Ladyrebecca's Musings and Ramblings

The Increasingly Political Thoughts of Rebecca (Becky) Walker

Oh the things they say… December 22, 2009

Filed under: Anecdotal,marriage,military,parenting — Addicted to Yarn @ 9:37 pm
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This evening, Jael and Israel were talking in the other room while I cooked supper. Israel came back into the kitchen, laughing his head off.

“What?” I asked.

Israel stifled his laughter before telling me of their exchange.

Israel: Jael, do you know that I’m going to be leaving on a deployment in a few weeks and that I’ll be gone for six months?

Jael: WHAT? Does Mom know?

Israel: Yeah, Mom knows.

Jael: Good because I was like, “I’ve just GOT to tell her.”

Later this evening, I said to Jael that I’d heard she was concerned about me not knowing Dad was leaving and she said, “I didn’t want you to just ask one day, ‘Hey, why isn’t Dad here anymore?'”

Lots of family hugs this evening as the reality of Israel’s departure kind of hit us. While I am really excited to see my family during his time away, I’m really bummed about not getting to see my best friend, my lover, my daughter’s daddy, my confidant, my skeptical anchor, my favorite person in the WHOLE WIDE world, or my bed warmer for six months. 😦

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Iowa, here we come!! August 7, 2008

Filed under: Anecdotal — Addicted to Yarn @ 2:14 pm
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Tomorrow morning, bright and early, we are hitting the road. We are driving to Kansas City, Missouri tomorrow to spend the night at a friend’s house. We will head to my parents Saturday and spend three days with them. Then we head to Israel’s folks, stopping in Des Moines for lunch with some friends. We will spend four days with them but will be spending considerable time out of the house, one day with my friend, Ellen, an evening with Eric and Tiff, a morning with Ben and Heather, and an afternoon with Tash. Israel’s sisters will be there, one with her two children but not her husband due to problems with the buyer for their condominium, and one with her husband, who we’ve not really gotten to know. We met him a day before their wedding and haven’t seen them since the wedding. We will spend an evening in Cedar Rapids with friends (hopefully, though we’ve not made contact recently so I’m not sure what the status is on that get-together). Then we are headed to Kansas City for about three days of doing nothing with our good friend Dianna. Then we head back south, which will require all the will power we posses.

Upon returning to Biloxi, we will begin to out process as we are scheduled to leave for Germany on the 25th of September. YAY!! It’s all coming together so quickly. We’ve known since Christmas that we were going to Germany but it was so far away. For so long, it’s been months and months away, and now it’s six weeks away. When we get back, we will have 32 days before we fly away. ACK!! and WEE!!!

I don’t know which I feel stronger…no, I do. I am WAY more excited than nervous. I know this sounds dumb but knowing that we’ve an empty credit card makes this so much less scary and so much more an adventure. Anyway, I will update with pictures (hopefully) when we return or if I get bored (he he) while traveling.

 

Grandma and Grandpa April 3, 2008

Grandpa and Grandma

I never really knew my grandpa Roger*. He left my grandma Ellen* when my mom was about eight. He lived with another woman Fran*, raising their family. When my mom was about 14, Roger and Ellen were actually divorced. At that time everyone, except Roger kids with Fran, who didn’t know their parents weren’t married, thought he would now marry Fran. Instead he left her for another woman. I don’t remember ever meeting him until he was in the hospital dying of liver failure from alcohol abuse.

Not a great father figure. But, the I learned about his mom, Beatrice*. Whom I’d met once when my sister was graduating high school, when I was about 15. She died a couple of weeks ago, surprising me, since I had forgotten she was alive. I know that sounds horrible, but she had isolated herself from her family completely. She had kicked her daughter, Jane*, out of the house some thirty years ago and hadn’t spoken to her since. Beatrice didn’t even tell her when her brother died. My grandfather, Roger, started sleeping on park benches when he was around 10. So I’m thinking he didn’t have the greatest example of loving parents either.

I was talking to Israel this morning about some of the conversations he has or overhears at work. One of the conversations that he listened to yesterday but refrained from joining was about how tough these guys were because their parents were such bad-asses. One guy bragged that his mom didn’t have to spank them or slap them if they back talked. She would just throw whatever was nearby at their head. Book, full cup of coffee, shoe, whatever. Pitch it at their head.

Another time, when speaking about raising their own children, someone said, “Yeah, you got to beat her ass,” in reference to a daughter. Israel said, “No, we don’t beat our daughter. We spank her. We don’t spank her when we’re angry.” To which this person replied, “You gotta spank her when you’re mad. If you wait until you cool off, you won’t hit her hard enough. You gotta lay into her ass.”

Seriously.

That’s really what was said. “You gotta spank (or beat) when you are angry or you won’t hit hard enough.”

I don’t think people should be allowed to hit their children. I think my husband and I are better than most people (I really do. I’m sorry. We are thinking and they are not. We are learning new things and they are watching Survivor. We are trying to make our world a better place and they are buying new full size SUV’s and complaining about gas prices. Which of us would you rather have around?) and I think we spank correctly. As a punishment and never as a behavior modifier. We don’t spank to make her stop a behavior. We spank her as a consequence to behavior and hope that she will make the right decision to forgo the negative consequence and choose the right behavior. However, I am willing to give that up and find other forms of negative consequences in order to protect every other child out their from their abusive parents.

Because that’s what throwing things at your child’s head is. It’s abuse. I’m not even sorry for saying that. If your parents ever threw something at you in anger, you’ve been abused. If you’ve ever thrown something at your child in anger, you’ve abused. Simple. (I’m not talking a rolled up sock thrown in jest. I’m talking about hard, heavy things that should not be thrown at children. Use some common sense. If it would hurt you if it were thrown at your, it will hurt your child. Duh.)

So, I don’t think Straus’s study as reported in USA Today, is nearly as out of whack as I thought it was when I blogged about it a while back. I now think that since most people who spank are also the kind of people who throw things at their kids, most people who are spanked are going to have weird problems as adults. And the phrase “lay into her ass” has certain sexual overtones that are altogether creepy. So, while I still think USA Today did a shoddy job of reporting and that Straus should not have lumped masochism with risky sexual behavior nor should he have used so small of studies of the high schoolers, I’m not as out right opposed to his findings as I was originally. As I meet more and more people and get to know them and have these conversations with them, I become less and less comfortable with other people being allowed to corporally discipline their children.

Yes, I want special rights for me and my friends. But I am willing to give those up for the well being of ever potentially abused child out there. I’m creative. I can find other ways to discipline and train up my child and any future children we might have. But hundreds of thousands of kids out there won’t get a choice about whether or not they are routinely abused by those who are supposed to be taking care of them and protecting them.

*names have been changed. I’m fine with my name being plastered all over the internet but I don’t know about everyone else.