On days like this

It’s midnight as I write this. That means that, in several more hours, it’s four years to the moment our son, Elias, died.

Apparently Facebook saw fit to remind me and rub salt in that wound by showing me a “memory” in the form of a picture of him. It just popped up in my feed last night. No, lie, I truly do wish for a slow, painful demise for whatever genius decided it would be a great idea to force you to relive pain in the form of memories on Facebook.

But, this is the day, with or without Facebook. It’s always difficult. Doesn’t really get much easier. You just sort of look for ways to get through it. That’s all you can do.

I’m hoping to soften the blow just a bit this time because several months ago, I bought tickets to Disney on Ice for the family. I guess it’s my way of trying to not have the next several days really suck. After all, Ceili Fey has a birthday on the sixth and Calvin’s is on the seventh. The past few birthdays have kind of sucked for her, especially. Hopefully this will be a great memory for all of the kids.

Here’s to memories, past and future.

Parenthood can suck it

Well, I’m now the world’s worst mom because I don’t buy mainstream hygiene products. I’m horrible because I buy uncool products that have ingredients I can actually pronounce. Hell, I even sell some so I’m sure that take my uncool factor into the negatives.

Yes, I’m an awful person for actually reading labels and not purchasing shampoos, soaps, lotions, and cosmetics that contain carcinogens or endocrine disrupters. Damn me to hell for caring.

It’s times like this I hate being a parent. Absolutely hate it.

Musings on religion

As a kid I used to be terrified of Hell and all that went with it. The hot, the torment, the being kept from the people that I loved….

I spent much of my time praying, asking to be forgiven and for God to come into my heart because, yanno, that’s what you must do to avoid hell. That meant that EVERY night before bed, I would pray. And pray. And pray. I frequently would fall asleep before I finished because, unlike my grandmother who “had the Holy Spirit” and was spoken to by God, I never felt God “enter” my heart. If I would say something about this, I’d be instructed to pray harder. I knew I must be doing something wrong. I would pray more in the hopes that I could feel what my Grandma did. God never spoke to me. No matter how much I prayed. I knew I wasn’t a good Christian. Maybe God didn’t want me. Maybe He knew my secret doubts and concerns!

Most anything I would do would make me feel guilty so, of course, I would pray. I’d feel guilty for not praying if I’d forget. I’d feel guilty if I fell asleep before finishing. I’d feel guilty if I listened to “devil music” or read something that might have been “not of God”.

I knew that my sole purpose in life was to serve God. That was also the only eternal purpose as well. It didn’t sound like much fun to me, to be honest. I wasn’t entirely sure I wanted to spend an eternity worshipping and fearing a divine being. It all honestly sounded a bit twisted, like a controlling boyfriend. I just wanted to live and enjoy life but I was terrified at the thought of burning forever.

My first marriage was mostly because I felt guilty becauseI was having premarital sex, even though I’d been having it for a couple years. Unfortunately, I did so to the detriment of a relationship with someone who I actually loved. He would die before I ever had an opportunity to apologize to him.

Eventually I started questioning things. I figured either I was a bad, unsavable person or something just wasn’t right about what all I’d been told. I was on the fence awhile but then after Elias died, I really began to question things. Especially after getting involved in online support groups for bereaved parents where most of them actually say things like how things happen for a reason and God took their child, etc. How the fuck can anyone love or worship something that would do that to people? Many take comfort in seeing their child again in Heaven one day. I’ll be honest. I’m kind of jealous of them because since I have come to believe that Hell is basically a social construct designed to scare people like me into toeing the line, it would stand to reason that Heaven, being the total opposite of Hell, would be made up as well.

I have a hard time wrapping my mind around everything. I still have a lot of guilt. I guess maybe I’m a recovering Christian.

Well this is awesome

While at an appointment today I learned that my blood pressure was 152/106. Nice, right?

Originally I kinda blew it off – which I was reminded I’d been doing for awhile now. I reminded her that we just passed the anniversary of Elias’ death and still had to make it through his birthday in April. I assured her I’d make an appointment the first of June.

It was also pointed out that the strange low humming noise I was experiencing could in fact be caused by the high reading.

As we were checking out, Ceili Fey remarked about how swollen my hands were. I looked at them and got a bit panicked. They called the NP back out and she thought I was having a panic attack. They sat me in a room and gave me something to help.

I also agreed to start on blood pressure meds. Why the change of heart? Because I flashed back to a couple of days ago when I actually said to myself  – possibly out loud  – “I’m going to stroke out”. No reason for it. The thought just hit me.

I told the nurse that I think the universe was conspiring to make sure I started on meds today.

I know I probably need it – so says the evidence stacked up against me – but damn. I didn’t want this.


Lies, damned lies, and fact checking

Came across this lovely piece of shit garbage “information” on Facebook today.

National Pro-Life Alliance The numbers don't lie. Abortion is the leading cause of death in the United States every year.
National Pro-Life Alliance
The numbers don’t lie.
Abortion is the leading cause of death in the United States every year.

Actually, the numbers DO lie but the “National Pro-Life Alliance” counts wholly on you not bothering to double check their so-called facts.

I know I stink at math but even to me, those numbers sounded pretty bogus, so I did some quick Googling. So can you. Btw, I purposely avoided the incredibly biased pro-life sites. If I wanted bullshit figures, I’d go straight to them.

For the purpose of this experiment in just how capable of googling I am, all info courtesy of the CDC. Why? Because I feel they’re *slightly* less full of shit.

Ready? Here goes:

Abortions have been and continue to be tracked by the CDC since 1969 – you can even break them down by state via Excel spreadsheet, if you should so desire.

In 2010, 765,651 legal induced abortions were reported to CDC from 49 reporting areas. The abortion rate for 2010 was 14.6 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years and the abortion ratio was 228 abortions per 1,000 live births.

Compared with 2009, the total number and rate of reported abortions for 2010 decreased 3%. The abortion ratio was stable, changing only 0.4%. Additionally, from 2001 to 2010 the number, rate, and ratio of reported abortions decreased 9%, 10%, and 8%, respectively. Given the 3% decrease from 2009 to 2010 in the total number and rate of reported abortions, in combination with the 5% decrease that had occurred in the previous year, the overall decrease during the most recent 5-year period (2006–2010) was greater than the decrease during the previous 5-year period (2001–2005).

Women in their twenties accounted for the majority of abortions in 2010 and throughout the period of analysis. The majority of abortions in 2010 took place early in gestation:  91.9% of abortions were performed at ≤13 weeks’ gestation, and of the abortions performed at ≤13 weeks’ gestation, 71.7% were performed at ≤ 8 weeks’ gestation. In 2010, 17.7% of all abortions were medical abortions. Source: MMWR 2013;62(8).


You can see the info for yourself here: http://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/data_stats/Abortion.htm

Hmmm. That CDC number looks nothing like the one on the chart….

Accidental deaths yearly:

All unintentional injury deaths

Number of deaths: 126,438
Deaths per 100,000 population: 40.6
Cause of death rank: 5

Unintentional fall deaths

Number of deaths: 27,483
Deaths per 100,000 population: 8.8

Motor vehicle traffic deaths

Number of deaths: 33,783
Deaths per 100,000 population: 10.8

Unintentional poisoning deaths

Number of deaths: 36,280
Deaths per 100,000 population: 11.6

All easily available at the CDC: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/accidental-injury.htm

Our numbers are closer, but still a tiny bit skewed.

Cancer deaths:

Number of deaths: 576,691
Deaths per 100,000 population: 185.1
Cause of death rank: 2

Also found on the CDC: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/cancer.htm

Getting closer. We’re obviously rounding on the chart.

Heart disease info, again, according to the CDC.

About 600,000 people die of heart disease in the United States every year–that’s 1 in every 4 deaths.1

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. More than half of the deaths due to heart disease in 2009 were in men.1

Coronary heart disease is the most common type of heart disease, killing nearly 380,000 people annually.1

See http://www.cdc.gov/heartdisease/facts.htm

Finally! Our chart has one right!!

I know, I know, it’s all about the attention-grabbing numbers that they throw up on a colorful pie chart! But, really, you should be insulted that “they” – and that’s not just the intelligence-insulting National Pro-Life Alliance, but any intelligence-insulting organization that throws bullshit up on a pretty chart – are relying on you being too stupid, too lazy, or too gullible to actually check their work.

You should feel insulted.