Monday, April 17, 2017

New Blog Site

Thank you for continuing to read this blog. I am now blogging on my website:

Have a lovely day...

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Humbled Runner

A few days ago, I was brought down to earth, fell off my high horse, and ate Mr. Stanley’s dust. Yep. I was hummmmm-b-led… majorly, humbled.

It all started at dinner. All great ideas involve food. We were having a grand ‘ol time eating the love-filled meal I had cooked for us. Cafe Stanley’s "Carne con Chile and Beans" (I’ll share the recipe with you on my almost complete website) were extra delicious because they were made with my secret ingredient-extra love. Really, food tastes so much better when adding extra dashes of love. That day, my magic wand was swirling and swirling.

Anyway, my son was telling me about how his dad (a.k.a, my husband) had outrun the fastest runner on his baseball team at practice. This got us chatting about sprinting and racing, and well, I’m ultra competitive in non-running sports, so this topic was somewhat up my alley.

Running is for mind and body health ( oh, and writing inspiration)- a non-competitive sport for me. However, my competitive juices kicked in when we discussed sprinting. I was a sprinter, eons ago. Yes, like on a real track and field team. With an arrogant tone and demeanor, I said to my husband, “... oh, I can totally outrun you…” We had a fun exchange and I persisted with racing that lovely man who puts up with my weirdness ( I mean interesting nature). He said, “... I’m not racing you. I KNOW, I’ll win.” He smiled knowing his comment would irk my competitive side.

It did. I smiled because I love his playful nature, but was also a little bothered because I know I’m not the fastest endurance runner, but as far as sprinting short distances, w-ell,  not to be arrogant or anything, but, I can totally keep up with speedsters. I even said, “... well, you’re lucky, anyway, because my leg is starting to hurt…” Honestly, it wasn’t an excuse , in case, he agreed to race and I didn't win. My right quad was really starting to hurt.

Did We Race?
Nope. Not that evening. Trust me, I was ready to turn our neighborhood into a track. But, he declined.

Sunday Runday?
Usually, not for me, unless, I must switch up my running schedule due to mom/family responsibilities. It was Sunday ( a scheduled rest day). I was dressed for a run because I had taken a few days off after running a 20 mile run the previous Sunday and an almost 16 mile run three days after… I know… As I type that craziness, I’m cringing.

You see what I mean about having to switch up my marathon training schedule due to mom/family responsibilities? One of my super-smart-runner friends reminded me how difficult marathon training is (time consuming) when making motherhood my primary role in life. But, like most runners, we all have numerous life roles along with our running dreams (for me it’s to BQ). I have an incredibly supportive husband and son, but I can’t help it, I want to continue excelling at being a dedicated, fun, and present mom and wife, hence, running goes down on my list.

It’s crazy to switch up training as often as I do, especially, because it leads to injury. My husband caringly reminded me to be cautious of injury when I told him I was going out for a 16 mi. run so close to a 20 mi. run (he’s not a runner, but he’s a cyclist, so I should have listened). I wanted to listen. Honestly, I wasn’t being stubborn or a crazy-runner, I was worried. Worried I wouldn’t be ready for the LA Marathon since I’ve skipped several long runs because I want to be a great mom, wife, sister, daughter, aunt, and friend 99.9% of the time. I know, crazy...

Get to the Point, Karina. Your Posts are Too Long (This One Is Not)
Sorry. Ok, so we hop on over to the local high school  track. The plan was  to warm up, gently run and listen to my body. My husband and son joined me, hopeful a baseball game would be taking place at the adjacent baseball field. No baseball game, but since my husband  had been wanting to practice base running form with our son, they did that while I attempted running without pain.

After an easy four laps ( a mile), my leg felt ok. Definitely, not 100 percent, but good enough to think I could keep running.  As I’m approaching my son and husband, I pause. My leg is ok and  endorphins and serotonin have kicked in, so the competitive side takes a peak. “Please, honey, come on, just once..., please?” I ask with a giant smile. I think he was tired of the pestering and agreed. Our son smiled when he saw us walking towards the starting line. As a former track and field star (ha!),  I take sprinting competition seriously. My husband agreed to line up at the start, like real track stars. I know, you probably feel sorry for my poor guy for putting up with me (sometimes, I do, too). You would like him-he’s super awesome and funny!

Guess who was on lane 3? My husband. I'm on the left (lane 2). I had to use a filter on these two pictures- It adds dramatic effect. Right?

This is me (in case you were wondering). My hair is a tad messy. I was wearing a hat, (sunny at the start) but by the time, my husband agreed to race, the sky was grey and felt a few drops of rain. Even, more dramatic... right?

We took our marks, got set, and he went. I went, too, but I totally ate his dust. Yep. I lost. I majorly lost  to Mr. Speedster and, now, I'm injured for who-knows-how-long.  Fortunately, the LA Marathon is on March 19th, so if I listen to my body and keep resting, I may make it to the start line injury free. Definitely, not at the endurance level I want to be at, but I know I will BQ. Not this year, or next, but,  I KNOW with my determination, I will run a Boston Marathon before I turn 60-for sure!

Hurting My Leg Was Not An Excuse
Even if I hadn’t hurt my quad, my husband is so darn fast, I still would have eaten dust. The man has gorgeous, strong runner legs, so instead of being a sore loser, I say, “... You see… you should totally be a runner… You were born to run…” His response was not nice, not nice at all, “Nope. Sorry, I hate running (ouch, right, runners?). I will never be a runner. But, I’ll happily cheer you on.” he ended with his beautiful smile. What a waste of talent, right? But, in his hey day, his speed came in handy as a baseball and football player.

While I’m mostly in awe of my husband's speed (he wasn't even giving it his all, either), I was a teeny bit (ok, fine, a ton) bothered he outrun me by a lot… But, I’m using the outcome as motivation to keep at my continual need for speed. Sprinting and long distance running use different form. I haven’t practiced sprinting form in years since my new running love is long distance, so, maybe, some of the loss is due to form, but, still, my husband is way… fast and super sweet. He reminded me of the changes in form, too, along with my leg injury as a reason for feeling like a tortoise . I may be a looser, but not a sore one. I admitted, even without leg pain, he still would have brought me down to earth, off my high horse, etc, etc.

I haven’t told my brother, yet. Not looking forward to his reaction. He would LOVE to know I’m no longer the fastest in the family. As a child and adolescent, it bothered  him to lose to me in our sprinting competition, year after year. He refuses to race me, but after this defeat, I’m sure, he’ll happily take the starting line with me.

Waaaa… I went from cheetah to snail… Waaaa…

OK, enough with the tears. I’m ready to get to work. Well, as soon as my leg feels better and this time, I’m definitely not skipping my post-run yoga sessions.

Ah, I can skip it today, I feel great. Who’s regretting those repeated thoughts, now, lady?

Again, I’m using this as motivation to keep improving as a runner. Plus, it’s fun for our marriage and our son can see how people of all ages need continual practice to improve and attain goals. Talent alone is not enough. He was born with natural talents, but as he develops, he must practice if he wants to continue excelling at his chosen sports and activities.

Lesson learned: listen to your body, rest, and always do post-run recovery (for me, it’s yoga).

Thank you for taking time to read my koo-koo mind’s adventures... Wait, if you'd like to read a fun anecdote, please keep reading. I promise, no politics in this post.


What is the point of this collage, Karina?

As I was waiting for my husband and son to finish up their baseball running form, I was feeling sorry for myself, worrying and imagining the worst. This is it, I'm not going to be ready for the LA Marathon. I should have listened to my body. I should have listened to M (my husband). I know better, I should have, this, that, and ... I could have spent minutes to hours thinking of the should haves, but that wasn't making me happy, so I made the decision to turn this negative into a positive.

Watching my son and husband sprint back and forth on the track wasn't making me smile, either. While I love watching them play sports, seeing them practice my favorite sport (aside from baseball) without pain, made me sad. As I sat sidelined, I thought with a deep sigh: shoot! This is going to delay training, again.

I decide to turn away from their fun and took pictures of the beautiful sky. As I'm turning, my hair gets in my face to say hello. Hi, I reply and notice it's still dry and silky. How?! I was running and sitting in rain, a light rain, but it was wet and humid, my hair's nemesis.

No way... It looks like this with this rain?! As I'm finishing up the picture on the right, I hear my husband from behind, "...You're taking pictures of your hair, again?" "Yes. If I don't, my sister won't believe me." "Believe what?", he asked. "My hair. Look at it", I say while bringing it up to show him, "it looks good. "It always looks good", he replied. You see, how lucky I am... He is mostly sugar.

He had asked the question about my hair because as we were getting ready to run, I said with a giant smile, arrogant demeanor and tone, "oh, wait, I want to get a picture of us in our starting positions to remind you of my awesomeness..." I know, I know, I'm embarrassed for me, too. I definitely have a reminder, alright. His awesomeness.

The second set of pictures were to text my sister. We were blessed with uncooperative hair in the presence of moisture and humidity. She would want to see this rarity.

This is my typical look on rainy and humid days.

Not in spring, summer, or fall (my hair seems to only love warm/dry weather) But, too much beach and sun makes me sport this look:

I think mother nature was being kind to me. It was her way of spreading girl power. Our soul sisters are awesome when we need a pick me up. Mother nature often comes through for me, so she's one of mine. If I was going to be bummed about my leg and think up ways to up the ante on my training, I was going to do it while feeling stylish... Plus, injuries, always get me extra love from my boys...

Saturday, February 4, 2017

More Than Hockey Pucks and Basketball

Kick it! Tan-an-tan-tan-tantantantan. You. Gotta fight. For. Your. Right. To... pa...r-ty…! blared the Beastie Boys’ famous lyrics throughout the crowded, freezing cold, Staples Center hockey arena as fans roared in excitement at the sight of Kyle Clifford from the Los Angeles Kings and I-can’t-recall-the-Tampa- Bay-Lightning-player at the moment, rushing towards each other, chipped ice squirting behind their blades with each pound of their skate, eager to get to the task at hand: head to head contact, punches, clangs, and tugs- all in the name of healthy, adrenaline filled hockey competition.

You wake up late for school and you don’t want to go... (punch)...
Busted! (jersey tugs)...
You gotta fight! For your right! To par...ty… (more blows before both players are sent to the penalty box)

This portion of hockey reminds me a lot of the movie, Gladiator. Right? The lovely,  adrenaline and testosterone filled party occurred within the first two minutes of the first period on... (please, don’t gasp) Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

I know. I know… I felt. T-errible…., capital T, terrible.

So..., what the heck was Ms. Love-the-world-and-spreads-kindness doing at a Kings game on a day she should be embracing, spreading, teaching and modeling kindness for her son?! Yeah, well, I’m not perfect. But, in my defense, let me take you back to how it all happened…

I’m going back in time, like the rewind on a VHS and cassette tape. Remember those?


It was a gorgeous, I mean gorgeous, crisp, clear and mostly sunny Southern California, late morning (ok, I’ll stop bragging about the gorgeous climate I live in), I was dressed and ready for a 45 minute “easy” run, as marked on my marathon training plan. “Bye, honey, I love you, I’m going on my run, now. I’ll be back in about an hour”, I say to my husband as I’m heading out the door. Bu-t, as I’m walking towards the front door, my lovely husband makes his way downstairs to show me his phone screen. And, well, he didn’t have to ask me twice.

What was on the screen?
People! This is a G rated post, well, maybe PG. Anyway, it was the date, time, and availability of Kings tickets. We already had tickets for the Clippers ‘vs Thunder game later that evening (one of our son’s Christmas gifts-he’s a fan of both teams). Since moving miles and miles from downtown, we haven’t visited Staples Center for basketball and hockey games like previous years (important detail and, remember, we love sports). Anyway, my eyes widened, we looked at each other with a smile, and my husband said, “...but, we’d have to leave in less than an hour?” “I can be ready, let’s do it!”, I respond with a giant smile. “But, what about your run?”, he asked. (I adore the man! One of MANY reasons I’m incredibly lucky he fell for my koo-kooness! He’s always super supportive of my interests and Boston dreams.)
“It’s ok, I’ll make it up.”, I quickly reply.

Really, Karina. Make it up, huh? When? How are you going to add extra days? With your magical powers?! You already have to make up a few others, remember… Shoot!  That’s right… What to do, what to do...? Hmmm...

Who are the best parents?
Us, of course! Ha! At least that’s what our son thought when we spilled the beans on our plan to spend the day at Staples Center. The giant dimpled smile and sprint to get ready let us know how he felt about the idea.

I sprint upstairs. Off went my running clothes. Showered and dressed before my boys?! No way...! Did you see that, Mr. Stanley?! I’m ready before you. When I mean business, I mean business. But, according to my boys, I still delayed us because I had to return for my bulky jacket. I got looks, eye rolls and sighs, but who was smiling when we arrived to the arena and it felt like winter in New York? Not them. I was still freezing with my snow gear, but as soon as my drenched hair dried, I was warm and toasty. I even offered my son my bulky jacket.

We Are Not Great Parents
Don't worry, on our way to Downtown Los Angeles, we acknowledged our mistake in not taking time to honor Dr. King’s day by doing something positive for the community. But, I did explain to my son that while we weren't really doing something positive by going to a hockey and basketball game, like Valentine's Day, Dr. King’s message of spreading kindness is practiced throughout the year. In a way, I think I was trying to clear my conscious and justify our day’s events. But, not really because I do express love and kindness, everyday, not just on Valentine’s Day or Martin Luther King Jr. Day.


Ok, fast forward to the punch and roll match up within the hockey game. Not only were we at a hockey game on a special day for spreading kindness, but we were inside a royal rumle of testosterone. Fortunately, my son is no longer a toddler or preschooler; otherwise, what a message I would be giving him, right?

Happy to meet his favorite "hockey man", Jarret Stoll. One of his many dreams was to be a future "frofessional hockey man" for the Kings. Don't worry, he didn't see the violent side of hockey, at this age. Remember, I was a helicopter, then. But, I still wanted him to explore his world and choose his own interests. I could make anything age appropriate.

However, just when I was internally cursing myself (yes, sometimes, I use foul words in my internal conversations and I’m a writer, so I use them a lot in my writing), the halftime show helped ease parental anxiety. Dr. Martin Luther King  Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech was played in its entirety. It was beautiful. Perfect. Aside from a few people looking at their phones and empty seats doing the usual half time snack and restroom break, the rest of the attendants listened and cheered throughout the presentation.

This image is from the Clipper's game. I didn't get pictures or video of Dr. King during the King's game.

Dr. King’s Dream Lives Everywhere and Everyday.
If you’re a sports fanatic, you are familiar with the jumbotron’s love of capturing unexpected and expected fans doing their thing…  The “kissing cam” and “dance cam” get the crowds laughing and hooting. And, on MLK day, it was fitting, making me realize, Dr. King’s dream is often most apparent at sporting events. How? Here are a few examples from the hockey game:

Kiss Cam: I love the kiss cam. It’s fun watching the camera suggest public smooching to unexpected couples. Sometimes, the camera lands on soon to be engaged couples. Since I’m a hopeless romantic, these smooches are my favorite. Everyone oohs, aahhs. No engagements this time, but many diverse couples showed their love and loud awwwwwws echoed throughout the center. The last couple was well over childbirthing age, but they sure were a testament to the research findings revealing S-E-X improves with age. Woo! Hot! Hot! Hot… kiss initiated by the assertive woman. I think the camera was blushing. Ha!

Dance Cam: If I love the kiss cam, you know, I LOVE the dance cam. Although, at Staples Center it’s tough to get away with dancing and not seeing yourself on the big screen so, of course, as soon as I see the camera, I stop moving and groovin’. I love to dance, but I DO NOT love cameras on me. However, my feet and legs never stop tapping. I’m pretty sure, I was born to dance.

Anyway, as the dance cam is making its way around the center, it stops on a young man strutting his fancy dancy moves. He enjoyed the attention, so the camera stayed on him for the remainder of the high energy, electrifying beat, to which he moved and grooved with pi-zzaz. The crowd roared and cheered . It was so beautiful to witness, especially, because the young man would be shunned by the erroneously-elected-president (he doesn’t deserve the title president, he behaves like a classless, evil, and hateful  monster) of our diverse country for being born with abilities he refuses to understand or embrace. It was absolutely beautiful to see people from different genders, sexes, backgrounds, levels of education, and abilities cheering for positive and beautiful diversity.

The Young Woman: Another highlight of the hockey game was probably not a highlight for the young woman involved; however, I deem it a highlight because of the response to her tripping before a crowded section of Staples Center. If you’ve never experienced tripping, walking into a glass door, slipping, or any other embarrassing mishap, you are extremely fortunate and coordinated. However, if like me, you have experienced any or all, you know how the young woman was probably feeling when she tripped while carrying her very expensive fries with a big smile, steps from her male companion. As I saw it happen, I felt terrible for her, but didn’t want to worsen her visible embarrassment by letting her know it was witnessed or worse, pointing her out to others if no one else had seen. Based on the reaction of the people near us, I thought I was the only one who had witnessed her mishap. I pretended not see her fall, but , I wanted to make sure she was ok, so I looked when she wasn’t aware. Here is the beauty of people, many saw her, but wanted to spare her any further embarrassment. How did I know many saw, too? The people in front of me did the same thing I did at different moments without leaning over to let others in on the poor young woman’s fall.

Dinner, Coffee, and Stroll

In between games, we witnessed positive energy and lovely diversity as we dined and strolled in Staple Center’s surroundings.

Along with eating, drinking coffee, chatting up a storm, and walking, you know I took a lot of pictures... Here are a few...

I'm not a Laker fan, but I'm a fan of Mr. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. I love his thinking and activism. And, he's a UCLA alum.

"The game's in the refrigerator: the door is closed, the lights are out, the eggs are cooling, the butter's getting hard, and the Jell-O's jigglin'!"- Chick Hearn 

Surprise! I'm alive!

Yep. I love Green Day.

I had better pictures of this cool sculpture, but my boys didn't want to be in the picture. You can see my son's right leg. ha!

2014 Stanley Cup champions!

Clippers Action
Pre-Game Wait: Our son was eager to get to the game, hopeful we would be allowed to enter early (more than two hours before the start?) if we waited outside the entrance doors. Since we have never been early enough to be first in line, we decided “what the heck”, let’s wait in line. I had a Starbucks coffee and my bulky jacket to keep me warm, so no complains from me. Plus, we were able to witness the pre-game activities of Staples Center staff. It was quite interesting. In fact, I came up with an idea for a  book or film based on the hierarchy and what I interpreted from their actions. I gave them dialogue and shared some of it with my husband and son. My husband replied, “... that sounds like Animal Farm.” Believe it or not, I’ve never read Animal Farm. I know, right? I’ve seen the title many times, it's on many of “the best books lists”. This is a sad reality-we will never have time to read all the great books. With all due respect, darn you, George Orwell. Now, I have to think of a different NaNoWriMo 2017 genre and theme. Fortunately, it’s only January, I have months of inspiration, and I’m inspired a lot...

Look at the giant sign posted on the glass doors.

Apparently, Staples Center is not responsible for our enjoyment. Interesting, right? I wonder if people have asked for refunds using the excuse that they didn't have a good time? That statement is a metaphor for life because we get out of life what we put in. The same is true with enjoyment of anything. We create enjoyment in any environment and situation. Like we did while waiting in line for an hour, we made the decision to fill the hour with creating enjoyment. We chatted with a lovely employee who we never would have interacted  with and got a glimpse of what happens before the doors officially open for game time.

Game Time!
This game is the reasoning for making the trek to Staples Center. We are Clippers fans, but we also like Mr. Russell Westbrook (UCLA alum), so it was the perfect game to watch on Martin Luther King Day. Why? We were rooting for both teams. And, so was a large percentage of the crowd.

Less is More
Immediately following the electrifying starting lineups were announced, Clipper’s shooting guard,  J.J Redick,  said, “...the best way we can  honor Dr. King is by living his dream.” With those words, the game began to another crowd of diverse fans all rooting for their respective teams, but at the same time rooting for Russell Westrbrook’s triple, double. It didn’t matter what team won because many of us were rooting for both. Enjoying an evening with our favorite people in the world while  remembering Dr. Martin Luther King through visuals, talented athletism, food, music, and kindness. All in the beautifully diverse city of Los Angeles. Yes, performing acts of kindness would have been the ideal way to remember Dr. King, but our day was a reminder that no matter the day, time, and location, we can always choose to look at the world in a positive light and spread love and kindness.

Ca-lifornia… Lo-ve...! Cal-i-fornia, knows how to party..., Cal-i-fornia…, knows how to party… In the city... of  L-A… the beat that makes me move and groove, no matter where I hear it, blared throughout the packed crowd, signaling the end of our Staple Center adventures.

“Mom?” says my son as he, my husband, and thousands of people  stand up from their  seats signaling the end of the game. I continue sitting and say, “oh, I just want to hear the rest of the song”. A few sighs are heard from the two seats next to me, but I keep bobbing my head to the beat of Tupak’s “California Love” lyrics. Sadly, my mini-dance session came to a halt when I hear my smarty-party say, “... but, Mom, remember, I have school, tomorrow.” “Shoot! That’s right-ok-let’s-go!” I say as I quickly get up and enjoy the rest of one of my favorite dancing songs while making our way out into the large, orderly and polite crowd making their way to the exits.

Drive Home…
My husband and I exchange another unspoken dialogue smile. Only this time, we both followed it with words. If we were grade schoolers, we would have said, “jinks”. “(Son’s name) got more out of today than anything else we could have done before the Clipper’s game…” Our son agreed and shared  feeling sad for the young woman who fell with her fries. My husband concurred. We all saw her? Apparently, more people than I imagined  saw her and felt empathy and concern for her (people of all races, genders, sexes, and backgrounds). Now, that is the kind of world Dr. King dreamed of. Dr. King would have smiled at the love and kindness in the air in the city of angels on his remembrance and appreciation day. A win-win day!

With the depressing life-changing craziness inflicted to our world by a giant narcissist and life killer, I will be spreading a lot more, California love-everyday!

Warning: This part is not like my typical humor-happy-go-lucky tone, but I want  to share these thoughts with you.

If you know me in real life, you know I’m a HUGE child advocate and supporter of all human rights, so it is not surprising to my family and friends to see me tweet and blog about my current thoughts and feeling related to the recent talking-monster-catastrophe wasting valuable space and time with his immature and selfish thoughts and actions. There should be something in our constitution prohibiting severely mentally ill individuals (who refuse to accept and receive help and treatment. Also, please know I don’t view mental illness as a negative. I view the refusal to accept and receive treatment by someone who is leading our country as negative. I’m a HUGE advocate and supporter of mental health.) from holding the most powerful and respected office in our country. I was wishing, hoping, and bargaining for a miracle on January 19, 2017. “Maybe some-one, one of the many super smart people, will come up with something… There has to be something in our constitution to prevent this catastrophe from happening…” But, sadly, I awoke to a day of mourning. Along with the evening of November 8th, 2016, January 20th, 2017 were depressing days for me. November 8th, 2016 felt like I had lost a loved one and January 20th, 2017, the day my loved one was buried.

It was a funeral in my mind. Like a funeral, family and friends helped to momentary lessen the pain, but after the good food and laughs, the realization of what was to come and how much work was in store to ease the loss of an America under eloquent, brilliant, and kind leadership and the realization of one replaced with the polar opposite-all the natural disasters in their greatest magnitudes in one. Unlike the natural bereavement process, I refuse to ever reach acceptance of the monsters destroying years of progress. I will not accept this catastrophe as normal or something I must deal with because this is America. America was founded with the goal of freedom of speech and the beauty of diversity. I love our melting pot and I will do my part to make sure it keeps melting.

Initially, I  thought about apologizing for my current expression of those thoughts because I vowed to keep politics out of my tweets and blog; however, we are not dealing with typical politics. The world’s safety is at stake and I can’t pretend I have no opinions, not when it relates to the future of too many innocent people, animals, and our beautiful planet, Earth. However, if you decide to unfollow me on Twitter or stop reading my blog because of my thoughts, feeling and actions related to the current chaotic state of our country and world inflicted by monsters, I understand, but I refuse to stop expressing my beliefs, thoughts and feelings during this time of crisis. Remaining quiet on a platform where I can reach many people, right now, is a lot like pretending not to see or  not reporting child abuse when a child discloses it to a teacher, counselor or an adult. Unfortunately, in my previous career, I had to report child abuse too often. Seeing the aftermath of abuse and trauma as a counselor and researcher, I MUST use that knowledge and help prevent the abuse and trauma inflicted  in many communities, right now, by monsters who should know and do better, but, instead, they choose selfishness and hate.

Maybe by voicing my opinions, I can change one opinion or inspire one person to help innocent people. What the current monster-in-office and his equally scary posse are doing is child abuse. Sadly, many children will be dealing with PTSD, anxiety disorders and depression as a result of their selfish thinking and behaviors. Of course, many adults will, too, but my primary focus is children because they don’t have resources to help themselves, so people who understand the consequences of what is happening to our country and world, MUST speak for them.

I’m extremely thankful and appreciative for the dedication, hard work and suffering Dr. King and all social activist went through for all of us. Their refusal to comply and their desire to stand up for the rights of all people is why many of us are able to enjoy our lives. I’m extremely fortunate to live a life I mostly love. I don’t love what is happening in our country, hence, the reasoning for this post. I try to focus on the positive and continue to spread love and kindness; however, as I’ve previously mentioned, having a little darkness comes in handy. What is happening in our country, right now, is one of the times when the darkness is needed to help achieve continual light.

Plus, my baseball swing is back to my younger self thanks to the frustration and anger I feel towards the monster and his posse. You can guess what faces I’m imagining on those baseballs. Of course, I didn’t tell my son that’s who I’m  imagining (He has strong negative feeling about the monsters, too, but his are age appropriate dislike. I water  down my feelings and thoughts in the presence of my son, but internally and with some adults, I reveal my real feelings and thoughts.) when taking power swings, but boy was he impressed with my swing a few days ago. I got a “Wow! Mom!” with other positive commentary and his gorgeous, proud smile. That was such an awesome feeling, especially, because we both share the love of baseball and his opinion on everything carries enormous weight. Parenting, humor, and athletic compliments from him always make me feel awesome! I LOVE my little guy...

My hate list is extremely short, there’s hills, and a handful of other things, but you can be sure I hate a group of monsters at the moment. I know some people would say feeling hate is not a positive, but when children, women, and innocent people, animals, and our planet are being bullied and abused, and I KNOW how much of a negative impact the abuse and bullying will inflict on  their minds and bodies, it’s difficult to feel anything, but hate and anger. Venting that hate on the baseballs got me back into my youthful baseball player self, if the monsters keep it up, I will probably be qualifying for Boston sooner than I anticipate. I want to BQ, but I’d rather not BQ and have intelligent and kind leadership.

Please keep spreading love… We need it more than ever. I’ll keep doing my part to help our world while running and swinging away to vent my frustrations until we reach unity and love, again.