Daily Prompt 6/18/2016 | Perfection

Remember, perfection isn’t perfect, it is fake.

[In response to The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt 6/18/2016 | Perfection]

No one is perfect. No one. Of course, no matter how often we tell ourselves this, it can be difficult to convince our brains that it is true when we pass by magazines in the stores and see women with flawless skin, shiny hair, zero cellulite, tight stomachs, perky butts… you get the idea. I’m guilty of tearing myself down every time I go out in public, and see pictures and videos of these perfect, beautiful women, that I could never look like. Well, the truth is, no one can look like them, not even themselves.

Photoshop, endless filter options, and apps like Facetune make it all too easy to alter pictures, whether you are just trying to erase a few pimples, or giving yourself thousands of dollars worth of digital plastic surgery, and it is just not fair. It is not fair to the men and women whose appearances have to be altered so much, just to be considered beautiful, and worthy of publication, when they were already beautiful. It is also not fair to the men and women who see these ads, and get tricked into thinking that that type of beauty is attainable, and that they need to spend their money to try and reach it.

You don’t believe me? Here are just a few examples:


It is all a lie. Models, singers, actors and actresses, reality TV stars… no one is ever thin enough, but if you are thin, you’re not curvy enough. Your skin is never clear enough. Your hair is never blonde enough. Your eyes are not blue enough. It isn’t fair, and it isn’t right. Men and women, young and old, are being told that nothing about themselves is good enough, and that they need to buy all of this STUFF to look good, but it is an impossible feat. Even these people, who were deemed worthy enough to grace the covers of magazines, and star in commercials, were not perfect enough. No one is perfect enough. No one.

I know I might be beating a dead horse here, and being a total hypocrite, but really, we need to stop focusing so much on how we look. Your eyebrows do not need to be on fleek, your winged liner does not need to survive a nuclear holocaust, and if you don’t have a thigh gap, then embrace your glorious thighs. If you’re 14, you’re told that you need to look 21, and if you’re 30, you’re told you need to look 22. It isn’t fair, and it just isn’t possible. You don’t need big boobs, you don’t need a huge ass, and you don’t need washboard abs. That’s not to say that there is anything wrong with wanting to better yourself, or lift your self-esteem a bit, but do it for you, and not because you think it is how others want you too look. You are worth more than that. Love who you are, and others will love you as well.

Remember, perfection isn’t perfect, it is fake.

Thanks for reading, friends.

Jan

Daily Prompt 3/12/2016 | Misstep

Seconds later, the sky opened up, and it started to rain. It was not even 1:30. I was so angry, and frustrated, and disappointed… and I knew it was going to get worse once lifted Liam out of the stroller and brought him back inside. He loves being outside. Why didn’t I listen to my gut? Never trust the weather people. They suck.

In response to The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt | Misstep

Hey, friends. I’m having a rough day today. Well, rough few days. From the time I woke up, to the time I went to bed, I was feeling dizzy and nauseous. I almost fainted in the shower, and had to sit on the floor of the tub for a few minutes with my eyes closed. Luckily, it was Kyle’s day off, so he was here to help me take care of Liam, since I had zero energy, and zero willpower to be alive. I managed to get outside to buy a coffee, and take Liam to the park, and the fresh air and caffeine seemed to help. But as soon as I got home, I felt like the waking dead once again.

Last night, I didn’t sleep. At all. I was having some really bad stomach pains in the upper part of my stomach, which kept waking me up throughout the night, and making me feel like I was going to be sick. The only thing that made the pain lessen slightly was lying on my back with my hands pressed on my stomach. I don’t really enjoy sleeping on my back, so even when the pain wasn’t as bad, I still couldn’t fall asleep.

This morning, Liam woke up much earlier than usual, and was very unhappy that he had to wait for his breakfast, while I sat on my bathroom floor, trying to stop the world from spinning. Needless to say, I’m still not feeling great. My stomach doesn’t hurt as badly, but I am exhausted, and being stuck inside the apartment isn’t helping with that. The forecast for this weekend calls for three days of rain and clouds, but warm temperatures. I checked THREE different weather websites, multiple times throughout the morning, to check when the highest chance of rain was. One website said not until 4:00, another said 6:00, and the last one said not until 10-11:00 at night. I figured it would be alright to spend an hour or so outside. What are the odds that THREE different sites could be wrong about the weather?

After Liam finished his lunch, I got us dressed and ready to head out to the park. Looking out the window, I could see that the sky was gray, but it was a bright gray, and not ominous-looking at all. I grabbed my iPod, hoisted Liam onto my hip, dragged his stroller down the back steps, and started to buckle him in for our walk.

Then, I felt it.

I stopped fiddling with his buckles, and looked over at the large puddle to the side of our yard. I didn’t see any ripples. I thought, maybe, a bug spit on me or something?  It was barely 1:30. There was no way that it was raining. No way, right?

Nope.

Seconds later, the sky opened up, and it started to drizzle. It was not even 1:30! HOW? WHY? I was angry, and frustrated, and disappointed… and I knew it was going to get worse once I lifted Liam out of the stroller and brought him back inside. He loves being outside. Why didn’t I listen to my gut? Never trust the weather people. They suck. Ugh. Sure enough, his eyes narrowed at me as I lifted him back out, dragged the stroller back up the stairs, and stored it away next to the back door. I put him down in the kitchen, and bent to take off his shoes and coat.

He screamed.

He cried.

He stomped his feet.

He tried to pull his coat back on.

That went on for nearly 20 minutes, while I tried to calm him with a snack, and some water, and all of his favorite toys. Nothing helped. So, I collapsed onto the couch, exhausted and nauseous, and waited for him to calm down on his own, so that we could play together. He eventually did, and we built masterpieces with his Mega Bloks and watched some Chuggington. And all was well… except for the nausea, dizziness, stomach pains, exhaustion, and wanting to die.

Question: HOW MUCH MONEY DO METEOROLOGISTS MAKE TO BE THIS WRONG?

Three. Three different websites, three different forecasts, all of them horribly incorrect. How is that possible? Hell, pay me half of what they make, I’ll stand outside for 5 minutes, and give you my best guess of what the weather will be. I’m sure I will be more accurate than these people. Seriously.

Anyway, thanks for reading, friends. I’m going to go sneak in a nap with the kiddo before dinner.

Jan

Daily Prompt 3/9/2016 | Women Not Objects

Inspired by today’s one-word Daily Prompt, I thought I would share with you this powerful video that I found on Facebook about the harm caused by the objectification of women. I found it through the 4th Trimester Bodies Project Facebook page (amazing group, check them out), who shared if from fellow Facebook group Women Not Objects.

In response to The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt 3/9/2016 | Object

Hello, friends. As many of you may already know, yesterday was International Women’s Day (as well as National Free Pancake Day, which I forgot to take advantage of). I spent the entire day celebrating being a woman by falling into the trap of responding to trolling comments on articles that I stumbled upon, which is another blog post entirely.

I don’t understand why, on a day celebrating something, people feel the need to tear that thing apart in unnecessary, terrible ways. Why? I just don’t get it. I am emotionally exhausted, and honestly don’t have much more to say on the topic at this point that I haven’t already typed out 1,000 times in multiple comment sections.

Inspired by today’s one-word Daily Prompt, I thought I would share with you this powerful video that I found on Facebook about the harm caused by the objectification of women. I found it through the 4th Trimester Bodies Project Facebook page (amazing group, check them out), who shared if from fellow Facebook group Women Not Objects. Now, being a warrior for equality for all people, I wholly agree and recognize that men are also objectified in the media, but seeing as yesterday was International Women’s Day, I thought this video was appropriate to share.

Women are not objects. Women are people.

Thoughts?

Thanks for reading, friends.

Jan

Daily Prompt 2/11/2016 | Under My Skin

The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt 2/11/2016 | Quirk of Habit

“Which quirky habit annoys you the most, and what quirky habit do you love — in yourself, or others.”

Strangely enough, peoples’ various quirks don’t bother me all that much. There are a few things that I would prefer that people refrain from doing around me, but nothing too crazy. I’ve seen people get physically angry at someone smacking their gum, or clicking a pen, or constantly clearing phlegm from their throats (okay, that one is pretty gross though…), but I’m just not one of those people. I’m not perfect, and I know I probably do things that might annoy other peoples, and I’m okay with that.

I do enjoy when people are kind, and do nice things for others, without being given orders to do so. I greatly admire people in the medical community, specifically doctors and nurses, who give up sleep, sanity, and often times family, to help others. I admire volunteers, whether it be once a month at a food kitchen, or every day at an animal shelter. People who sacrifice a little bit from their lives to improve the lives of others. Those people are just wonderful.

So, habits don’t bother me, but I guess you could say certain personalities do. Even certain, tiny aspects of peoples’ personalities. Is that a habit? I actually don’t know. Let me just give you a few examples of things that do get to me, and be warned, this is going to get a bit ranty, and may likely offend someone.

1) When teenage girls refer to a grown man, who is a complete stranger, as “daddy” on the internet, and says things like “fuck me“. I specifically see this on Facebook/Twitter/YouTube, directed at YouTubers, or musicians, etc., and it is SO creepy. Now, I’m no prude, and I’m definitely not going to judge grown men and women who call their partners “mommy” or “daddy“, or any variation of the two, in the bedroom, because that is none of my business. But when a 12-year old girl comments on a 29-year old YouTuber’s Instagram selfie with “OMG daddy fuck me“, I get concerned. Where the hell are the parents? Who is teaching them this? Ugh. That really gets to me. It is just so unhealthy.

Related irks: People who obsessively “ship” two real people, young teenagers writing VERY smutty fanfiction, stalkers.

2) People who blatantly fish for compliments. I’ll be the first to admit that I have low self-esteem, and I know there are many out there who feel the same way about themselves. Recently, on Facebook, a friend of a friend shared an image of a piece of paper that simple said “Share this if your ugly!“. Grammatical error aside, things like this piss me off, because this is 110% for attention. The ONLY reason to post something like this is to get responses like, “Aww, no, you’re beautiful!” but this is the wrong way to do it, and it just irks people, and makes you look insane. The kicker in this situation was that the girl was GORGEOUS, and upon further snooping, I discovered that she is actually a MODEL. Are you joking? No. Just stop.

3) People who constantly butt into other peoples’ issues and problems. As many of you know, we recently had to deal with some stupid, family drama surrounding the Dodge Journey that we received from Kyle’s aunt. Well, as of last night, we got a new car (that gorgeous Lincoln LS), and Kyle’s mom took the Journey off our hands to use as a second vehicle. But just a few days prior, our drama reached a boiling point, when Kyle’s grandmother poked her nose into a matter that did not concern her, and tried to play middle woman, but ended up twisting everything that Kyle said, passing along false information (lies), and ultimately made the whole situation 10000% worse. In the end, Kyle ended up blocking his grandmother, and both of his aunts, and we most likely won’t be attending Christmas this year. Ugh. If a problem has nothing to do with you, then leave it alone. If it is not directly affecting your life, then butt out, and let the other parties sort it out.

And now… the big one. I’ll apologize ahead of time. Sorry.

4) I’m not religious, but I am also not disrespectful towards people tho choose to believe in what they believe in, as long as they are not forcing those beliefs on others in order to control them and their lives. We’re all living on this planet together, and life is too short to hate on someone for believing in something different. With that being said, one of the things that bothers me more than ANYTHING else, is people who use the Bible to justify their hatred of something, i.e. homosexuality, but cherry-pick through the rest of the sins, simply because they want to do them. You all know what I’m talking about. Saying that you hate homosexuality because it is an abomination, because the Bible says so, but being guilty of ANY of the following, makes you a hypocrite:

Divorce/Adultery.
Love of money.
Any of the following dietary abominations: eating shellfish, eating many kinds of birds, eating anything that has many legs, or stands on four legs, and eating and touching PORK!
A woman wearing PANTS.
LYING, guys. That’s a big one!
Arrogance.
Blatantly ignoring the law.
Wearing mixed fabrics.

Getting a HAIRCUT, or shaving your beard.

So, if you’ve done any of those things, which I know you have, guess what? Those are all considered just as sinful as homosexuality. Those are abominations, according to the book that you quote from, to prevent two people who love each other from getting married, or living happily. You can’t pick and choose what things to be an asshole about, just because you like to eat shrimp, and think that two men kissing is icky, or unnatural. Guess what? There are over 1,500 species of animals that display homosexual behavior, and many of these species are older than the human race. You can’t get any more natural than nature, folks. So, I’m sorry, but that just isn’t how it works.

Now, if I remember anything from my time in the Brownies, I seem to recall that the original book was written with no punctuation, and was completely open to interpretation, and has changed so many times throughout the years, to fit the specific beliefs of whomever was interpreting it. If this is correct, then couldn’t it be possible that many of these things, as well as homosexuality, were not originally meant to be labelled as abominations, but the words were misinterpreted as such? Just something to consider.

As I said before, I personally don’t believe in any of this. I lead a life free of religion. I do believe that, as long as you aren’t hurting anyone, or infringing on someone’s legal and human rights, then everyone deserves to be happy. But you need to understand that there are so many religions that are practiced on this earth, and not everyone believes in yours, and they all have different rules, which are open to interpretation, and we are all live vastly different lives, and just accept that. Stop thinking that just because someone chooses to believe differently, or acknowledge different things, that you and your beliefs are being threatened. Relax, folks. I do apologize if this offended anyone, but if it did, then maybe you have some things you need to think about?

Anyway, I’m done. Those are some of the big ones for me. I’m not trying to start a debate in the comments, or attack anyone’s beliefs, I’m just trying to tell you things how I see and interpret them.

Thanks for reading, friends.

Jan

Daily Prompt 1/18/2016 | Beliefs

The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt | Reason to Believe

“In Reason to Believe, Bruce Springsteen sings, ‘At the end of every hard-earned day / people find some reason to believe.’ What’s your reason to believe?”

I’m an Agnostic Atheist… so, this is awkward.

I have no religious beliefs. I respect your beliefs, and even admire people who choose to believe in something higher than themselves, but I just can’t. At the end of the day, regardless of how your day went, there are so many people being murdered and abused, being kidnapped and sold, starving on the street. There is so much suffering in the world, and nothing is being done. No matter how many people pray to their respective gods and goddesses, nothing is being done. Every day, the world dies a little more, the humanity becomes more and more dangerous.

I choose not to believe. I choose not to believe in any deity that would give babies cancer, and allow men to hurt women, and control them for their own gain. I choose not to believe in a religion, or a deity, that would condemn two people to death simply for loving each other. A deity that would punish people, for not believing in them, for whatever reason, by killing thousands of innocent people with hurricanes and tornadoes. Not that I believe that any of these things are caused by a god, but if they were… why would they do that? It’s cruel, and terrible, and unnecessary. I would not put my faith in someone who caused that kind of pain.

My grandmother, who is very religious, once told me that anyone who does not accept God into their lives will never have a life of happiness or meaning, and will always be an empty shell. That is just an awful, hurtful thing to say to anybody, especially someone you love, just because they do not share your beliefs. How can you possibly feel that way? I’ve also heard her say vile things about babies and children, whose parents chose not to get them baptized. A baby.

Let’s not forget that religious strife has caused countless deaths since… ever? It still does today! People justify murder and brutality because a book says that two men being together is icky? So you should kill them? Or that a woman’s opinions, feelings, and rights don’t matter, because she would once have been considered property? Some men still consider women property. That is not right.

No. I choose to believe that we carve our own path, and that our actions are our own, and that we should be held accountable for them. I don’t need any sort of belief, or fear of damnation, to be a good person, and do good things. I don’t believe in heaven or hell. I just think people should respect and look out for each other, and that you probably shouldn’t go around causing harm for no reason. I don’t need a book to tell me what is right and wrong. We are all stuck on this planet together, at least for the time being, and we are all human. We all deserve love, respect, and freedom to be who we were born to be, without fear of persecution or death. If you need to seek answers in a high power, and if that gives you comfort, then by all means, live your life.

But for me, I choose to believe in myself, and my ability to determine right and wrong. I choose love over hate, and acceptance over discrimination. And I will not let anyone change that. Now… do I know for certain that Zeus, Hades, Osiris, Odin, etc. do not/did not exist? No, I do not. But is there tangible proof that they did/do. No.

This is why, at the end of the day, I choose not to believe. If my son grows up and has questions about religion, or wants to attend the church of his choosing, then I won’t stop him. But I also won’t lie to him. I feel that people should be free to choose who, or what, they want to put their faith in, without fear of judgement. I have friends and loved ones who have devoted their lives to their religions, and they are amazing, fulfilled people. I have friends who share my beliefs (or lack of), and are just as happy and fulfilled. I also know devout individuals who are completely miserable, and vice versa.

Be who you are, live fearlessly, and strive for happiness. Just… don’t kill people, okay? Be nice. Love thy neighbor, and all that.

Thanks for reading, friends.

Jan