Sometimes It’s Worth It

This morning I got up even earlier than usual, got bundled up, and went outside to watch the stars fall. It was so worth it.

 

In the past most of my meteor shower watching experience have been less than stellar, I’d sit out there for hours and maybe see just one or two. This morning I saw more than I could count, and each one filled me with a kind of childlike glee that I haven’t experience for a while.

 

The simple things in my life have gotten covered up in the complicated things, the things we try to do to make things simple, the things that lead us to forget why we are doing them in the first place. Even when you try to do things one-step-at-a-time, with pure intentions, the right way, you can lose track of the original intention. That’s just the way it is, life is complicated.

 

Sometimes it’s good to be reminded that some things are simple. My planet moves through space, it encounters a cloud of dust, the tail end leftovers of a comet, and just for being here, just for showing up, you get to see something amazing. Not complicated, amazing, they are different.

 

The problem is, if you show up for anything beyond a meteor shower, things get complicated. Everybody thinks they can do whatever it is better, they think they can improve upon the experience.  This is a prime example of the capacity of the human mind in relation to the universe. It just doesn’t measure up.

 

I’ll get on with my complicated day now, trying to keep in mind, once in a while, they are still simple things, amazing things, that aren’t complicated at all.

I Live In the the State of Stupid or Why Snake Handling and Cousin Fucking are No Substitute for Satire

After waking very pleasantly this morning, I commenced with my morning routine. This involves drinking a whole lot of coffee, reading online news sources and making disparaging comments about whatever idiot idea Joe Scarborough is pontificating on at the moment. Like I said, I feeling good, looking forward to a beautiful early fall day in Missouri, when I saw this…

Missouri local school board ends ban on Slaughterhouse Five

12:46am EDT

By Kevin Murphy

KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Reuters) – A school board in southwest Missouri on Monday restored two books it had banned from public schools for being contrary to teachings in the Bible.

The Republic School Board voted 6-0 to make the two books – “Slaughterhouse-Five” and “Twenty Boy Summer” – available to students for independent reading as long as they are kept in a secure section of the school library.

Only parents or guardians can check them out.

Under a policy the board adopted in July, teachers still cannot make the books required reading nor read them aloud in school. The old policy had removed the books from the school altogether.

The novel Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut is a satirical account of the bombing of Dresden, Germany, during World War II. Some people object to violence, language and sexual material in the book.

“Twenty Boy Summer,” by Sarah Ockler, is about young people and sexual relationships.

Area resident Wesley Scroggins, a Missouri State University associate business professor, objected to those books and other materials he said “create false conceptions of American history and government and or that teach principles contrary to Biblical morality and truth.”

Several anti-censorship organizations, such as the American Civil Liberties Union, sharply criticized the book ban, which received national attention.

In August, The Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library in Indianapolis offered up to 150 copies of “Slaughterhouse-Five” to any Republic students who wanted to read it.

(Edited by Peter Bohan)

When I read the headline I thought, “Good, it’s hard enough to live in a state in which the current media exposure consists of a semi-reality series about running a truck stop, (yeah, I’ve been there, don’t judge me) without the anti-intellectual drama of book banning.” Then I read the article.

Seriously, Missouri? Mommy has to check out a Kurt Vonnegut novel for you?

And who is this Wesley Scroggins? Has anyone checked on this moron’s credentials? If this guy actually has higher education, he is a testament to the worthlessness of business degrees these days and possibly the value of any degree from Missouri State University.

Mr. Scroggins, since you you apparently busy with an Ol’ Time Religion Snake Handling and Cousin Fucking Tent Revival the week they covered this, let me give you a clue, education is not about indoctrination, it’s about exposure to ideas. Good education allows the student to form their own ideas and philosophies. Your personal beliefs are irrelevant in this context. It’s not a complicated concept, you should be able to grasp it, even if the more complicated concept of satire is something I’m sure will always elude you.

If you were capable of understanding satire, you would, no doubt, see the humor in your situation.

You say allowing young minds to be exposed to the content of these two books would, “create false conceptions of American history and government and or that teach principles contrary to Biblical morality and truth.” Really? Because you should know that history is an always developing discipline, encompassing opposing viewpoints of how history should be interpreted. Not to mention you work for a secular institution, supported by a government who at its very heart separates church and state. Are you seeing the humor here yet? 
Mr, Scroggins, you are at best ignorant, and at worst profiting from an institution that promotes ideas contrary to your own values. Either way, you do not belong there. I suggest you become a lay preacher at a truck stop.

This Blog Is About To Take a Turn

My life took quite a dive last week, one that isn’t really adoption related, but I’m sure that will play into it. Right now I’m  numb and don’t know exactly where I’m at with any of it. Only that I’m sad, lonely, and my life is forever changed. I lost the love of my life, my partner in crime, and husband of twenty-eight years last week.

I’m still in shock and there are a lot of (not literally) bloody details, I’m not ready to go into. I just need to write about this.

I’ll completely understand if you aren’t up for this journey, I know it’s not going to be an easy one.

I’ve got through the memorial service, starting on all the lawyer crap today, and feel like I’m getting farther and farther from him every second. People are staying with me, not sure if I’m suicide watch or not, though I know I’m not suicidal. My friends, especially my bastard friends, have bee wonderful, my greatest comfort in all of this. There are no word to thank them.

I’m going to try to write here often, and details will emerge, but for now let’s just say, I’m more alone that I think I have ever been, but I don’t feel abandoned, he didn’t want to go, he didn’t leave leave me. He chose me, sure, but he never tried to change me. He made me feel right and good. I don’t know what I am without him.

Ward Of The State (Slight Return)

Due to my recent employment situation, I am again dependent on the state.

It’s triggering.

As an adult adoptee most of my contact with the state has been adversarial.  I want my original birth certificate and they refuse to give it to me.  This because they think of me as a child that cannot understand my position.

The fact is, I understand my position very well.  Obtaining my OBC will not change a thing about who I am or what has happened to me, but it will make me feel like an adult.  It’s simple, but they won’t help me.  I’m  supposed to be fine with all that.

The state does  feel that I might need some help with my joblessness.  It’s been explained to me that losing a job can be very traumatic.

I get that.

The state has told me that’s it’s unfair and I shouldn’t be able to understand my situation.

I think I have a pretty good grasp on the situation, actually.

They tell me that I may feel like my identity has been taken away.

Um no.  I know what that feels like and this isn’t it.

They say this could be the most significant transition in my life.

Trust me, it’s so not.

They want me to know if I start to feel out of control or that I fear I might hurt myself, counseling is available.

Oh where have you been all of my life?

They even offered to set up a “rap session” for us to dicuss what we are going through.

No, in the name of all things holy, no.

I’m not trying to minimize  job loss here, it is hard, but it’s not like the end of my world.

Honestly I’m offended that they take unemployment so much more seriously than adoption.  I lost a job here, not my biological roots, not my name, not my identity.  I’m supposed to be just fine with being adopted and not require any kind of assistance dealing with it, but lose my job, and it’s time for intensive intervention.

What the hell ever.

Second Thoughts About Relinquishing Myself

As you all know I have been considering relinquishing myself to my governor, but now I’m not so sure.  It’s not that I don’t like my governor, I do, and it would be cool to be the governor’s kid.  I bet I could get into the state fair for free.  But, even with all the perks, I might be doing myself a disservice.

Since this would be a public adoption, it wouldn’t cost very much.  My states chief executive might even get paid to take care of me while the paperwork went through.  I think I’m worth more.  I think I’ll put myself up for adoption privately. Possibly internationally.

I’ll be acting as my own facilitator, oh course.  So what does a white kid go for on the international market these days? $30,000 or $40,000?  Hey for that I can throw in a collectible Barbie Doll and a teddy bear.

So if you know anyone that might be interested in a bright, fairly well behaved girl, with a smile that can light up the room and melt heats, let me know.

I Wonder If I Can Relinquish Myself?

Since my state continues to treat me like a child that can’t be trusted with my records, I think I’d like to relinquish myself, to the state.  the problem is I don’t want to be a ward of the court.   Since I’m relinquishing myself I think I should be able to pick my new adoptive parents.

I was thinking the governor would be a good choice.  He can afford another kid, and let’s face it, the prestige would be nice.  I think it would be a mutually beneficial relationship.  He could get all kinds of publicity for adopting and I could live in the governor’s mansion.

I think it would be a great way to bring adoptee rights issues home to someone who could do something about it.  At all the family photo ops, conventions, and tree lighting ceremonies I could raise my fist and yell “GIVE ADOPTEES THEIR ORIGINAL BIRTH CERTIFICATES!!”.   I’m betting that could get something done fast.

We all should do it.  Just imagine if all the governors, in all the states that don’t allow equal access for adoptees, had tens of thousands adult adoptees trying to relinquish themselves to them…….

The potential news story.

Addie Pray Nixon, yeah that sounds good.

Did You Know…

..that there are at least 37 distinctive types of dinner forks?

..that in order to get a certificate of ‘no tax owed’ you have to be in the state system?

..that you have to have a certificate of ‘no tax owed’ to get into the state’s system?

..that a flea can jump 350 times it’s body length?

..that Grown In My Heart is planning a big Mother’s Day giveaway?

..that deSoto was the first white guy to see the Mississippi River flood?

..and that the natives weren’t a bit surprised?

..that some cats will eat cheese?

..but not mice?

..that I spend way too much time at Adoptee Fried Chicken?

..that Europeans are adopting american children?

..that adult animals usually make better pets than puppies or kittens

..that puppies and kittens usually make better pets than children?

..the the first SUCCESSFUL parachute jump was made in St Louis, Mo.?

..that there are 500 different kinds of bananas

..but the only one you are familiar with may become extinct in our lifetime?

..that you can get a certificate of ‘no tax owed’ if you say you already have one?

..that no one ever follows their grocery list?

..that I’m getting tired?

Deathbed Conversions and Gumball Machines

If you haven’t read my previous Happy Monday post, please do, this one will make a whole lot more sense.

I know exactly how that stupid vending machine made it into the front of my store.

During the conquest of the Americas many missionaries were sent out to “civilize” the savages and bring them religion.  Some of the native people really went for the Jesus thing, some gave it lip service to save their butts, and some didn’t buy into any of it.

But as some folks who were less than impressed by Christianity approached death, they would ask to see the priests and convert moments before expiring. While this pumped up the stats of the church, I’m guessing that most of the deathbed converts were merely hedging their bets on the afterlife.

It does make sense to cover all of your bases.  The Pagan Gods tended to be forgiving of their peers, and only asked that they be paid tribute in the areas they were responsible for.  Even when the Christian God laid down the law, he asked only that no other Gods go before him.  So waving the spiritual giant foam finger at the Christian God in final overtime probably made a whole lot of sense.

While the Pagan Gods still have their followers, most folks are more into the things that have replaced them these days.  You know, money, success, standing in the community, doing your own thing.  Even though most folks don’t have a God for these things anymore, they tend to ignore the Christian God in order to pursue them.  I don’t think they think much about it, until they fear that their soul might be in some peril.  All in all, the number of deathbed conversions hasn’t suffered much over the years.

I’ve always found deathbed conversions to be ass kissy and tacky.  I’m perfectly willing to go into the great beyond with all of my doubts worn honestly.  I’m not going to beg to be invited to a party that I’m not dressed for.

I’m guessing that it’s mainly fear that motivates last minute conversions.  I’m sure they see it as fear of change, fear of the unknown, fear of eternal damnation.  Legitimate fears I suppose, if you believe in that kind of thing. I have a hard time thinking a last minute apology is ever going to make up for all the stuff that leads to those fears, but some still try.

Even waiting until the last minute, presumably after all your deeds are behind you, can still lead to trouble.  These things aren’t exempt from the no good deed goes unpunished clause.  Attempts at getting the Lord on your side can complicate things with the very folks you fear you’ve hurt, that lead to all this ass kissing in the first place.

Take orphans for example.  Helping them out would seem to be a good way to get back in good with the man upstairs.  And as long as you really don’t have to do anything, well more is the better.  No need to check anything out, just do your good deed and get spiritual brownie points. Easy.

Well, maybe not.

While spiritual matters are mainly the concern the individual and whatever God they are working with, I think that how ones actions effect others probably come into play.  I’m certain not even thinking about how your actions will effect others come into play.  That might even earn you demerits.

I have no doubt that this is a difficult thing to understand for those who see everything in black and white, or good and evil, but it’s something to think about.  Thinking about things is hard, some just won’t go to the trouble.  That makes me sad and explains the gumball machine.

Happy Monday From the Southern Baptist Convention

I got a good nights sleep last night, felt well, and was looking forward to a typical day at work. I should have known it wasn’t going to happen. Mondays are never typical days at work. I had taken Saturday and Sunday off, leaving the store in the hands of my a-dad. As my regular readers know, he’s not typical. Guess what I found?

Yep, Buster is pretty scary, after getting over the initial horror of the machine itself,  I read the label on his belly.

Proceeds from this vending unit benefit SONRISE CHILDREN’S HOME and MEDICINE VALLEY COMMUNITY CHILDREN’S MINITRY.  For more information call 660-673-6023

Who are these people?

Sonrise Children’s Home is this outfit…

http://www.seethesonrise.org/

Mission statement is as follows…

Sonrise Children’s Home is a non-profit 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization.  We were formed by a group of Christians that saw a need and believed God to use them to meet that need.  This non-denominational entity is operated by a Board comprised of Christian men and women who love God and want to please Him.

The number of children in the foster care system is on the rise while homes are limited.  Consequently, children are being placed hundreds of miles from their families, making reunification difficult.  They are growing up with insecurities as they are relocated to unfamiliar surroundings and often being separated from brothers and sisters during one of the most difficult times in their lives.

The mission of Sonrise Children’s Home is to provide children with a safe, secure, loving environment to grow and develop good moral character, to provide a moral compass through a relationship with God, and to be self disciplined in order to become a productive member of society through a model of Jesus Christ.

We must provide for the physcial need of the child with a safe, secure, and loving home.

We must give the child an opportunity to grow and develop good moral character.

We must provide a place where work ethic and responsibility are learned.

We must be good stewards and provide for God’s hurting children

We must model Jesus Christ and show the hurting children God’s love for them.

Ok, it’s a foster placement facility, that relies way too much on Jesus and discipline for my taste.  The thing is, as far as I knew it was shut down.  So I did some checking, and it’s reopening..

http://republican-times.com/modules.php?sid=18927&thold=0&order=0&file=article&name=News&op=modload

I was never sure why the place shut down in the first place, but I’m thinking it didn’t do a lot to ” provide children with a safe, secure and loving environment”, being thrown into another foster placement and all.

Oh course they aren’t going to worry about the effects of multiple foster placements when they have the Lord’s work to do.  I’m betting they aren’t going to want anybody else to think about it either, especially when they are raising money.  Besides, there’s a whole new group of children who need to know Jesus’ discipline, if they like it or not.  And, they have a gumball machine.  God only makes nightmarish gumball machines available to deserving charities.

I did take a look at their 990 filings, the last of which was in 2007, and can be pretty sure that the reason wasn’t money, as of the last filing available they were still very much in the black.  Did they lose their management?  Did they have logistical problems? Did they just get tired of it?  I don’t know.  All I do know is that any children they had in their care at the time were thrown into yet another foster situation.  That ain’t good.

And is this Medicine Valley Community Ministry? According to official sources, the Missouri Secretary of State’s Office, Guidestar, Charity.net, they don’t exist.  I’m not sure how they are soliciting donations.  I can’t tell that they do anything at all other than raise money. They do seem to be tied up with this bunch though….

http://www.northgrandriverbaptist.com/index.php

Who don’t seem to support anything but their own social gatherings, and a bookstore.

And they seem to be very close with these folks who we all know….

http://www.sbc.net/default.asp

Yep, the Southern Baptist Convention.  They seem to think that adoption is a mission….

http://www.sbc.net/resolutions/amResolution.asp?ID=1194

Seems that they want to create an adoption culture.

Great.

I’ve got a gumball machine supporting a children’s home that I’m not even sure is open, or is going to stay open for any amount of time, and a ministry that doesn’t exist, scaring the heck out of children of all ages, with a gumball machine in the front of my store.  Oh happy Monday.

I guess I have a phone call to make.  Several phone calls.

I’ll keep you posted.

Update: I’ve just found this letter from a local paper dated September 23rd 2008, explaining the reason for the closure.  It seems that they closed down after taking in just one child.  Considering they have raised tens of thousands of dollars in the last few years, I find this very disturbing.  Combine that with the inability to find personnel and I feel that they shouldn’t be fostering children at all.  Their priorities seem to be much more about pleasing God than actually ever taking care of children.

In the effort of keeping the surrounding communities informed, we want to update you on the progress and setbacks with the Sonrise Children’s Home. On August 18th we welcomed our first child to the Sonrise Children’s Home. A very monumental day for all that has been involved since the conception. We give God all the praise and glory. It has been wonderful to see this building become the home for a child in need.
To our regret, we received a resignation notice from our house parents with a month’s notice. We are currently searching for new house parents. Unfortunately due to the current circumstances, we will have to close the home until we hire and train new house parents.
Although this has been a disappointing setback to all, we need your prayers and help more than ever. The only way the Children’s Home will be able to protect and nurture the children from the surrounding area is by your support. We will press on with our fall fundraisers and look at new fundraisers to help our income. We are seeking counsel from other children’s homes on how to bet-ter raise funds, organize and operate the home. We understand the challenges ahead, but we serve a great God. We will work hard to do our part so there will be children back in the home soon. The rest we will leave up to our Redeemer and Sustainer, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Terry Busker
Sonrise Children’s Home
Board President