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With the Free CONDOMS….Do I get a free guest pass to the Motel Too?–Reflections on Free Condoms in the HighSchools!

LIFE STARTS HERE.jpgI understand the goal of the school system.  I just do not comprehend the where and the how of it all.  I am a Baby Boomer!  My mother was very strict and I did not have my first boyfriend until I was 21 years old. 

 Yep, you guessed it…Late Bloomer, Baby Boomer.  I was born in 1961!  The Kennedy Era….blacks were still being treated like 3rd class citizens and society was still quite “Judeo/Christian” in its ethics and views of the American Society and the global outlook on things strange and foreign. 

 So with all that being said,  I am still a child of the “strict Judeo Christian Ethic”  I do not like to have conversations ab0ut overt sex, sex play, or lifestyles.  What I mean is that I am considered a person who is quite conservative in my values on life in general.

  However,  I have been concerned only about the goals of myself as a mother and leader in my family.  My personal views do not involve the rights, or lack of rights of another person unless their rights impringe on my personal assumed or legal rights as it were. 

 So again I ask this silly, silly question,  Does the giving out of free condoms to highschool students come with free passes to the local motel,  a booklet on sex,  proper hygenic sex,  sex education, and levels of sex methods, and proper treatment of one’s sexual partner? 

Do not give a person socks without shoes!  The condom is only part of the equation as far as I am concerned.  But I guess the “Powers that Be”– believe that highschool kids have that mentality of “Where there is a will there is a way?”

  In a back alley,  a park,  their parent’s house or whatever location that would be demoralizing to both parties engaged in sexual intercourse in some illegal public place if they were to get caught in a compromising “position” by a representative of law and order (if you know what I mean.) 

So if condoms are being handed out….what about books,  proper cleaning of genital areas,  books on crabs, genital warts, sexual life choices,  sexually transmitted diseases, Aids awareness packets, and procreation booklets as well as the most difficult topic of all —–abortion. 

For as we all know…..the condom,  the spermicide, the gels, the sponges, the pills, the “bandaides that are placed out of sight on the female body” do not always work. 

The purchase of the condom can be done at any time.  The saving of a young life from disease, or date rape is more difficult.  Teaching teenages about respect of one’s partner, or “domestic violence”,  NO, MEANS NO, and  pregnancy should be a mandate in all United States schools. 

 My son learned about his body parts, and sexual organs in Grace Lutheran Church and School, in the 4th grade.  I was upset at first and I asked the principal “Why”?  Now?  He is so young…..I still wanted him to believe in Santa Claus and Charlie Brown, the Easter Bunny and all of those fun child like things! 

 But instead a religious school that I paid $300 per month to was teaching about God and his private parts!  Ugh!!!! I was not ready for my 10 year old to start that discussion. 

Look,  I am not a prude.  I grew up with alot of pets!  I have had dogs that we owned that procreated in our yard and then we would have to throw water on them with they got “stuck”. 

  My son grew up with dogs also.  He is now 14 years old.  He was Zero to 13 living with our pets.   He had seen the dogs stuck together in the yard and came running telling me that something was wrong with the two dogs.

  I ran to the embarressing scene only to find the dogs looking equally embarressed as I was.   I would deal with the dogs and then I was left with the discussion of what that was called, and how that happend….which to be honest….I have still not understood why that “sticking” thing happens with dogs….but anyway…I digress. 

 I just did not want my son to get ALL of the details at9.  I thought 12 years old was better.  But what caused me to relax was the great principal Mrs. Lloyd. 

 Mrs. Lloyd said to my very, very, anxious teary eyed face…..”Mrs. Riveroflifelisajoy,  Don’t you want your child to be aware of his body and his rights over his body? Just because we are Christian does not mean that we should be naive about our bodies,  and neither should our children. 

This class will help possibly prevent the child from being lured into a sex abuse issue,  do you understand?  We have to teach them, and that helps them to understand the dangers.  We do not want to frigthen the children,  we want to arm them with knowlege not ignorance.”  

 After that talk, I calmed down.  I thought about what she said.  I thought back on my own personal experiences, and I realized she was right. 

 So I say all that to say this…..SCHOOLS SHOULD GIVE MANY, MANY, MANY, VARIOUS COURSES ON SEXUAL EDUCATION.  Do not just teach what a condom is….tell what will happen if it is not used properly,  take the boys to the side and show proper application,  take the girls to the side and show the various sexual safety products like female condoms too. 

Let the schools hire trained professionals that will treat this teaching professionally, and respectfully.  No matter what the teenagers sexual preference….SAFE SEX MUST BE TAUGHT FROM  9TH GRADE THROUGH 12 GRADE. 

That might be a better option than JUST giving out a condom.  Safe sex and sex relations and sex products for procreation, and abortion/prolife should be held at the begining of the school term for atleast one week as part of the core curriculum. 

 Most of the ignorance is continued by lack of knowledge in the American Society and  country.  The United States is a Super Power……why are our children more aware of Disney World, Disney Land,  video games,  popular music and the like….but ignorant on their own bodies, the risks of sexual activity, the pros and cons of birth control, and pregnancy vs. prolife/prochoice?

I would hope that my voice will be heard.  Look,  if a religious school realizes how important it is for their students to have CONTROL over their bodies….because that control over one’s body actually does control one’s future and destiny…..why not let all schools create a program that will teach and do no harm?

  With proper guidance and education maybe our children, and their children’s children will have the option to decrease abortions,  aides, and domestic violence.  It will not solve the world’s problems, but it will be an assist to the world overall.

—–RIVEROFLIFELISAJOY

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What EVER CAN GO WRONG–WHEN YOU LIVE PAY CHECK TO PAY CHECK—WILL GO WRONG! TAKE UP PAINTING AND KEEP COPING THROUGH IT ALL–IT REALLY WORKS!!!

Flower of HungerFRUSTRATION.jpg2nd-art-work.jpgSunflower.jpgHUNGER AND DOUBT.jpgLIFE STARTS HERE.jpgfoliage.jpgchinese-ink.jpg  

#1 Flower of Hunger**** by Riveroflifelisajoy

#2 Frustration**** by Riverof lifelisajoy

#3 Chinese Ink and Water Color****by Riveroflifelisajoy

#4  Sun Flower ****by Riveroflifelisajoy

#5 Hunger and Doubt ****by Riveroflifelisajoy

#6 Foliage**** by Riveroflifelisajoy

#7  Chinese Ink and Red water color**** by Riverof lifelisajoy

 I really thought I would have been going to the Poconos,  or atleast SPLISH SPLASH this summer of 2007!  But instead I was stuck at home after work everyday,  and during my vacation. 

It was all based on a series of events that emptied my pocketbook after each pay period from May 23 2007 through September 2007.  It all began with my son’s senior trip from his private Lutheran School. 

 He had attended that school since kindergarten and now was graduating at the age of 14.  The school has nine grades.  It is called Grace Lutheran of Queens Village.  It is an excellent school for academics, and mentoring boys and girls. 

 I will always love and honor that school for its care and concern for my son.  However,  my problems began because of my son’s health.  He had experienced some episodic conditions that would need emergency care if and when they occurred. 

 It was because of this problem that I found myself attending a two day trip to  Washington D.C..  The trip was great!  We went to Beni Hannas Japanese Grill, the Spy Museum,  we observed the Washington Monument from a distance (due to terrorism alert as per our tour guide),  we went inside the Capital Building where all of the congress meets, Lincoln Memorial,  and the Arlington Cemetary and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. 

 We walked underground from one building in the capital to another.  I,  of course,  got lost during that activity.  You know, the cell phone died;  I had to ask around and then I and another parent eventually found the bus.

  I, a chaprone, had gotten lost because I always,  always have to use the restroom at the worse time!  So with all of this stated.   I had spent my entire 2nd paycheck of May on this trip!  I had planned to take my  mother with me. 

 I was going to follow the bus route, but my car had begun a serious oil leak and I had to leave the car behind.  My mother cannot climb those steep steps to into the coach bus. 

 So I had to make accomodations for someone to look in on my mom.  The problem was that my son’s school, knowing his medical history and condition was afraid for him to attend that two day trip without me being present.  If he were to get sick on the trip they were concerned about his safety and their liability! 

 All that was well understood by me.  The problem  was that it was not explained to me until May 2007!  My son had already paid for his ticket back in September,  for the $300.00 ticket!  The hotel was the Marriot!  4 Star accomodations!  Great….!  But not great for me who only makes $500.00 every two weeks!

  So at the last moment I could not pay any bills,  I was instead going on a trip!  I love trips….but not Trips on a Shoe String!  I like to decorate on a shoe string …but not go out of state on a trip/vacation on a shoestring.  I literally only had $20.00 between my son and myself for the entire trip! 

Thank God for two male parents who brought lunch on the second day for my son and myself!  My son,  however,  did become ill on the second day to my dismay.  I was in shock!  We were at the Smithsonian Museum (which is a definite place to visit when you get the chance) and my son was throwing up and falling asleep just about everywhere we toured that day. 

 He had a temperature,  and he was having asthma conditions that he was not telling me about at the time.  (He hates doctors and hospitals!)  He just kept asking when are we going home?  I want to go home.

  Finally the bus made it home from Washington D.C. and my son and I made a B-line to North Shore Manhasset Hospital.  NorthShore Manhasset Hospital has  the best pediatric emergency room –especially for asthma, and seziure disorders.  They also have a cable t.v. in each little cubicle –and if you stay unfortunately they even bring video games to their pediatric guests!! 

My son loves that hospital—once he has to go there for medical emergencies.  The doctors are quite thorough too! But my problem was that when I returned from that trip I had zero dollars to my name. 

 The next problem was that my son was graduating and I had to pay the school $2500.00 to complete his fees for graduation and school price for the year end. 

 My son needed a tux for his prom,  and shoes (size 11 1/2), shirt,  pants, tie,  cap and gown for graduation  and his hair done (he gets his braided–I’ll write about that in another blog).

  All of this shot a hole the size of Atlantic Ocean in my pocket book.  Remember I am a single parent,  caregiver to my mom,  and I do not receive childsupport due to the castastrophic disease of my (((missing for nearly 10 years–husband)))—so for me on a $500.00 bi-weekly pay check,  and $1600.00 per month rent,  ((and I pay gas bill, and the electric bill)) —I actually live pay check to pay check. 

 It was a very happy,  sad,  bittersweet time for my son and  my mother and I.

  I could have enjoyed it more it I had enough money to cover my son’s trip to Washington,  pay his school fees,  and buy all of the needed items so that he could enjoy his final days before graduation, and graduation itself! 

 I could not and did not even buy him a “real” graduation present.  Matter of fact…I did not even buy him a birthday gift.  I could not afford it this year!  I felt so bad.  I had waited for my taxes to come in so I could bring his school fees up to date. 

 The next problem after graduation was completed was  my car.  My car was due for inspection in June 30, 2007.  It had a very bad  oil leak–I own a 97 Toyota Camry.  It leaked so bad that I was putting two quarts of oil each time I went to work,  and every night when I returned home from work.

  Pep Boys in Hempstead LongIsland refused to inspect it until I paid them $658.00 for the repair of the oil leak.  I had to leave my car in Pep Boys for an entire month!  I had to pay my utilities,  and I had to pay my $1600.00 rent,  $500. 00  car insurance also had to be renewed. 

I truly do not know how I made it through those months and kept food on the table.  The telephone was cut off several times.

It was a hot,  hot,  mess from June,  July,  August!  I was on pins and needles.

  So I decided to start painting!  I could not go anywhere because I had no car for the whole month of July until I saved up enough money to pay Pep Boys; who was holding my car hostage! 

 So I metrocarded it to work everyday!  That was rough.  I had to walk ten blocks to the closest bus stop every day. 

 When I began painting I was disgusted.  I thought,  as I began to paint– that I had brought that paint set for my son. 

It had a real artist easel,  oil,  acrylics,  and water color paints.  I would come home after my long walk and talk about my day at work;   and talk about my car being held hostage; and wondering if Pep Boys would try to sell it or something. 

 I would feel butterflies in my stomach when I thought about my car.  So I put all of that nervous energy to work on a canvas by painting instead. 

Soon I began to like to paint.  Then I tried to get my son to paint.  My son was the real victim of this summer’s no money blues!  But he began to write songs on the piano!

  So for the summer he discovered his talent in music,  and I did like an old chicken….I scratched on the canvas with a brush and some paints.  I will attempt to upload some of my pictures so you can see what I did. *******************

   I have twenty that I actually did.  The first green themed picture  is called Foliage.  I experimented with the arcrylic.  I dabbed,  and  drew “leaves”,  and just imagined some of the parks I have been to in the summer.  I love it when it is hot outside and the plants seem to drink in the summer sun,  just after 10:00 am and it is a cloudless sky—-thus the title Foliage! 

The second picture  was one in which I had purchased some Chinese Ink from my son’s Scholastic Book Fair at school and it was supposed to be used for drawing the Chinese letters.  So I decided to combine the water color of red and I believe I also used a acrylic red for the dabbled spots on the picture.

I hope this may inspire some of you to take your frustrations out on a canvas.  To be honest with you I actually used typing paper,  because I only had one actual canvas.  On that canvas I drew a mermaid surrounded by sea creatures.  That one was my favorite to draw with colored pencils.  I love the deep ocean animals,  shark,  whale,  Octopus, Squid,  Jelly fish,  amemone,  coral reefs! 

I am a water person by nature.  I love swimming and I love the smell of the ocean.  It just can’t help it.  My mother always took me to Far Rockaway as a child,  and Jones Beach.  I will write about my love of the sea, and beach in another blog.  Just thinking about it makes me feel calm,  relaxed and serene!

I’ll write again soon!  riveroflifelisajoy!