Abuse, Causation, Foregiveness & Freedom

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In my novel, “The Journey,”  soon to be published in about three months, the protagonist, Francisca faces abuse as a child and as a married, young woman.  The antagonist, an abuser, Jake Angelotti, also as a child observes abuse of his mother and as well of himself.

I became interested to understand abuse since I like my fictional character faced child abuse as well as I chose to marry a violent man.  For me, I needed to understand why these people in my life were absers.  In my understanding and through Jesus, I found peace and genuinely prayed for those who hurt me.  With praying came a healing and forgiveness. 

Abuse can be genetic.  There are a few theories as to why abuse committed by him or her are not trouble by their actions.   As far as I know, unless corrected, there isn’t any true scientific facts.

Abuse can be part of a cycle.  . A child observes in his natural family abuse and considers this as normal  despite the information in our news media and literature on abuse.  Denial is deep. In my novel, the Antagonist observed his Pa abusing his mother and himself.  He became enraged while he watched the actions of his Pa.  Little did he realize when he grew up, he’d became the exact replica of his Pa.

Abuse can be the enjoyment of power.  It gives the offender a “false sense of strength.”  (Wikipedia)  They have welled up anger inside and take it on the weaker partner. In my story I wrote, repeatedly, Francisca, is beat as a child.  Some of her beatings are as inconsequential such as her not having her barrettes facing the right direction.  The reader observes Jake acting like his father in his and Francisca’s relationship. 

Abuse can be because the person is evil.  The abuser may not possess any social conscience over his actions.  In my story, Jake rationalizes the reason why he beat on Francisca.  The, “If only.” 

Some of the other contributing factors to abuse are use of drugs or alcohol, anger issues, stress and improper moral values.

To understand the reason why the abuser hurts his victims helps.   But for me,  I needed to take ownership of my negative feelings such as hate and a lack of forgiveness.  Prayer and God helped me to heal.  When I called my abuser and ask for them to please forgive me for my anger I held against them, a new Sharon began to occur.  God takes the tangled and convoluted relationships and makes it right. 

Am I angry at God for the abuse in my life?  No.  I live in a fallen world where evil exists.  Why did it have to be me?  There are thousands upon thousands of abused people including the abusers who stand with me.

My prayer for you is, if you have been abused and not forgiven your abuser, go to someone -a minister or clergy of your faith and discuss this with them.  You can ask the Lord to forgive you for your anger and hate, and He will prepare the path to freedom.  

The next blog is going to occur on Tuesday,  the 3rd of September, my birthday.  Until then, I hope you all have a wonderful labor day and please enjoy your family, love ones and friends.

 

 

REMEMBER WHEN -THE 60’S AND 10 ASPECTS

For many of us baby boomer the 60’s was the good old days.  The early 60’s, before President Kennedy and Martin Luther King were assassinated, to me were The Good Old Days.  I believe after this, the country began its metamorphosis into for many respects; deterioration.  Let me name a few of aspects of The Good Old Days.

1.  THOSE WERE THE DAYS OF INNOCENCE Sex was not discussed on TV or in the movies.  I remember blushing when our 8th grade girls health teacher discussed French Kissing.  Our eyes popped open wide when she said boys put their tongues into the girl’s mouth and girls did the same to the boys.  And they liked it!  I can remember shaking my head in disgust and saying “ewww!”

2.  THOSE WERE THE DAY WHEN ALL ADULTS IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD knew who Sherry was (my nickname) and who were my parents.  They also knew my parents phone number.  Phone numbers then could have up to three parties per line.  This means people shared the same telephone line.  The way one knew if the phone call was for their house was by the ring.  The phone numbers also had prefixes like MA or BR or Fu-short for Fulton.

3.  THOSE WERE THE DAYS when parents’ authority reigned supreme.  Children were disciplined.  Yup, I did receive my share of spankings.  I can’t say I didn’t deserve most of them. 

4.  THOSE WERE THE DAYS when even in the middle of the city, where we lived, we could leave our doors opened during the night.  We didn’t have to worry about home invasions or even a burglar attempting to get into our house.  Although, I did have a brand new Jansen bathing suit stole from our clothes lines.  They caught the thief, too.  He lived across the ally from us.

5.  THOSE WERE THE DAYS of Bee Hive hair styles.  The higher the better. Rat the hair as high as the hair would go.  Don’t comb it down.  Use hairspray and comb the top layer.  Those were the days of white lipstick and or pale pink lipsticks.   The old folks use to complain and say we looked like we were dead.  

6.  THOSE WERE THE DAYS of straight skirts worn above the knees.  I use to roll my skirt up when I left the house.  I couldn’t wear the mini skirts or certainly not the micro skirts.  If I wore one of those types of skirts, and my parents caught me wearing it, I’d been imprisoned in my room for life!

7.  THOSE WERE THE DAYS teachers were teachers and didn’t belong to unions.  In fact, I never heard of a teacher making sexual advances to their students.  We learned the basics.  None of the Common Core stuff where now children in school are going to learn about our history starting after WWII.   We respected George Washington and Abraham Lincoln.  Not sure if the school children of tomorrow are going to know about these two presidents.  Now, the gay agenda is to begin teaching about alternative life styles to our kindergartners and first graders.  These are young, innocent children.  This will change children forever.

8.  THOSE WERE THE DAYS when little or no drugs flowed until the middle 60’s our innocence began to fade in this country.  GI’s came home hooked on drugs such as LSD.  The Beetles sang about getting high.  This was the age of the flower children and communes, where I’ve been told, drugs flowed freely.

9.  THOSE WERE THE DAYS children and people of all ages could walk all over our big city of Tacoma, WA without fear of becoming a victim.  We all know senseless murders are taking place every day in our cities and towns.

10.THOSE WERE THE DAYS churches were full and everyone attended church and worshiped Jesus.   

NOW THESE ARE THE DAYS were rape occurs, and drugs flow freely.  The churches are empty.  Parents can not discipline their children for fear of government intrusion. Many family bonds are broken, or they never existed. The world in the 60’s was challenged by President Kennedy “To ask not what country can do for you, but ask what you can do for your country.”  As well as Martin Luther’s famous speech, “I had a dream…” For many the concept is “What can my country do for me?”

MY HEART BLEEDS AND TEARS FALL SILENTLY for my countrymen.  What has happened to us?  Our great nation is slipping in its power.  COULD IT BE WE LEFT GOD OUT OF OUR LIVES?  Has materialism taken the place of God?

I think about Abraham in the Bible and how he pleaded with God not to destroy the city of Sodom and Gomorrah if there were fifty God fearing believers.  Abraham continued to narrow down the number to where at last only Lot and his wife were left, and they fled from the city.

My prayer to God is to remember there are more than fifty belivers in our country.  In fact, there are thousands upon thousands.  SO MY PLEA TO GOD IS TO PLEASE HAVE MERCY ON THIS NATION, AND LET US RETURN BACK TO BELIEVING IN HIM.

Tell me what you think.  I know many of you remember your childhood and youth with fondness, tell me about it.  Giving me your views on what I’ve written.  I’d love to read them.

I’m going to be away for a few days.  The next time I’ll post a blog will be on the 30th of August.  I also want to say my novel is unpublished at this time.  I do not want to miss lead people.  It should be out, I hope in December.  The story I’m writing takes place in the 60’s.  God Bless you all.

  

HAVE YOU MET ANY HEROES OR HEROINES, LATELY?

How many of you know a hero or an unsung hero?

I sat transfixed to the TV while a lump formed in my throat a few days ago, and watched children flee in terror from their schools. The screen changed again and showed a picture of a bookkeeper, by the name of Antonette Tuff,  

Ms. Tuff was responsible for saving the lives of all of the children in her school plus the teachers and even the perpetrator.

Mr. Michael Hill, a disturbed young man, came to the school to murder. Through the convincing, warm, caring voice of Ms. Tuff, he placed all his weapons on the counter.

Her comment to Mr., Hill was, “We’re not gonna hate you, baby. It’s a good thing that you’re giving up.”

This heroine, this valiant lady prevented blood shed. God put her exactly where she needed to be at the right time. My list goes on and on about known heroes.

Each terror strike, we experienced people coming to the rescue of others when they need them the most.

Each World War and battles fought even in the Holocaust, Men and women  stepped up to the plate to help and rescue others.

The Bible describes many times when women and men saved their people. In the Book of Easter, Queen Easter of Persia, became a heroine and saved the life of her uncle and her Jewish people

But what about the unsung heroes? What about the nurse who holds a patient’s hand out of compassion as she or he is dying. They are examples of unsung heroes or unsung heroines.

Consider the gifts of money given to the victims of natural disasters by strangers. Perhaps, you’re an unsung hero.

My friend Barbara, who is a retired nurse, volunteers her time to care for a woman stricken with cancer. When needed, she takes her to doctor’s visits and to her chemo treatment. After realizing this woman was experiencing increased confusion, she organized her medications and set them up in a tray. This way, the lady could take her pills as prescribed. Again, no one but the people around Barbara know she is an unsung heroine.

I think about my husband who delivered Meals on Wheels when he was able too. He brought the shut-ins at home, cold and hot meals with a smile. These people depended on these meals for their survival.

In my novel, “The Journey,” an older couple offered their mother-in-law flat to an abused woman who fled from her husband. As a couple, they became unsung heroes to this destitute, young woman.

Last year after being unemployed for two years, my husband became gainfully employed. In September of 2013, we moved from Florida to Massachusetts with the idea of at last experiencing a paycheck every week.  Close to Christmas, his employer notified him and  his fellow employees, they were going to began to lay people off.

A good friend lent us a large amount of money, so we could move back to Florida. I don’t know what we would have done if she hadn’t helped us. When we arrived, her friend rented us his camper trailer for a small fee. We camped out in her backyard, In February, we moved and now pay rent to a friend of a friend. To us, these people are unsung heroes. We could not have made it without them.

All and all, heroes come in all sizes, in all shapes, all ages and all walks of life to help people in need. Remember the three women held captive for so many years. This hero set the captives free.

To all of these people, I want to say thank you. I don’t know where this world would be without all of you.

What about the heroes in your life? Have you met any? Tell me about them?

I’ll post my next blog on Monday, August 26.

ROMANTIC JEALOUSY FOUR WAYS I LEARNED TO DEAL WITH IT

First of all I wonder why on earth jealousy is called a green-eyed monster.

In Othello, Shakespeare alludes to cats as green-eyed monsters (because the cat has green eyes) in the way that they play with mice before killing them.  This is where the phrase came from.

“O, beware, my lord, of jealousy;
It is the green-eyed monster which doth mock
The meat it feeds on; that cuckold lives in bliss
Who, certain of his fate, loves not his wronger;
But, O, what damned minutes tells he o’er
Who dotes, yet doubts, suspects, yet strongly loves!”

“Romantic jealousy is defined as a complex of thoughts, feelings, and actions which follow threats to self-esteem and/or threats to the existence or quality of the relationship, when those threats are generated by the perception of a real or potential attraction between one’s partner and a (perhaps imaginary) rival  Wikipedia

The emotions felt by a person when jealously is streaming through their veins are  and can be a combination of fear, anger, humiliation, sense of failure, feeling suspicious, threatened, rage, grief, worry, envy, sadness, doubt, pain, and self-pity.
I can remember feeling a few of them as I listened to a program on TV giving information about ways to determine if your husband’s cheating.  One of the things spoken about was your husband or significant other will buy new under clothes when he never did before.

Oh my goodness, I got bit by not a cat, but a monster who invaded my mind.  The emotions that pumped through my brain were jealousy, rejection, anger and a desire to even the score.  I fail to say I was in a long term relationship in which my partner’s eyes from the day we began to live as a couple roved from female to female, and he acted on it. My denial in this relationship was deep, and it took me many years to realize what was happening.   

 My husband, who usually never worried about whether he had holes in his underwear, brought some new ones. I have to admit later on, he needed new underwear. After listening to this program, I marched to the Chester drawers and pulled out my husband’s new pairs of under clothes.  By gum, by golly, he was not going to wear these new items for another woman to admire.  I fetched my scissors and proceeded to cut holes in every single new set he bought. 

Not one word did I say to my husband.  He  put his new,, holey underclothes and said to me, “What happened to my under shorts and undershirt?  They have small holes in them.  I fessed up. 

Now, let me tell you the emotions I felt. They were stupid, childish, regret, foolish and shame to list but a few.  I asked for his forgiveness and he forgave me.  Thank God, he has a good sense of humor.  From time to time, he’ll bring it up.  One of his comments is, “No wonder I’m practically bald,  you made me lose all my hair!” 

Needless to say, I was not walking close to the Lord.  What did I learn from my sudden burst of insanity?  I learned this:

1.  PRAY Ask the Lord for wisdom.

2.  WAIT Don’t act on it.  Tread water.  Do you see other signs of infidelity?

3.  COMMUNICATE Tell your significant other you need to talk.  Say the “I feel,”  LISTEN and REPEAT what you think you hear.  This is called active listening.

4.  SEEK PROFESSIONAL HELP  If none of this works, talk to a professional about how you’re feeling or both of you can attend counseling.

You ask me if I continue to be touched by jealousy.  There are times in the last close to thirty-eight years we’ve been married, the old ugly, green monster popped up.   I don’t act on it.  I talk to my husband about how I’m feeling.  My jealousy is put to rest, and we continue to live out lives as best we can.  

Tell me, have you ever experienced romantic jealousy?  What did you do about it? 

 

CHIVALRY IS DEAD OR IS IT?

Today, I heard on TV, 66% of the men in this country expect for their first dates to pay for the meal when they go out to dinner. My mouth flew open. I couldn’t believe this survey. The MC continued. These guys also stated if their dates didn’t pay for the food, than this was the last time they’d date these women.

This occupied my mind all day long. Removed my serenity. Gave me tears.

If this is the case, I believe a funeral is in store. A long, black casket is needed, pulled by four horses. On the coffin, a banner needs to fly saying, “Chivalry is dead.” The sound of the horses’ hooves clop, striking the pavement while women mourners weep and groan, dressed in black. They hold handkerchiefs to their eyes to wipe away their tears and follow the casket. Bystanders composed of young and old men stand on the side booing and shouting obsenities. Behind this group, a set of trumpet, tuba and horn musicians play Chopin Handel’s “Death March.”

DOWN THROUGH THE AGES, writers such as Anna Seton or the recent Philippa Gregory took us to the time when knights in shining armor romanced the ladies of the English court.

Fast forward the years to the romantic actor, Clark Gabel. His tip of the hat towards a starlet on the screen would make the women viewing the movie want to swoon and cry, “Awww, if only—”

Maybe the problem is WOMEN AREN’T LADIES ANY MORE. Did we not demand equal rights? We demanded equal pay and got it. I didn’t burn my bra. For me, gravity’s taken affect. No wearing a t-shirt without a bra and letting my boobs hang down to my waist for this gal. No. No! No!.

SOME WOMEN want equal rights in the front. I can’t imagine pulling down my pants and urinating in front of many pairs of male eyes popping out as they salivate during a battle. Then, sweetly asking as bullets are flying, man are groaning and yelling from injuries, “Does anyone have some toilet paper? I need to wipe myself. Now, I need to wash my hands.” Forget that, I probably would pee my pants!

SO WHAT HAPPENED TO THE MAN WHO
WALKED on the side of the street, so ladies could avoid being splashed by mud puddles.

OPENED building doors for females.

RAN around the car to open the door for a gal waiting. I must admit as a young gal, I felt funny waiting for my date to break his neck to reach the car door to enable me to step outside. A Volkswagen was okay, but Dad‘s Oldsmobile was long and sleek.

OPENED the umbrella bit. While a guy opened the umbrella and held it out for me, rain dripped down his face soaking him. On second thought, I could open my own umbrella, and he could open his. This way I didn’t have to feel guilty if he got pneumonia.

SLIDE the chair OUT for me at the table when I sit down to dine. My father pulled the chair and scooted it in when we went out to ear for my mother, and my brother did the same for me.

CARRIED MY BOOKS As a student in high school, many of my boyfriends used to carry my books from class to class.

IN MY HOUSE CHIVALRY IS ALIVE AND WELL.

My husband still, when we are out, opens all doors for me if it’s possibly feasible. Yup, gals after almost 38 years. Eat your heart out.

HE comes to my rescue when I can’t open a jar.

HE gets my fast food drink or meal.

HE opens the umbrella for me, so I don’t get wet. Yes, he does get slightly soaked.

OH YES, I almost forgot, HE squashes the bugs when I’m afraid of them.

IN RETROSPECT, when I dated a guy as a teenager. I lived alone and the places my dates took me to had packets of sugar in bins at the table. While he paid, I dumped the bags of sugar in my purse. No, I didn’t consider it stealing. I thought it was compliments of the restaurant. I needed the sugar for my cold cereal in the morning. I suppose, if the thought crossed my boyfriend’s mind for me to pay, he realized, we both be headed off to jail for none payment of a bill.

I wonder if the reason why chivalry is dead lies in the fact that WE parents were or are too busy putting the meat and the potatoes on the table? Maybe, some of us are TOO busy texting and playing on the computer. TOO, busy worrying about the events of the world to teach our sons manners? What do you think?

I don’t know about you, but my tired, aching feet and back appreciate it when a male gets up with a little smile and offers me a seat. “Thank you, sonny.” I remember the day when men were men and weren’t afraid of being gentlemen. On the other hand, maybe there are still knights in shining armor around.

Give me your thoughts on chivalry. I’m interested to know whether you have paid for your boyfriend‘s meal when you went out to eat. What happened when he expected it, and you were forced into paying the ticket? Did you continue to date him?

HUMOR AND THE FOUR TYPES THAT INFLUENCED MY LIFE

Greenville Kleiser stated, “Good humor is a tonic for mind and body. It is the best antidote for anxiety and depression. It is a business asset. It attracts and keeps friends. It lightens human burdens. It is the direct route to serenity and contentment.”

Out of curiosity, I wanted to find out the types of humor we humans have. Of course, there was no agreement of the number but even wikipedia listed four different types. Two of the categories I consider humor wasn’t even listed.

The four different classes of humor that have influenced my life, I’m giving them Sharon’s category names.

The first kind of humor that tickles my funny bone is called CRAZY, ZANY HUMOR. Hmm, what is a funny bone? Well, will leave this maybe for another blog. You ask me what kind of humor is that? Drum roll, please! It is the type of humor found in Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz’s sitcom.

One particular funny episode occurs that I remember when Lucy works in a candy factory. Her job is to pack the candy morsels. However, wouldn’t you know it, she can’t keep up with the conveyor belt that begins slow but soon speeds up.

Lucy doesn’t want to get fired and have the candy fall on the floor, so she begins to stuff the candy into her mouth looking like a chick muck holding nuts in its mouth.

Next, she begins to stuff those sticky suckers down her blouse and wherever else she can stuff them. Now that’s comedy! I laughed until I had to make a bee line to the bathroom.

I loved to watch Red Skelton and Carol Burnett, as well. They don’t make them like they use to. Even Johnny Carson would wear his crazy hat and come up with some whoppers in which I began to giggle and laugh.

The second type is called ANECDOTAL FAMILY HUMOR SITUATIONS. Here is one example of this humor. A couple months after 9/11, our government put out a warning to not open any strange mail or packages because they could possible have anthrax spores.

I received a strange box that didn’t have anything written on it. This strange box sat on our front porch until my husband came home. Both of us didn’t remember ordering anything. So Jose, my husband dressed me in a large, trash bag. I wore plastic bags around my shoes. I tied a towel around my head, and one around my face. Oh yes, I wore cleaning gloves. I moved the parcel from the front porch to the lanai.

The man, who professed to love me, my brave knight shouted orders from behind the sliding lanai, glass door. First, he began hollering at me to bend over the package. Because he was hollering at me through the glass window, his voice was muffled.

I turned to hear what he was saying and almost knocked over the box. Jose rolled his eyes and shook his head. I realized what he was trying to say to me and bent sticking my rump up in the air.

Carefully, I opened the folds of each corner. I gingerly removed the box from the brown paper. I began to laugh then bellow. My husband began screaming, “What, what’s the matter?” I yelled, “All’s clear. These are my thank you cards for after my graduation.”

My husband shook his head and came to my rescue when he received the “all’s clear” to help me climb out of my costume. We still laugh about it and say, “Remember when- – -?”

The third type of humor is NATURE HUMOR. One night after an emotional evening of working as a nurse, I came home distraught. I could not clear my mind no matter how hard I prayed. Finally, in the wee hours of the morning, I went outside and sat in one of the lanai chairs. I listened to a little bird just singing away in an monotone song.

In fact, I never heard of a bird chirping like this. I forgot about my emotional pain and began to giggle. I remember thinking; gee maybe he’s deaf and can’t hear himself. I could imagine him sticking his little head up and pointing to the stars and the moon as he sang what he thought was a beautiful song.

He continued to peep his heart out. After all he had the right to sing to the Lord no matter what time of day or night it was. I can imagine the Lord smiling when He heard his creation praising him. In a short while, a group of birds woke up, or they were already awake. I pictured them as having put up with this rascal bird for long enough. They let out a chorus of what I assumed as angry chirping. My little, singing fella, decided to hush up and go back to sleep. So, did I after experiencing a great laugh.

The fourth type of humor is BIBLICAL HUMOR. One of the scenes found in the New Testament is after Jesus rose again and found his disciples Peter and John and others fishing. They fished all night long and not one fish was caught. Jesus stood on the shore frying fish for the men he loved, and he prepared bread knowing they’d be hungry.

I can picture him raised his hands to his mouth and hollering to His disciples, “Did you catch any fish? Try, throwing your nets over the side of the boat, again.”

Do you think maybe they thought who does this man think he is? Why is he telling us to throw our nets in the water when we are the fishermen and fished all night? Still, they threw their nets over the ship, and their nets become full of fish, they experienced difficulty pulling in their bounty.

This made me laugh because Jesus knew that the disciples hadn’t caught any fish. He knew they were perturbed, down trodden over his death and now angry because not even one fish did they catch. Yet, this stranger is frying fish on the beach. I love it.

Yes, there are many examples of humor in the Bible.

I guess what I’m saying in this world filled with terror, anger, pain and the seriousness of events taking place around us and to us, look for the lighter side of things. Try to find the humor. Just for a moment, one can escape and bring joy to one’s heart. You deserve it!

What do you consider as humor? Do you have any funny antidotes you could write about? I loved to hear about them.

FIVE WAYS TO AVOID THE PITFALLS OF CANCER

First of all welcome. Today’s topic concerns the use of weapons that a woman diagnosed with cancer can use to avoid the affects of the psychological roller coaster of the disease.

A couple of days ago, my friend, Barbara, and I talked about the time of her life when she fought cancer. She suffered from malignant melanoma skin cancer.

In 2013, there will be 70,000 diagnosed with melanoma. According to the American Cancer society, there are two other common types of skin cancer which are squamous carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma where 3.5 million new cases are diagnosed every year. The causation is sun exposure which affects the back of hands, face, ears, neck and lips.

In 2011, Barbara suffered one destructive wave against her after another. The last negative swell was a Tsunami that lead to a fight for her life.

I asked her how she avoided the pitfall of the highs and lows of the disease. She gave me five different ways which sustained her during cancer and afterwards.

1. PRAYER took first place on her list. What she told me that prayer brought her solace.

Besides this, there were even prayer warriors praying for her.
Her own surgeon before the operation prayed with her.

God promises to walk with us through the valley of death and to fear no evil for his rod and staff will comfort us. This brings much comfort to those who believe.

2. EDUCATING oneself about the disease is important. A person should understand the nature of whatever type of cancer one is battling. It is important to understand the language used by doctors and nurses. Get a second opinion.

3. SUPPORT of friends and family is important. They provide support needed to face the day. They provide a listening ear. They provide a shoulder to cry on.

Another one of my friends who suffered from metastasized cancer, after experiencing her hair falling out from receiving several chemo treatments asked me to shave all of her hair off her head, but changed her mind. She did it herself. I would have gladly done anything to make her life easier to handle.

4. SEEK medical professional support. They are there for the asking.

5. GET a healing proactive role. Understand what the doctors want to do. Try not to let negativism pollute your mind. Remember what your mother told you. Eat your vegetables and fruit. Have a well-rounded diet.

Barbara is now in recession and been cancer free for one and a half years. I celebrate her life. I’m privileged to call her my friend.

Tell me for those of you who have experienced cancer or have friends or family that have, what are your ways that you coped? What were the ways your loved ones and family coped?