Looking in the Mirror

Spiritual Revelations for those seeking Humanity in Humans ~~CordieB.

Archive for children

African-American Grandmothers ~Written by CordieB

Cordieb and BabyCocoa

Cordieb and BabyCocoa

I’m reposting this due to an interesting blog posting I read today on RawDawgB’s blog, entititled, "When the grandmomma’s gone "   Now, if you’ve been blogging with me for some time, you will know that I judge people for themselves, not based on color, religion, sex, or anything else.  But this topic is based on stats – and I’d appreciate any feedback you might offer, no matter your race, creed, or nationality.  Please be frank and honest with your opinions; however any opinion that are based on racisim or hatred will be deleted as they were on the first posting.  Peace, Light and Love . . . . CordieB. 

Why is it that African-American women tend to take care of their extended families and non-families more so than our caucasion sisters.   I visited my Aunt (who is 70+)  last weekend, and was amused, as always, at her streangth and her many stories of days gone by.  While I was there, two of her great- grand children were preparing to eat.   Now, my aunt, who is 70+ has raised her children, some of her grand children; and now – God bless her soul, she is raising two of her great grands!  These children are still in elementary school!   She receives very little assistance, –other than finacial help from her son who lives with her.    Most of the physical and emotional tolls all fall on her.  This same woman took care of my grand mother when she became too old to care for herself.  She would not have ever thought of putting Granny in a nursing home.  She took care of me when my mother passed away  (And I thank her for it).  She has taken in so many people with hard luck situations, and hardly ever complains.  But what’s so amazing about her is that she is the norm among African-American woman 50 years of age and older.  Now, some may feel that this is a myth or a belief that is not based on fact.   I made this observation based upon people whom I’ve encountered (my family, my friends)– and true enough, there are studies that show this to be true –  see below: 

Goodman and Silverstein (2001) found that compared to grandmothers of other ethnic groups, African American grandmothers were more likely to have more life satisfaction and lower negative affect. However, further empirical research has pointed to other reasons that suggest the issue of grandparents as caregivers for their grandchildren is especially relevant for African Americans. In the United States, the largest percentages of children living in a grandparent headed household are African American (Pebley & Rudkin, 1999; Pinson-Millburn & Fabian, 1996; Fuller-Thompson & Minkler, 2000; Caputo, 2001). Studies have found that compared to White grandparents who are caregivers to their grandchildren, African American parenting grandparents are more likely to be unemployed, live below the poverty line, and have more grandchildren for whom they provide care (Sands & Goldberg-Glen, 2000). Similarly, others have found that living beneath the poverty line, being African American, and being single raises the probability of becoming a grandparent who is a caregiver to their grandchildren (Roe & Minkler, 1998). Fuller-Thompson

To read the entire study, see http://www.clas.ufl.edu/users/tlmills/pub/Mills%20Publications/Mills,%20Gomez%20Smith%20&%20DeLeon_Grandparents.pdf

If you read the whole report you will see that among grandmothers raising grandchildren, African-American grandmothers make up for 69 percent of the total. 

Now back to the question.  Why?  I have more than a few answers of my own, but the best one that I can give is because we are expected to. 

Now expecting a 70 year to raise an elementary school aged child is nothing to brag about–in fact it is ludicrous.  I find  this type of expectation is what oftentimes leaves whole generations without proper guidance and discipline.   Where are the mothers? God only knows where the fathers are.  What are we teaching our children when we give them the expectation that we will always be there for them and for their’s-no doubt.  How many borderline unfit mothers would straighten up if we threatened to call social services and not do the work ourselves? 

Now I know that I might pee a lot of my beautiful people off by saying this; afterall – it’s not only that we are expected, we also have those spiritual virtues of love, caring, and being responsible for others who are less fortunate. 

However, love sometimes has to be learned the hard way.  Caring means, sometimes no matter how hard it might be, we step back and let our children or friends actually pass the grade and not do the work for them.   By doing the work for them, we are making  a contribution to a new generation of ignorance and complacency.

The Bible says, give a man a fish, and he’ll eat for a day, teach a man to fish and he’ll eat for a lifetime. 

There is a difference between helping and "enabling."    Enabling is a term that I, until recently, only associated with addiction.  However, when we allow self sufficient adults to become totally dependent upon us, we are not helping them at the least.   In fact, we are enabling them to become addicted to a cycle of dependency.

We can’t stop this cycle overnight.  But we can stop it by gradually putting our foot down and not allowing people to make so many unhealthy and unloving demands on us. 

We have to again teach our children and our neigbors self-sufficency by providing tough love–that which will have lasting and significant assistance. 

Peace, Light and Love. . . CordieB

A Spiritual Riddle

I feel like the hush of a whisper, gently blowing in the wind;
I am the warmth and light of sunshine softly caressing your skin;
I have the touch of bubbles, kissess, silk and french lace,
Brushing ever so gently upon your sweet face.

I am a cool mist alikend to a newborn baby’s breath –
softly blowing against your ears
I am the cup that catches your blood to endless depths
It is I who eases your silent fears;

I am a fountain of knowledge and wisdom; . .
I am with you from beginning till end
I am a blissfull vase full of mystery and wonderment
I am strong, yet I easily bend

I have the essense of the morning’s first dew
Like the spring’s first warm rain
It is I to whom the birds first sing at the break of dawn
I’m the mystery of midnight – yet I am not vain.

I watch over you in your travels
and pray wishes of wellness many times
You feel my sweet presense along your journey
Even through eternal space and time . . .

I bring laughter and happiness to you often
I can warm your heart with a smile
I have the fragrant alure of morning’s sweet honysicle
Come sat by my side for a while . . .

I often sat back and watch you in wonderment
Always loving througout the ages
But the essense of my real beauty
Lies in the joy in the children’s faces

I taste like sweet cotton candy dipped in lemon juice
My eyes were created to reflect peace and seduce . .
I’m easily chilled like snow flakes on the last rose of summer;
I’m remnescent of the last vision seen before slumber.

I am a colorful mozaic of joys and sorrows.
My tears help cool my soul.
The essense of serenity lies in my powers.
My true powers are yet to unfold;

I can radiate the coolness of a kiss on a foggy windowpane.
Or be as sensual as a shallow warm summer’s wave
Although I’m the ultimate protector -less I go insane,
It is I that you feel you must forever save!

I am happiness, sadness; rolled up into one
My presense is such – I’m all but I’m none

I am like the vision of a rainbow
Reflecting rays of color on a transluscent sea
I’m a trusted comfortor and nurturer;
Your humble beginnings were born within me.

I dance with the rythem of leaves blown at the first sight of fall
Sometime I do tumble, at times I might fall
Yet, I am the will of the powerless, the strength of the man
I’m God’s beautiful miracle . .
I am . . .        (click below for the riddle’s answer)

Read the rest of this entry »

If


My Son Sam – It’s Wonderful When Boys can Be Boys

I read the following poem on Sue Ann Edward’s, Always Embraces Always blog a few days ago, and I feel compelled to share it as well.  I hope it enlightens you as it has me.

If
by Rudyard Kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But can make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by the waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk to wise:

If you can dream – and not make the dream your master
If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:

If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build’em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can walk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings – nor lose the common touch
If neither foes nor friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And – which is more – you’ll be a Man, my son!

The Lady with No Face (A Spiritual Riddle)

I read this riddle today written by Oscar Basurto Carbonell, who is the  author of innumerable writings related to Self Knowledge, Healing, Art for Good Health, Meditation and Spiritual Science.      Oscar is also an accomplished artist, who has been painting since his early years.  He has a great knowledge of the ancient science of techniques and designs of the Sacred Geometry, of the Ancient Symbols and of Healing Energy.

What a beautiful adorned bride! Nobody has ever been able to run away from your charm. The door of heaven and hell is open with your kiss. You always bring assistance or weeping. You are the river that leads to the sea of eternity. And also the moon ray that is diluted in the darkness. You are always passionate and faithful. Required by some and despised by others.Nevertheless, you always impose your presence. Your absence has never occurred in life. And from the old ones to the children, everyone answers your call. What is the reason to love you? What is the reason to hate you? You are in an inevitable way, the most real destiny and the deepest embrace. The weeping of death and the joy of eternal rebirth are in your voice. And you are who reveal the mystery. You are who conquer fear.  To read the rest of this post, please visit http://healingquotes.wordpress.com/2008/03/08/the-lady-with-no-face-for-reflection/

Love Vs. Religion

There was this girl who was Christian and this guy who was Muslim they fell in love. They wanted to get married and live their lives together. Then Religion was brought into the relationship. He told her that if they got married the kids would have to be his religion. She quickly responded that she wanted her kids to be Christians. There was an invisible wall put up between them from that moment on. Her love for him grew strong and she even thought that maybe she could change him or find a way to persuade him that it could work. But this thought of how much she loves Jesus kept coming into her mind and that her kids would not be able to feel that love from Jesus or for Jesus if she was marry him and have kids with him. He was also very concerned if he would marry her about the fate of their children’s soul. He told her that if she could not agree that the children would be Muslim then they would have to end the relationship. 

To read the rest of this thought provoking story, visit Bright Warrior Nika’s blog at http://nikabrightlightwarrior.wordpress.com/2007/12/15/love-vs-religion/