysitter. You remember her, right? The woman who momentarily turned her back, blinked, or took a phone call when Mickey, the kid mauling dog, attacked Kevin. The jury is still out on which she did, exactly, but the point is… She, in a moment, made a split decision that may or may not have led to Kevin’s attack by the dog, Mickey, who was tied up in the yard of the home they were visiting. The psycho killer dog not being euthanized for previous behavior is what led to the attack. But I digress…

The sick-in-the-head twisted animal rights cuckoo birds fought to excuse the dog’s behavior and have now started a campaign calling for the state to bring charges against the sitter for doing nothing more than momentarily looking away. Something we, as parents or sitters, have all done. But a woman, who consciously chose to leave her children –alone– in an unlocked, running, hot, car for an hour and a half, gets a pass?

Tell me how this makes sense? Seriously. Someone PLEASE explain it in such a way that I can understand because I don’t think anyone can.

But seriously, think about this for a second…

Could you imagine if she’d left a couple of dogs in a hot car for that long? Or worse still, imagine how the cuckoo birds would have reacted if one of those children harmed an animal during the hour and a half they were alone. Taylor would have already be drawn and quartered!

This is out of control. And shame on any Phoenix judges, DAs or
family service workers if they don’t do something to rectify this insanity. Shame on them if they let this woman off with a pass and even more so if they bring decide to bring charges against the babysitter in Kevin’s case.

I’d like to say that I don’t think the things of this world could shock me anymore. Unfortunately, every time I do, I’m proven wrong.

(Incidentally, Taylor has posted her email on the donation page with the statement “Please do not ask the details of my case I will not provide that info. I am happy to accept your prayers, well wishes or general inquiries.” A bit convenient – if you ask me…js)