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Archive for August, 2009

“My dog is a shitzu and she really is a shit, but I love her to death.”

I can’t think of a time when my dog hasn’t wanted to be with me. Unlike the shitzu, my dog is a hundred pound mutt somewhere between a rottweiller and a labrador. When she hears me pull into the drive way, she yowls loudly. She also does this when I pick her up from the dog groomer. There is no doubt that my dog loves me. This is apparent to all. She doesn’t ask much of me; food, water, an ear or belly scratch here and there, some simple conversation affirming just how much I love her, a bath, and a brush.

Sure, there have been times when I have not been happy with her. For instance, there was the time when I left my brand new ski jacket out and for whatever reason, she felt that it was wise to chew holes in the pockets. She loves to eat crayons, so those must be kept up. Her drama is pretty minor and definitely bearable. The few times that she has had accidents in the house have truly been my fault for leaving her too long. She has never caused significant damage, never nipped or bit anyone. She is a very good dog in all actuality.

If men really were dogs, I am confident that women would be happier. We would always know that he is completely “into us”, that he would do anything for us, and that we really do mean the world to him. Why is it so hard to find a dog of a man?

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Ultimately, isn’t this what we are all looking for? That incredible relationship where we are so in love that we can not imagine our lives without that special someone? I know I am looking for it, but the difference is that I have once felt this in love. Like many, my love ended in a divorce. We were married young – 18 and 19 years old. We had been married for four years and had a baby. Something was going on with him and I can only guess as to what, but the reality is that one day, I came home to discover his things packed and he was standing before me zipping up his coat. This was goodbye to the life that I knew.

That happened fifteen years ago. Given the time, many would assume that I am bitter, but I am not. In fact, he and I are now very good friends. Although we don’t see each other often, we give genuine hugs when we do and inquire about each other and each other’s families. We have a child together and will forever be a part of each other’s lives.

During the past fifteen years, I have focussed on me. I have gone back to school and received my bachelor’s degree, I returned again and received my master’s degree, I have a career, I have purchased my first home, I have made two major moves, and most importantly, I have discovered who I am. I have my own hopes and dreams these days and I am perfectly content in being me. This is a lesson that I wish I could share with all women.

I was raised that women should be at home raising their children and supporting their husbands. Within that belief system, I put my life on hold so that I could take care of my husband and support him in his dreams – all while burying my own. I thought I was nothing without a man. Oh how wrong I was.

I am not a feminist or an advocate for being single, I just know that I am not willing to settle. I want the man that is best for me, or no man at all. Many people search for that special someone that will complete them. I am already a complete person. I am looking for that special man that will compliment me, and I will compliment him. I hope to find him one of these days, but if not, I will enjoy this life of mine. Being single does not mean being lonely. I do not understand why so many people think that way. Perhaps they are simply afraid to discover who they really are.

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There are many signs that stamp one’s daughter as a young woman – the first bra, the first date, the first boyfriend, makeup, shaving her legs. The list is endless, but perhaps the most significant is when she is on the pill. This is a hard time for the parents in so many ways.

I have never been a parent that is afraid or hesitant to talk to my children about anything. We have very open dialogues about vast subjects. Sex and drugs have always been two primary topics. I am still old fashioned in my beliefs about sex. I do not believe that teens should be having sex. I don’t feel that they are emotionally ready for this endeavor. Many teens enter sex for one of two reasons: their hormones are raging and they lose control, or they are looking for love and hoping to find it through sex.

Our sex conversations have always been on the lines of, “You know I don’t want you having sex (various reasons given), but inevitably, the choice is yours. You will find yourself in a situation where you will make the choice. Before you get there, it is far more important to me that you are protected so come to me and we will get you on the pill.” ¬†Of course, there’s also the talk of needing to use condoms to prevent STDs, but being on the pill has been a huge one. If and when she becomes sexually active, I want her taken care of. A teen pregnancy will end her dreams.

My daughter has not decided to become sexually active at this point. For this, I am thankful. However, her hormones are simply out of control during her menstrual cycle. During her most recent flare up, she was sure that I absolutely hate her and brought me a large knife while suggesting that since I hate her so much, I should just kill her now. Yikes. These actions have made it apparent that it is time to put her on the pill.

This scares me. She has a boyfriend and I hope that this won’t be the key that tells them that it is ok to have sex. She has shared with me that they have talked about sex and both want to wait, but the day will come when the decision will be made. I guess it is a good thing that she is on the pill, but it is very hard to watch my daughter become such a young woman.

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