Post Election: Finding the Truth

We are now one week out of the dramatic election which was 2016. Turmoil, fear, anger have ensued and people are looking for answers.

As an avid Facebook fan and regular internet user I know where I see blame.

My biggest complaint throughout this whole election season has been the actions of friends and family whom I had admired and respected. There wasn’t a day that went by in which purported “news” stories were being passed around social media like wildfire with outlandish headlines describing atrocities of both sides and opinions stated as facts.

Whether the person reposting these “stories” ever read the ensuing article or not I do not know, which further ads to my frustration. As an adult and as someone who values the written word I believe it is our duty to seek out truth and knowledge yet here are educated people falling for fake news.

If you asked most of your friends if they believe gossip is a good thing, their answer would most likely be, “absolutely not.” Yet here they are day in and day out spreading gossip.

If someone actually takes the time to read beyond the headline, they would see that most often these are nothing more than opinions crafted to steer your opinions to a bias view. There are rarely any facts to support the stories and no credible sources.

Discussing politics has always been challenging. We each bring our own views and experiences to the conversation. But now we have an added element of false information being taken as fact. Pew Research has shown that 4 in 10 Americans get their news online. Where once there was trust in the spoken word of Walter Cronkite, yes I am dating myself here; we now have anyone with an internet connection telling us the “news.”

As Americans we can all be disgusted at the protestors, the Trump supporters, the Muslims, the Blacks, Hispanics…the list goes on. But as Americans we owe it to ourselves and this country to become more educated. Look beyond the headlines, read past the opinions. Look for facts from all sides and make up your own mind.  Demand truth!

We owe it to ourselves, our neighbors, and our future generations.  

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Skinned Knees & Broken Hearts

The Heartache of Parenting

My daughter called me today crying. I had to tell her I could not come over and hold her and make everything better. All I could do was listen. It felt like I had been kicked in the gut.

As a mother we always want to be able to at least comfort our children when they are hurting if we can’t make things better. But after almost 22 years, my baby girl has now moved across the state and where once I could wrap my arms around her and hold her close to calm her fears, now I only have a cold, lifeless phone to cross the distance and soothe the pain. 

Being a Mother is learning about the strengths you didn’t know you had…and dealing with fears you didn’t know existed.

When our children are young life seems so big and dangerous, skinned knees, hot stoves, falling off chairs. But then as they grow older we realize how safe that time was and how we wish so desperately to go back to that simpler place. Oh how often I would kiss the boo boos and say “OK, now it’s all better.” And away they would go to tackle their next adventure. But now when my child hurts, it is often more a pain of the heart and I cannot seem to find a band-aid to fix that.

It is true; a parent feels the pain of their child. I do not know if it is because nothing is really new and we remember how we too had our hearts broken or lost that new job or is it much more? Once you become a parent, whether by birth or adoption or however that child came into your life they become a part of you. Suddenly our needs drop down the ladder. Those new shoes you have been looking at quickly become insignificant when you are looking at new bats for your favorite softball player.

God gives us many blessing but none so sweet and yet so painful as that of being a parent. But for all the pain, the grief, the skinned knees, the calls at 3 am, the broken hearts and banged up fenders I would not change a thing. Except to be able to hold them and wipe the tears away whenever they needed me.

Image: https://goo.gl/images/cyDKDJ

Looking Presidential-Hillary

“Not necessarily attractive.”

“Maybe Hillary should smile *less* …

“Well, I just don’t think she has a presidential look,”

 

This week’s debate marked a milestone in American History. The first female candidate of a major political party sparred with the male counterpart on the opposing side. Yet analysts and viewers alike still find a way to make sexism a part of the conversation.

Fox News’ Brit Hume said after this week’s debate, “I Think, For The Most Part, [Clinton] Looked Composed, Smug Sometimes, Not Necessarily Attractive” and twitter was alive with comments saying she smiled too much. Since when is a candidate deemed qualified based on their appearance? And to Mr. Trump who stated, “Well, I just don’t think she has a presidential look, and you need a presidential look.” She has been criticized for her voice, her clothes, her hairstyles and the list goes on.

We are about to elect the leader of the greatest country on earth and for many it is coming down to looks and well let’s face it gender. I may be wrong but some people I know who are staunch Trump supporters cannot give me a concrete reason for voting for him except they refuse to vote for Hillary.

Now we can all make assumptions as to what their reasoning is. I have no problem with someone who says they believe Trump is more qualified (well actually I do but we will save that for a later date), or they prefer his policies. But when they have no reason other than they hate Hillary? Well I find that a bit disconcerting.

I always thought being a President was different than a beauty pageant, although I am sure she would have scored high on smiling! Maybe I am out of step with reality.  We live in a world of reality tv telling us to be more like the Kardashians and the Real Housewives of Atlanta and where ever else they find mothers in heels and dresses sipping wine. I must have been doing something wrong in my sweats, minivan and convenient store coffee driving kids all over town. Heels? Really?

The sad fact remains, we as women are still judged on our looks and gender. Progress has been made but we still have a long road ahead. Perhaps, just perhaps if Hillary wins in November, we will have a new definition of what Presidential looks like.

Mother Plus…

What do you want to be when you grow up?

  • A Doctor?
  • A Nurse?
  • An Astronaut?

We all had childhood dreams and ambitions. Did yours come true? I often struggled with this question. My mother, who was widowed at forty-seven, always told me to have a career. Whatever else I did, I need to make sure and have a career to support me. But I didn’t want that. I got good grades was accepted to Loyola University, but never went.

I longed for something else. I wanted a family. I wanted to be a wife and mommy. The problem was there were no ads in the classifieds, no courses at the local college for such a position. So I whittled some years away working at the local mall and hanging out with friends till I met the man I wanted to marry. Some years later we had that family. Two beautiful daughters, the house with the white picket fence (yes, it really had one), dogs, cats, rabbits and a minivan to complete the picture.

I was happy. I had found my calling. I homeschooled the girls into high school, volunteered at church, worked occasionally part-time and spent many blissful hours in my gardens where I sowed vegetables, foxgloves, daisies, and whatever other flower I could get my hands on. Life was good and I was satisfied.

But suddenly something went wrong and now after all these years; I am a fifty year old divorced woman who is now an empty nester. As both girls are launching their own lives who do I take care of now?

Me! That’s who. I absolutely loved my old life and aside from a few rocky years during the divorce I still love it. But now it is time to take care of myself and find out what God has planned for my next chapter. I am and always will be a mother but now I can be a mother plus (always a mother but so much more). The last few years have given me cause for alot of prayer and soul-serching. Now, not only can I say that I am satisfied, but I am eager-eager to see where this leads, eager to experience new adventures, eager to discover the world and myself.

Someone once said you can’t be truly happy in life until you are happy with yourself. I believe that. We all have our quirks and bad habits but we all have gifts too. Life is learning how to take those gifts and make them meaningful. For a while it was raising my daughters. Now it is writing and exploring all about me.  It is time for my plus life. 

As long as you are breathing, you have time to find your gift. What is your gift? What is your plus?

 

Welcome

Hello! I am so glad you dropped by. My name is Trish and I want to welcome you to Thinking Woman Today. This is a site created with you in mind and I want to invite you to visit often as we discuss topics from spirituality, parenting, politics and much more from a woman’s point of view. The world is a complex and wonderful place and as women today we owe it to ourselves our daughters and granddaughters to revel in our awesomeness, challenge our fears and push our limits to become all that we were created to be.