Category Archives: anthropology

Celebrating our Addictions

Scroll down any social media feed and you will see plenty of memes glorifying various addictions with humorous, creative graphics and witty sayings. These can be anything from alcohol, food, weight loss, tacos, running, crossfit, cycling, climbing, shopping, coffee, shoes, to iPhones and other weird things. Sometimes the posts don’t actually call it an addiction, such as memes related to anger, political outrage, judging others, or social media itself, but we all know people who are hooked on those and post about it daily.

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Why is this okay? Why do we click LIKE or HAHA on these posts to give approval to what we know is sometimes a very unhealthy relationship or even unwanted slavery to these things? I do it, too! I laugh and then I think , well that’s actually not that funny, is it? So do we just laugh because otherwise we’d cry? I think it is because most of us are in the same boat and if we admit to it , we might want out of the boat and then we might be all alone and have no friends. So we play along and encourage the things that make us miserable or at the very least do not lead to joy and contentment and peace. Those things come from another place, a person, the Lord, Jesus Christ. But sadly posts about Jesus do not get the same approval, do they? I suppose it is the company one keeps. And I have over 800 ‘friends’ on the F-book that I may have something in common with, but not the main thing. I think most of my Christian friends are still following my posts, but many have either unfollowed or snoozed me because they don’t want to read Bible verses  or logical political posts. They’d rather keep their heads in the clouds and focus on wine, tacos, and running. It’s okay. I will be praying for them and for myself to fight these non-Jesus substitutions, aka idols,  for real peace and joy. And let me just add that I know that most of these things can be enjoyed in moderation in a healthy way and not be an addiction. We know if we’ve become dependent or not.
Romans 1:32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things are worthy of death, they not only continue to do these things, but also approve of those who practice them. ~ This verse refers to some pretty bad sins, but it came to mind as to how people tend to encourage others in the same behaviors they are slaves to.

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My life in pictures #2

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I’ve always loved Volkswagen Beetles . I had a copper colored one like that. 

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Enter a captionIphone 072Iphone 133Iphone 187Iphone 196Iphone 286Iphone 364Iphone 372Iphone 430Iphone 448My husband gives himself tattoos. This is my favorite.

I had some issues with this post and couldn’t get the captions under most of the photos. The group photo is a special one. It’s literally a group of moms who all have children with the same very rare condition that my daughter has, Lissencephaly.

The one of the motorcycle was me a few years back in my faster, fitter, younger days.

That’s my husband with a painting on a wall of Willie Nelson, a very famous singer and musician in America.

The Summer Solstice, anxiety and what to do about it

I am a university educated, non-pagan,  Christian living in a modern society. I don’t believe in Mother Earth or that the Universe is God or vice versa. I don’t read horoscopes for advice on daily living or otherwise. HOWEVER…. I do believe that God in His infinite wisdom is a God of order and patterns. The Bible, aka the Holy Scriptures, are full of examples of this. For instance, from the beginning when God created the world, He made it have a 24 hour day, a 7 day week and seasons based on the rotation of the earth and it’s journey around the sun. He created gravity which influences everything. He created our human bodies which respond to other things he created such as barometric pressure, humidity, temperature, light, darkness, and wind. All of these things are external to our bodies , yet you don’t hear much about them when you read about mental health.

SAD , seasonal affective disorder, is a psychiatric diagnosis given to people who get depressed during the winter when they don’t get enough sunlight and their vitamin D levels drop, and probably other changes  that are not measured. This is one condition that has been recognized by the medical field, but is not given much attention unless the sufferer finally seeks helps. Thankfully it does seem to be more acknowledged than it used to be. This condition, in my opinion, is happening year round now that more people are afraid of skin cancer and also because children and adults alike are spending much more time indoors on the internet. One thing everyone can do is take quality Vitamin D3 supplements. I do suggest getting your levels checked first if you have that option. Many people benefit from fairly high doses. Do your research. I am not a doctor.

On to the main topic, seasonal changes. Just when you are getting adjusted to a new hotter or colder temperature and longer or shorter days, it starts to change again! I know some people are not as sensitive to these things,  but those people don’t read articles like this.  I believe that God uses seasons to keep us from getting too comfortable with worldly life. Today is June 11. In Texas, it has been even hotter than normal. As in 90s and above with very high humidity.  Last month was fairly pleasant as far as weather , if you’re used to Texas weather, and people seemed mostly happy.  But as we get closer to June 21, the first day of Summer, I’ve notice a lot of irritability. But I don’t really think it’s the heat that is making them grouchy. I think it’s the upcoming Summer Solstice.

What is the Summer Solstice? It’s the longest day of the year , meaning the most time elapsed from sunrise to sunset.  And the Winter Solstice is the shortest day.  Like I said, I am not a pagan , but I am aware that pagans celebrate these days. I believe pagans have corrupted all God-given things by ascribing perverted rituals and nature/god worship to the creation instead of the Creator, just as pagans have distorted and abused the God-given gift of sex and love. In fact, pagans of the past, and even now, use sex as part of their worship of their false gods. God hates this idolatry and punished and punishes it severely.  That’s a topic for another day.

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What does this have to do with Summer, and seasons in general? Just as humans are affected by having too little light in the Winter, and by the phases of the moon, they are affected by the seasonal changes and long bright days of the Spring and Summer. You’d think the effects of warm weather and sunny days would be mostly positive and I think it is, but I think this time of year can create anxiety in people. Spring and Summer is when God intends for people to be productive and actively preparing for Fall and Winter. If a person is trapped indoors at a desk job or otherwise stuck in a non-productive, toxic or sinful lifestyle, this season, just like Winter,  will cause discontent and unease. People may not know what is wrong , but they feel like they should be doing something. This feeling can build and build. If you follow the worldly ways, you will seek relief in the usual numbing addictions, entertainment, food, alcohol, sex, internet, TV, etc. , instead of doing productive activity and spending time outside and in  the deep soul-searching, prayer, and evaluation that we all  need to do to keep growing into the person God made us to be.  You will feel anxiety because you are resisting God’s will. If you will trust God and seek His will, you will find peace and freedom!

What is God’s will? To put Him first in your life and to grow into a godly person.  You will find that daily living by the power of the Holy Spirit will reap great awards. He will help you shed the shackles of sin and your pet idols and fear of man. How do you do that? First you must know Jesus and receive the free gift of salvation by confessing that you are a sinner and need Jesus to make you right with God. Then you begin to learn about Him and His ways and , yes, His rules for right living. We are not saved by those rules, but they are what God wants because they are for our good. The more you get to know God, the more you will see what a good and loving Father he is! He has your best interests in mind. Then your faith and trust will grow and you will be able to hear the Holy Spirit as he guides you daily. All Christians have the Holy Spirit in them, but not all Christians listen to him. Please note that I am not talking about ‘going to church’ or ‘religion’. Knowing Jesus is neither of those. If you’re new to all of this, I suggest first reading the book of John or any of the gospels of Matthew, Mark , or Luke. Or you may want to read Genesis first. You can read it online. Here is one source.

My prayer is that if you are feeling out of sorts or even if you’re not, that you will seek the Lord and find Him and begin to live for and by him. Feel free to post questions in the comment section if I can help.

Happy Mother’s Day (to those with human children)

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What?!! You consider your pets, animals, furbabies to be your children? You are not alone in your confusion.  On the eve  of the American Mother’s Day holiday which is tomorrow,  I would like to honor those women who have raised  actual human children and also explain to the childless why animals are not the same as children, no matter how much you want them to be.

I guess you could say that I find the trend of adopting animals and considering them children to be very sad and disturbing. Don’t get me wrong, I love animals! We have lots of them. They are a wonderful addition to our family and we treat them well and enjoy their company and even , yes, talk to them and treat them like humans sometimes. But we also have six human children, all of which I gave birth to. I’m not leaving out adoptive moms, though. Raising human children doesn’t require going through the birth process, however I think whether you carried them for 9 months or not possibly could lead to slightly different parenting of your children, but I don’t know for sure. I have great respect and even awe for adoptive moms of whom I know quite a few.

Back to honoring mothers, it truly is the hardest job in the world. Nothing  prepares you for it. I wanted to be a mommy since I was a little girl. I started babysitting for neighbors when I was eleven years old, then worked in child care centers for several years during college and also cared for my siblings’ children before I had my own. I had many ideas/fantasies of what I thought it would be like to have my own children. Like most human relationships, mothering turned out to be much more complicated than I expected! I am not the first woman to secretly think they may not be up to the task when holding a screaming , colicky baby for weeks on end. Even if you are really into child development and read all the best books and have a fairly easy baby , you still have to stay awake way past your bedtime, get up during the night, do things you never wanted to do and dig deep for the energy, patience and creativity that parenting humans requires. And then there are the ‘stages’. Terrible Twos, pre-teens, teens, young adults, etc.  And even when they grow up and get married , most of them still expect a lot from their parents.

My children are now 13 years old to 26 years old. One of them is totally disabled. She is the easy one! Every day they give me reasons to pray for help and guidance and wisdom because they are people! People with complicated emotions and needs, unlike pets. They are born with personalities and genetic tendencies that are not easy to change , just like you and I . Sometimes they are easy when they’re little and then they hit puberty and they become like different people. Thankfully it is normal to have a  some good months mixed in with the difficult ones. One heartbreaking , yet common pattern, is for children to repeat their parents’ worst teenage and young adult behaviors. Whether this is learned or genetic is not always easy to pinpoint. Nothing hurts more than to know that your child is hurting the way you hurt when you were their age and not be able to fix it even though you try. I’m always thankful for the times when my children seem relaxed and content. It’s tough growing up!

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My mom and I . She’s the world’s best mom! I may be biased. 

To keep this from getting too long I will just list some of the differences between human children and animals.

  1. Babies require constant attention and supervision unlike animals.
  2. You cannot put a baby in a cage when you need to go somewhere, like to your job.
  3. Humans live much longer and cannot be ‘put down’ when someone decides they are in pain or sick.
  4. Humans babies become human toddlers and begin to rebel against your every instruction and test their boundaries . This goes on for the next 21 years at least.
  5. Puppies require a lot of attention but are usually pretty well behaved by the time they are 1 1/2 to 2 years old. That is just when children are revving up to make you think you are the worst parent ever.
  6. Oh, never mind, everyone knows that dogs, cats, donkeys, monkeys, or whatever pet you have are not the same as humans.
  7. There are just so many ways human children can cause you extreme anxiety, grief, anger, frustration, and also bring you joy , love, and hope that animals cannot begin to replicate. 

    Why would anyone have children in this screwed up world and knowing that they are so complex and can ruin your life just as easily as they can make you proud? Because that’s what humans do! We carry on the human race . It’s built into us to reproduce and nurture. We have hope. We fall in love. We want to raise a family. However those things seem to be in jeopardy. So many young, 20-30 somethings are getting married but not having children. They may be too selfish or maybe they’re scared or maybe they have bought the lie that the earth is overpopulated or humans are less valuable than the earth itself,  or they may think it’s too expensive.  Be brave! Be thrifty! Read books! Make babies and put your whole heart into for caring your family.  Give up buying more stuff and doing more stuff and form real, human relationships with your offspring. Or adopt some of the many orphans that need loving families. Or do both! Even if it’s difficult at times, it’s still worth it.

Happy Mother’s Day !

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Moody Moon

I am a firm believer in the power of the moon over people’s moods. Why? Because I am a people watcher. It’s so obvious.  The moon will be full March 31, in 4 days.  The effect is already starting. The bigger it gets, the more crazy and emotional posts you will see on social media. People get anxious and chatty and impulsive.

Sure , scientists disagree and point to very sketchy research disproving that idea, but ask anyone with children, or who works in an emergency center or with special needs kids, the moon has an effect on behavior and emotions. You will see more seizures, more depressed people, more hyperactivity, more shootings, more accidents, more drinking.

The same thing happens when the moon gets smaller and smaller and there is ‘no moon’. People are in a bad way. But the new moon arrives and they feel relief!

How about you ? Feeling extra antsy? More emotional? A little more nervous? Angry? Irritable? Check the calendar. It’s probably either almost a full moon or almost a new moon. Try it!