Belief

Do you believe in Santa Claus?

Do you believe in aliens?

Do you believe in a God?

Do you believe we should treat others the way we want to be treated?

According to the dictionary the word belief has the two following meanings:

be·lief

bəˈlēf/

noun

  1. an acceptance that a statement is true or that something exists.
  2. trust, faith or confidence in someone or something.

 

What does it take for you, personally, to believe in someone or something? How can one chubby, white bearded man dressed in red velvet deliver gifts to every single kid on the planet in one night? Are there other species out there aside from what we know as ourselves – Homo sapiens? Do you believe and abide by words written in a book over 2,000 years ago without actual proof that any of the contents occurred? Do you believe in “doing unto others as you would have them do unto you?”

I do believe in The Golden Rule. As a kid, my folks instilled the belief of treating others the way I wanted to be treated verbally as well as through their actions. I’ve carried the belief through childhood, adolescence, high school, college and still do.

As a victim of sexual harassment, sexual assault and rape, I have found myself at the forefront of parallel universes endlessly the past three years. Traumas that have occurred in the past, are kept very much alive in my present due to the current news cycle that seriously feels like a horribly written drama for an off-brand network. Sadly, it’s fucking real. Reality.

As I live in my present, showing up for work, performing my daily tasks, and putting one foot in front of the other, I’m constantly besieged with stories and images from the news – in print and on the television – that drag me back to the very horrible moments I don’t want to keep reliving.

My thoughts on the current shit show in politics.

As a rape survivor, I’ve become accustomed to the myriad of triggers that can send me into a tailspin. I’m used to hearing and reading about the person who holds the highest position in America, and has also been accused of sexual assault by over 15 women and still was elected to run the country. I’m used to him now. That’s par for the course these days. More specifically, what has been a punch to the gut 24/7 the last week is the nomination circus surrounding the SCOTUS nominee, Brett Kavanaugh.

What almost sent my head into outer space were the comments made by #45 – victim blaming and shaming two of the three sexual assault accusers of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh over the past week.

To say this has been an extreme trigger would be an understatement.

Why didn’t Christine Blasey Ford report it 36 years ago? Jesus tap dancing Christ.

I was a freshman in high school when my very best male friend and I spent New Year’s Eve together. About five families and all of their off spring rented hotel rooms and us kids ate pizza, swam, watched movies and hung out. The ages ranged from about third grade to us two, cool 14-year-old young adults. As roughly 10 youngsters were all in a room watching a movie, most of us fell asleep. I had on a red and black plaid button-down onesie. I sat on the bed with my best friend and another one of the kids. At some point I fell asleep. When I woke up, the room was dark, and everyone was sleeping. The front of my pajamas was unbuttoned and there was a hand that wasn’t mine inside of them.

Fourteen.

What does a 14-year-old girl do? Immediately dial 9-1-1 and report an unwelcomed hand exploring the inside of her pajamas? Scream in a room packed to the gills with friends – kids, causing a gigantic commotion when she’s really just confused and scared and crying? As soon as shock wore off, this freshman girl got up to go to the bathroom, clutching her pajamas shut. I buttoned them up and then sat on the toilet, wondering what to do. It was about 2am or so. I went to my parent’s room and knocked with no answer, so I stayed outside of their room until someone else from our large party woke the next morning and pretended nothing happened. It wasn’t until my mom noticed me avoiding phone calls from my best friend and not wanting to do things with him per usual that she poked and prodded until I spilled it. I would have never, ever said anything – and there was no underaged drinking, no smoking, no drugs, no anything that I did wrong that December 31st.

Every New Year’s Eve is a sweet reminder of this – every.single.year. This kind of shit lives within you forever.

Please stop what you are doing and think about that. Think about your kids. Your nephews. Your nieces. Kids of your friends. Children you don’t know. My incident isn’t even in the slightest bit extreme and I think about it more often than I ever should. This “why didn’t she say something 36 years ago” question can kiss my fat ass.

When President Ronald Reagan nomintated Douglas H. Ginsburg in in October of 1987, he quickly withdrew his name from consideration. Why? Because NPR “revealed that Ginsburg had used weed on a few occasions” during his student days in the 1960s. And he even *gasp* used it after graduation. If weed caused a nominee to withdraw, even though it was due to behavior at least 20 years prior, I think being accused of sexual assault from three different women might suffice for the same conclusion in 2018. Bow the fuck out Kavanaugh.

Why should we believe accuser Deborah Ramirez? When, according to the man at the top of the food chain:

Fast forward to the night of my rape. I admittedly had been drinking, was an admitted emotional wreck and admittedly took a sleeping pill. So that means I deserved to be raped, right? According to POTUS and some of the current media I sure the fuck did.

It’s not me. It’s you – you fucking ass clowns.

Tucker Carlson, FOX News – on Dr. Christine Blasey Ford

“Sex offenders tend to commit serial sex crimes. Doesn’t she have an obligation to tell someone? To stop him from doing that if he is, in fact, a sex criminal? And I know it’s hard, but why don’t we have a right to know? If there’s a rapist on the loose, if you don’t tell anybody … you’re part of the problem, are you not?” Carlson asked radio host Ethan Bearman. “Where’s her obligation here? What about the rest of us?”

I told. My rapist, as are thousands of others that have actually been reported, remain on the loose, Tucker.

Fuck off, Carlson.

 Newt Gingrich compared Brett Kavanaugh being accused of sexual assault to the Salem witchcraft trials.

“What he’s being put through is almost like a medieval torture,” the former House speaker told host Sean Hannity.

Fuck off Newt.

You know what’s like midevil torture? Old, rich, white men (looking directly at you Charles fucking embarrassment to my home state of Iowa Grassley) dismissing allegations because – the nerve of a victim opening their mouth out of an act of civic duty. Go fuck yourselves.

The accusers have asked for the FBI to investigate their claims. The requests have thus far, been denied. Judge Kavanaugh isn’t really on trial – he is being interviewed for a lifetime job. And of this hour – 8:27 am on the day of Dr. Blasey Ford’s testimony, the vote on Kavanaugh will still take place tomorrow. What a thorough investigation.

If you are a man in this country, specifically a privileged white male, why would you be scared if you’ve done nothing wrong in this category? Have I ever done stupid things as a kid? Absofuckinglutely. But I never thought about sticking my hand down the pants of a sleeping friend. Have I been so drunk I’ve done something I regretted? Hand held high. But it hasn’t ever crossed my mind to take sexual and forceful advantage of someone else who is even more or less inebriated – or not drunk at all – while being full of alcohol myself. NOT ONCE.

I can understand the worry of being falsely accused but again and unfortunately, it does happen from time to time. According to the Our Resilience Organization

Myth: A lot of victims lie about being raped or give false reports.

Fact: Only 2-8% of rapes are falsely reported, the same percentage as for other felonies.

If you ever god forbid, find yourself accused of sexual assault, you will be presumed innocent until proven guilty because your personal freedom is at stake. Most likely it won’t come up during a job interview, as is happening with Kavanaugh. He wouldn’t go to jail or do any time for these heinous actions if he did, in fact, commit them. He would lose a job. Albeit, a very fortuitous, prestigious and important job that requires public trust, but he still has a lifetime appointment as a judge, so I think he’d be OK.

Oh you poor, dude. Being asked about your actions as a young adult.

If the Senate Judiciary Committee chooses to proceed without any formal investigation into these allegations, treating them as a “he-said, she(they)-said” matter, with no key witnesses such as Mark Judge subpoenaed to testify regarding his “lack of memory” then it would be a grave disservice. Seems as if minds of some voters are already made.

The outcome if this is the way chosen to handle this approval process? Teaching the next generation of young women and men that even if you speak up and tell someone about a sexual assault, they’ll learn it’s not serious enough to be taken at word. The next generation will learn that sexual assault isn’t deemed a crime serious enough to affect their reputation, current or future life.

Yet, here we are. I am up on a sleepless night, trying to comprehend why there is even a question how to proceed with the hearings with Dr. Blasey Ford. Who, came forward with the understanding she would remain anonymous, then was outed by media, received death threats, inadvertently put her family in danger and is in hiding over an incident that she believes took place 36 years ago. I believe her.

Everyone deserves a fair say. I just want the young generation to know that if you are ever sexually abused, assaulted or raped, your voice matters. You matter. As I watch this shit show unfold, my greatest fear is the possible negative aftermath in which these two – and all other kids – will be raised.

While one man’s prestigious lifetime appointment to a job is on the line for him, lives he literally touched in the wrong way have been altered forever. I believe survivors. I believe Christine Blasey Ford. I believe Deborah Ramirez. I believe Julie Swetnick. I believe in the courage that Dr. Blasey has to appear on a worldwide stage, forced to relive a horrendous night in her life.

There’s a short list with about 20 other names on it for a SCOTUS nomination. Hopefully, another judge will be offered the lifetime appointment with no sexual assault skeletons in his or her closet. Being a lifetime appointment, with a stellar moral compass required, the situation should not be rushed.

For myself (and countless other victims), the shame, embarrassment, and the toxicity of wanting to remain strong but feeling emotions boil over from acts that happened to me as far back as a 14-year-old rear their ugly heads because of the tone deafness in this country. And folks wonder why the vast majority of victims don’t come forward. How long has it taken some of the sexual assault victims to come forward about the abuse at the hands of priests? Double standard at its fucking finest.

If you know of someone who has experienced any kind of sexual trauma in their life, reach out. It has been a shit show of a week and hopefully, we’ve come further than we were almost 30 years ago when Anita Hill testified and was ignored.

I stand with survivors.

I hope you do, too.

CBXB

CBXB!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sayonara 2016

Know anyone who had a ridiculously fabulous 2016?

Me either.

Not to say great things didn’t happen for folks in this dumpster fire of a year but seriously, although my Gma used to say, “don’t wish your life away,” I couldn’t think of anything more that I would wish for than the goddamn clock to strike midnight on December 31, 2016.

Yes. How we all feel about this past fucking year.

Yes. How we all feel about this past fucking year.

While I kicked my year of with bad shit happening to a good person (yours truly) last January, there have been highlights and honest-to-goodness reminders as to why I wished I was a mother fucking super hero (or ass kicking princess).

I tried taking a cue from Elsa early on…

Elsa's help.

But I’m not a sexy smoker (see below). Nor do I know how to inhale. And lastly, I hold grudges like my net worth (let’s be real…I’m elated when I have triple digits in my checking account, so not really saying much), therefore this wasn’t going to be my outlet to let 2016 the fuck go. Also, it was just February.

Not a Sexy Smoker

Trying to heed advice of my fave, fearless lighting designer, Hawaiian Housewife (I know you’re rolling your eyes to the back of your skull M), who seems to let any/everything roll down her back (except puke – in which case she likes to displace on moi) with her famous line of…

Good Advice

Well, I didn’t try a bag of dicks per se but instead used an Iowa ear of sweet corn.

Corn Bag

While delicious, this didn’t help in the hate that seethed out of my soul for the year of all shitacular years.

So what did I do? I sprinted, ran, happened to be at PetSmart on an adopt-a-pussy Saturday sponsored by Sweet Faces Cat and Kitten Rescue (yes, I am now officially the face of their rescue and I will give you an autograph) and I did what any sane person does. I picked out three cats to add to my brood because in the end, you really can buy love.

Three's a Crowd

And in the end, you now have four feline mouths to feed.

Mouths

Plus I gotta fill the tiny yapper of my Ewok resembling chug, Precious.

Chug Life

But in the end, I got my loving therapy through this….

2016 at its Finest

All of the extra feline lovin’ seemed to help my in heart failure main squeeze, Mr. Ted E. Bear rekindle his love for life. And that made me feel like one extremely lucky lady – even though I will forever be recognized as the crazy Nashville cat lady. I give zero fucks for that title if this little pussy can still be by my side daily.

Better Tedder!

Friends tried to help by burning some of my past hurts away, while I ignited flames with lighter fluid.

Fire Starter

The fire didn’t really cure anything BUT this shirt did reflect my outlook…

Win Win

So I’d call that a win-win, wouldn’t you?

Being involved in a traumatic, life changing event, I enlisted the help of a f.a.b.u.l.o.u.s. therapist that I regularly see on Thursdays (#therapythursdays anyone?). Upon completion of sessions, copious amounts of vino is required. And while I don’t mind drinking with my five (yes I said fucking FIVE fur balls), my sister and gusband (gay husband) are more than ready to join me in Iowa and Missouri, respectively, when I need the company.

Therapy Thursday

IOWA!

My kind of pour.

My kind of pour.

Over the course of this year, I’ve let my pride of self-worth sit on a back burner and simmer (due to uncontrollable reactions to aforementioned bad shit happening).  With the help of friends who aren’t afraid to tackle the CBXB monster and family who’ve dealt with me forever, I was forced to not only wash my hair but show face at my fancy salon (with my fabulous chug in tow, of course) to get my pink rejuvenated and remain blonde.

Gussy

Those same folks about keeled over seeing me in flats and also forced me into my pre-2016 daily shoes…stilettos. I mean, I’ve always been known for my practicality.

Heeled UP

Counting on those who know you best, I hung in like a champ for my Iowa Hawkeyes football tailgates – and kept the family tradition of moonshine touchdown shots alive with Dada CBXB.

Tailgating

Cheering it on with family as often as I could.

CHEER

Speaking of cheering, you all have sent nothing but positivity, well wishes, fab karma, and outrageous juju my Aunt Crazy Pants’s way after her cancer diagnosis this summer. While she’s my end-all-be-all-twin, she’s still kicking some fucking cancer ass. And that’s the way we prefer.

Holla!

Aside from my family and very, very close circle of now known friends (funny how tragedy, traumatic experiences, etc. leads you to your faithful peeps) these two twin monkeys have done nothing but keep my rails from coming fully off the track. I mean, look at their faces. How lucky am I? Even if it was the most dismal year in the history of histories in my lifetime?

For real.

Speaking of rails on the track, while my job is typically a full-on shit show, I have people surrounding me in the office that are full of life, love and overall kindness. Their humor, wit and ability to deal with crazy on a daily basis has made my 2016 a better place.

Work

What made this year – day after day – hour upon hour – minute upon minute – second upon second – all the more difficult was the constant issue of rape culture and the shaming of women, men and any human who has suffered this intolerable situation. From Brock Turner getting a fucking six month sentence after raping a woman in public on a campus, to the published accounts of victims reading letters to their accused in court, to a fucking presidential nominee with 12 – yes 12 women accusing him of inappropriate conduct…one being recorded on tape resulting in a TV anchor’s dismissal from a network by simply being in the situation and not stopping it.

But then, America voted that man president. Women I know voted for that man. Women I know that have daughters voted for that man. Men I know who have daughters voted for that man. Why? It’s beyond me.

Not only does he “grab pussy” because he’s a “star” but he’s totally going to “Make America Great Again.”

FUCK YOU TRUMP

TRUTH

I’m all for voting and standing by your decisions. And I’m also not saying I loved the other choice on the ballot but fuck. Nominating a male chauvinist pig (among many other indecencies as a human being) as POTUS made the end of the year almost unbearable as a person in my standing.

TRUTH TRUTH

This year has proven unbelievable in the most horrific ways. Unbelievable in the most humane ways. Unbelievable in the amount of support I have garnered at the hands of acquaintances, friends, social media buddies, family – the outpouring was (and still is) something that I can’t even still comprehend in the best way possible. To that, I am grateful. To that, I dedicate my first bottle (of tonight) champs to you.

CHAMPS!

I will put on my finest threads and ride out the rest of the hours 2016 has to offer.

MOTHERFUCKER

I will most likely headbang my way into 2017, giving zero fucks about the neckache I will endure.

Bangin'

Because if you are reading this, you have aided me through the darkest 365 day chapter of my life thus far. And I love you for being there digitally, emotionally, physically, snail mailingly, social medially, FaceTimingly, textingly, etc. You have no idea how much one message, like, encouraging word can carry me through days.

Together

The motto I have stuck to and lived by every moment of 2016…

MOTTO

And now, it’s time for a fresh start. Not to say I – or anyone else – is immune to bad shit. It happens. It’s life and makes up the DNA of our souls. But sometimes enough is enough.

I say enough.

FUCK YOU 2016

Sayonara 2016.

FUCK YEAH 2017!

Cheers!

CBXB

CBXB!