Potential music news, podcast thoughts and looking back on many things

On Twitter, I recently posted a tweet that I’m going to expand on here, given that this is my blog. What I wrote reads:
If I tweet something using the words “men are” or “men do,” I shouldn’t have to tell you that I’m not saying “all men.” You should have enough of an understanding that the reason I say these things to begin with, is cuz enough men do this or say this, to warrant me to talk about it. And also, I mentioned someone in this tweet who like me, is a feminist. I’ve been following this person’s tweets for awhile now and I’m glad that they are speaking out all the time about the ways in which men are shitty. Because it’s important to call men out, most especially because calling them out is literally the only way that many of them will actually examine their harmful behaviors/harmful actions.

Something else that’s happened on Twitter lately, is that there’s been an announcement that there’s going to be a Christina Aguilera event happening online in a few weeks. But other than that information, I don’t know anything else about said event. Well, accept the fact that said event won’t cost any money for concert viewers.

Another musically-related thing that’s happened on Twitter recently, is that Stacie Orrico, who’s one of my favorite singers of all-time, has made a few appearances on social media lately. Now, many people probably don’t know this but Stacie has never been someone who enjoys social media. And so TBH, it’s interesting to me that she’s trying to use social media now; but I think that’s great!! Because quite frankly, before these recent social media posts of hers, I’d given up on the hope of ever hearing new music from her again. Like, I’d literally been thinking about this myself recently and felt myself alternating from being sad about this truth that I thought might be reality, to feeling grateful that she’d released several songs back in 2012 and for a few years after that. And the thing is, given what a stan I am of her music, I’ve been trying hard not to get my hopes up about her releasing more music. But try though I may, I haven’t been successful at this. And that’s frustrating because I love getting excited about things; but yet, I also have past experiences that prove that even though Stacie has said that she’d likely release a new album back in 2013, that hasn’t actually happened. And I know that her life has been filled with raising kids and enjoying married life…and she seems happy about where she is in her life, now. But as someone who loves her voice to the extent that I do, I really do hope that she does release more music soon.

I wrote the following FB post on my personal page yesterday which reads:
Five years ago today, I had a shunt revision. Five years ago today, my life also became harder than I could ever imagine. It’s a lot harder for me to walk than it used to be, and I don’t know that I’ll ever get over that particular grief. But at the same time, I have people in my life who took care of me five years ago; these folks are still in my life today and are some of my favorite humans ever. And while there’s no telling how long this shunt will last, the one thing I know for sure is that I have more of a loving support system than I felt I had five years ago…and that is the best gift EVER!!

In the Childfree by Choice FB group, someone asked why many childfree people hate kids. While I know that I don’t owe anyone an explanation of why I feel the way I do about kids, I happily posted a response to said question. What I wrote to this person reads:
It’s OK that you like kids, just like it is OK that some of us, myself included, cannot stand them. The biggest thing for me is that they take time away from adults, so much so that those adults completely lose their identity as individuals. Kids are also loud and annoying shits that think everyone’s world revolves around them…and that everyone’s world should revolve around them. Really, what’s to like about them? That is the real question…unanswerable though it is.

Also in this particular FB group, someone posted a topic about a relative of theirs not respecting their decision to be childfree; the person who’d posted this topic wanted to know if they were the one with issues around this. The response I wrote to them reads:
Obviously, this relative of yours does not understand where you are coming from, though. I can tell this by the fact that they continue to pressure you but also, at the fact that they get defensive every time you tell them that your decision is yours alone. Sounds like it is way past time for you to set boundaries with them on this, because nothing they could ever say will change your choice about what happens or doesn’t happen in your life. It seems like this person needs you to spell it out bluntly for them: I’m no longer going to discuss this choice about my wanting to remain childfree with you, relative/I don’t care what you want for my life, relative. If the person in question reacts defensively to your boundary-setting, know that that is their problem, not yours. The only thing you can control is yourself. I hope things start looking up for you soon.

I’ve been engaging on a post on FB that someone on my friends’ list wrote. This person is not originally from the US but they do of course have an opinion about how the current US President runs things here in America. And some folks have commented on this post, who can’t stand that someone who isn’t a US citizen is unafraid to put their opinion out into the world. And the folks who think that this person should keep their mouth shut because they are not a US citizen, seem to feel threatened by the topic poster’s perspective. So myself and several other folks have gone back and forth with them on this. And one of the people saying that the poster of this topic should keep quiet, asked me why I wasn’t saying that Jo Biden is a pig. The response I wrote to that person’s question reads:
I’m silent about Biden because this thread is not about Biden. But for the record, I think Biden is a pig, just like your lover 45 is. You don’t know anything about me, but just because I do enjoy engaging in fruitful discussion, I will say that I am a member of several minority groups. I have multiple disabilities and I’m a gay woman. I’m also a woman who’s been sexually assaulted on repeated occasions, by multiple people. So, I have actual lived experience to back up what I’m saying, rather than just believing what I’m spoonfed by Faux News.

On a different note, I figured that I’d talk about a particular experience I’d had a few years ago that’s related to how people can be traumatized by religion/religious people. Because this was something I’d been recently reflecting on, in terms of how far I’ve come since then. But also, I think it’s important to discuss this on my blog, given that one of the reasons I’d created this blog to begin with, was to speak openly about the things people do wrong when it comes to the way people with disabilities (PWD’s) are treated by much of society. This religiously traumatizing story definitely falls into that category, for sure. And interestingly, I’m still so traumatized by this story that I’m not even going to use this organization’s actual name because I don’t want to receive pushback from them. I mean, I’m sure they wouldn’t find me unless they Googled my name or knew about my website…but the trauma that they’ve caused me is so deep that I just don’t even want to chance them discovering what I have to say about how awful they treated me.

So, now for my personal story of my time with this organization: there was an organization in San Antonio Texas that I’d wanted to mentor youth with. Now, keep in mind, this whole thing happened at a time when I was still trying to convince myself and other people that I was religious. But anyway, this particular organization claimed that it was doing good things for the youth of today…but yet they were actually being hate-filled people. In fact, in one of the questions I was asked in my initial interview as a potential mentor with this organization, the question was something along the lines of “if a young person told you that they were gay, how would you respond to that?” If my memory serves correctly, I said that I’d respond in kind. But the thing was, this mentorship program which had the word Christ in its name, by the way, didn’t like my honesty. And unfortunately for me, that discovery wasn’t the end of this awful organization’s crapiness towards me.

The other shitty thing this organization did, happened after I’d done that interview with them. They organized a meeting with me, with one of their people and a Principle or Assistant Principle at one of the elementary schools I might have been a mentor at. And even though I knew that this particular thing was going to be a disaster from the minute it was organized, I didn’t feel strong enough then to share those feelings with anyone. Instead, what I did was I listened to the lady who’d interviewed me, tell me that the Principle or Assistant Principle at this particular elementary school had some concerns about me. When I asked this woman what she’d meant by that, I was told that people were concerned about me being a mentor…because of the fact I’m disabled. But the thing was, this lady didn’t even want to say the D-word, disabled; she simply fell all over herself to avoid the truth. Well, long story short, it was like pulling teeth, for me to drag the truth out of her!! One thing I do remember saying in my favor during this conversation though, was something like “I really don’t think it’s necessary for us to have this meeting, simply because you all are not familiar with people with disabilities you know, being functional human beings.” And then I went to this meeting, dreading every minute of it from the very second I was first made aware of it. And so, what was done to me that was so humiliating, was that while I was sitting in the office of this elementary school, waiting to be seen, the lady who’d interviewed me told me that once my name was called, I was to stand up and walk towards this school employee, who spoke like, two words to me…and whose voice I was supposed to remember the location of and then walk towards. Now once again, I want to say that this voice that I was supposed to walk towards, had only spoken just a few words to me. But even so, I did exactly as I’d been instructed to do.

Now, let me tell you, dear blog readers, the reasons why this whole experience was literally the worst public humiliation of my life. First of all, this organization who I’ll remind you had the word Christ in its name, claimed that the organization’s mission was to bring people to Jesus Christ. That in itself is already problematic as fuck, especially given that this organization didn’t accept people in the LGBTQ+ community which they’d made quite clear to me in my initial interview with them. But also, the fact that they made me as someone with disabilities go through extra things that people without disabilities didn’t have to go through, was beyond ridiculous. Because they could’ve done Google searches to see how people with disabilities live functional lives, just like non-disabled people do. Or better yet, they could’ve reached out to the person with disabilities that they were in contact with, me, and allowed us to have a meaningful conversation with each other. But instead, it seemed that they’d already had their minds made up about how this situation was going to turn out, literally from the first time I’d met with them in-person. And TBH, after all the hell that they’d ultimately put me through, I didn’t want anything to do with such an organization anymore, anyway. But even so, as I’d said above, this whole experience hurt me to my core. Like, this whole fiasco happened at a time when I was still suffering from internalized homophobia, which of course didn’t help matters. Well, I take that back: this fiasco did help me have even more internalized homophobia, I’m sad to say.

Within this last week, something that I forgot to write about, was the fact that I logged onto my school account to check when my registration date was going to be for this upcoming fall semester. And once I’d gotten that date, I put said date in my calendar right then because I didn’t want to risk forgetting it. Because quite frankly, I’m done lying to myself that my memory is so good that I’ll remember important dates. But honestly, what has actually helped me commit dates to memory, is writing them down in my calendar. Funny how that happens!

And in other news, while I’d thought that my Apple Music subscription as a student was verified as I’d been told it was, I was wrong. And how I’d found this out, was due to the fact that every time I’d open the music app on my phone, a message would pop up saying that I only had a few more days to verify myself as a student using this particular service. And so, I sent an email to the person from the third-party company who’d told me that everything was verified. And in the email I’d sent this person, I directly asked them if my student membership was verified as they’d claimed it was, why Apple Music would pop up with an alert saying otherwise. But being that I’ve yet to hear back from them, I decided to use my caretaker’s eyes to check this situation out yet again. And what he discovered, was that all that needed to be done was to enter in my Apple ID information. And then once that had been done, my Apple Music student membership was fully verified. Wow, how incredibly frustrating this whole process has been, though even that’s putting it mildly.

In a recent episode of the This American Life podcast, Ira Glass first told a story about some different families who’d responded to Corona Virus very differently from one another. And in one of these stories, someone who’s in the medical field creates a video documentation for her husband that she wants him to be able to hold onto if something bad happens to her. And in this video documentation that she’d created, this woman lays out literally every awful thing that could happen to her; because she doesn’t want her husband to be traumatized by what she might physically look like, if she gets horribly sick. But then a sort of related story that’s told about a family in a similar predicament, is that one of these family members has Corona Virus. And this family member seems to take comfort in the fact that his family members are keeping in constant contact with him…to check on how he’s doing.

But then Ira Glass tells a totally different story, this one about an undocumented person’s journey in the United States. It was interesting to hear this story because as this woman tells it to us as the listeners, at least from my perspective, I feel like no matter what it is that she’s gone through, she’s determined to do whatever she can to make the most of the cards she’s been dealt. And the thing is, not only does she have to deal with the fact that she’s an undocumented person in the US, but she also has demons of her own in the form of mental health differences…and also, her ailing parents. But all that being said, I love the sound of this woman’s voice; oddly enough, it’s very calm-sounding.

In the next story in this episode of This American Life, someone who works with Ira Glass tells a story about how over a decade ago, someone who was in high school at the time, rigged many of the categories of the available awards for the senior class contest that numerous schools participated in. And in this particular story though, the guy who was responsible for doing this at the high school he’d gone to, seemed to be the only person who’d gotten worked up about this situation all these years later. And throughout the time that this story is being told about what he’d done, he’s shown to be quite an unfeeling person. This surprised me because to be honest, I’d thought he’d feel bad about it…but that wasn’t the case at all. But personally, I cannot for the life of me, understand why someone would even want to go to such lengths to rig a fucking popularity contest. Like, doing so wouldn’t have any affect on him whatsoever. But maybe he wanted the attention that he ended up getting from this particular podcast. Who knows. It was definitely weird to me, for sure.

In another recent episode of This American Life, the show’s host tells a moving story about how patients are currently being treated in hospitals. As Ira Glass is narrating this story though, I feel happiness which is kinda weird to me. I say that it’s weird because the story that’s being told about how people who work at hospitals are doing what they can to give families of relatives with Corona Virus good memories of their deceased family members. More specifically, some of the medical professionals in hospitals have been writing things down to personally give the families, because they (the medical professionals) wanted the families to know that their relatives were cared about by those who’d cared for them at the hospitals. And honestly, I think that whoever it was that had this idea, was thinking of hospital patients as human beings which made my heart smile…because in most other cases, that sort of thing is a rarity. Even my own personal experiences being a patient in hospitals have dictated me not being taken seriously, several times throughout my life.

And similarly, in another story that’s told on this particular episode of This American Life, we the listeners learn about a man who dealt with his grief from losing loved ones in a thoughtful and kind way. And what he did, was create a phone booth at his house that allowed him to pretend like he was actually talking to loved ones of his that had died. Of course though, the way he and others from Japan would describe this phone booth he’d created, they truly seemed convinced that their loved ones could hear them (their living relatives) and respond to them (their living loved ones). And for years, this phone booth has been a place for people to allow themselves to grieve however they need to, for as long as they need to. But personally, while I can understand how this kinda thing provides some folks the comfort they’ve been seeking, I don’t agree with the beliefs that people from Japan have, of their dead loved ones going off to an actual place or being able to communicate with their living loved ones, once they (the dead family members) have died.

In the last story in this episode of the This American Life podcast, we the listeners hear a story that’s about two adult siblings who are estranged from one another; and the only reason the two of them visited one another recently, was because one of their relatives had arranged for them to do so. And as this story was being told, my stomach literally hurt because I could feel that this particular relative of these older men selfishly wanted these two relatives to sort out whatever issues they’ve had with each other for all of these years. And when I say that I could feel my body reacting to this guy’s forcefulness, I mean that my entire body felt for the two older men that this guy was trying to force his agenda onto…because in my own life, I’ve been through this very thing. Because for most of my life, I was made to feel like keeping my bio mom around was something I had no choice about. And then within these last several years of me going from tolerating church-goers’ guilt-trips about this, to realizing that such people were toxic as fuck, just like my family of origin is…this issue of my bio mom has been one of the most difficult things I’ve ever had to face. And the reason it’s been so difficult to deal with, is mostly because of society’s harmful views that a woman giving birth to a baby is what makes her a mother.