A Series of Random Thoughts: Conspiracy Theories, Facts, Depressing Thoughts

* I’m in a mood to ramble about some real life current events – something I don’t normally like to do because I lack the skill to properly express myself in a rational and intelligent way. But, here it is, take it for what it’s worth. My early Christmas Eve thoughts after reading the news headlines this morning. *

Too many shootings around the U.S. Or, rather, too many suddenly being brought to the front page of the news sites due to the Sandy Hook Elem. drama. This morning it was reported that firefighters, responding to a blaze, were opened fire upon – 4 wounded, 2 dead – before finally getting to the fire, which by that time had consumed three houses in New York.

The conspiracy side of my brain says this would be the perfect route for “terrorists” to take to disarm us. Ramp up the shootings across the nation to aide in the push to rid/control firearms, that way, when the average citizen is no longer packing the heat and able to defend themselves, they move in with larger forces and begin taking over.

The more disturbing theory cooked up by my brain says that there are just a bunch of idiots in the world. Specifically, there are those that think this type of gun violence is a means to an end – in other words, they don’t want to shoot anyone, but if people dying will push a bill through to take guns out of innocent folks hands, then so be it. They’ll risk themselves for the “greater good” of the world and take on the roll of a shooter just to get a point across. This may seem a bit more extreme than the idea of terrorists, but folks aren’t exactly firing on all cylinders these days, if you know what I mean.

In reality, I suppose I could consider the fact that, 1) our fine news outlets are going to bring us the most disturbing news that will depress and anger us. This is especially true if it pushes a bigger story or fuels the needs of their agenda. 2) There are disturbed, wicked individuals in our world that may come to the conclusion that this is what they are destined for. To take as many other people out before going out themselves.

Of course, there is a sicker possibility – the talk of folks wanting to “top” the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy. I understand that this wasn’t exactly an elementary school that someone walked in to, but the story of firefighters responding to a fire – the fire spreading due to gunfire, firefighters being wounded and killed while the fire rages out of control – I can see this as being a scene of someone trying to create an even larger drama than what we witnessed a couple of Fridays ago. I mean, some sicko is sitting around thinking, “Yeah, 20 kids were shot multiple times, point blank … a couple teachers … but there was no real property damage. What could I do? Make it bigger … set a real fire under the media – yeah, fire! Firemen rushing in to hose down a fire, but unable to do so because a maniac is slinging bullets their way. The fire grows, the fireman are in a panic, people are running and screaming … I’ll be famous!”

No matter the rationale behind these idiots, one thing is certain in my mind. If things were ran my way, I’d do everything in my power to

Firemen at work

try and take these guys alive. I would want them alive so that they could be put on public display – televised free for the world to see, son. Are you with me? And, for example, the parents and families of the Sandy Hook children – or even the families of these two slain firefighters, would be allowed to exact their brand of justice on these folks. If you want to make an example of someone like this, if you want to give the next one something to think about, then put these slimebags on display and let everyone see them tortured for their actions. I know the whole “eye for an eye” thing gets blown out of proportion, but in our pansy-assed society of not wanting to make anyone uncomfortable or have them face any strict discipline, I think something like this – while barbaric and cruel – would certainly make some folks think twice. For the sick and twisted minds, all they really get to see is the sensational stories the media brings them. The crying families, the distraught neighbors. But you throw the perpetrator into the public spotlight, alive and kicking and screaming while he/she  is sentenced to suffer the same fates as their victims, I guarantee you’ll reform a person or two.

I suppose we could ban the guns, the automatic assault weapons, semi-automatic, regular firearms that everyday citizens keep in their homes for protection. But all that would do is take away that “average citizens” method of defending their family and home. The gun argument is a messy one because no one wants to look at the broader issues. Yes, the mental health aspect, but also the fact that you can not stop a crazy/evil/unstable person from doing what they want to do. If someone wants to shoot up a school, then they will do it no matter what kind of laws are in place. If someone wants to buy fertilizer to make bombs and blow up a federal building, they will do it, no matter the restriction put on the purchase of that product. If someone wants to take a car and start mowing down pedestrians on a busy sidewalk, no one will stop them until dozens of people have lost their lives. Taking the guns out of the law-abiding citizens hands will do nothing to curb the violent members of our society from committing crimes and killing innocents.

There is no right solution. But if we started on people when they were young, quit pampering them and treating them like they are special, unique creatures that deserve everything the world has to offer – maybe then they would grow up and have realistic expectations. The world is about feeling all warm and special, it isn’t about no one never losing because we are all winners. It’s about getting out there, working for what you have and competing to succeed. We’re raising a nation full of wusses and when something isn’t right in their pampered little mind, they retaliate. But that’s just my opinion on one of the reasons people come to this point of violence. They snap because they were never taught to handle their feelings if they moved beyond a breaking point. You can’t just snap at the least little thing in a world as harsh as ours.

Hate these words or agree with them, I don’t care. I’m one person, my words carry no weight or power. Not to retreat to a fantasy world, but by golly, if a world ever needed hero’s or a special brand of justice to stop these horrific crimes from happening, we need one now.

When Was the Last Time You Felt Really, Truly Lonely?

This is an interesting blogging prompt. When was the last time you felt really, truly lonely? Well, it’s interesting for me, at any rate. You see, I have this good old friend that visits me every night. I like to call him Insomnia (hence, my screen name.) Insomnia and I sit and talk every night, but it isn’t the same as when I sit and have a conversation with someone else. Heck, even folks I’m really not that fond of are more entertaining and sometimes preferable to this guy.

Insomnia

So, really, when was the last time I felt lonely? For me, the answer that comes to mind is: every night as I sit in the dark alone, bathed in the glow of the computer monitor. It’s just me in my chair, typing on a keyboard, clicking a mouse button and listening to the sounds of a quiet, dark house on a quiet and dark street in a quiet and dark neighborhood. Me. Alone. Seriously.

It’s a feeling I get. It starts in the pit of my stomach and moves out in a radial pattern that slowly consumes my entire body. My head is the last to be covered, and I go kind of numb and the silence grows even quieter than normal. Pin drops would be cymbals crashing. A sickening feeling in my gut, an emptiness in my heart, a numb, tingling feeling in the rest of my body. Even though I’m not physically alone. I’m just the only one awake.

Every night that I sit alone at my table, or watching television, or laying in bed reading, or even just laying there in the dark staring at the ceiling, I feel utterly alone. And the odd thing is, it isn’t like I crave social interactions. There are times when all I want is to be alone. I can not stand groups larger than two or three. I do not like listening to others chatter on about things I have no interest in – and sometimes, even the things I am interested in.

But I’m not really answering the question for this post, am I? My brain wants to answer it, but instead my fingertips are skirting around the issue, jumping around it and avoiding the meat of the matter. I’m not sure if I can say exactly WHEN I feel lonely, considering there are time when, even in company of others, I feel lonely. Confusing? Doesn’t make sense? Yeah, I can see where it might sound a little wonky. We’ve come this far, though, I might as well see what else I’ve got to meander on down the road with. You can come if you want to.

There are two other people in the house with me, both asleep and lost in their own dreams. Worn out from their daily activities from mid-afternoon to the wee hours of the morning. They move about and exist while I am away at work, earning my keep. When I return, it’s in the A.M. My dog – I love my dog – greets me at the fence. I’ll pat his head and scratch his back, behind the ears, give him a few comforting words assuring that his master hadn’t abandoned him. My dog, the only soul awake and excited to see me as I pull into the drive, walk into the house and plop myself down for several hours and share a soda with that other guy I mentioned. Insomnia.

I do sleep. If I’m lucky, I’ll get at least 5 hours a night/morning/day. Usually asleep by 5 if I can manage it, no later than 6. As soon as 10AM rolls around, though, I’m back up and at ‘em. Life goes on, you know, and time waits for no man. Right now, as a matter of fact, my son is snoring softly from his bed. The Wife has drifted off on the couch while watching television. And I’m right here. We have to be up and off on a trip early this morning. I’ve already tried to lay down and get some rest, but it eludes me.

Maybe one day we will reach some kind of agreement. I can break off my relationship with You-Know-Who and all will be well with the world. Until then, I’m just an insomniac, alone in the dark and waiting for sleep to claim me for a few more hours of rest.

Good night.

Hurtful Comments & Lying Catching Up on a Friend

As I’ve said before, our son is a 3rd grade home schooler. My wife has always been a little anxious about being his teacher because she was always afraid she wasn’t teaching him properly. By that I mean, was she spending enough time on certain subjects, was she using the right materials, etc, etc. Well, this year we signed up for the K12 program. This is the first year (I believe) it has been offered in Tennessee, and it is a home school program supported and ran by the public school system. As part of this program, students from grades 3 to 8 must complete assessments. This helps the education system customize the areas where the individual students need to concentrate more of their attention and also provides the parents (in our case especially – well, my wife’s), with a bit of a roadmap as to how they’ve been doing in educating the child.

This was all toward the beginning of the year and we had not heard anything back from the teacher assigned to us or anyone else with the program. Wanting to know more, my wife called our son’s teacher yesterday to get the results. It turns out that my dear wife has been doing a fantastic job! The teacher reported that our son’s scores exceeded the average testing scores, in some cases as much as 20 points above average. She said we should have noticed that his courses had been adjusted to match that because he was on a higher level because of his test results.

My wife – being the proud mama – posted this on her Facebook page. Folks were commenting their congratulations and “liking” the status for Wife and Son. Then, my wife’s best friend commented. Her comment was:

“You know I am very proud of **** and you, but as someone that works in the school system, 10 hours a day 5 days a week, the kids at my school work very hard in all the subjects. And there are plenty of kids with advanced status. With that being said, way to go ****.”

A nice short comment. But knowing this person – who I might add is a pathological liar (no, really, I wouldn’t trust her to tell me the weather if I was sitting by a window because it probably wouldn’t be true) – my wife was a bit upset. She took the comment as a jab from her best friend, trying to diminish the fact that our son, based on the same standards as those in public schools and her friend’s classes, was excelling in all his subjects. And never mind the fact that this woman isn’t even a teacher, she’s an assistant who helps grade papers and watches the class room in the teachers absence, but she felt the need to comment on her students when all my wife was trying to do was be a proud mama and do a little bragging – which all mothers are entitled to.

Maybe the comment was just taken the wrong way, but when mixed with the congratulatory messages from other friends and family, it was sort of the black sheep comment in the room. And the fact that it came from someone who has had a negative outlook on home schooling to start with, there shouldn’t have been any real surprise. My wife, while hurt, felt that she had done something wrong in bragging about our boy. She tried to explain that she meant no harm, was just proud of her child. I, of course, threw in my two-cents because, honestly, I became fed up with this person long before. This morning, she posts a follow up and deletes her original comment. Still, though, she makes sure to bring up her other students and how they are just as well off. A completely unnecessary moment. If this is your best friend, just share in their moment of happiness and joy and move on. Don’t start pointing out all the faults in what they might be saying or excited about. That just makes you an ass.

Her last comment was via a text she sent my wife this morning. “Hey, girl. I hope I didn’t hurt your feelings. I don’t mean to diminish what you do but I felt that you were diminishing what I do in our schools every day by commenting on how great **** was doing. And as far as what your husband or friends think, I don’t care about them, I just didn’t want you to be mad.” So, you tell your best friend that her husbands opinion is of no concern to you. The man your best friend married and had children with and you don’t concern yourself with his thoughts or opinions on situations involving his wife and son. @#$%^ you, and I mean that in the nicest possible way. Really.

Myself – it didn’t really make me mad or upset me, but I did find it a little disturbing considering the woman’s behavior toward our son lately. It started around Christmas of last year when she came to see him and told him she had an “awesome” gift for him but she had forgot it. She would bring it the next time she came over. Well, that next time came but the gift never did. Again, she told him how great a gift she had gotten him and promised it the next time they got together. Nothing. This continued on ’til January, where she finally stopped mentioning it.

Then came our son’s birthday. She comes to the party, and after our son has opened up all his gifts, in front of everyone she proclaims, “Hey, buddy, I’ve got you something good! But it’s at home, I forgot to bring it. I’ll run it by her next week when I’m out, okay?” Our son isn’t all about the getting of gifts, he’s fine and happy if you just show up and everyone has a good time. There was absolutely no reason for her to even mention a gift. We make a point to tell everyone that they don’t even have to bring a gift, just show up and enjoy themselves.

So the birthday promise goes on for a good month. Our son, this time, is asking when she will bring his birthday gift over. Maybe he’s thinking about the Christmas gift that never came, I don’t know, but he’s curious this time. Finally, a month after she’s lead him on two or three times, she shows up to visit one afternoon. My son comes running out of his room, excited and asks, “Did you bring my birthday present?!” To which this grown woman who couldn’t even deliver on a Christmas present she had promised, replies: “**** I gave it to a kid at my school. He did good on a test and I gave it to him as a reward. Sorry, bud. But you got all kinds of stuff already, no biggie.”

Yeah … no biggie. Except now even an 8 year old child knows you to be a liar. We had to sit our son down that night because he was confused and a little upset, and explain that this woman has a condition. We went as far as to point out other times and events, toward him and my wife, that she hasn’t come through and simply made comments that weren’t true. We basically explained to an 8 year old that people lie to kids just like they lie to adults.

It goes on. Lie after lie after lie. Even about things that make no difference. This woman won concert tickets a year or two ago from a radio station. She bragged for two weeks about how these were front row seats and she was excited to go. Front row seats! FRONT ROW! Every day for 2 weeks that’s what we heard her talking about. Then at the last minute, she couldn’t go. I offered to buy them from her. She said $50 would cover it. Ok, no problem. I agreed. Oh, well, wait a minute, now maybe she was going to give them to her sister. Ok. No problem. Well, no if we still wanted them, $50 was good. Fine. Whatever. We go to pick up the tickets and she hesitates before handing them to my wife. “Well, I really thought these were front row tickets, but it turns out they’re balcony level seating.”

Why lie about concert tickets? They were still good seats, mind you, we had a blast, but why even bother with something like that?

Bah, I wash my hands of that foul woman. I can tolerate many things in this world, but the one thing I detest more than anything - ANYTHING – is a liar. I’d rather shake hands and share a meal with Charles Manson than sit at the same table and listen to a liar.

So, excuse my rant on this fine Friday, friends. I had to get that out of my system. Please, continue on your way and thanks for stopping in. I’ll see you around! :)

A Series of Random Thoughts, Part 2: Negativity & Consequences

Today is your lucky day. After typing out a super-long, confusing, much more jumbled than normal post, I finally scrapped the entire thing and decided to start over. So here we are. I hope that this one will be a more focused and less rambling discussion of something I have a strong opinion on. This something being the idea that we – by way of negative, or bad, behavior – create our own problems. Be it karma, a spiritual backlash, punishment from a higher power – whatever your beliefs in what I’m going to try and explain my view on, I believe it is what causes us the most trouble in life.

I believe that our negative actions and habits lead – subconsciously or otherwise – to the troubles we have in our every day lives. Karma. That old what goes ’round, comes ’round method of life. Good vibes, bad vibes, good run of bad luck method of mayhem. If we behave badly, engage in negative aspects of life, then it has been my observation and experience that negative outcomes follow soon after. Describing what I’m talking about is where I have the most trouble. Let me try and work out as clear an example as I can. Hang with me for a few moments and we’ll see if I can do it. This may get messy. If it does, you’ll never know it because I’ll just trash this one, too and try to start over.

Let me use a semi-made-up person that I will call Bob as an example.

Bob is a successful college professor. He teaches several classes, has a good job, makes good money. Bob is also married and has two wonderful children and quite a successful side business that is also his hobby. He has managed to find a way to turn that hobby into something other people are willing to pay for. He has it all! But … Bob is actually always running into bad luck. Nothing seems to go right. He has the money, the family support, the career backdrop, but Bob just can’t seem to win. It is always something. Car troubles, student troubles, family arguments, etc.

Bob has it all – money, family, job. He is every definition of the word winning. (I swear, that is the only time I will resort to using that god-awful and much overused term.) Always under stress from things turning bad, Bob usually escapes into the wonderful world of pornography. He’s always been a fan of the porn industry. Bob attends adult conventions, follows the “stars” on Twitter and Facebook, sends them private messages, watches their bodies of (ahem) work. He really supports the adult film industry.

In this example, I believe the here that Bob invests his valuable time in the world of pornography, he is sabotaging his personal life by setting himself up for failure in other areas. Pornography is – in my opinion – a negative point in our lives. Some may view it as a healthy outlet, some may view it as a protected form of entertainment, but I view it as destructive as going out an trashing someone’s car or robbing another person. Bob’s gut feeling knows this and he subconsciously makes mistakes due to the conflicting emotions inside him. Now because of his involvement with a “seedier” side of life, his personal life is affected. He spends more money than he should and is overdrawn. He talks down to his wife and his marriage is on rocky ground. He is busy browsing porn sites and watching videos so he doesn’t have time for his kids. His job is affected, his time is consumed, yet he doesn’t know what the problem is.

Personally, I’ve seen the same thing happen to friends, to myself and to co-workers. I’m not just basing this on a wild far-flung theory I dreamed up. I have come to believe that actions that bare negativity – be it pornography, deplorable treatment of others, gossiping incessantly and so-forth – lead to a reversal of karma that comes back and smacks us in our own face.

My own example: back in the day I use to be similar to Bob, minus the money and family part. I, too, was in on a seedier side of the internet with its seemingly unlimited access to explicit adult content. All during this time of my life, everything that could go wrong did. I had the worst luck of anyone you’d ever seen. Once I began to grow out of that phase, adjust my life accordingly and actually change my way of living for the better, things improved. The same goes for those around me that I’ve witnessed with the same experiences. Not necessarily with something as adult oriented as porn, mind you, but I hope you get my example.

I’m not saying this is a religious experience – stepping away from the “bad” to experience the “good.” But I do believe that living a calmer, cleaner lifestyle directly affects the attitude and overall experience we face each day. Behave positively and you’ll be rewarded with positive results. Simple stuff. Deal with bad things and bad things will return to you 10-fold. Folks can choose their own method of dealing with this, through the comfort of religion and prayer or well wishes and good vibes as the kids call it these days. Either way, I feel that we have the control to change things for the better based on the simplest of our actions. Something that may not seem harmful – googling the latest leaked photos of a celebrity flashing their bits – may subconsciously set us up for sabotage at a later point. I think it is the deeply buried, internal moral compass we are all designed with. Some people have turned this compass off and they are some of our worst offenders. Others have forgotten how to read it and some only bother to glance at it when they’ve hit rock bottom in the hopes of getting back on the right track before veering off again.

As a society, I have little faith in the human race. We are violent, self destructive and more concerned with gossiping than getting anything constructive done. As a result, we live in a world filled with negativity and that crap builds up thicker then the carbon emissions our government worries about. There is a strong moral decay in the world and it all starts with the way we treat ourselves and the lives we live and expands from there. We do the drugs – even the over the counter variety that we view as harmless. We eat the fast food and get fat. We delve into the seedier sides of pornography and claim that it’s art and protected under free speech and expression. We defend one religion and call for tolerance while ripping another apart and condemning those that worship it. We fight wars overseas for the same reason we fight with our coworkers at work – because we can’t keep out noses out of other peoples business.

We create our own strife – at home as well as globally and then blame everyone but ourselves for the results. I suppose I should have used something other than pornography as my main example in this rant, but it is the one I feel other internet users can associate with as it is so wide spread online. If we just live a clean lifestyle – free of the venom that advertisers, co-workers, so-called friends and the other negative influences in our lives – I believe a person can have a near perfect experience. Of course, it takes two to tango, they say, so that will also depend on those you choose to associate with. Thinning the herd on friends and limiting contact with negative co-workers that in truth are holding you back can be more difficult, but I think the end result will be worth any hurt feelings or burnt bridges you must endure.

Negative actions equal negative reactions. We have a moral compass inside – are born with it – it’s that gut feeling that tells you something is wrong. Unfortunately we’ve learned to turn it off or have lost track of it all together. Society is crumbling around us and we’re slaves to abhorrent behavior, yet we wonder why bad things happen to us. Karma may be a bitch, but we are her master and control when she comes around.

A Series of Random Thoughts, Part 1: Our Children Can’t Cope

Another article was plastered on MSN’s front page this morning when I logged in. Another kid killed himself because of bullying. This particular kid had even changed schools to get away from the bullying but then it started again at his new school. The bullying, according to the article, was based on the boy being very smart, and also being short in stature.  At one point, bullies even took to throwing stones and pipes while chasing him and shouting names. So, as a final answer, the boy hung himself in the family’s apartment.

Now, I am not making light of this or any other suicide based on bullying. In fact, while any comments I am about to make may come off as cold or uncaring, it isn’t directed toward the kids – or even adults – who have “had enough” and taken their own lives. But I suppose the following view point comes from someone who has just had enough of society in general and the way we have fell into an “accepting” and “gentle” nature as human beings, ignoring our problems and trying to teach each person that they are an individual and deserve all the same rights and respect as everyone else.

Well, now that didn’t sound right either, did it? Let me see, how to explain myself. Let me try breaking it down a little bit more.

I’m not sure exactly when it began, but I know it was after the 90′s (mid-90′s at any rate) when we started deciding to shelter our children. Well, I take that back, too. The schools and society decided to start sheltering our children. Many parents – some like myself that were raised in a bit tougher manner, complete with spankings, groundings, no electronics to have taken away – continued on their own path. We were already set in our ways. But then came this new generation of parents. This new generation doesn’t believe in spanking or grounding. They want to talk about a problem until it vanishes – or else ignore it and pretend it never happened. If there is a temper tantrum, they try to appease their child, usually throwing their hands up at onlookers and laughing, saying, “Oh, he/she’s so hard headed, I just don’t know what to do.” (HINT: jerk them up, take down their pants and wear the rear end out).

So this new generation of parent came in behind us. They were soft, gentle, didn’t know how or just didn’t want to discipline their children. Their children were unique, special, individual snow flakes unlike any other. They weren’t disciplined, they were psychoanalyzed and given medication to calm them down so parents didn’t have to deal with them. (No, I’m not saying conditions such as ADHD and such do not exist, I’m just saying that there sure are a lot of cases these days considering parents don’t seem to know how to make their children mind.)  Soon, school were following right in behind them. They had also decided that we needed to raise a kinder, gentler society. But then again, schools have always had the wrong idea.

In school, you had to conform to what they wanted society to be like. If you had a brownie, you couldn’t eat it unless everyone else had a brownie, too. If you had one of the super-sized box of crayons, they would confiscate it because it might make the other kids feel inadequate because they only had a 12-count box of crayons. We didn’t want to make anyone feel u n c o m f o r t a b l e. But the one thing I would give schools credit for “back in my day” was the fact that they would discipline unruly children. Paddlings! Archaic methods of punishment, maybe, but I’ve seen many a peer come back into a classroom, face red, tears streaming down their face and the threat of sending a letter home to their parents.

Did you know that teachers are not allowed to spank children anymore unless they have a signed consent form from the parents at the beginning of the school year?

At some point, we decided to take all punishment out of the school system. I suppose they still give in school suspension and even expel students if it is severe enough. But really, in school suspension would be like a vacation to me. Taken out of the general public, put in a special class room where I could be alone and do my work and get the day over with? YES PLEASE! And I can see why punishment has nearly been eliminated in schools – it’s because we, as Americans, think it is our God Given Right to sue over everything. Schools are afraid to even brush shoulders with a student in the hallway because the kid might tell their parent the teacher dislocated their shoulder and all hell would break loose.

So, we have weak parents that don’t want to discipline their children. Schools are not allowed to “punish” students anymore for fear of being sued. Both of these have led to the ultimate point here (finally) in that no one cares or wants to be involved with the children anymore, therefore letting them run rampant like a subsection of society with their own governing rules and lives. “Let’s not interfere, we might have to pretend we care.”

I know, that is a broad statement. There are actually parents and teachers out there who do care – but I can say, without a doubt, that there are just as many – if not more – that couldn’t care less.

So, the parents can’t be bothered. The teachers don’t care or are scared to act. The kids run rampant or try to fit in.

BAM … full circle, baby. We’re back around to where I started this blog post at. Now let’s see if I can tie the ends together the way I have it in my head.

Because of our (society) inaction in raising our kids anymore, the young ‘uns are unprepared to cope with reality. There are going to be bullies, there are going to be bad days, there are going to be heartbreaks and tears and pains. Life is not fair, I don’t care if you are in the 1% or the 99%. Make a millions dollars a year or barely break 20k a year. Life is going to let you down, but what you have to do is hang in there for the times it’s going to lift you up, too. But here we are in 2012, in a generation of fragile little caterpillars that aren’t even ready to transform into big old butterflies, and they’re killing themselves off left and right. They can’t handle it. They can’t hack it. It’s too much pressure in their little pre-teen and teenage lives.

Really? Let me say this: boys, girls, gather around Uncle J for a moment. I want to share something with you. Read the next paragraph closely and try to understand what I’m saying to you because, honestly, I know you’re cool enough to have gotten this far in my rambling here. I’m even going to bold it so you know it is important and comes straight from the heart, okay?

It get’s better. You are young, going to school, learning, growing, experiencing dozens of new emotions and physical changes inside and outside your body. Your mind is expanding at a rate you probably can’t comprehend, sucking up everything you see, touch, hear, taste. You’re growing. Do you know what that means? Growing? It means you aren’t done yet. You’re still baking in the oven of life, my friend, and THAT means you haven’t even begun to live yet. 

I’m sure all this teenage and pre-teen drama is exciting and heartbreaking and all, but you need to buck up and realize that that isn’t all there is. 98% of what you think you know and what you believe you will do when you are “grown” is B.S. You’ll never do even half of it, mostly likely because life has other plans for you. That girlfriend or boyfriend probably won’t be with you past high school. Your friends will change and/or you’ll lose contact if your bonds aren’t strong enough. You will realize just how small a phase your teenage life was.

Those bullies will grow up to enter the real world and have bullies of their own. Life will his you all equally, and those high school days will be washed away into the distant corners of your memory. All you have to do … all I’m asking you to do … is hang on! Hang in there and pull through. It’s a measly 12 years (and not even a constant 12 years, depending on where you live. Not every school system has year-round school). Don’t kill yourself, don’t kill other people! Just hang in there! PLEASE!! Otherwise, you’ve proven me right and our future is doomed because we can’t even raise a generation ready to step out into the world. Because let me add these last 2-cents: if you think high school is the only place in your life that you will meet bullies or people abusing power, then you are mistaken. Use your young years to learn how to really and truly cope with them, don’t give in and let them take you to a dark place. 

Now, I realize there are going to be arguments to this post. Things like, “Oh, bullies these days are vicious. They won’t back down. They beat, verbally abuse, throw things, harass, spread horrible gossip, etc, etc, etc.”

Well, you know what? You just described every place I’ve ever worked. Graduating high school isn’t going to get these kids away from bullies. It will just introduce them to a whole new set of bullies with brand new rules on how they can or can’t be dealt with. And if they can’t deal with them, I’m ready to blame us – all of us – for not preparing out kids better. Especially the parents of my generation. We grew up learning this internet thing from the beginning. We are part of the “Social,” and we are responsible for monitoring our children as they grow and learn and join us in this online world. But more importantly, we’re responsible for teaching them respect, morales and how to stand their ground when the time comes. We, as parents, must invest the time in our young to instill in them – as best we can – the values that will – hopefully – keep them alive and keep a rope off their neck or a gun out of their hand.

It’s a dice roll. Sometimes your numbers will come up, sometimes you’re gonna lose the bet. But at least you will have tried. And if you are invested in your kid, if you know their mannerisms and can/should be able to spot when something is wrong, then you will probably be able to prevent things like this from happening. And this whole idea that they need their space and privacy and we shouldn’t discipline them because it will make them horrible people? What the hell is wrong with you?! If you young son or daughter has a Facebook page, Twitter account or writes in a blog, then you need to know about it. You need to educate yourself so that you know where and how to look for these things. Passwords shouldn’t be secret, nor should anything a child writes while living under your roof. You aren’t being nosey, you’re being a parent, and that’s what our youth needs more than anything.

So, kids: it gets better. Roll with it. I know life is tough, I was bullied. In fact, one of my bullies – the worst one – even had a job at my first place of employment. So when I graduated high school, he was still there! But he was a punk, a thug and eventually lost his job. For all I know, he is probably in jail now. It’s going to be rough, but high school is a minor part of your life. hang in there and then leave it in your dust if that’s how you feel when it’s all over.

Parents: don’t assume your kids are fine. Don’t think you are hurting them if you discipline them or pry into their lives. That’s what they need. They’re learning and growing and don’t know how to handle everything that comes their way at this age. They’re a garden that needs pruning, tilling, and all that gardeny stuff. Get your hands in there and get dirty with them.

And readers: if you’ve made it this far, I hope I didn’t offend too much. I know my writing is all over the place, but that’s how I think. My fingers just try to keep up. Thank you for taking the time to read and please feel free to comment below.