Gaping Holes Between Generations

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phttps://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/generation-xyz/ 

So, the Daily Post posed a question in their daily prompt that I found kind of interesting.

Think about the generation immediately younger or older than you. What do you understand least about them — and what can you learn from them? 

This is something I actually pine over quite frequently. Being 43, I feel it is a constant struggle to exhaustedly bridge the gap between the generation above and below me. My parents generation was more of a selfless generation. They did all they could to earn a living and support their families. They had strong morals and convictions and there was no wiggle room for deviating in any direction. It was a time of the family. Family gatherings, family prayer and extended family get togethers. Now, they continue to care for their own parents who are aging and in need of their help. They spent an entire lifetime caring for others without ever thinking twice. So what can we learn from them? Selflessness is a gift that keeps on giving. Putting off your own needs to help out with needs of others can be the most rewarding and kindest thing you can do in a lifetime. The generation was dependable, hard working and kept problems within their family unit, sometimes keeping them only to themselves. I guess what I dont understand is how they sacrificed their own chance of living the life we all dream of. 

I don’t know why it was so hard for them to find balance between living for themselves and living for others. I also find it hard to have conversations with them because they are very closed minded, set in their ways, often times not even willing to see something from a different perspective.

I also have two teenagers. What can I possibly say about this generation without completely offending them? They are a generation who likes to be edgy. They claim to be accepting of everything and anything yet they think nothing of ridiculing and judging their own parents on a daily basis. They are brave and bold and fearless to a point that is dangerous. They do not respect adults like other generations. They feel like they are on the same level and can say and do whatever they feel like. If they think a rule doesn’t make sense than they just don’t follow it. They challenge everything and everyone from their own parents and teachers even extending to the church. They are consumed with themselves as evidenced through excessive selfie taking sessions. They do as little as possible without going the extra mile to help anyone else. It’s not my problem is a common theme. Dare I suggest they are lazy? They don’t get up to mow the lawn or do the dishes or even clean their rooms because after all who can make them. If there’s no point to something in their own mind than why do it? 

 What could we possibly learn from them? They move at their own pace. They can’t  be forced into doing something because someone thinks they should do it. They dont over extend themselves and they will have healthy hearts because they do not rush around or sacrifice their own needs for the needs of others. I worry because they don’t seem to have much common sense. Things like thinking outside of the box or even making change seems extrely difficult for them. They are a generation who has been entitled. They don’t know what it’s like to go to a library to look up information to write a paper. They don’t understand the concept of sacrificing one thing so they can have another. They want it all and why shouldnt they have it all? Everything is at their fingertips. They lack interpersonal skills because texting has taken the place of face to face conversations. They are as quick with their fingers as they are with their comments.

And my generation? It borders on both extremes. Between the rigid views of our parents and the liberal views of our children, how could we possibly please either? And further more, who has the energy to do it anyway? We overextend and over schedule. We are consumed by our children’s activities and competition has consumed our spirits. We work hard. We cater to our kids. We sleep. 

For me personally, I feel frustrated and stuck. I feel like I’m in a no win situation and I don’t see improvement anywhere in sight. What about you? How would you answer the question?

Help! 

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Daily prompt from the Daily Post: Is it easy for you to ask for help when you need it, or do you prefer to rely only on yourself? Why?    

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/i-am-a-rock/

I’ve pondered this question time and time again. The answer is a bit more complicated than I’d like to admit. The truth is it is not easy for me to ask for help. In fact, it is near impossible for me. It takes a situation in which I feel total desperation and truly have no other choice than to ask someone else for something. The tricky part of the question is the part that asks if I prefer to rely on myself. The answer would be no. At times it would awesome to sit back and let someone do something I find uncomfortable or inconvenient but then I open myself up to disappointment and fear that the person I ask isn’t capable or dependable at all. When I do something myself, it gets done right and it gets done period. I don’t have to worry somewhere in the middle of the details. So why don’t I ask? Why do I find it so hard? I really don’t know for sure. I imagine some of it is pride, admitting I need someone’s help and hinting I can’t take care of something myself. The other part is the fact I’ve lived away from family for so long that I had to do things myself. Help is nice and sometimes necessary but the stress it causes me to simply ask far outweighs the benefit of the help. 

How about you? How would you answer the question in the prompt and why?

 Top 5 Reasons Why I Love To Blog

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This is a response to the daily prompt today to write a list from The Daily Post

1) I love interacting with people and making new friends. I look forward to comments back and forth and I really believe bloggers are a special kind of people. 

2)Blogging gives me the opportunity to safely and openly explore views that are much different than my own and helps me keep an open mind.

3) Blogging helps me feel more connected because there are people who are supportive and feel the same as I do. It’s hard to not feel like “the only one” sometimes but blogging reminds me that’s just not true.

4) Blogging is so much cheaper than therapy. My computer allows me to express my deepest feelings freely and without judgement. Don’t we all want that?

5) Plain and simple, I just love to write and if that’s my worst habit than I believe it’s a good one.  

Now it’s YOUR turn. What is the number one reason YOU blog?

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/the-satisfaction-of-a-list/

Advice I Seemed To Ignore

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Today’s daily prompt: What’s the one piece of advice you wish someone had given you a year (or five, or ten…) ago? https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/powerful-suggestion/

I think I may have been given this advice but I’m not sure it was drilled in hard enough. The first piece of advice is not to take life too seriously. Be silly, laugh and find enjoyment in everything you can.

The second is to tell people who constantly have an opinion of who you are and how you live to mind their own business. People can make me feel pretty crappy with constant replay and criticism of my every action. How I raise my kids, what I teach them is important or not, and whether I choose to work or not is none of anyone’s business. In fact, their opinions are not warranted or wanted. I wish someone told me to put people in their place from the very beginning. Put people in their place and nip the disrespect and criticism in the bud as soon as it starts to bud. 

How about you? What advice do you wish you were given years ago?

If I Had A Tagline

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Today’s prompt from the Daily Post: https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/tagline/

Often, our blogs have taglines. But what if humans did, too? What would your tagline be? 

I searched some familiar taglines and I could identify with many of them. I think what sets me apart from many is the way I see things and the way I am constantly striving to actively see things in a new way or a different perspective perhaps. So, I would choose the tagline THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX.

Don’t get sucked into media influence or following the crowd. Think things through and soul search until your mind is comfortable with how to think best for you. Be a leader, an innovator, blaze your own trail and if the path seems exciting, slowly people will follow. Be comfortable doing you no matter what the consequence,

What would your tagline be? Mine is JUST DO YOU. My soul is what matters most so I will think, behave and act in a way that suits my soul and have no concern for what anyone else thinks of me. Be accountable for who you are and lead by example.




The Great Debate

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https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/a-house-divided/

Today’s prompt: Pick a divisive issue currently in the news. Write a two-part post in which you take on two personas and approach the topic from both sides.   

Both of me have already been struggling with the OU scandal that has been monopolizing the news the past few days. I live in Oklahoma, in the very town this happened in so this story for me is more than a fleeting headline.  

The compassionate, empathetic, forgiving side of me would like to debate first. I realize these frat boys did something very, very wrong. There is nothing anyone could say or do to ever explain such a disgraceful chant. Do I believe racism is alive and well? You bet I do and it goes many, many different ways. Do I believe African Americans are the only victim? No, I do not. I remember when my son was in kindergarten. He pulled a handicap accessible fire alarm and was suspended from school for three days. Even at such a young age, the embarrassment and humiliation he had to face was excruciating for me to watch as a mom. He was so distraught and just driving on school property to drop my daughter off sent him into an emotional meltdown. It took all I could muster to give him the courage to walk back into that school. How does this apply to the boys at OU? If you watched those news reports you could see the hurt and shame on their faces as they packed their things and moved out of the house. Do I think they needed to be kicked out of school? No, sorry I don’t. Like it or not, we do not put together robots to attend schools who identify with every great thing the university identifies with. People have a right to say what they want, sing what they want and they have the right to have individual beliefs. What I do believe is that these boys were caught on video doing something that will disgrace them for the rest of their lives. They have to live with that guilt and humiliation that will far outlast an expulsion from a school. And let’s be honest, the world is not a big enough place to allow the punishment to end there. We love to throw stones and for some, this will become a long time commitment and fascination. I can’t help but wonder how I would feel if the dumbest thing I have ever done was aired on tv for the world to see. And do I have the right to finger point and demean when I am not free of sin in my own life? Show me one person who has not done or said something that should bring him shame and then maybe I will have a different perspective. Perhaps another consequence would have brought people together instead of divide them more. The double standard, the teaching and forgiving approach the university took with the athlete that physically assaulted a girl breaking her bones was much different than the zero policy the school took with these boys who assaulted with words. That is the problem with parenting and schools when it comes to discipline. It needs to be specific and it needs to be consistent. Imagine if we sat these boys in front of African American students who were devastated by the words and lack of consideration of these boys. Imagine if they could have had a real heart to heart conversation about how much this hurts the people it was directed at. Imagine if in the midst of their own humiliation and accountability, a handful of these boys experienced compassion and empathy for the first time for the people they hurt. Perhaps that punishment, understanding and healing would bring about real change and meaningful consequences. So tell me, this expulsion…was it to punish the boys or make the school look good? Did the University succeed in really teaching these boys and using their own power to turn these foolish, reckless boys into young, responsible men?

The spiteful, revengeful me believes those boys should pay. One affects the whole and if this is the attitude of a few frat boys on a bus than we should shut it down, we should shut them down and use this situation to send a very loud and clear message that this kind of behavior will not and should not be tolerated. These boys are an embarrassment to our town and cast shame on the university with all this negative attention the world is watching thanks to the diligent reporting of these worthy news stations. This information has to get out. People need to know that 2015 is not far enough away from the past to eliminate the terrible injustice that has gone on for far too long. We need to stop it in its tracks and send a clear message that these kinds of songs, these kinds of behaviors and these kinds of words are no longer acceptable and will come with severe consequences. We should start reading Facebook and private messages and listen to private phone conversations for even the slightest connotation of a racial slur of a racial tone. We should have a prison in the center of every town where we can publicly demean and shame these people until they lose their will to live altogether. That is the answer. Mistreat those who mistreat others. That will save the world, and isn’t that the common goal we all share? Don’t we want to forgive and move on and start over where people really are equal as human beings both in our eyes and in our hearts. Isn’t the goal to love everyone and be equal on every level despite the color of our skin with equality in opportunity, respect and dignity for every living person and a world free of hate, blame, vengeance, retribution, and superiority.

The common sense side of me has only one question. What exactly is our goal? When will the people, all the people be truly satisfied? When will our leaders stop dividing and start bringing us together as one nation under God. Can I even use that word anymore? When will the news media be an outlet to grow our hearts instead of growing our anger and hatred? When will everyone be accountable to do their part to end this hate once and for all? Let’s be honest, do we know? Is that really what we ALL want? Is that what our behavior is showing others?


What Would You Do?

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Prompt: What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?  https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/too-big-to-fail/

Oh my! What wouldn’t I do if I knew I couldn’t fail? So many thoughts, so many things. The older I get, the more I believe that where you are and what you do directly influences the way you see your life. If I am someplace I do not want to be, I can try my best at making things work but at the end of the day, I am still someplace I don’t want to be. I have often asked myself, “where do you see yourself completely happy?” The answer is simple. There is one place I have visited that awakened my soul. I have never felt happier or more alive. When I meditate, I go back to that very place in my mind, breathing in its peace, imprinting it permanently on my heart. If I knew I couldn’t fail, I would pack up a few of my things and open up a cozy little coffee shop on The Big Island of Hawaii. I would smile and make conversations with the customers and make Hawaii my home. I would let the beauty of that little slice of paradise fill me with the wonder that it has to offer.

I have moved around quite a bit and I know what a place needs to have for me to feel satisfied, not longing to be someplace else. Yes, I understand that happiness comes from the inside but I cannot deny that it is outside factors that have the ability of robbing happiness right out from underneath me. So, if you’re ever in Hawaii, stop by and see me. I can only hope that one day my dream will be the new reality I create. If not, you can find me in Oklahoma probably underneath the ground in my tornado shelter. What do you think? What would you do if you knew you would not fail?

Set It Right

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Daily Post prompt: Think of a time you let something slide, only for it to eat away at you later. Tell us how you would fix it today.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/set-it-to-rights/

So many thoughts ran through my head when I read this prompt. I could write about so many examples but many I am still not ready to address. They continue to slide and slide and one day I know I will have to take them on. Today, I will write about school. To make this post as short and simple as possible, I have allowed my sons teachers for the last two years to completely ignore the conditions of his 504. If I had the courage and the energy I would do two things differently. I would report them and follow through so that the school district would feel the repucussions of not holding their teachers accountable. I would also go to the news media and make a big stink out of the fact that teachers, who are supposed to teach kids to be accountable, follow rules and laws are the biggest hypocrites of all. Let me get one thing straight. I do not disrespect or dislike all teachers, what I do dislike is the double standard and the fact they do not hold themselves to the same standard they hold their students to. 

I am ashamed that apathy on my part will lead to more kids not getting what they need in the classroom, things they lawfully deserve. There are some battles that take too much out of me and I gave this fight all I had with no noticeable positive outcome. The bottom line is this, when people are not held accountable, they continue to get away with escaping what is expected of them. What a lose-lose result if you ask me. Anyway, I m ashamed I let this slide and I am sorry to admit I don’t have any fight left in me to continue on.

Everyone Can Learn But…

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https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/we-can-be-taught-2/
Today’s prompt: what makes for a great teacher 

 I have watched for years as my kids have struggled or been successful in classrooms. I have thought about this long and hard. What is the difference in a good teacher and one that is less effective? It’s really a tough question and even harder to generalize. The best teachers know a few simple facts. The first is that people learn different ways. I believe the teachers who limit themselves to one teaching method lose not only the interest of some of the people in their class but also fail at reaching each and every student.

I was driving through Sonic yesterday and my son was excited to tell me what he learned in religious education class. The teacher had three cups. One with vinegar(the people), one with soy sauce(sin) and one with bleach(god). When the sin was added to the people, the color got darker. But when God was added to the sin or the people, the color turned clear. Why am I telling you this? If this teacher decided to lecture that day about the concept of sin, I can guarantee my son would have been staring off into space fantasizing about building a new building in his latest Minecraft game. But, because he was taught in an experimental kind of way, he was totally intrigued.

The second method is this. I get that teachers are not there to entertain us but let’s face it, a boring teacher is a boring teacher period. I believe teachers have to be spontaneous a little creative to find ways to keep her audience listening. Sometimes, it’s the little things. I know my daughters favorite teacher back in middle school gave an assignment she was absolutely excited about. They were each assigned a president and they had to teach the class about it by coming up with a song. It was several years ago and she still knows the words today. She will never forget the facts about Abe Lincoln that she crafted into the catchiest little tune.

That is my answer then, creativity and several teaching methods make for the best teachers. Anyone can learn but not everyone can teach well. What do you think?

Time Capsule 

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Today’s prompt: What would you put in this year’s time capsule to channel the essence of our current moment for future generations?

How could I possibly capture the essence of the current moment? These are some crazy times, no doubt. The world, the way we live has changed drastically in the 43 years I have been alive. I have watched quietly as the rug has been pulled out from under my feet and I have layed here on the ground trying to recover from this everlasting sting grasping for the slightest glimmer of something meaningful, something familiar. I grew up in a different time and place. A time when people sat together in the same room and had conversations. They stared at one another and not down into their hand at a glowing thing. Yes, that’s right, things have replaced people and we are now having very serious relationships with silly cell phones. Families would hang out and visit, play games together and eat dinner together without the constant buzzing and beeping sound coming from the pockets of every person sitting around the table. I grew up laughing with the person next to me, not over the latest funny thing someone had just texted but over the jokes and conversation we were having while giving one another undivided attention. Now we are a nation divided, at least when it comes to our time and attention. We are scattered and focused for a fleeting moment on the constant bombardment of distraction continually being thrown our way. It’s like a walking community filled with Attention Deficit Disorder, except this time, this kind we actually bring on ourselves. Studies show we are spending 162 minutes a day on our phone and 23 days out of year. Can you imagine spending 23 days at the beach? That sounds like a better plan.

Back to the capsule, what else could I put in to capture the essence of the world as we know it today more than a selfie. I would bet we spend more time taking pictures of ourselves than we do having a conversation today. According to USA Today, people are taking over one million selfies a day. What’s more, “selfie” became the Oxford English Dictionary’s “word of the year” in 2013. I would also put a cell phone because that seems to be our lifeline lately. It used to be church and faith and now, it’s a phone. People used to use the phrase “phone a friend”, now the phone is our friend. It talks to us, sings songs, gives directions, keeps track of our daily schedule, heck it can even tell us a story if that is what we wish. So, that’s it for me. A cell phone and a selfie. What do you think? Did I hit the nail on the head?https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/time-capsule/