For Those Who Are Mourning the Lives That Were Lost

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”

~Matthew 5:4

As I sat here trying to figure out what to write about today, there was only one thing that I could think of.  As you all know the town of Newtown, Connecticut was devastated on Friday after a gunman came into Sandy Hook Elementary School and went on a shooting spree, killing 27 people in total, 20 of which were children ranging in ages from 5 to 10 years old.  It was a tragedy like no other and one that no parent ever wants to have to live through.

I am deeply saddened for the families in Connecticut today.  A tragedy such as this one makes you want to take stock of what is truly important in life and makes you want to grab your children and hold them closer to you.  I know I held my daughter a little tighter on Friday night and have cherished, even more so than usual, all of the hugs and kisses that we love to shower each other with.

There’s not really much that can be said, as funerals for these lost lives begin today, nothing that sounds comforting enough.  I know that I am praying for those families today and I think to honor their memory everyone should make sure that they don’t take anything for granted.  We never know what will happen from day to day so cherish every single moment of every single day.  May God bless the souls that went on to Heaven on Friday, and may he give their families peace in knowing that they are with him now.

 

“But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”

~Matthew 19:14

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://write-2-be.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

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The Superficial World We Live In

“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” 

~Confucius 

Can you imagine living without money?  I mean without one penny to your name?  No roof over your head.  No food aside from what people willingly give you or you can find in the garbage.  I’m talking about back to the living off the land days where you’re picking berries and boiling dead animals for food (that is if no one gives you any).  Better yet can you imagine living this way and being completely happy about it?  

Well I came across a story on the internet about a 51 year old man named Daniel Suelo who claims that not only is he broke, but happily, deliberately, and blessedly broke.  I clicked on it because just the thought of it sounded completely insane to me but in reading it I can see the validity of his choice.   

Having said that, I can not say that I would make a conscious choice to just give up what little money I do have to my name and go roughing it in the wilderness somewhere (if you know me at all, you know I’m not the outdoor type—not even a little bit).  However, I understand his position.  

The world, especially in recent generations, is so overly consumed with things and what they can possess and acquire.  It’s so bad sometimes that you start to wonder just what lengths people would go to, and how many people they would walk over, just to get their hands on something incredibly superficial.  People concern themselves so much with the latest ipad (or whatever new piece of technology is out), or how many cars they have, or having the flashiest car, or the biggest home.  

But yet we have a huge problem with children in this country and others literally starving to death, schools that don’t have adequate materials to teach our children to the best of their abilities, teenage girls who think it’s cute and fun to have a baby at the ripe age of sixteen or seventeen (sometimes younger than that).  It makes me wonder where our priorities are and does this Daniel Suelo have the right idea (or at least the right intentions).  

I may not have some prestigious career (at least not until I make the NY Times Bestseller’s List) and I may not be raking in money hand over fist like a lot of people but I guess when I really think about it, my blessings are worth far more than material possessions.  I think there is really something to the saying that the more money that we have, the more problems we see because I think it makes people focus even more so on possessing things they don’t even need.  

Maybe we do need to get back to the basics and see the blessings in the simple things, the most treasured things that some people would die to have.  There are children in other countries who can’t even get an education and we take ours for granted.  There are families starving and homeless yet the majority of this country just focuses on how much bigger house they can get for their money, or how fancier their car can be, or eating the most expensive kinds of food, instead of being grateful that they even have a house and a car, and food to eat.  

Now I’m not in any way saying that we should just chuck it all and purposely live in the state of poverty because God only knows that I couldn’t go that simple.  However, maybe we should take a look at what it is we truly have and are blessed with before complaining about things that we don’t truly need.  Maybe the world would be a lot less superficial if we just remembered how good we had it even when we only had the basics.  Sometimes less really is more. 

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://write-2-be.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Making Investments in Our Future

“There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in.”

~Graham Greene 

I watched the Oscars last night and I thought about all of the awards shows that we as writers and artists’ watch throughout the years and all of the acceptance speeches that we hear.  It is extremely rare not to hear an actress, actor, writer, director, singer, songwriter, or visual artists’ (graphic or otherwise) thank their parents for allowing them to be who they are and for not only encouraging their gifts but for also enhancing it by being supportive of that talent.  

I started thinking about the children whose gifts and talents are not acknowledged, let alone encouraged by their parents.  All of the gifts and blessings for the world that are not being realized because there is no one there to tell them that it’s okay to dream and dream big.  I was one of those children.  

When I watch those awards shows I can’t help but to think of whether I could’ve been one of those artists accepting an award for their brilliant talents if only I had a mother that encouraged or enhanced my gifts, or at the very least, acknowledged that I had any.  I know that I’ve mentioned here before that my mother was (to put it in nice terms) not very nurturing.  She never really believed in me and to this day it still hurts.  

I do feel that when she heard me singing around the house and heard other people who didn’t have to placate me tell her that I was actually good at it, that she perhaps could have invested in some voice lessons, or piano lessons for me.  Maybe when I wrote the class poem for my eighth grade graduation and my teachers all told my her that she had a very gifted writer on her hands, she could have put me in writing workshops that they had for children (and they had them, I checked).  Or maybe when I sent a poem to a songwriting contest and received a letter saying that they wanted to turn my poem into a song, however, they needed to deal with my mother contractually (because I was still a minor), she could’ve done what she needed to do as my mother to make it into a reality.  She could have actually invested in my gifts when I was younger but she didn’t.  

While I know that I can not jet off back into time and change what never was, I am left to constantly wonder what could have been.  Most days I don’t dwell on it.  But on nights like last night when I see people accepting their awards and whose parents clearly believed in them enough for them to get where they are now, I get a little resentful (as much as I hate to admit that) towards my mother.  

But that is when I just turn that resentfulness into a persistent desire to make sure that I am different with my daughter.  I want to make sure that I encourage her creative talents, enhance her gifts by supporting and investing in them, and empower her to believe that she can do and be whatever it is that she dreams she can be.  I want her to know that I believe in her and that I know her future is worth the investment.    

If we as parents do not invest in our children’s future where are they supposed to get the idea that their future is worth investing in to begin with.  It starts with us and if we see brilliance in our children it is our job and our duty to help them develop and cultivate their gifts.  They are our future and we have to make investments, not just in the stock markets and the next big business venture (not that our own careers are not important as well), but we have to invest in them too because their future is worth it.  They are our future Grammy, Golden Globe, or even Oscar winners and we have to help them get there.  Don’t wait until tomorrow to make an investment in your child’s future, do it today!       

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Taking Care of You

Ms. L reminded me of something tonight; that you can’t take care of everyone else if you don’t first make time to take care of yourself.  I have a hard time doing that.  I had a conversation earlier today with someone about not knowing what to do with myself during the time that my daughter is with her father.  I mean I know how to make use of the time when she’s in school because after dropping her off and going to the gym everyone morning (which is probably the only thing that I really do to take care of me) I am only left with a small amount of time before having to get her from school.  But when she goes away to her dad’s house and spends the night I am left with all of this time and I don’t know what to do with it.  

I mean sure I write and do housework but I don’t really do anything that is solely just for the sake of having fun (or pampering myself).  It’s almost like I forgot how to be me.  I’m just a mom and a writer.  I don’t really know how to be anyone else.  It’s programmed in me and I suppose I have to search and find that something that is just for me, just for my benefit, so that I can feel like I’m being taken care of too (and if I have a little fun along the way that’s good too).  

For anyone out there is feels so caught up in what they do for a living and being someone’s parent, find a way to take care of you this year.  You deserve to feel pampered and you deserve to have fun (fun outside of the kids) too.  It’s time to take care of you so that you can be able to better take care of the ones you love around you.  Until tomorrow…Try putting yourself first every once and a while. 

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Lessons We Can Learn From Our Children

It’s easy for us as parents to get annoyed with children who just keep pestering you until they get their way, and to get frustrated with their complete disregard for danger or consequences.  Sometimes what can also get on our nerves is when children go from one activity to the next as if it is their money that they are wasting on that particular activity.  However, we as parents can learn a lot from our children and their sometimes annoying behavior.  

Children have such persistence and resilience within them.  Their fearlessness allows them to try a multitude of things without the thought of failure.  What we see as their indecisiveness and constant change of activities should be acknowledged as them trying to find what interests they are better suited for so that they can master what they are truly good at.  Children are really good teachers sometimes and perhaps we should take a few pages from their book.  

If we didn’t think so much about the failures that we might encounter, we may be more inclined to seek out more adventures and endeavors.  If we were as persistent as our children to get what it is that we want out of life, perhaps we might learn to always go after what it is that we want and to never settle for less then what we deserve.  

Just imagine what we could do in this world if we followed the words that we often tell our children; to always go after what you want and never let anything get in your way; to figure out what your purpose is and then be the best that you can be at it; and to never be so afraid to fail that you never try to begin with.  Until tomorrow…What lessons could you learn from your children? 

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

What We Take Away From Our Childhood

This is going to be short (I hope) but I felt that I needed to share this today.  I was talking to Ms. L. earlier today and we were talking about (in short) expectations and what we will and will not accept from people, or as far as standards, period.  I had an epiphany in the middle of the conversation and it was something that I had always known deep down inside but had never brought myself to say out loud where someone else would actually hear it.  Now I don’t want to get too far into detail because it’s a little too personal but it had to do with things that were carried over from my childhood.  

Parents we must watch what we say to our children, but more importantly, what we don’t say to them.  I hear and read stories about children being bullied in schools, young girls becoming promiscuous, or children just acting like they have no respect for any adult, and when you actually listen to what they have to say you realize that the shortcomings are sometimes within the parents.  In my conversation with Ms. L I remembered about all of the things that my mother said to me and mostly what she didn’t say to me.  Those words, and those lack of words still live deeply within me today and they have affected my choices and my decisions and sometimes the rough situations I found myself in were a result of what I wasn’t told and shown when I was younger.  

I know we teach our children to be independent and that the belief has to come from them that they are smart, and beautiful, and that they are worth more than the hand they are sometimes dealt, and that they don’t have to just settle for what seems to be okay when they could have better.  But children need to be told this, and they need to be told constantly because it stays with them.  How many times do you hear when someone tells you they are the way they are because that’s what they were taught and brought up to know and do.  Now when they are speaking of something good and respectable we congratulate their upbringing, but we forget that that answer applies to those that do things that are not respectable as well.  

The children out here being bullied by other, or worse, bullying others and being promiscuous and disrespectful are doing what they are taught, and what was instilled in them somewhere.  Either they aren’t being told that they deserve better or they aren’t being made to believe it.  Our childhood does stick with us into our adulthood and while you quite possibly should leave some childish things in the past, the things that are ingrained in you, they stick, whether we want them to or not.  That’s my thought for today and I hope that someone gets something out of this.  Until tomorrow…Let your children know that they are worth, and deserve the very best! 

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress