Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Opening the box of books!

Posted: March 11, 2020 in Uncategorized

I was so excited when I finally got my copies of Chicken Soup for the Soul – Believe in Miracles. In fact, the box sat unopened for days because I didn’t want to open it alone (that’s just sad!) and I thought it would be good to video and start the promotion of it. My dear friend Lori did the video and you know what? It’s not an easy thing to do. None of it was rehearsed as I want to have some sense of reality, so to speak.

But unfortunately, WordPress doesn’t like the video, so I’ll post a picture from it.

I’ve been using this picture because I don’t hate it.

Then a funny thing happened – I wrote a piece for a feminist magazine on why women inmates must be protected from male predators. I mean, talk about stating the obvious, but we are talking about the criminal justice system.

We are talking about being PC and not rocking the boat and upsetting anyone.

We are talking about feelings being more important than the safety and well-being of women.

Anyway, it was a lot of work and I learned how to research and compose my writing so that it communicated well, made my point, and opened up the conversation.

Well…the platform (Medium) that it was published on, banned the editor of the publication. In just one second, “Poof!” it was as if she never existed with no reason given.

Just…gone.

This was quite an eye-opener for me. I realized that as long as I publish on someone else’s platform (Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, etc.) I am giving up the control of my writing. It means I have to follow their rules and not write about important things – feminism, gay rights, trans rights, and God forbid if you have any type of a conservative point of view.

Trust me, it’s no longer tolerated.

It was just the push I needed to get my ass back in gear and resurrect my Patreon account and publish what I want, when I want, and not have to worry about being censored or banned.

My current target for this month is to get an additional 20 patrons and start to build a platform that will not only help me financially to write more, but to not have to worry about being PC or whatever word we are using to call censorship.

We live in a world now that does not like free speech and I’m just not going to accept that. I refuse to be careful about what I say if I feel it is the truth. We’ve lost the idea of having civil conversations and working towards greater understanding and now just seem to demand agreement, no matter the cost.

If you are able to pitch in $2.00 per month, that will help me keep up the work I started and continue to work on Human Rights without the fear of not only being censored, but being financially forced to back down.

https://www.patreon.com/SusanLewis

You would think, wouldn’t you, that speaking up for inmates safety would not only be welcomed with open arms, but that it would be supported.

Right?

Yeah, that’s what I used to think until recently.

Now it’s about saying and agreeing to what the “Thought Police” say you should.

I’m not buying it, so thank you for your help and support.

Love you, mean it!

Actually, nothing. At least not at the time.

I barely knew who he was when that bullet slammed into him in 1968 while he stood on the second story balcony in Memphis. In fact, I don’t think I even knew he existed until it was on the news that night. I was 12 years old with more important things on my mind.

First and foremost, I was obsessed with a boy named Ted Ballard. I had been in love with him since I first saw him in 4th grade. We were the same age and in the same classes, year after year. There was a bunch of us that all went through the school system at the same time, so we knew each other because not only were we neighbors, we were all going to the same tiny school down the street.

It was the only one for miles. So, that’s where we went. We walked down the street, through a field, and then back onto another paved sidewalk. You followed that for a block, down a hill and there was the little school. It had a black top, a couple of buildings for our classes, a small playing field. It was fenced but not locked. We didn’t need locks in those days because everyone knew everybody. God help you if a neighbor saw you misbehaving; they would be on the phone to your mom and you knew you were in trouble before you even had time to close the front door when you got home.

Back then, neighbors watched out for each other and the children.

At that time, San Jose had just made it onto the Rand-McNally maps. When we had moved there from Fresno when I was 8, it literally was not on the map. My Dad had to figure it out as he moved us. You just headed towards San Francisco and tried to remember that little exit off 101 that would get you to that one-horse town called San Jose.

In 1968, Viet Nam was in our living room daily and very night. Every day we saw what was going on. We heard the bombings and the gun fire. We watched through our fingers as we covered our faces in hopes we didn’t see one of our own being blown to bits. We listened to the bull shit Lyndon Johnson said as he pushed and pushed and pushed for the war to continue.

The United States must not lose a war! Not now and not ever! To do so would hurt our pride and we never lose.

The Civil Rights movement was in full force. Again, I did not know who these people were and why they were so upset. There were marches and speeches and dogs attacking people, and fire hoses being used on them, but I was more concerned about what Ted was doing and what I should wear the next day to finally get him to see me and realize I was alive and perfect for him. I worked hard every night, trying to write the perfect love note to leave in his desk.

The notes only made it to my waste paper basket in tiny shreds in case one of my brothers found them. I would have died if they — or anyone — knew of my unrequited love.

(Years later, Ted finally noticed me as I was walking out of the bank. I didn’t know who he was. He was bald and apparently had not had an easy life, but that’s a story for another time).

By the time I was 16, I was a full-blown hippie. I had the hair and the look and I loved the idea of speaking out and going out of protest lines — even though my parents wouldn’t let me — I still loved the idea.

Feminism was arriving and the idea that I might actually have a choice about my life made me happy and scared and confused.

I mean, really, what the hell does a 16-year old know?

Absolutely nothing, but don’t tell them that. At that age, everything is possible.

I took a “Black History” class in High School and read books like “Soul on Ice” and had discussions about discrimination.

I had no idea. I had no clue that there were people out there that didn’t have the life I had. I just sort of assumed we all had it good. I learned that some people weren’t liked because of the color of their skin and some weren’t liked because of their gender.

I was not allowed to take auto mechanics simply because I was a girl. I had to take Home Economics (economics, my ass). I needed to learn how to cook and clean. I had to take typing (which, of course, now I’m really glad I did) and sit there, with my back straight and my hands posed “just exactly so” over the keyboard of the Royal typewriters, going clackity clack with 25 other girls. If you were going fast enough, the sound of the slamming back of the typewriter carriage to type the next line was almost poetic. Like a well -timed symphony.

Dr. King had only been killed about 2 years before I entered High School, but his influence was there. Us white kids comprised 99% of the attendance. Non-white kids were known — mostly Hispanic — to us and we all knew who the 2 or 3 black kids were.

We liked them well enough and they liked us. I wanted to ask them a million questions about their lives, but they weren’t dissimilar to mine.

Or so I thought at the time.

As I grew up and became an actual adult — which takes more time than I ever realized and I’m not fond of it — I started to walk in other people’s shoes. Some that had it better than I did, but mostly those that did not. Hookers, drug addicts, convicted felons, and the like.

I had to come face-to-face with my own prejudices that I didn’t know I had.

I often had large doses of humility when I would hear myself complain over the increased cost of Netflix while counseling a woman who had lost all her children to foster care. Yes, she had royally fucked up, but her heartbreak and wailing of the loss was often deafening. She couldn’t turn back the clock and she knew that. My job was to get her to see, with little baby steps, what she could do to turn her life around and get them back.

I had to swallow my pride and ask for help when I was just about to lose my house and end-up homeless. Fortunately the people that helped me, didn’t judge me.

I learned that if bad things could happen to me, who had it so much better than so many others, then maybe it wasn’t so much of a character flaw as it was just a difficult and almost impossible planet to survive on.

If it was hard for me, how hard must it be for the people that didn’t have the opportunities I had simply because of the color of their skin and/or where they were born?

I began to really look around me and see people everywhere, all with their fair shares of burdens and worries.

I began to feel disdain for those that had it so well and bragged about it. It wasn’t that I wanted what they had — no fucking way — but I wanted them to see how they could help, someone, anyone, and pay it forward.

I may not have much and I may have made huge mistakes in my life, but I began to feel compassion and empathy for those around me who always carried on and daily fought the good fight.

Through the internet, I began to learn more and more about Dr. King. I re-read some of the literature about the civil rights movement that I had smugly tossed aside in High School.

Forty years later, I grieved for the loss of him.

Forty years later, I admired his strength, compassion, intelligence, and perseverance.

Forty years later, I wished for his return.

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” ~ MLK

I may not be able to change the world today or tomorrow or ever, but what I can do is continue to work for justice in my home, my work, my neighborhood and when I vote.

I can speak out more and write more and learn more.

I can honor Dr. King for the work he did by learning more about the suffering that others have that I never did and work to help them lift themselves up.

It’s the least that I can do.

Photo by Marco De Waal on Unsplash

I wanted to care but no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t. Nothing I said to myself could get me to change my mind or feel anything but…nothing. Just…nothing.

It was as if I was reading about some random stranger’s death with a cursory glance while I sipped my coffee and wondered if I had enough gas to get to work or if I should leave 5 minutes earlier to get it.

I didn’t like her, not one iota, but I felt that I should feel something when I heard of her death. I wasn’t surprised by the news. I had seen her posts on Facebook for a fundraiser her son was doing for her. She had pancreatic cancer but wanted to try an herbal program that boasted of wonderful success in remission for all types of cancer.

I had felt sadness when I first found out she was ill but not for long. I had not seen her in years, so she was no longer part of my life.

I didn’t judge her for trying or have much of an opinion about it. It was her life and far be it from me to say what anyone should do once they’ve been given a death sentence. I don’t know what I would do so I can’t say what someone else should do.

She looked horrible in her profile picture. Much older and worn, but that’s to be expected when you’re dying. She still had the great hair and red lipstick and smile, but she had aged 25 years since I had seen her 5 years before.

I felt nothing when I read about her illness. I felt bad that I was ambivalent about her and her pending demise. The more I tried to feel something, the worse I felt.

Is it possible to feel numb and annoyance at feeling numb at the same time?

I didn’t like her when I knew her and worked with her but I tried to. I felt that I should like her since she started working for us a few years before.

Things at work had slowed down. We were looking for someone to bring in sales. I knew things at work would be better if I liked her. I even tried to be nice and insincere to smooth things over. I failed at it and she could tell.

I don’t have a poker face, but there have been times when I would have paid a million dollars to have one. To be able to hide my feelings and thoughts, carry on with an insincere but pleasant conversation, and get away from them as soon as possible.

But I don’t posses that ability. I am envious of people who are hard to read. Is is something a person is born with or is it something that can be self-taught?

My boss asked me if I would be friends with her and include her in my circle of friends. She and I knew some mutual people and they all seemed to like her or at least I thought so.

I was never unkind or cruel. I am not that way, but it’s not a matter of what I do; it’s a matter of what I don’t do. If I don’t like someone, I don’t have long conversations with them. I am short with my responses and greetings, my smile disappears quickly from my face but it’s there just long enough to be seen as polite.

She was brash and rude and the main topic of all her conversations was how great she was. She would go on and on about how many people loved her and how lucky we all were to have her around. By her insistence that we needed her, the back end intention was we were doing everything wrong and she was our only savior and chance at survival. The fact that we had all done well for 15+ years was no longer relevant.

She proclaimed herself as our savior and we were not in the market for one.

She talked her way into our small company and I, like others, were hopeful she would be an asset. We had been struggling lately with our sales and needed a full-time individual to take the lead.

We were doing okay, but wanted to push the business to the next level. It was a logical decision to bring on someone full-time and take the job off of my boss’s plate.

We weren’t looking for a miracle; we just wanted another employee who would learn about the company from the ground up and help us push it further along.

She had had some success with her own small business and she came with some good recommendations. The fact that we all had mutual friends made her appealing to us.

My intense dislike of her wasn’t immediate but it didn’t take me long to begin to dread coming into the office. Having her barge into my office with unsolicited advice on anything and everything, commenting about what I was wearing, and how she thought I could improve my job performance, were things she did on a daily basis.

She had ruined a dinner party at a friends house when she began to tell everyone what an asset she was. When she started on her third glass of wine and told my best friend how lucky I was to know her, my friend rolled her eyes and left the table.

That’s when I began to suspect that I wasn’t the only one didn’t like her.

Funny how we try to like people. We first must lie to ourselves before we begin lying to others.

She shouted when she spoke, barged into offices even if the door was closed, knew more than anyone else. She was impossible to train. You can’t teach anyone who thinks they not only know the subject, but they know more than the trainer.

That particular day was when I came close to throwing the training binder her across the table. I know within a few minutes of working with someone if they can be trained. Most can be, but the few that can’t, it’s because they don’t want to learn. It’s as if admitting they don’t know something, it makes them feel like prey.

  • You have to be vulnerable while opening your mind to new ideas.
  • You have to admit you don’t know something before you can learn it.
  • You have to be willing to be stupid in order to gain knowledge.

All of this we could have dealt with if the numbers had been there, but that was not the case. Her inadequacies began to show up quickly.

First it was the padded (false) stats. Everything sounded good, according to her, but upon inspection, not so much. The money wasn’t there and then when it did appear, the new clients asked for refunds before even starting.

Her appointments kept cancelling on her. It was as if she were a magnet that repelled rather than pulled.

I felt sorry for her. She made me uncomfortable because she seemed so desperate and alone. The more I attempted to befriend her, the more I felt my integrity slip away.

The day she was fired, she cried on my shoulder. I limply put my arm around her shoulder and patted her back. I felt a twinge of remorse for not feeling anything but relief that she would be gone. I felt as if my comfortable world was about to return.

It took me a long time to come to terms with the fact that I didn’t like her and didn’t have to. I wished her no ill will and had hoped she had gone off onto better and more interesting adventures.

I am sorry she’s gone too soon.

Have you ever known someone you didn’t like but wanted to? Was it something that bothered you or not?

Photo by Mink Mingle on Unsplash

In a world that values things more than people, it’s easy to forget what’s important and what isn’t. That can vary from day to day or even moment to moment.

One day, you have a fender bender. No one is hurt, but you’re upset that you didn’t see the car and backed into it in the parking lot. You were distracted with the kids screaming in the back seat or your day at work wasn’t that great because your boss let you know your performance could be better.

It could be a million little things that are bothering you and then BAM! You bump into the car you didn’t see parked there.

You exchange your information with the other driver, apologize profusely, and remind yourself to make sure you paid your insurance premium for the month.

You’re thankful the other driver was kind and didn’t throw a fit.

You worry that your insurance rates will go up again as you drive home, forcing yourself to pay attention.

You’re upset that you were so distracted that you didn’t see the car parked when you back up and you should have.

You take a deep breathe and calm yourself down. You debate whether or not you’ll report the claim to your insurance carrier or maybe bite the bullet and pay for it out of your own pocket. You say another prayer that it won’t be much because you’re about to be overdrawn in your checking account if your rent check clears before your payroll check get deposited.

All of these things are on your mind until you turn the corner onto the street you live and you see smoke.

Lots of smoke.

Pouring up into the sky…near your home.

You see the fire engines as you approach your home but you can’t tell exactly what is happening and you say your third prayer in the last hour that the smoke is from a house way down the street from you.

The last thing on your mind now is the fender bender.

All you can think about is your home being on fire.

Then you realize that if it is, right now all you care about is your family and pets.

You accelerate, with all thoughts of being a more careful driver evaporating immediately.

As you get closer, you can see that it’s not your house, but a neighbors home 6 houses down.

You heave a sigh of relief, suddenly grateful that you have not lost your home and family and pull into the driveway.

You stand there and a new emotions step in and it is one of compassion, worry, and care for your neighbors.

You’re happy you are safe and you are worried that your neighbors are not.

And that, that right there, is your greatest asset.

You thought I was going to say you are your greatest asset, didn’t you?

Well, you’re not wrong but you’re also not right.

Your greatest asset is more than something you can put in a Hallmark card or quickly write as in inspirational quote for Facebook.

Your greatest asset is what you do with you. It’s:

Your empathy

Your ability to understand others

Your level of ethics

Your integrity

Your moral compass

Your ability to be kind

To be decent

Sometimes it feels as if you have to be mean and unfeeling to get through life. There are days when the worries and stress of the world, or just the day, weigh on you relentlessly.

Sometimes we feel weak if we aren’t constantly being rude or unkind. We don’t understand why life has become such a burden.

We feel justified in snapping at the person who is moving slower than molasses in the store aisle and you can’t get past them.

What do they expect if they are slow AND blocking the aisle? What? They think they’re the only person on the planet?

There are always plenty of reasons to be mean and unkind, but there are just as many to be kind and decent.

Your biggest asset is when your heart reaches out to resolve a problem. When you let yourself be kind even though the world has given you plenty of reasons to be ornery and mean.

It is your heart and soul that is your biggest asset and it is often not your first reaction when you’re about to take the bait.

It’s important to give yourself a second or two or three to decide how you want react to a situation. Your emotions and actions are always your choice and one else’s.

And that’s what puts you high on the food chain.

Your ability to see, to decide and then to act.

No one is perfect, but don’t fall prey to those that tell you to be harsh in order to get ahead. Pay no attention to anyone who tells you that you don’t matter or you don’t make a difference.

Kindness can never be overrated and if you find yourself tempted to lash out, don’t beat yourself up if you do.

The beautiful thing about time is there is another moment right around the corner.

You are important. You influence the people around you and you make a difference in their lives.

Life is hard enough without being too hard on ourselves.

Your biggest asset is what you do with you.


Photo by Daniel Clay on Unsplash

I think it was when I saw you had gone to great lengths to Photoshop in your thigh gaps. I know damn well you don’t have thigh gap any more than I do. I know that you, like I, hate to wear anything that doesn’t cover our thighs because by the end of the day, we’ve got a rash from our thighs constantly rubbing against each other when we walk.

When I saw that you gave yourself perfect thighs (including NO cellulite) I stopped being amused and started to get angry. Not really angry but just enough to feel myself want to reach through the monitor and bitch slap the shit out of you.

What the fuck are you doing?

You have never had a thigh gap and never will. Well you didn’t until the invention of Photoshop, which apparently you have mastered, though you have told me on too many occasions for me to count that you barely know how to use Google.

Apparently that was a lie and that’s why I’m pissed off. I guess the desire to have perfect thighs can cause a woman to get out of her comfort zone and figure out an app to make herself look better.

You and I go way back. We’re the same age. I know how confident you were about yourself and your life. I know what it’s like to be insecure and afraid. When did that happen to you? There’s no sin in admitting to a trusted friend that you are scared or unhappy, but when you lie to me I know that the first lie was to yourself.

You constantly post on Facebook what a wonderful marriage you have and though I don’t disagree that the two of you have been married a long time, you have told him that the only way you’ll ever not be married to him is via death. Now I can’t speak for your husband, but if a man said that to me, I’d head for the hills and not look back. I see him flinch and quickly smile when you say that. You’re not seeing what I see.

I know that your husband is terrified of you. He’s afraid to say anything. I’m not saying that he wants to leave you, because he probably doesn’t because you coddle him. You are the first person to actually care for him. But I hate seeing the fear in his eyes whenever he wants to disagree with you. You’ve badgered him into silence and compliance. He’s too sweet and maybe too scared to say anything.

You and I are too old and have gone through too much for you to be so worried about what people think of you. I know that the last trip you went on and posted on Facebook was a huge disappointment. I know that you had a horrible time because you couldn’t get along with the group of people you were with. But you didn’t post that. You weren’t honest. You weren’t truthful and though I don’t expect anyone to air their dirty laundry on social media, you’re doing worse than that. You are lying to yourself and therefore everyone else.

If we have learned nothing else as women of a certain age, it’s that we may not have much and we may have been discriminated against everyday of our lives, we always fought for our integrity, our honesty, and our transparency. Because without integrity you’ve got nothing. You know that. We’ve had long discussions about it over the years. We know that the only way to be free, is to first be honest with ourselves and let the world see us as we are. We know that there’s no shame, only pride, in getting older and proudly wearing our lives on our face without apology.

We earned every damn wrinkle and gray hair.

We earned every scar and imperfection and we’re proud of them. We wear them like a badge of honor.

You were a bad ass.

When did you get scared? When did you decide that your appearance was more important than your mind? What happened that made you run and decide to put on a false personality for the world to see? What changed? What scared you? Was it looking in the mirror one day and seeing how your skin was now sagging? We’re all going through that. Hell, I hate seeing myself in the mirror. I put my make-up on as quickly as possible because though I think of myself as a much younger age, the mirror tells me differently. I fucking hate mirrors and can’t handle taking a selfie because there aren’t enough filters to make me see myself in the way that I think about myself. I know it’s part of life and I’d rather grow old than die young, but I don’t need to see wrinkles and my sagging neck. I’m not a believer in cosmetic surgery, but I admit I’d pay money to have the neck I had at 20.

Was it when you looked down and wondered where your tits went? That’s the point we all realize that gravity isn’t always our friend.

Was it when you couldn’t fit into your clothes anymore smack in the middle of menopause? I know that one too. I’ve always been able to lose weight whenever I wanted to, but the last 5 years changed all that. I woke-up one day with an additional 20 pounds. I swear the fat fairy came one night and plunked extra fat right on my stomach and hips and shrank my boobs. So not funny. It felt like it was overnight because one day, out of nowhere, my jeans didn’t fit anymore. I had to buy a bigger size (which took me months to do until I couldn’t stand the suffering of wearing too tight jeans all day and ended up with a yeast infection) and I almost started to cry in the fitting room. I didn’t because I didn’t want to admit I was bothered about it. I didn’t want to admit that after all the years of managing my weight and being fit, Mother Nature decided to play a cruel joke on me and gave me back all the weight I lost and kept off for years.

It was as if all of it no longer mattered, so why try?

Was it when you had to begin coloring your hair because the gray appearing faster than you could keep up with it? I know that one too. I now do my roots the very second I see the gray start to reappear. I should have purchased stock in L’Oreal for the amount of money I have spent on hair dye the last 30 years. It must have been something like that or something happened because I knew our friendship was on the rocks when you accused me of flirting with your husband. If you knew me at all you would know that is the last thing I would ever do. I wrote it off to the wine we were drinking and a slip of the tongue on your part. But I was wrong because you began to insist that I had done that. Later you confided that’s what you used to do as a younger woman. I knew that whatever you were running from, you were now projecting onto other people.

That made me sad and angry. That was the last time I saw you. But that didn’t stop me from seeing your posts on Facebook. It didn’t stop me from caring about you but from a distance because that was not something I was willing to have in my life. I didn’t want to step into something that not only wasn’t my creation, but was something that was only in your own mind.

What happened to you and where did you go? I’m not saying you need to show the world your cellulite and be proud of the muffin top we all have as older women, but I always thought you would be honest and proud of who you are because you should be. You’ve accomplished a lot in your long life. You have suffered great tragedy and come through it. I’ve always admired your disagreeable nature towards the world but now you’re toning yourself down, you’re dimming your light because of social media. You’re suddenly worried about what you look like and what people think of your looks and life.

Stop it. Log off. Stop posting. Stop caring about what the world thinks of you because darlin’, it will always disapprove of you. The world is not conducive to intelligent women, so stop trying to appease the Gods because it will never happen.

We’re older women.

We are valuable.

We are bad ass and we don’t listen to anyone who doesn’t see it.

Get back to being you because that is more than good enough and fuck anyone who doesn’t think so.


I recently turned 64 and that makes me a bad ass because I wasn’t always sure I’d make it this long. No, nothing as interesting as a disease or a horrible upbringing or even a bad life. No, I wasn’t sure I’d make it because I’ve dealt with too many losses and betrayals that I never saw them coming. Then again, if you see a betrayal coming, maybe then you’d have enough of a warning to stop it or at least get out of the way.

I consider myself a bad ass because I refuse to let the world change me. Every morning as I am just about to wake-up, the demons come. I call them demons because I really like that word and after having just binged watched the show “Lucifer” my affinity for demons is much higher.

You know the ones I mean. The ones that poke at you when you are your most vulnerable and whisper all your failures in your ear. Your failed marriages. Your inability to not only sustain a relationship, but the fact that you haven’t ever had a truly successful one. Sure, there were times when things were good with my husband, but they were few and far between and certainly not enough to keep me hoping.

Or how about the demon that reminds you every day that if you hadn’t been such a dumb ass, you never would have lost your house?

Then there’s the one that constantly reminds you of your debts that you’ll never be able to pay off because you’re a loser?

I think my favorite demon is the one that reminds me that I’m getting older and I’m still alone and will probably die alone at home and no one will discover my body for days.

I hear them but I don’t listen to them. I may not be able to stop the random thoughts that drift around in my mind as I wake-up in pain and with a headache most mornings, but that doesn’t mean I have to listen to them.

The only thing that shuts those fuckers up is motion. Demons don’t like action. They don’t like it when you start moving and pushing forward into the day.

Anyone that wakes up scared, worried, in pain, hurt, sad or in any way wanting to roll over and sleep for a week, but still gets up, is a bad ass.

Doesn’t matter how you got to where you are, you’re still here and still fighting.

Doesn’t matter the mistakes you made; if you are still getting through the day the best way that you can, you’re a bad ass.

Doesn’t matter what people think of you or the promotions you didn’t get or the muffled sobs you make at the gas pump — if you got up and gave it another shot and didn’t quit, you are a bad ass.

I turned 64 and I am so far from where I wanted to be at this age. I didn’t prepare for the disappointments that I faced, but I did learn that it’s not about what happens to you — it’s all about your attitude towards it.

Granted there are a few people that I do not think fondly of, but that’s OK. There’s no “Great Memo In The Sky” that dictates how anyone should feel. The problem is if I let it fester inside me and let it hamper my own joy and happiness. It’s not that I’m running around spreading glitter and rainbows, but I do work hard to have a positive attitude as best as I can each day. Those that still annoy me is because I haven’t quite made the step to let it go and that’s simply because there’s something else I need to learn about it. There’s some piece of the puzzle I haven’t taken responsibility for. There’s some unknown reason I hold onto my anger towards them.

Maybe I will figure it out and maybe I won’t, but the fact that we are still standing, still swinging at the plate and still hopeful and not a victim, makes us the biggest bad asses of all — we’ve had plenty of reasons to quit and we don’t.

Failure is not an option.

It was an episode on Longmire and it made me cry and feel like crap. I cannot handle it when an animal feels bad, let alone gets hurt. I can’t even deal with an animal feeling sad. Even when I know the animal is rescued at the end of the video – only because it was posted that way and they said so – that the little creature was scared actually keeps me up at night.

I don’t want to know these things, even if it all turns out well. I. Don’t. Want. To. Know.

I only want to live in a world where everyone and everything is vegan, even me. I’ll never be a vegan, but I want to live in a world where I am. Where animals graze on grass and lions don’t kill zebra babies to feed their babies. Sometimes nature sucks and don’t tell me it’s beautiful. It’s not. Killer whales tearing apart a seal to keep from dying isn’t a world I want to live on but here I am.

I want to live in a world where a woman of my age still has value. I don’t, but I want that world. I want the world where someone of 80 has more value than me and I’m good with that.

I want to live in a world where I can write and type because my hands haven’t gone numb and made it almost impossible to post anything without hours of pain and frustration.

I don’t have all the answers but I have enough to know that there is a lot more right and beautiful about people and this planet than most will have you believe, so I like where I’m at and I admire my intelligence with the knowledge that I don’t fit in, never will, and my crushing loneliness is just the way it is.

And I’m good with that. Better that than chronic neck pain from nodding in agreement with people who don’t know their asses from a hole in the wall and have no idea there is a world outside their sense of self-importance and value.