Sunday, May 4, 2014

From Then to Now. My Story.

Loose talk makes everyone famous in a small town. I was born in a small town, claim an even small one as home and have transferred my home to an even smaller and gossiper town. And I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I love it, love knowing your neighbors and everyone you meet. 

Problem is when everyone thinks they know the truth, thinks they know your story, and they think they have some kind of right to draw their own conclusion. That’s not the always the case, especially when your life has been broadcasted and exposed.

You would think I was in magazines the way I talk, but that’s not the case. Tragedy has always been a great interest in human nature and my life was scared by such at a young age. Soon after the dust settled down everyone seemed to think they had a better way to direct my life, and most importantly they seemed to think they have a right to.

But enough time has passed that it is now time to tell my side. Not to cause pain or anger to anyone but to simply tell my story.

November 15th 2012. Very few people I know will ever forget this date. I won’t forget the sound of my own screams, the nightmares, even now do not allow that memory to fade. Like the memory of my heart breaking the memory of the man who so unintentionally caused it to do so will also never be forgotten, no matter what others may say. Jason Timothy Sagez. I met him at a fish fry at Cole Sibley’s house in August of 2011, it was a Sunday and I was not pleased havening been drug to Calhoun but would forever be grateful for that displeasing day.

Although we had ignored each other during the few hours in each other’s presence it would not take long in the coming weeks for me to fall completely for him. Although it still bewilders me why one of the most beloved people I knew chose me as well.

Months passed and shortly after my nineteenth birthday and seven months of being together we started making serious plans for our future together. But job market placed that on hold that summer and forced us to be kids for just a little longer.

As things fell back into place the early fall of 2012 we had picked a little starter home, an ancient trailer down along the banks of the Illinois, I figured something would go terribly wrong. But never in my worst dreams could I imagine the reality.

The nightmare of such reality was unimaginable. The screams. The pleading with God. Convinced that they were wrong, they had told the wrong family, that he was coming home….

But it was real. I spent the next several days surrounded by family, friends, and new friends and associates whom I had never met or heard of in the 15 months Jason and I had been together. I was spoiled by the fact I did not have to be alone. These people loved Jason, didn’t they? They flocked together like a family and I felt way safer around them than I had being alone in my miserly. I never was forced to face myself in the beginning.

I was sheltered at first by the cruel things people would say. Although I originally had thought it to be months before the comments started to float about in reality the funeral hadn’t even taken place. But others who felt more loyal to me, or perhaps were just more decent of people, kept me from it.

Friends and associates always seen to it I had something to fill my weekends especially so that I was not to be home with my pain. Yet if I was at bars someone thought it was insensitive of me. But if I was home I was too weak and lost in my pity party.

Course then started to rumors. Whom I was sleeping with although it was not true. Jason hadn’t been gone three months. But it is always something in a small town.

Over the months I have been told I have no right to mourn. After all I wasn’t with him near as long as his high school girlfriend. Accusing of holding on to long, moving on to fast, told even to have my tattoo removed that is my memorial to him. Some of these people say it to my face, others pretend they love me, are good friends to me, yet I hear it from people I trust more than them.

Hearing such from two separate groups, Calhoun and non-Calhoun, AKA Jerseyville, made things worse. Especially since Jerseyville had no freaking clue what the hell was going on. They had long not associated with me and had not known Jason more than to pass by if that.

I could not please everyone as it is impossible to do so, even if I had wanted to. I would wonder if any of these people knew Jason really, especially the one I knew. If they had surely I would know them, and know them a lot better if that was the case. But if in 15 months I knew you that little and heard of you that little, your opinion of course will mean not a damn to me.

I wanted to scream at people. Ask why they had such a right to tell me how to act, how to mourn. They claimed they knew him better than me as they had been in his life more than I had been. But they hadn’t been there in the time we were together. And it made me angry and jealous that they did have more memories with him than I did.

But I wouldn’t sink to their level. I wouldn’t pretend to know who could and couldn’t mourn.

I became so bitter in life. I know that. Dropping out of school twice, desperately trying to find a safe and happy place again.

I know I lashed out, I know I hurt people I shouldn’t have. No matter the hell the put me through, two wrongs do make a right no matter how much hell raged in my own heart, mind, body and soul. I apologize for that but offer no more than those words. I am human, I admit if I could do some things differently, I would have pissed a few more people off in a few more… interestingly of ways. But have fun figuring out which ones I have not totally forgiven and vice versa.

Pain broke me, I know that. I ended up alone and it was my own doing. This I expected but I didn’t care. I was tired of constantly being judged. I felt nothing outside of my numb misery.
I could of moved anywhere when I left home. Instead I came to Hardin. Moved right into the heart my fiery dungeon of hell. I desperate attempt to make claim to it as my home. A desperate attempt to hold on and to prove myself. Of what I still wonder at.

Finally Halloween rolled around. I had stopped caring what others though but would still sink into corners when the ones who had offended me most walked in. But even in this personal battle I made my presence, for the third year in a row to Big Johns and Mainstreet. No one can say God doesn’t interfere the most even in the midst of sin. Through shots and Jack Daniels mixed with Coke I ended with my saving grace, Frankie Witt.

The funny thing about Frankie is, he had been around through everything. I seen him constantly and he was always good to buy me a drink and a chat at the bar whenever I saw him. But most importantly he did his own thing and didn’t give a damn about what people thought. This also meant the only rumors he heard about me came from my once former best friend and his very pissed little sister. (I am pleased to say this has been remedied and I am excited to have one of my earliest friends in the county is now to be my sister and she seems pretty pleased about it too).

But Frankie like I said is his own person and does his own thing and doesn’t listen to what people say. He was the perfect getaway and the new beginning in the same setting.

Everyone has their own opinion on the both of us. Together and obviously separately. But it doesn’t matter, it didn’t matter last fall and it doesn’t matter now. And trust me there were plenty of people trying to say otherwise and come in between of that.

But I felt for the first time since the accident, whole and alive and free. And it was real and not the false security I had searched for that summer. I was alive.

Guilty yes. That guilt still rakes me. My feelings for Jason and Frankie fought inside me. Feeling of betrayal was high for both the men in my life. The ache for Jason alive and well and the knowing that Frankie didn’t deserve a woman in love with someone beyond her control.

Time has subdued those feelings only justly. My life hasn’t turned out as planned and I would like to think of myself as a stronger and better woman for surviving it. I could be drunk every second of the day. Shooting up my veins and snorting drugs but I’m not.

I could of died but I didn’t. I’m still standing here.

I survived because of friends and in spite of others. I offer no apologies for who I am now. For my engagement and the surprise of the baby Frankie and I have created. For this I offer no apologizes for the condition of my heart and soul.

I know a little more each day who I am. Pain will never cease and I will never entirely be whole.

Nothing I could ever do would of pleased the lot. But that is the way of small towns.

I am who I am. I have been lucky enough to have been loved by two great men and to have loved and love them both as much as I do. I offer no heartache for that.

Every mile is a memory for me. Ever tear falls for a reason and ever person has molded me and shaped my life in some way.

Love has no boundaries, weather or not we would like it to. Love is the greatest medicine and enemy of pain and heartache. Love is self-mending and soothing if strong enough.

The screams and ache inside of me have faded but my memory holds strong. Legends never die and love won’t let them. That’s how I know Jason will always live on.

Even with each miserable tear that falls as I type this I know I am finally happy. As sick as that sounds. I know I have caused much pain and discomfort in being happy to many people. People that I love. But had it not come across Frankie that night at Big Johns, I don’t dare wonder what would have happened to me. I know the route I was on and know that I would not be breathing today had it not been for a friend turned fiancée telling me I was going to learn to drink like a big girl.

That is my story.


Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The One Day

We all have dreams and places where we want to be in our careers. Weather it is a career you work in now or a place where you have just wanted to be your entire life. Like my writing career. I practice the “art” of writing and bull sh****ng while staying in college and working as a waitress. To say the least writing doesn’t pay my bills.
It would be nice for it to do so someday. I love writing stories however I want to write stories of real people. I love history so I want to write the stories of the history of the areas I grew up. The phenomenal, the original lay of the land how the early settlers where. The stories that were passed from mouth to mouth in backs of coffee shops, Sunday dinners, and the like. I want the stories of the survivors of a broken America. Those that will survivor to re-build a nation of the Promised Land.
I want to write a great American Western Novel. That is my one true goal. I love the old west, I was not meant for this time period that is for sure. I want to write one great cowboy book. A Lonesome Dove story that will go down in history. I want to create one last legend. A woman based off the legend of something like Jesse James and the like. A woman who rode fierce and who rose forward in the remains of a total Civil War.
I want to write things that make people better themselves. That give them hope as they lie on the pits of their lives with no believe that it gets any better. I want to write things for people who believe and struggle to find their inner peace and inner strength.
I should say my goal with all of this is to find the patience to wait for it. To pay my dues and earn my place in a writing world. But anyone who knows me first hand knows that patience is not my strong point. Never has been and probably never will be, just hopefully a bit better condition
Till then – keep moving up.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Racisism... Again...

Here’s what I don’t understand with the race issue. It’s something that should have been dead and buried years ago. I’m twenty-year-old white girl from Illinois. ILLINOIS not Chicago. Big difference. I wasn’t at the sit-in’s and walk-out’s. I wasn’t there for the race riots or the march on Washington or for Martin Luther King Jr’s “I have a dream…” speech. I sure as heck didn’t own no slaves.
Yet I feel as if I am being judged more because I am white than anything else. Somewhere along the lines the race issue flipped. Instead of finding a middle balance we pushed things beyond a point of return once more.
I’m not an Obama supporter. Half of what this blog has said proves that. However, I wouldn’t like him if he was white, black, Asian or Native American. Lately, I have seen that things changed more and more in this direction.
This year at the Missouri state fair a rodeo clown got a little out of hand. The clown dressed up in an Obama mask and mocked the president. Many called it racist. How, I ask, is this racist? First off it breaks out first amendment right as our freedom of speech and allowing us to critique the government. In 1994 a George H.W. Bush rodeo clown, or the Clinton, or the Reagan clown be allowed and nothing was said about it. Why? Because it wasn’t a race issue with Bush same as it isn’t a race issue with Obama. It’s an idiot President issue.
There are so many people who say that President Barrack Obama is the greatest President. Maybe one day he will do something to earn that title. But political issues aside you can’t say that he did something great based on the color of his skin. Yes he did something never been done before. A colored man in the White House. Yes, it was a step forward in American history - yet there was something that went wrong.
Lil’ Wayne. The name fits because he is indeed a lil’ man. Trampling on the American flag. Disrespect in the highest. Then he goes even farther disrespecting the soldiers who protect the flag he disgraced. Disgracing soldiers while wearing uniforms as fashion statements. Writing sickening “song” lyrics. If Lil’ Wayne can exercise his 1st Amendment right and not be punished or thought ill of while disgracing America why can’t Tuffy Gessling, the Obama clown, be treated the same way?
There are scholarships I can’t apply for because they are for African-American’s only. Schools proud of being for mainly blacks only. Black Entertainment Television. Black dating sights only. If any of these things said white in its place all hell would break loose again. It wasn’t that long ago that there were white only places. Charles Drew was the doctor who created large scale blood banks and allowing soldiers especially during the Vietnam era to be saved by his blood transfusions. A war fought in the midst of the race wars. A man who was rumored to have died after a car accident in April 1950 because the doctors at an all-white hospital refused to treat him.
Everyone knows that Martian Luther King Jr. had a dream. He dreamed that his four little children would be judged on their content of their character not by the color of their skin. Here in the 50 years after that speech I have that same dream. That one day I and the rest of my American people, no matter the color of their skin, be judged by their character. Not their skin, their level of class, the money in their bank account, or their appearances, but by what’s in their heart and soul. Their minds and morals.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Student Loan Dept My Realization

This summer I began my degree for a Bachelors in Communication with a focus in Journalism and dropped it all in the same season. The entire reason being tuition. When it was all said and done I was paying nearly $2,000 a month for one class online. Something that would have totaled the cost of my degree to almost $60,000 not including the cost for my transfer credits.
At twenty years old it was hard to summon the strength to put myself into so much debt at such an early age. Already in the process of moving out on my home and buying a home I knew that the student loans would force me to be over a $100,000 in debt by the time I was twenty-one. By the time I graduated at twenty-two and started paying my loans back I would be forced to move back in with my parents for the foreseeable future or marry up the wealth ladder. One of the two.
I hear the horror stories all the time about someone who went away to school got a good degree and even a job in their field and then had to move back home with their parents for a few years to pay off a chunk of that debt. I love my mom and dad but that’s not happening.
I got curious and looked online and came across a website called American Student Assistance that listed all kinds of scary facts about student loan debt. Like the fact there are approximately 37 million student loans outstanding. That there is over $908 billion dollars in student loan debt.
With all the talk in Washington about the interest rates set to double this has a lot of students going college shy and some stressing about surviving the after college wreckage.
According to a PBS report done on July 1st of this year states that in today’s dollars a tuition rate for a pubic collage in 1982 including room and board was roughly $2,423. Thirty years later that number had a 257 percent increase to around $8,655. Surely the modern technology we use in colleges, computers and the like don’t cost $6.000 a year?
The PBS report already states what most of us know. The student loan debt for people under 30 has forced us to put off buying homes, new cars and taking the risk of starting our own business and instead take whatever job we can get just to pay our bills.
I have received financial aid before. So I hate when people have things on Facebook saying “Pissed I had to pay for college today. Sorry my dad works!” My dad has been disabled from what started as a work accident since I was in grade school allowing me financial aid. However financial aid wasn’t enough to pay for my journalism school. When I attempt to go back to my local community college to get a certificate in medical billing and coding so that I can go to work and hopefully find a way to pay for journalism school down the road the government aid won’t pay for any of my certificate classes. Even though it allows me a way to get to work quicker so that I can help the economy. Go figure.
Currently I have a $1,000 in student loan debt not a lot but considering that was for just one class. And it will take me a few years to pay it off especially when I add to it this fall. The thought of not going back to school has accrued to me. Knowing that even with a pay increase I will have to be working in my field for over twenty years before I pay off my student loan debt and actually start making money has nearly detoured me.
Hopefully that 2003 Cavalier of mine makes it another ten years or so…

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Summer Revolution

It has always seemed like summer brightens people's mood. Or it should. New years should be in May, typical weather May not this bi-polar thing the Mid West and Illinois has been experiencing lately. If  New Years resolutions were made in May chances were the wonderful Vitamin D or whatever it is about warm weather would help us stick to those goals.
But in all honesty there's never a good time to make a "new you" and it's not like it's going to happen over night. In the last six months since my Jason's death I have learned that there is going to have to be more things change about me in order for me to be happy. My own happiness cannot depend upon Jason no longer unfortunately. Being graced with the best of friends to have my back helps but this time it has to be for me.
As my FFA Creed said " in being happy myself and playing square with those whose happiness depends upon me."
There are a thousand things I want to do in this life and to be realistic I'm not the best goal setter or the best doer. I get wore down easy, disappointed frequently and all to often give up. Life seems easier that way. Perhaps that's why I haven't written on this blog here lately. Disappointment's weigh be down and I'm too stubborn, as often reminded, to do much for my own good.
But it's fast approaching that time to change. I'm not talking my hair, my makeup or my fashion. Maybe my shape but eh. Luckily for me I am very good at seeming sane around most people but for those few unfortunates they know how close I am to becoming full fledge crazy, again. For the umpteenth time.
My outlook on life isn't what you would call glamour's by far. Negative Nancy has been my nickname more than once...
But anyhow, I really don't know where I'm going with this. Making a big outward statement that I'm going to change my life for the better so people can nag at me when I don't? Maybe. But anyways I'll keep you posted on my Summer Revolution.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Hunting Bigfoot

Hunting of just about any game entices me. Whether to take part in myself or just hear about it. But this is a hunting of a different sort. Hunting the un-findable and the un-killable. Hunting Bigfoot.
As a small girl I recall my grandfather, always the ultimate BSer trying to convince my older male cousins and several of their friends that Bigfoot was real and that he lived in a holler a few miles from where I grew up. The boys being around fourteen were convinced enough that they wouldn’t go into that patch of woods in broad daylight with loaded guns for a good many weeks. (Even though now they would never recall such an incident happening lol!)
I know my Grandpa was just pulling their leg and trying quiet successfully to scare them. But over the years as TV shows, books, and websites have become dedicated to the hunting of the large cross between modern man and bear it seems that there is some question to what really lurks in the woods. I for one must admit as an hunter I’d like to believe I am the biggest baddest thing in the woods when I’m armed-so I myself try not to believe in the hype.
But just a few years ago farmers from my area had believed to see a Bigfoot like creature by their cattle just after a snow. Old timers freaked out enough they wouldn’t even feed their cattle after dark? That left me wondering what they saw and added extra curiosity to the topic.  
It appears to be that many people have reported a same idea when it comes to the Bigfoot. Whether it’s ideas that has been fed to us by Hollywood or by just simply knowledge we store in the back of our head about other sightings that we use as details when we believe we have had an experience of our own.
It seems like most of the sightings I have read about seem to offer the same general facts. 1. The creature is always tall, towering above 7 feet to sometimes reaching even 10 feet in height. 2. The creature is always some sort of brown in color and is covered in hair completely like a bear would be. 3. The creature is almost always followed by a foul smell, similar to that of a skunk although those familiar to the outdoors claim that the off odor is different. 4. The creature makes a loud whooping sound often followed by a high pitched scream. Avid hunters and outdoors people say that this sound is much different than any noise they have ever heard and cannot place it to any animal, especially one that would be native to their respective areas.
Some other strong similarities that seem to be producing trends is that most Bigfoot sightings occur in Northern America, often times in the Canadian area and in the Northern US states although several have been spotted in Texas. However some avid hunters have reported sounds much similar to that of the Bigfoot occurring in Southern IL (my home state) just this last fall. This sound, the hunters claim is like nothing they have ever heard in the woods before and cannot identify it to any animal.
The Bigfoot seems to have put a fear into most animals as well.  This is similar to experiences that people have reported their animals acting when experiencing paranormal activity. Animals are reported to being on edge when Bigfoot is nearby. Dogs do not want to go outdoors and into the woods. One story reports that a spotting of what is believed to be a male, female, and offspring living in a small patch of woods where deer and bears alike have wondered into and ran back out moments later.
One inconsistency with reports I have read are the Sasquatches diets. One report states that they are vegetarians who only occasionally feed on fish (I’d feel safer if I believed that but I don’t). Another reports that I have found, written by loggers have said they discovered deer skeletons. Not unusual of course especially in bear country, but the skeletons had been dissected. The man reported the bones had been broken apart and separated and nearly organized by size. Something a bear would not be capable of.
Other reports have said where one woman’s dogs awoke her early in the morning just after dawn and she went downstairs to the door where the knob was jiggling as if someone was trying to turn it and walk in side. When the activity stopped and she looked outside she saw a tall brown shaggy creature running along the tree line.
Other scary reports say that people feel as if prisoner in their own homes after hearing strange sounds and seeing Bigfoot creatures as close as ten feet away. Those feel scared to go outside after dark and have said they feel as if they are being watched from the windows of their homes.
Where Bigfoot dwells is another issue. We already know that most reports of the creature say it tends to live in more secluded well forested areas like the Northern parts of North America and occasionally Texas. However some people go as far to say they have seen places where the creature sleeps- similar to a wolf or bear living in a den. One man from the British Columbia area states that he followed large foot prints to a crude shelter made of limbs. Similar to what a child might make a club house out of. This is the same man who had reported finding tree limbs snapped off at high reaches of 7 to 8 feet and as fresh as a half hour old, appearing sometime during his lunch break from mowing his land. The man had also reported as if feeling watched and while on a careful look out for bears experienced odd noises.
Other reports from Texas say that a man and his son frequently see their local Bigfoot. They claim he often times bangs on the tin of their barn and appears fascinated by them as they are with the creature. The state that something one night after hearing strange and frightening noises coming from outside that they found a solid wood post that had been set in concrete snapped off. They claim that this Bigfoot likely dwells in an underground cave and tunnels as local hunters have never spotted the Bigfoot in the woods during the day.
Every Bigfoot spotter has their own stories, and the evidence, pictures and the like often have the faults especially in the world of modern technology where computers can manufacture and alter just about anything. But a complete non believer can be turned in just one experience.
But if it’s not a Bigfoot in the woods what is it that is stalking people? Scaring them witless and making these unheard of sounds? Most traits seem to be extremely similar from report to report and for many of these things no other creature seems to fit. A large bear or moose could be responsible for the breaking of limbs, a skunk for the odor, an owl or large cat responsible for the night screams but what about those who have met the Bigfoot face to face? What can possibly explain the fear put into grown men?
For other stories visit one of my favorite blogs on the topic
Happy Hunting

Monday, April 1, 2013

Buckwild's Shain and America's Michael

I’ve been getting some heat on our beloved Facebook about my stance on this issue. But since I stand by 1st amendment followed by the fact I just don’t give a damn, thought I’d elaborate here. Once again you are all free to express your own feelings whether you agree or disagree.
Buckwild’s star Shain Gandee’s death is a tragedy. Most all deaths are.
 *Note most all excludes rapists, terrorists, child pedophiles, and those who beat the hell out of their kids and spouses.  There are some flat out murders who may live simply because days like these leave me wondering if I will be lumped in this group.
I am Buckwild fan so by that alone I haven’t seen much of the TV show. I don’t dis on being rednecks or doing stupid shit. As I have been constantly reminded we all have done some stupid shit. True. Very true. Most of us do have a little more respect than to publicly display our mistakes proudly on television. That’s what COPS is for. But since Buckwild is shockingly chose to Jersey Shore and we all know how I feel on that subject, I don’t support the show nor do I care if it gets cancelled.
But that’s not the point.
Point in case being is I have been critical of how many people are making a big deal over this. Should the boy be mourned? Yes. Should he be idolized…well that’s all up to you. But for me in my mind, no. Reports all say that he died after a night of leaving the bar early in the morning and highly intoxicated.
If the reports are wrong then I’ll feel a lot more sympathetic. I realize that there is a good possibility that one day I will bury someone else I am close with. I realize that several nights there is a possibility that it could be caused due to drinking and driving. They being the drinker and driver.
It’s a fact of life and a stupid choice. God above make sure if I am ever this stupid to try and do it someone beats the holy hell out of me for my ignorance.
But once again. Not the entire point.
The major problem I have with the issue of Shain Gandee… and I’m sure his family is touched by the support because I know how it helped by the show of support when my own fiancée died. But the fact is he was a reality TV star. Yes it’s all great to be on Television but America has once again forgotten wherein the true hero’s lie.
Everyday soldiers die but their names are not reporter on our television sets because a celebrity has passed. A World War II hero who saved dozens of lies by disobeying orders and going alone in his aircraft died the same day as Michael Jackson. But superstardom is idolized more than it should be. Heroes who save us are often forgotten because of a celebrity. It’s worse when the celebrity is such because he simply lets a camera crew follow him around as he or she parties.
I have no qualms with mourning a man. I have qualms when mourning one who risked his own life for nothing but a beer and a drive is mourned before a man who laid down his life for his country. Who gave his life so a kid could be on TV and drink and live free without having to pick up a gun and go to work halfway across the world.
I quote Toby Keith in my mind as I write this article. Might as well quote him in it as well. “I stand by my right to speak freely but I worry ‘bout what kids learn from TV… I’m a (wo)man of my convictions call me wrong call me right but I’ll bring my better angles to every fight… you sure know where I stand.”
Says it all right there.
Rest in Peace Shain Gandee. Because I’m sure you were a great guy and I know you and those that died with you were loved and will be missed.
But also Rest in Peace to Michael Cable, a solider who’s name will be forgotten shortly to most of the country. I apologize for the nation you defend because our society has a new habit of being selfish on one part and on another forgetting who cares for us. But you died defending us and our freedoms that include the ability to be a reality star and to enjoy reality television and do the things that  Shain and Buckwild along with the rest of us enjoy doing. Because if it wasn’t for Michael and the rest of the men and women like him, most of us wouldn’t know Shain’s name.