Tuesday, December 18, 2012

As Smart As She Is, Sarah Doesn't Get It

Take the Liza Long ("I am Adam Lanza's Mother" blog post) and Sarah Kendzior ("Want the Truth Behind Adam Lanza's Mother?" blog post)...

Liza poured her heart out about her mentally disturbed son, and Sarah commented negatively on the posting, decrying the privacy breaches of a minor, as well as scrutinizing other questionable posts in Liza's blog.

It's spats like these that point to personality differences, not necessarily issue discrepancies.  

You see, Sarah is a logical, probably left-brained thinker, having recently obtained a PhD in anthropology.  Most of what she's published has been scholarly dissertations and articles.

Liza is a creative type, probably right-brained thinker, who blogs mostly and uses imagery and metaphor with ease.

These two women could easily write essays on the exact same subject and come up with vastly different pieces.

When Sarah criticizes Liza for writing about walking up the mountain with her son and evoking the Abraham and Issac story, one can immediately see that Sarah is taking Liza's writing as more factual fantasy than metaphor.  I'm pretty sure Liza does not want a knife in her hand, neither does she desire God to call her to kill her son.  Creative writers use imagery to convey thoughts, ideas and feelings.  Sometimes these feelings are distasteful to others, but they are feelings all the same.

As a creative writer myself, I understand that we often take poetic license to express ourselves.  And, when one is driven to the breaking point, then sometimes these pictures written in words on a blog can be disturbing.  Most especially so to a logical thinker, who doesn't possess the "grain of salt" necessary to understand that the piece is not written by a madwoman, but rather by someone who would have written mythical stories in the days of old.

If you've ever had a tween or teenager in the house, and multiple children sparring with each other, then you as a parent can empathize with much of what Liza writes.  She pens, "I quit!  Let the state take care of you and your compulsive inability to stop poking people."

Sounds like a lot of moms I know, including me.

There isn't a week that goes by in my homeschooling madness and stay-at-home horrendous housekeeping that I don't just want to throw all the textbooks and crafts away and drive them to the public schools nearby.  "I quit!  Let the public educators teach you and your inability to stop poking each other!"

Okay, Logical Brained peeps, what do you think of that?  

Links to their Blogs:

Joint Statement from Both: http://sarahkendzior.com/2012/12/17/a-joint-statement-from-sarah-and-liza/

Liza: http://anarchistsoccermom.blogspot.com/?m=1

Sarah:  http://sarahkendzior.com/

Monday, December 17, 2012

Out of the Mouths of Babes...

A boarding school chum of mine is a school librarian, and a first grader hunted her down today...this is what transpired...

I was at my desk in the hallway (Yes, we have a Hallbrary not a Library) and a first grade student walked by and stopped to share the following:

Student: “Mrs. Cimmino, I was looking for you”

Me: “Here I am”

Student: “Did you hear about the kids that were hurt at their school?”

Me: “Yes, I did”

Student: “Well, I was thinking the other kids must be really sad and when you read that Amelia Bedelia book to us it was really funny and made us laugh so maybe you could go read the book to them and it might make them laugh and forget they are sad”.

Me: “I think that is a wonderful idea but the school is far away.”

Student: “Maybe you could send them the book. Could you send them the book?”.

Me: “I tell you what, I will send them the book and I will tell them that it is from our students to theirs.”

Student.”Will you do it today?’.

Me: “I will do it today.”

Student: “Cool”

And he walked away smiling.

And suddenly I felt better.

See the original post at:

Friday, December 14, 2012

Newtown, CT Shootings

My heart aches for those affected by this senseless act of violence. 

I pray for those parents who mourn their children tonight.

I can't imagine saying to my precious children as I dropped them off at school, "See you tonight!"  And, then never seeing them again.

God bless and comfort those who grieve tonight.  God bless those who lives are shattered.

God be with them, with the caregivers, the first responders, and with us all.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Loving the Neighbor Whose Dog Poops In Your Yard

It's funny.  It's easy to be resentful, greedy or envious and we can stay our same, wonderful selves when we justify it.

  • I can't be forgive her, you don't know what she did to me.
  • I can't love him, he doesn't treat you like he does me.
  • I can't pray for her, she has more than I do.
  • I can't be honest and repay the store, it was their fault they didn't charge me enough.
  • I can't give to them, they believe and live lies.

We can always justify incorrect actions on our part when something doesn't sit right with us about another human.  It's convenient to withhold grace and love when people don't act or live the way we think they should.

But God doesn't give us an "out."  He demands we offer forgiveness and grace in every situation, with every person.  He doesn't say, well, not if you got your feelings hurt.  No, you must love your neighbor, even when his dog poops in your yard.

Yes, it's hard to pray for someone we believe is being selfish.  Yes, it's hard to love someone who steals from us.  Yes, it's hard to give when we feel depleted.  Yet, we must.

(Now, of course, we all know that boundaries must be set up with dangerous people, and certain people cannot be in our lives--I would never let a sexual predator near my family--and we remember that forgiveness does not mean forgetting, and that it benefits the forgiver not the one forgiven.  All that has been talked about ad nauseum, so no need to rehash it here.  I mention only to keep perspective.)

All this difficult toil is necessary for our own well-being.  We don't have to put ourselves into unnecessarily difficult situations, but we do have to offer our best to everyone.  That's what differentiates us from those who would rather wallow in the misery of selfishness, greed and anger.  Shun these things and peace can be found.  Pray for those who are astray, and happiness can be achieved.  Love those that hate, and find contentment.

I want to find reasons why I can't be generous or loving.  I want to lash out at those who persecute me.  I want to find fault with others' boasts and diminish them.  I want to hate my neighbor that allows his dog to poop in my yard.  That's my flesh, desiring the hatred and self-elevation that brings a rush of adrenaline and excitement--momentary satisfaction but with long-term misery.

God knows the best for us is a positive attitude and a positive view of others.  That's why He implores us time and again to love others as ourselves.  We mask our own failings when we acknowledge the faults of others.  Something about a speck and a plank, I believe?  It's not for us to judge, but for God.  He'll take care of what needs to be done, we just need to keep on living well regardless.  

Because, let's face it, we are sinners and other people are sinners.  Only one perfect man walked the earth and he beat death.  People will fail us.  People will frustrate us.  People will drive us bonkers.  But, love them, we will.  (Too Yoda-esque?)

God instructs us to love, to forgive, to offer up prayers for others not based on our own ideas of necessity or entitlement, but on God's.

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.  
~Ephesians 4:29-32