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Care-givers, I hear you!

23 May

Families are full of quicksand, especially as the children grow up, marry and have families of their own. They all develop in different ways. What is important to one branch means nothing to another branch. They may be in direct conflict. There may be a sense of closeness with one or the other group and an impossible distance with another.

Conflict can erupt when the aging parents or remaining parent become truly old and no longer able to care for themselves. In most cases, it is the mother who outlives the father and ambles into old age, illness or dementia on her own. Then it becomes apparent which of the siblings is a caregiver and which ones are not. It seems that typically one child is local and others far away. But of course, this varies.

In nearly all families with more than one child, there is one local and one far distant. The one who “flies in” is generally full of ideas about what the local sibling should be doing. Or worse they fuss about what has already been done. They complain and suggest and disrupt the routine and then, they fly away. It may be many months before they repeat the pattern.

In the meantime, the local sibling may have moved nearby or into the house with the mother. This is because it is the only way the mother can remain there in comfort and safety. Some caregiver children do it all by themselves. Some have part-time helpers. Others need to be supervisors for the 24/7 caregivers and other help. Some parents live in assisted living, some in their own apartments or houses. Others need help taking care of a large property in the way it needs to be taken care of.

That sibling who is nearest or living with the parent may feel slightly or not so slightly irritated by circumstances. The fact is that the far sibling sometimes expects compliance and gives no real appreciation to the one whose life is completely given up to caregiving. The away sibling may exhibit behavior indicating contempt for the one who is there all the time. Believing them beneath consideration, or deserving scorn. This speaks a great deal about their character.

caregiving
Caregiving

People do not respond well to being treated that way. Thankfully most people are very supportive and value the contribution of the stay at home sibling. It is certainly nice to be appreciated and those who give up their lives to care for a parent are actually being very heroic even if they can’t see it themselves. Not everyone could or would do it. It is a strange existence. And in the best of worlds, all the siblings understand this and help each other out.

Copyright©. 2019 Bonnie B. Matheson

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Meditations

14 May

I was at an elegant dinner party recently where I met an interesting young man named Devron Johnson.  He spoke with such good sense about the world today, we have continued our discourse.

He emailed me about his writing, asking for suggestions for staying focused (Haha!!! I am not focused most of the time, but I have learned some tricks.)

“I have been studying the Philosophy of Stoicism and the teachings of Marcus Aurelius since I was in middle school…Maybe this is why I tend to see things without too much emotion and clouded judgement.” He said.

Marcus Aurelius, I should have known! Devron is an intellectual. He has an open mind, it is splendid to see such in a young black man of the 2000s.

(Especially in the era of Black Lives Matter, because those people do not appear to read anything except violent, angry material. What interests them are attacks against white people who really are not nearly as prejudiced as themselves.)

The Meditations are marvelous. Perhaps it would be helpful to young people if some schools or parents or police or some form of authority, tried to forbid kids to read about the Stoics. Certainly, Meditations is seditious information because by using it for instruction a man can control himself and therefore he can control others (especially if they have not read it). Perhaps if it were forbidden they would flock to read it and learn some of the greatest lessons ever taught.

Sigh.

Not going to happen, but I am impressed that he read Marcus Aurelius in middle school.  He must have had a mentor or a really good teacher or divine help with his reading. (I am only partly kidding about the Divine help.)
Here is a link to his blog: https://knwhre.wixsite.com/mysite
“As for the not playing victim. Being a victim or playing victim will never help or improve anybody or any situation. I think that is the problem for a lot of millennials (my generation), and ethnicities (specifically Black people) who were once oppressed. Yes there is still racism, sexism, classicism, etc. However, there has been a lot of improvement and it should not be used as a crutch today. “ he added.

I agree with everything he said about victimhood.  Not useful.  And anyone who sees themselves as a victim gives power to the thing or entity by whom they feel victimized.

It is NOT the same thing but there is still some discrimination against women. I have been privileged my entire life and yet even I have experienced it.

And then, of course, there was the sexual harassment which we all grew up with in my time. It was not even remarked upon.  It was just ‘the way it was’.  But most women had their ways of combating it.  Most women were not as downtrodden as young women today appear to believe we were. 

Women stuck together.  Women basically controlled the family, even though the man might bring home the money.  Women raised their sons and daughters and a lot of men practically worshipped their mothers.  Women did OK for the most part.  

It is only NOW when they are educated and independent that they seem to feel like such victims. They have become whining snowflakes. It is unbecoming, to our sex. I have absolutely NO patience with it.  Women are NOT second class citizens. They never were even before we had the vote.  We had our ways.  We have always been able to run circles around men. We think differently. It is a gift or perhaps it is evolution. We have evolved for survival’s sake to know how to protect ourselves and generally get our way.

Copyright©. 2019 Bonnie B. Matheson

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Hypocrisy

9 Apr

Good words.

Sadly this country seems to have lost it’s mind. We are prisoners of our own ridiculous new rules. People seem to have forgotten common sense completely. Herd mentality and venal accusations against anyone on the other side of an argument fills the news.

That teenager who stood his ground while confronted by a native American who was drumming in his face is a good example. The press completely lied about the incident. They showed clips meant to disturb people and stir up anti- white behavior.

Actually the News has become the new KKK. They are burning crosses but not in people’s yards. They are doing it on National TV.

I just watched a clip on Candice Owens in a hearing with Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) where he played part of a clip of her words without bothering to find out the rest. Everyone is trying to smear everyone else. What good does that do? Gas-lighting constantly and then denying it, is the norm now.

The democrats are posting the abbreviated clip and saying that Lieu obliterated her, while the Republicans have posted the entire clip and boast that Candice Owen obliterated Representative Lieu. Both are right depending on which clip they watched.

It is really hard to have a pleasant discussion with anyone who is on a different side because they say you are a terrible person. At least that is what they say to me. They call me a racist, and elitist, and anti-gay, homophobic, anti-Islamic, anti-vaccine, anti-rabies, you name it. Think of something bad and that is what they will call me.


But I am a rather peaceful grandmother, who writes for a living. I live with my mother who, as most of you know is 101 years old. I am not a bad person. I don’t wish anyone ill. There is no group that I dislike especially. And certainly not any race or religion or sexual orientation that offends me just by being. I have friends in all those groups and others that I do not care for in the same groups. That is human. Normal. Get over it.

Some people are totally anti-woman. So what? They are outnumbered and the law supports women, not misogynists. But it seems a real waste of time to confront them. Everything is open to me as a woman. Why should I complain about sexism? Who cares? I am not a victim. I just go out and do what I wish to do.

There is no point in condemning a whole group. Individually we are all just humans, trying to get along. I learned years ago that keeping feelings of resentment and anger against another person, poisons the one who is holding onto evil feelings. It surprises me when I run into someone, like I did today who says, ” I will NEVER forget. I will Never forgive.”

I liked this woman immediately and I wanted to tell her the truth about what her attitude would end up doing to her. But I barely hinted at it. She must discover this for herself. As long as she is angry she will give power AWAY and she will give it TO THE VERY PEOPLE with whom she is angry.

Holding a grudge, holding resentment, holding anger are all like holding hot coals. Eventually you will burn yourself, if you refuse to let them go.

Let’s let go.

Today I read a wonderful post about Joe Biden.https://www.richmond.com/opinion/their-opinion/page-evans-column-hugging-makes-joe-biden-who-he-is/article_a1f16262-43b3-5a3d-957f-47dfa97e9d27.amp.html I am not a fan of Joe Biden. But the article was written by someone who is not only a fan, but a personal friend. Page Evans wrote this article for the Richmond Times Dispatch. She exposed the silliness of all these accusations against a man who is completely innocent of any wrong doing. He got caught up in the “Me, too” movements complete paranoia and fascism. Joe Biden is not a pedophile or a womanizer. And I feel sorry for him for what the Republicans are putting him through. They are mad because of what happened to poor Judge Kavanaugh. That was so embarrassing to the Left. They still have not figured that out. Good Heavens! A boy teenager. A girl, (maybe) and a possible memory. It is not enough to knock someone out of a job.

The point is, that everyone has their own take on a lot of these things. Some people will side with a Native American over a white boy, just because. Just like in the South, it was once the case that white people sided with the white boy. Times change. And what is OK changes with the times. There are some in my cohort who will never be reconstructed. You will just have wait for us to die off before all opposition ceases. I hope that is not too soon, because much of what they think is needed for balance.

Copyright©. 2019 Bonnie B. Matheson

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