What I Think About Religion

I usually try and avoid intimate and personal things about myself on the Internet….just kidding – I am an open book, for the most part. However, I never really open up about my religion and that’s mainly because I’ve always been somewhat confused about it. I grew up in a Methodist-style home with a preacher Grandfather and an entire family whose life was dedicated to Jesus. I spent two days a week at church and loved it. The older I got, the wider my path got and farther away I got from God. I really found myself – and my religion – when I moved to San Diego. Jesus has really opened up my eyes to a whole new world and I have really been focusing on my passions and what God wants me to do rather than what I want. My all-time favorite Bible verse (and the one that has helped me feel less “stuck” lately) is 2 Corinthians 12:10 “For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecution, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

I have been at a cross roads with several different life changing areas; my education and my career have been the top two. I used to only care about how much money a job paid. I didn’t ever really care if the job paid value to my life or if was beneficial to anyone besides myself. My eyes have recently opened to see that my passion does not lie within the numbers that are in my bank account, yet lie within my heart and soul with how I feel being fulfilled with my 40 hour a week duties It’s been a complete battle for me to constantly remind myself that my fortune does not lie here on Earth, but lies in Heaven. The money should not be a paradise, but seeking eternity in Heaven will be. With that being said, my heart has taken a road I never thought I would go down – teaching. Specifically, teaching Special Education. I want to fulfill the hearts of others in order to fulfill myself.  These are things that far more important to me over the money or any of the materialistic riches that may lie within this Earth.

I have excited to see where God leads me next and I am slowly beginning to understand that there is a plan already written for me.

Until next time loves.

XOXO

Letter to the Ferguson Protesters

To the Ferguson Protesters,

First and foremast: HAPPY THANKSGIVING. I think your chaos and rioting has taken away the holiday season for many us, especially to those whose lives and businesses you destroyed, but we’ll get to that a little bit later. I’m writing you this letter in hopes that you will understand exactly what you’re doing to our country. But before I get into why I think you’re all acting irrationally and like a bunch of idiots, I want to provide you with a clear, cut-throat definition.

TERRORISM: the use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims.

What you are doing to your community and to the cities throughout the US is called terrorism. You are now just as much of a threat to the US as Bin-Laden and ISIS is. Both of these terrorist groups used violence to try and force change in the country – and look where that got them.

Now before you jump down my throat about how you’re not a terrorist, let me forewarn you that I am a Graduate student getting my Master’s in Terrorism & Homeland Security. Needless to say, I know a thing or two about terrorism and I’ve also spent the last 48 hours with my face down in research on Ferguson, MO.

For the purpose of this letter, I want you to put your feelings aside about this being a racial issue. Let’s just talk straight statistics. In 2012, the crime rate in Ferguson, MO was 381.1 with the US Average being 297.5. So important fact #1: Ferguson has a higher crime rate than the average city in the United States. What does this mean exactly? It means that law enforcement is probably a little more on edge and forceful than usual. Wanna know what else is shocking? The murder rate in Ferguson is a almost double the average US city. The average US city has 4.8 murders per 100,000 people while Ferguson is at 9.4 murders per 100,000 people (population). This same statistic always applies to robberies, burglaries, thefts and auto thefts (and you easily see how your recent rioting spree is going to increase these numbers for 2014).

Let me ask you a realistic question – if you were a police that knew these statistics, wouldn’t you be a little weary of EVERY call you answered? And don’t give me some bullshit response – like “Well, that’s their job.” Yes, it’s their job and it’s your job as a citizen to OBEY THE DAMN LAW.

Now, l’m not going to summarize the events that happened on that August day because most of you have the story in your own (whether it’s accurate or not) and I can imagine my letter won’t change your view on the way things happened, but what I am going to do is present you with hard evidence that you’re clearly taking this entire thing to the extreme.

Also, let me express my deepest sympathy for the family and friends of both Michael Brown and Officer Wilson. It is tragic to have lost your life at the age of 18 and as a young officer, I can imagine how terrified you must feel right now with all of this going on. It’s sad for BOTH families. But y’all, stop playing the race card.

See, the reason you shouldn’t pretend like this is some racial profiling bullshit is because black cops kill unarmed white men too. Men of the same race also kill EACH OTHER all the time. Now, how come you’re not rioting about that? If this was REALLY about racial hate, don’t you think it’s worse for two men of the same race to kill each other? It’s like having two men in the same gang or motorcycle club kill each other. It’s like killing your brother. 

Here’s another cold, hard fact for you: According to FBI Statistics, of the 2,695 murders in which the victim was black, 91% were committed by people of the same race. Only 14% of murders were white on black.

Pretty obvious that you guys are protesting for the wrong reasons. Let’s just say that Wilson DID kill Brown strictly because he was black – you’re still missing the entire bigger picture. Maybe what happened was wrong and maybe what happened was right – that’s up for God to decide ultimately because only God knows the truth at this point. What I do know is if you wanna protest and fight for justice, get your facts together. Fight for a real cause – and stop hurting other people in the process. The more you riot and loot and damage other people’s property, the more people will begin to take your protesting as a joke.

I sincerely hope and pray that you find your way to this situation because what you’re doing right now is stupid. It’s childish. It’s HURTFUL. It’s silly. You look like fools. You destroyed your own community yet blamed it on the fact that a white cop murdered an unarmed black adult. 

Babies, Wedding Rings, and Women in 2014

     So this has literally been an ongoing rant of mine for quite a while, but yesterday I stumbled across and article that discussed how women who are not pregnant nor have a desire to be pregnant are viewed in society. I have to say, this sparked A LOT of controversy within my core group of friends (mostly girls, but a few guys chimed in as well). Let’s just start by saying (bold, loud and proud) I DO NOT WANT TO HAVE CHILDREN. NOT TODAY. NOT TOMORROW. NOT NEXT YEAR. NOT IN THE NEXT TEN YEARS. NOT EVER.

     The reasons behind this are personal and really not something that should concern anyone else, except myself, my family and my future husband. Society has this damn belief that women need to marry and pop out kids (in whatever order they choose) because it’s the way of life.

WRONG!

     I am completely content with my life that doesn’t involve a baby (never) or a husband (yet). I get to focus on ME. I get to focus on my mind, my health, my body, my career, my education and honestly, WHATEVER THE HELL I WANT TO FOCUS ON. If I want to sleep until 2:00 pm on a Saturday than drag my ass down to the beach and sleep on the beach all day, well guess what? I CAN DO THAT – BECAUSE I AM NOT A MOTHER. If I want to go out with the girls five nights in a row, guess what? I CAN ALSO DO THAT BECAUSE I AM NOT A MOTHER.

    Some many times I am approached by people, especially woman. They ask me what I do for a living, where I’m from, who I’m dating…and of course….”When are you two planning a child?” My reply: “I don’t know, when are you planning on croaking over and dying?” Exactly. It’s just rude. Like, don’t ask me when I’m planning a child. The only thing I’m planning in my head is my dinner, my outfit for tomorrow, and workout plan. And possibly my weekend plans. Get out of my face, lady. Now obviously I don’t say stuff like that because my momma taught me better so I usually chuckle and say “a baby isn’t in our plans just yet, but maybe one day.” (knowing damn well I don’t want a baby, but whatever shuts her up, right?)

      It always cracks me up when other people ask me when I’m getting married. Seriously? Listen people, I’ve already been married once and it was a huge lot of SUCK and a little bit of FUN. Please remind me WHY I want to do that again? Ok, my point exactly. People always  remind me of my age and how quickly I’m approaching 30 and how I need to start considering marriage. Once again, I have considered it and my boyfriend knows that when the time is right, we will get married. DO NOT PUSH ME TO GET MARRIED. Let me repeat this: DO NOT PUSH ME TO GET MARRIED. Hello, have y’all not read the stats on divorce rate? Maybe if you weren’t constantly shoving marriage and babies in every poor girl’s face, we wouldn’t have such high divorce rates. You know, just a thought.

    Then there’s the whole social media shit. Like everyone just wants to have babies/get engaged so they can post it on Facebook. Seriously? Ok, I get it. It’s exciting and you want EVERYONE to know you’re just full of shit and giggles….but that doesn’t need to be the reason behind you getting knocked up or engaged. 

    Anyways, I hope this post finds everyone some sort of justice for their choice. It’s ok to be single, 30 and without kids. Hell, it’s ok to be 45, single and without child. As long as you’re happy and you are following your dreams then nothing else matters.

 

XOXO

D

 

Relationship vs. Love

Recently, I had found myself falling more and more in love everyday (with my boyfriend, obviously). If you scroll back through my blog, you will see I once harbored a lot of hate and anger towards my ex and basically every other male in the universe (sorry boys!). Several things have occurred to me over the last few weeks.

I feel that people view the word relationship and the word love interchangeably. They have different meanings depending on who you ask. As I get older, I realize that these words really don’t correlate at all. You can love someone outside of a relationship and just because you’re in a relationship, doesn’t mean it’s love. A relationship, in my eyes, is a bond between two people whether it be strictly platonic, sexual or romantic. Love is a feeling that you express, that you feel, that completely takes over your heart without knowing. I don’t mean love as in you love your parents or your friends, I mean love, in a romantic, passionate, spiritual, intellectual, sexual, emotional….every single aspect of your body and mind is consumed by love.

Love is finding someone that inspires you and motivates you. They are that person that says go to the gym and eat that apple instead of go to the club and take that shot. They want you to be better (even though they probably already think you’re perfect). They want you to be happy and successful. They won’t ask you to leave your job for their benefit but instead will push you to move up the career ladder and better yourself. They never ask you where you’re going or who you’re with, but ask you how you enjoyed it and want to know all the details about your life. They want to share their life with you – not just make you part of their life when it’s good for them (parties, dinners, social events, etc…).They want to your motivation and guess what? They want you to motivate them. I’m not saying make him feel like he’s not adequate for being your significant other, but help him pursue the courage to be better. When he needs someone to help him quit smoking, BE THAT PERSON. When he needs someone to listen to him vent about his job or his personal needs, BE THAT PERSON. When he wants someone to tell him he’s amazing, even when he makes mistakes, BE THAT PERSON.

I’ve learned the hard way about forcing relationships into love. My boyfriend has been such an amazing person in my life and has open my eyes to some many new possibilities. I have learned to love myself in ways that I never knew was possible and I have learned that changing is a lot easier than I ever expected. He has shown me that I can do things I never thought were possible and he has always been that driving force (those are his words, by the way) that push me over the next obstacles.

Frustrations

Sorry for excessively blogging lately, but sometimes it’s my only way to deal with what I feel without becoming an emotional basket case.

Have you ever wanted something, like, REALLY REALLY bad? And I don’t mean like a pair of shoes or something simple – I mean like that rockstar position you interviewed for (*wink wink*), good news from the doctor, or even for a relationship to work out. Recently I have found myself wanting, like desperately craving and needing, something that I feel like I worked really hard for. It sucks because some things just take time (there is where my lack of patience comes into play). Excessive time makes me over-think it, though. I tend to play back every detail of every second and then I start doubting all the confidence I had exhibited initially. 

I know I’m tough and I know that I can accomplish pretty much anything I put my mind to, but dang it, I really really hate not knowing where this is all going. I know God has a plan for me and I know He will only guide me down the path that is chosen for me, but I really want this. I want it so bad that I’m scared I will screw it up.

U G H.

-D

Human Development at 7:39 A.M.

People who read my blog (the solid 5 people who do haha) always ask me where I come up with the thoughts and ideas I write about. To be honest, I don’t know. My mind runs 100 miles an hour day-in and day-out. There’s like a 2 hour span during the day where my mind ISN’T occupied with my thoughts (when I’m at the gym and when I first wake up). I tend to find my deepest thoughts in that hour and half commute to and from work, especially in the early morning.

While driving to work this morning, I was chatting with my best friend back in Georgia. She and I were discussing having your shit together (obviously one of my favorite topics) and figuring out who we are. This strange theory crossed my mind – what if we never really know who we are? 

I’m 26. So obviously I’m not supposed to know who I am completely. But what if we spend our whole lives chasing this idea of figuring out who we are when in fact, we are individuals who are constantly changing, constantly growing, and constantly evolving? What if we never become one particular way? Sure, we have specific characteristics and traits that can’t necessarily be changed, but what if we never really become one particular brand of a person? 

Since I’m studying Psych (and completely obsessed with it), it fascinates me that human development never stops. I’m sure most people assume it stops in your 30’s because society expects you to be married with kids living in the suburbs and working a corporate job. However, it’s proven fact that human development continues well on into our 60’s and 70’s. We never stop developing. Doesn’t it only make sense that we never really know who we are? If we are constantly developing, even when we’re full of wrinkles and a great-great grandmother, how we are ever one specific person? 

Just some food for thought, kiddos.

Until later – XOXO

-D

The War with ISIS, James Foley and Obama

I’m going to go out of my normal comfort zone here and discuss the beheading of James Foley, the war with ISIS and our lovely President Obama.

For starters, I feel like I should have never watched that video. I now feel somewhat manipulated by the terrorist who posted the video because I did exactly what they wanted me to do – watch the video. Secondly, I feel that I, in some manner, contributed to the murder by watching the video. While that’s obviously my psychological demeanor speaking, I know that it’s tragic, I know it’s real and I know that it’s probably going to continue happening. Over and over and over again. With a second innocent journalist in their hands, I really hope that Obama can step up and save his life. Although I don’t know if anything that the US does will prevent them from taking another innocent American’s life.

I’m slightly distraught with our society in general. Does anyone seem to understand just how awful this situation in the Middle East is getting? I know many of us have assumed to just bat our eyelids at the sound of another  war in the Middle East, but does anyone realize what could happen if the ISIS take over? They are slowly taking over Iraq and creating a massive genocide. Innocent families and children are being forced to leave their homes and evacuate without food, water, and shelter. Children are dying from starvation and illness. While the US has sent food packets and water by air, I know it’s not enough to save the innocent lives of everyone.

Last Tuesday, ISIS had the nerve to send us a video beheading an innocent journalist and threatening another. It has now been 8 days since the brutal attack and Obama is golfing on vacation. It has been stated that US and British counterterrorism analysts are examining the video of the beheading to find out who murdered Foley. While I appreciate the dedication to finding the person who beheaded him, it’s not one person that is starting this war – it’s an entire Islamic State. With that being said, we have at least 20 journalist missing in Syria right now, many of which are believed to be in captivity by ISIS.

ISIS is threatening us by asking us to remove air strike. However, Obama defied this and has since, according to CNN, confirmed the United States carried out 14 airstrikes against mobile ISIS targets in the vicinity of the Mosul Dam.

I am eagerly and anxiously waiting to see how this plays out for us. Prayers to the family of James Foley and to all the families involved in this disgusting war.

XOXO

-D

The Greatest Mother On Earth

The days are slowly approaching the 5 year anniversary of my mom’s death. The nights seem to drag on and I seem to lose sleep and become more and more distracted by my emotions. Nobody will ever understood what I went through the night (and the many many days) after my mom’s passing….tonight I have sat in bed and read her letters to me over and over and over again.

 

“I did not give you birth, but I love you as much as I love your brother and sister. I have often thought that God sent you because he knew I needed someone like you to love. You have been the special light in my life and I am so glad God made you my little girl. Whenever you are hurt or upset, you have this adorable way of saying ‘Momma, I need you,’ but the truth is I need you.”

 

May you rest in peace, mommy. I may be turning 26 in just a few weeks, but never ever EVER forget that I will always be your little girl and you will always be my mommy #June42009 #Foreverinmyheart #IloveyouMommy!

 

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Funny

paradigmshaft

It’s funny how somebody can grow on you. Logically I am the most head strong person I know. I never lose focus towards a goal. I’m what you might call a dick. I’ve always got a plan, and I’m always thinking. I’m a guy who if somebody attempts to blackmail, I’ll say fuck you, and take myself out, just so you don’t have the pleasure of fucking me over. I can tell when someone is trying to get an edge on me. I’ve never been one to be scared in front of an authoritative figure. The reason is, people don’t scare me, because I always come out on top.

Having said all this, recently somebody has just invaded my mind. No logical reason should this girl be in my head. She doesn’t really seem to like me. I mean she does, but not to the level I do. Not that…

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To My Future Wife

Absolutely true!

Brett E. Shoemaker

Photo on 3-11-12 at 9.36 PM #2 How’s it lookin, good-lookin?

I don’t know who you are yet.  I don’t know what you look like.  I don’t know the color of your eyes.  I don’t know the color of your skin.  I don’t know your name.  There are a lot of things that I don’t know about you, but there are a couple of things that I want you to know.

You’re Already Beautiful.  Congratulations, babe, you did it.  You are already beautiful.  Seriously.  If beauty is a game, you’re a pro.  You are perfect already.  You were beautifully and wonderfully made.  You have nothing to fix.  Let me say that again, you have nothing to fix.  God did not mess-up on you.  I know what society is telling you.  “You have to look like this, wear this, and have this in order to be beautiful.” Nope.  You’re already beautiful.  Beauty is more than what…

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