Thoughts in the mind of l0oree

Posts tagged “psychology

Developmental Stages

I am in my second week of college. I started a 5 week class of Psychology. This is my second assignment.  My essay about moral development.  You can see original here

Building up to Moral Development:

I believe all human developments build up to the moral development. To be human is to incorporate all senses that create the perceptions through all the physical, emotional, and social mile-stones. Physically the mind does grow and is able to discern morals around the age of 13 all on its own without outside influence.  Up until then environment, including parents, coach the child in what to do. Be it a good outcome or poor outcome caregivers are ultimately responsible and accountable for children’s actions until the child can discern for their self “Theory of Mind”, and beyond the “egocentric stage”.

December 31, 2010

13th Birthday--December 31,2010

    I cannot think on this topic without thinking of my child that is 13 years old and in the eighth grade.  Before this year on big assignments like 6th grade Berlin Wall model and paper explaining it, I helped. When thinking about the war, my child decided killing is wrong, but he did not quite understand why and what impact the wall had on society before and after being torn down. I wrote it for my child. We researched together on the internet a video of how and why the wall was made. My child made the model, and I wrote the paper.  With help, he got the point that not being allowed choice leads to unhappiness; and eventually, walls get torn down.

Kohlberg’s Moral Stage 6

However, this year has been a great turning point for my child. I notice ideas about ecosystem survival and essay writings about the quote “breaking away of mental chains” in three minutes time incorporating mental chains of poverty, racism and war.  My child now goes beyond personal perspective and includes the” Theory of Mind”.  As the parent, I purposely provided good examples and environment for the child to make good moral judgments. Even during this stage of life, I continue to offer advice.  Example… I encouraged him to do the big brother program.  I explained this is an opportunity that will be missed if not taken.  He will have this mentor for advice, and I think a good program due to my son has no dad in his life since age four.   He is doing this.  His mentor is the City of ———-’s Assistant Director.   Son has reached stage 6 “The morality of individual principles of conscience “(Kohlberg’s Moral Stages,

His actions are driven by his internalized ideas. In art class, he abandoned a group project and went to the corner by himself to read. His favorite book was taken away. He knew going to school not to read in class due to that morning he asked to take his new book to school. I clearly told him no reading in class. That I would take it away myself if I heard of him doing this. At home, he told me that the group had a “ lame idea”.   The project was about making an island.  He wanted to create a survivable ecosystem, and the group wanted to make a utensil town. This was the first art project he was interested in doing and a letdown. So, I explained to my son that the book is to stay with the teacher until she deems he can receive it back, and that the teacher is concerned with his getting along with a group at the moment.  When possible follow the group majority peacefully.  Then do the project like he wants at home later.  He did have a great idea.  However, the other children did not see the point that for an ecosystem to survive on an island everything has to get along.

Kohlberg’s Moral Stage 5

Just before entering stage 6, my child was majorly concerned with law, order, thinking of new rules, or questioning the rules of why is it a rule.  The “Contractual/legalistic orientation” step was everywhere.  Reading the author, John Grishom, became a favorite.   The war conflicts in other countries on the back of his mind but cannot understand why there is a United Nations going to war on an individualized country with its own set of rules.  Rules, rules, rules  ……what to do as a parent in this situation is mind-boggling, but what I did was use my Intro to sociology knowledge and explained some of those principles. I talked about the herd mentality and about what most of society agrees with as the norm at the time is what the law of society usually becomes.  Society can be wrong sometimes and peaceful resistance can help society change a view-point. Wars create chaos and strife and usually more conflict even after the ending of the war. Any conflict entered into should be thought out carefully with a resolution already in mind before starting the conflict, or like I said you would just end up with continuous chaos. The reason for the rules is to prevent chaos in the first place.

Kohlberg’s Moral Stage 4 and 3

These stages in the middle I can’t quite pinpoint the exact moment but it was there.  My child would do more than the expected; like clean up the bathroom, massage my feet, make a special card, or bring me flowers.  I feel as though it was genuine too.  I did not give a reward for the behavior. I gave just a smile, thank you, and wow you are amazing response.  His little mind was showing me respect and thankfully he continues to show respect. “Authority and social –order-maintaining orientation” stage and “Good-boy/good-girl orientation” goes together with my child. I set the rules for my child. I explained why, there are rules, with what happens when rules get broken. Not focusing on the punishment but what happens like running in the house could cause physical harm or breakage of an heirloom.  The punishment only last for a moment the breakage of an heirloom is irreplaceable.

Kohlberg’s Moral Stage 2

During stage 2 my son automatically did things to complete his own satisfaction. Lego’s, puzzles, kinex were his choice of me time and often included me.  I continue to have a picture of his house of cards.  He was genuinely proud of himself and ran to say,” look at what I did mom”.  I give out praise continually for all these amazing feats.  Tying shoes, riding bike, reading, writing, house of cards, what’s next?  I am so amazed.  I kept secret that I can do a house of cards too.  I do not think he would even comprehend that at the time.  He was all about what he could do without even being aware.   “Naively egoistic orientation” abounded.

Kohlberg’s Moral Stage 1

This stage my son avoided trouble at all cost. I notice when in conflict with sister would always just go to room.  He decided to be responsible for room and not the rest of the house.  My son’s first moral response was “obedience and punishment orientation”.  Taking away of Television, games, and books were my son’s punishments. Obeying gets the things back. Cleverly, he decided staying in his room and lying about doing homework easily gained his things back.  I would then tell him that I will find out if homework is not completed and a circle of continuous taking away would ensue.   This took a while for him to realize through punishment that the homework must be done.

Building up to Moral Development

Throughout these stages a child is also developing socially, emotionally, and physically.  The stimuli and parenting style of parents facilitate the prospering moral stages.  Without a good environment while developing the other skills good morals will not develop, stay stagnant, or may become morally wrong.  Parents would benefit society greatly by taking a parenting class during pregnancy.  The reason is: our children are the future to a morally good society with rules that keep out the chaos and keep the peace between families, neighbors, countries, the universe…………. The building up to moral development must start and continue throughout life.  Whatever a child is going through at the time of each stage determines the time, perspective, and order of the stages.  My son’s stage 1 came after stage 4.    All stages are incorporated into a person. Whichever stage comes first, the stages do not stop just continue building. So please never assume it is too late for morals 🙂 Each individual is different just as no snowflake is alike. Age is just a number baby! lol and Build,build,build…………:)

  ” I believe the children are our future

Teach them well And let them lead the way

Show them all the beauty

They possess inside

Give them a sense of pride

To make it easier

Let the children’s laughter

Remind us how we used to be

 Everybody’s searching for a hero

People need someone to look up to

I never found anyone

Who fulfilled my needs

A lonely place to be

And so I learned to depend on me.

 I decided long ago

Never to walk in anyone’s shadow

If I fail, if I succeed

At least I’ll live as I believe

No matter what they take from me

They can’t take away my dignity

Because the greatest love of all

Is happening to me

I found the greatest love of all

Inside of me

The greatest love of all

Is easy to achieve

Learning to love yourself

It is the greatest love of all

 I believe the children are our future

Teach them well

And let them lead the way

Show them all the beauty

They possess inside

Give them a sense of pride

To make it easier

Let the children’s laughter

Remind us how we used to be

 I decided long ago

Never to walk in anyone’s shadow

If I fail, if I succeed

At least I’ll live as I believe.

No matter what they take from me

They can’t take away my dignity

 Because the greatest love of all

 Is happening to me

I found the greatest love of all

Inside of me

The greatest love of all

Is easy to achieve

Learning to love yourself

It is the greatest love of all

 And If by chance that special place

That you’ve been dreaming of

Leads you to a lonely place

Find your strength in love”

Selected References

Griggs, R. (2012). Psychology: A Concise Introduction, Third Edition. Worth publishers. Chapter 7 Developmental Psychology (246-286)

Kohlberg’s Moral Stages. retrieved 11/22/2011.


Week One Discussion “My Brain” 11/20/2011

I believe my left cortex is used slightly more than my right due to I am right-handed. I do more things physically with my right side than my left side. The right side of my brain is always thinking about the artistic beauty in every thing that my left side is doing logically.

My hippocampus is used a lot quickly without me even being aware most times due to I can memorize quickly and learn new task fast. I can walk into a clinic as charge for the first time and by the 2nd hour know every patients’ name in the building although for some reason have not a clue about the workers’ names. My mind tends to categorize what is the most important thing at the moment to remember and do first.

My occipital lobe works to make up for the wrong shape of my eyeball. Even with the astigmatism, at times I see better without my glasses. My occipital lobe is always searching to make sure I see things correctly. I have a photographic memory. My mind can remember everything in my cluttered room, and I can assure you if one little thing is touched or moved in the slightest my mind recognizes the adjustment.

I use the temporal lobe more so than occipital without even being aware due to I am an auditory learner. I read out loud even to myself at times due to this. I can listen to television, listen to music, and converse at the same time. I do so much listening that others perceive me most times as not paying attention. When in reality my brain is taking in more than they can ever imagine.

My pons works overtime due to I have only had 6 dreams in my life that I can remember on awakening.  I am solving in my sleep so no need to remember. Although, one vivid dream that I had that awakened me from deep sleep had me crying due to no way for me to solve. It was a vivid dream of Africa and thousands of people bleeding from all orifices of their body. I was so frightened from the dream I could not go back to sleep, went to the living room, and turned on the television.  What I was dreaming about was on the late night news special report of the eboli virus in Africa. This was 1995, 9 years before nursing school.

My cerebellum is always trying to co-ordinate my movements and struggles when having reaction to medication that causes parkinsonian symptoms. I have to literally think to take one step at a time in that situation. After that experience, cerebellum will never be taken for granted.

Lastly but definitely not the least important, my medulla does so much all the time that the rest of my mind never even has to think about what it’s doing. Breathing and blood pressure are automatic.

The brain is amazing. So intriguing, something about the unknown of the how we know things I desire to want to know more.  The part of our body that does the most, controls our thoughts, movements, behavior is the part of our body we know the least about.

reference:!/view.aspx?cid=B5DCEF1F8F2240A0&resid=B5DCEF1F8F2240A0%21107  This is all the whole board of discussion names left off but the responses with the grades on them are mine.



Doreen meaning: Gift from God

My birth Grandma’s name Dora Willamina means Gift protector.

My birth mom’s name Till ora Henrietta means prayed for home ruler.

My ex husband named our son. I had no choice of our baby’s first name. My son’s father was not present at his first son’s birth. He had driven a big truck. When he arrived at the hospital, his wife at the time had already given their first-born son a name. So, as compassionate as I am, let ex husband totally decide our son’s name. I could not imagine the pain it must be not given the choice to name your first-born child.

At my first born’s delivery, the dad was not there. I called, left messages and called all his friends —>whom I knew he hung out with and would get the message to him that our child was being born. I was so scared. For the past 2 months MD had put me on complete bedrest. I had edema to the point you could not tell by poking as far as possible that I had an ankle bone. My foot that usually wore size 6.5 could only fit into my sister’s size 10 flip-flops.

The last checkup at the health department the MD said,” you are having this baby today”, two weeks before our baby’s due date. My blood pressure was >200/110. I was in labor with mag drip and the other drip for 15 hours. For 14 of those hours, no pain medication at all; for I was not dilated at all.  Because our child was not in the birth canal yet,  a stretchy girdle like binder was placed around the tummy on top of the two monitors as tightly as possible.  With mag drip you go through hot flashes that feel as though you will die without air and then periods when you are shivering cold. The nurse would get warming blanket one minute the next some cool ice chips and a fan.

I did not have a name picked out for our baby.  The only ultra-sound  had been at the beginning  3 months. The length of our baby’s femur bone determined our baby’s due date.  Laboring like this all night,  the MD comes to room and speaks to the nurse” all she has to do now is push.” No c-section needed.  Our baby’s head was anterior instead of posterior. Although maxed out on the epidural to the point I could not even move my legs, our baby’s head  was pushing on my tailbone and creating the most pain ever.  My mom so sweet held up my legs for me.  I pushed for two hours and finally was brisk away to the delivery room. MD came in did small episiotomy and our baby girl was out in two pushes with MD using the tongs to direct our baby girl’s head.

She was the most beautiful baby girl. Eyes wide open looking at me. Wow was the only thought on my mind at that moment. Next, I went to shared room with a chick that had had her baby at home and was ambulanced to the hospital with the cord still attached.  I kept calling the nursery. I wanted, needed my only blood kin that I had ever met in my life right beside me. I would ask every time has our baby slept? The nursery would say no she has not slept. The last memory  had been her eyes wide open staring at me. I could not sleep at all. Finally, 12 hours past the nursery said our daughter had her first bowel movement and could come to the room.  She never left out of the room after that. I wanted our baby near me always. The next morning I weighed I lost 70 pounds over night. I weighed 115 the day I found out I was pregnant and 205 the last MD appointment.

The nurse came to the room with papers to name her.  I called her dad over and over to come to the hospital. Dad never came. I looked at MY baby girl now; seems like not OUR baby anymore.  Now I must have the right to name her without any help.  I looked at her and said,” she looks like a very beautiful Sabrina.  Ya I like the sound of Sabrina Vinson”. I looked to my mom the only one with me of my whole life history during one of the most scariest times of my life and said, “I will name her after you>. Sabrina Fay Vinson.”

Troy Lyn Vinson never came. The hospital nurse explained that the father has to come sign the birth certificate for Vinson to be her last name. So now definitely she was mine no one elses, totally dependent on only me.

I was in the hospital an extra day due to my blood pressure was still >180/100 on 2 blood pressure medications. The obstetrician had a cardiologist come see me. The MD made my mom promise I would have help with my baby and stay on complete bed rest to let me go home.  Fay Maurice Baugh Schreiner looked at the MD and said yes I will. Next, mom even signed  discharge papers agreeing that she would do that.

Once home, I put my little sweet girl in the small cradle right beside my bed.  Mother never not one time picked up my baby girl. Mom’s husband told me the next day- “you need to move because THE baby was getting on”…… Fay Maurice Baugh Schreiner’s nerves.

So the very next day, I dressed, got my baby dressed and went to health department for my baby girl’s WIC formula all by myself.  Which now I am strong enough for the both of us. Not just a me anymore. I enrolled in a gym. Next  mom told me Lori Ann if you can go to a gym you can work. So on my one week visit after birth I kindly ask the MD if I could go back to work and I did JUST LIKE THAT> “you move I move just like that, hey DJ bring that back…..,Ludacris.


He did not want a short first name, for he had gone all his life with three first names. He was not happy with the name, Paul Eric Gregg. He never mentioned why it bothered him so much, but it did.

I never bought a baby book or anything to look up meanings to decide the name. Paul said,” I will name him when I see him.” Presuming my ex husband was leery for some slight chance could not be at the hospital in time to give the name he chose; the week before due, Paul said, “I want  Nathaniel as the first name and you can decide the middle name.”

Wow! I was huge, big with nothing to do all day. I had in mind before Paul decided  Nathaniel possibly Nicholas since due date was Christmas. This name did not sound right.  I thought long about what name to give to my son. I searched everywhere for boy names.  I read every one of them with the name Nathaniel. The only name that I liked how it sounded with Nathaniel is Ryan.

MEANING: God Given Little King (watchers)

I never looked up the meaning of this name until 2009. I was like wow that is so cool. When my son was infant I would call him king and the boss. Then later that year I randomly received e-mail with a birth cousin with asking me if I would like my birth genealogy.   Last year I was curious about the  meanings of my ancestors, so I researched them.  Anyways, I  think it is cool how the name’s meanings correlate; especially since, we have never in our lives met except on the one day that my birth mom gave me the one and only thing ever the Name Doreen Van Assen.

Give is part of me. I am a gift,  my son is a gift, my grandma is a gift protector. My mom is a home ruler, my son a little king. The names so connected….. a name is one of the most special gifts ever.

Picture Perfect/Capture the Moment/Slightly Offbeat

They say one picture tells a thousand words. Just imagine how many words would be in your mind if you have a photographic memory? Words that must come out. Writing helps to release those words. It is stress relieving. I put my fingers on the keyboard and type word after word. No bothering with spell check or grammar. I write. The writing then seems to release endorphins the same as exercise.

I do not write many descriptive essays because when releasing the memory onto the page, the picture fades in my mind. I want to keep those images for by chance; I might all of a sudden go blind. It is weird but I will stare at my children’s and loved ones faces, so if in fact I ever go blind, I will still have their face in my memory. I tend to worry about the strangest things.

Pictures are sometimes perfect all dolled up in Shirley Temple curls

A hard task to do with nothing but rags to curl with

and straight thick impossible to curl hair.

Somehow my grandmother Ruby managed to do that

The twins even won a contest for their portraits

All sorts of pictures and portraits all around grandma’s house

Of all ages on the wall, on the dresser, on the night stand

The twins dressed alike. Identical. I have stared so much

I can tell my mommy from any other

Including the identical beside her.

I go to grandma’s house and stare into the pictures

Pictures at my mother’s house are hidden.

They are protected like treasured gold.

Portraits of me and six month younger sister separated

Or always striking a different pose

Same home-made dresses slightly different

Maybe just a slight color change

Hair-bows made to match each dress.

Hair of my sisters curled to not quite perfect Shirley Temple curls

My hair in waves naturally flowing

Smiles upon my face because I love to dress up and look so pretty

I tend to glow right off the page with a genuine beautiful smile

No one can take that smile from me

It is captured forever in this picture

I sneak everyday to the top dresser drawer while my mom is out

Stare at the pictures stuffed so tightly that one move

 And the pictures will be ruined

By not fitting securely into the space provided

Mom could some times tell that I looked at the pictures

She screamed don’t ever do that again me wondering

Why does she not frame the pictures and have them on the wall?

Then I could stare and not risk damage to the priceless heirlooms.

Pictures are not always perfect

The not so perfect pictures captured by mom’s camera put away in albums.

I was always told to never look at them, but I did anyway.

These not so perfect pictures fascinated me even more

Picture of me and my sis playing in a cardboard box

Picture of us wearing daddy’s military boots, picture of me asleep on the potty

Head against the shower curtain?

Potty trained before the age of rememberence

My memory only goes back to age 3.

A bedwetter until age 12.

I remember mom waking me up

Out of deep sleep,” come to the bathroom no wetting the bed tonight”

Spanked anyway the next day

Because all though she woke me up

In the middle of the night, I wet the bed

To this day I wish I knew why?

It was not because of laziness for sure.

I awoke after my bed was soaked. I never knew it until then.

I would of gladly woken up and used the restroom preferred to the

Physical and verbal abuse of bedwetting.

I spent many mornings making my bed up with it wet hoping to go undiscovered.

Every now and again it worked and a reprieve was granted

From the constant nagging for something I had no control over

Pictures to me are the most beautiful when natural

Not perfectly posed of even the perfect smile

I love to watch the models strike their serious poses

With one little thing slightly out of place or off center

You can’t quite tell what it is

Just enough wrong that you want to look at it again and again

I think the most beautiful singer in her picture is

One that has an earlobe on one side of her face lower than the other

It took such courage to do that with all the computer enhanced technology

And the money to buy the fix

The picture tells me she sees herself as beautiful just the way she is

No alteration needed

Indeed she is very beautiful. My eyes want to look at the picture over and over

Not because it is perfect but because she is beautiful even with a flaw

I seem to now like my flawed attributes

If someone stops to stare at me, it is

Because I am beautiful not ugly

Just enough flawed that someone will notice

I am beautiful with the flaw

Love me even though I am not perfect even when I am bad…..this is what my mind says to that.

Breaking the Bank Once Again

I am back.  I have not posted anything lately because my computer has been at the repair shop.  Best Buy had to send it to the manufacturer for a new hard drive.  Well I needed a computer to renew my Nursing license.  Without it I can not work.  So I broke my bank again to buy another lab top.  It’s all good though.  Now,  when the broken one comes home repaired my son will have his very own laptop.  Which was something I had planned anyways.  Who would have ever figured on a lab-top less than a month old could get that damaged?

I have broken my bank more times than I can count.  Mostly for my children whom I love dearly.  They are the only blood relatives I have in the world that I have ever spoken to in my life.  I  knew choosing  unwed single motherhood would not be easy, for I give to my children everything with in my possibility.  I give them more than I have for myself for sure.  I give them my heart.  They are my heritage. My only heritage. 

I am very different from my mother in many ways.  My sister was born on Valentine’s Day.  When she was little mom made special her birthday. Bought special heart-shaped cake pans little ones and one big one.  She made enough little cakes for all the students in my sister’s classroom and the big one.  She celebrated Lisa’s birthday with her whole classroom at school. Me six months older in age one grade ahead of her did not get to even be invited to the party.  In fact, my mom did not even save me a little cake from the party.  It never really  bothered me much until, six months later in August the family was on vacation.  Not just some little vacation.  This was a two-week trip to Florida staying not in an RV but motels.  Eating steak dinners every day for lunch and supper at restaurants, breakfast every day at Shoney’s.  Well my mom is always happy on vacations.  I was so excited my birthday was during this vacation.  I just knew it would be so special.  I woke up that morning not one word of happy birthday from anyone’s mouth.  We went to a tourist thing.  I don’t even remember where.  I remember the gift shop though because it was late in the day and still not even one word to me of  a” Happy Birthday”.   I saw a teddy bear key chain in the gift store.  Nothing really that special but it did have my name on it.   I asked my mom to please buy that for me.  The cost was 4 dollars and twenty-five cents.  Mom said no that was too expensive.  I said please momma please.  I begged and begged.  Then I even through a hissy fit.   I screamed back at her mom its my BIRTHDAY PLEASEEEEEEEEEEEEE.   She said no and never even apologized for forgetting it was my birthday.  That was that.  From then on, I realized for sure in my mom’s eyes there was nothing at all special about me. 

So for my children, I will break my bank and not blink an eye. 


Validation Required

When you see a baby shout, they must have something important to say.  Listen to the children. They are way smarter than you think. They have no reason to lie unless provoked. If they can’t get positive feedback any other way……………validation required for sanity…………………..

I was always accused of lying about everything.  “Lori Ann you are lying to me” constantly out of my mother’s mouth. “I don’t believe you”, “your just imagining things” . These words made me ponder my every thought. She seemed to only say those words when I was telling the truth.  Another major statement of hers was ” be sure your sins will find you out”  My mind would get so confused and flustered.  I  shouted back  wanting heard, believed in.  I would  break into  hysterical crying fits sometimes.  Mom called these hissy fits.

 Eventually, all the non-believing she had in me made me doubt her more and more to where I didn’t believe in her at all.  How could she not believe me when I had living proof;  plus she saw with her own two eyes?  I kept all my thoughts hidden deep inside  never to escape. Because no one not even   mom believed  me.  I went into a shell.  My bedroom is where I stayed without coming out for years. 

Music from the clock radio soothed the need for thought-provoking stimuli. I  listened and dreamed of  love, happiness and validation through the words of the songs.   Songs put meaning into my existence.  While  listening to music, I felt normal.    Emotions,  tears and laughter finally allowed  independent thoughts.  I listened to every station every genre of music rock, country, jazz, r&b and pop.  Songs soothed my broken soul………In my room, I could make-believe a world of truth.  I listened. I was no longer alone.

  Lack of validation leads to no value of thoughts and opinions important to  life, therefore causing one to think why live at all?  The best validation to your soul is to realize that you are not alone, and there are others going through life’s difficulties.  The music rendered possibilities of resolution to  problems or situations beyond my control.      

Hedonistical Hugs

A whole lot of pleasure brings a whole lot of pain if pleasure is the only thing you have ever had.  Plus choosing unhealthy pleasure can lead to bad health.  Growing up emotionally apart from love, I never received hugs ever from my mom.  Never an encouraging thought out of her mouth.  The most encouraging thing I can remember is “mommies sorry I found my scissors” spoken after she had given me the beat down with a military belt over accusing me of using her scissors.  I was 16 years old when this happened. What in the world would I possibly want with her scissors.

 By that time, I wanted nothing at all to do with her.  My life with her had been ridicule and beat downs for the stupidest things imaginable.  A shirt in my closet hanging with one sleeve accidentally folded in.  Really a beat down with a marine belt for that?   A glass accidentally broken on the tile floor.  Who has never broken a glass has never lived in my book.  I walked on eggshells everyday of my life up till then.  I never knew what weird shizz she was gonna beat me for.   The constant continuous screaming at me as she smacked the belt across my derrier. ” do you understand me? are you going to do that again? I am gonna beat you until you can’t sit down”  Me the whole time thinking in my head someone pleae give me some calgon to take me away from this crazy lady.

  Calgon was all the rage back then.  A bathsoap commercialized with the theme calgon take me away.  I even once had the nerve to ask my mom to please buy me some calgon at age 11.  I did not tell her why but I just knew in my mind the calgon would take me away from her madness.  She didn’t but it was worth a shot I guess.  To this day,  bubble baths are one of my favorite pleasures. 

 Not only did I get beat downs, I was ignored to the highest degree.  At age 6  the family was on vacation visiting relatives in Corona, California.  Well they have this huge gravel on the side of their streets. I was riding my bike and got hung up in the gravel , crashed and scraped a gash out of my knee all the way to the cartilage.  I ran in the house crying. It hurt so bad. My mom looks at it says put some water on it.  I go straight to the tub and soak my tears away in a bubble bath.  It took over a year for it to heal.  It is a scar that is still dark brown almost black on my knee. A constant reminder since I was six of how neglectful my mom was of my feelings and needs over the years.

  Children will naturally seek out ways to make them feel better.  Whether it be chocolate, steak, diamonds, cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, sex whatever makes em happy.  It does not take much to make one happy if they never had anything to start with.  My pleasures in life are soda pop, bubble bath, music, exercise used to be one, hair make-up, massage,  cigarettes, chocolate.  Yes cigarettes have been my pacifiers throughout the years.  I started smoking to fit in and found that it would make my migraines disappear. So I smoke and it helps to relax me.  It is so important to choose your hedonistic pleasures carefully because some can cause damage.  It’s an oxymoron you can never receive pleasure without ever been in pain. The more pain you go through the more simple things give you great pleasure and the longer you can wait for the pleasure to come.  This pain makes it easier to ultimately forgive.” A little bit of pleasure is worth a whole lot of pain” 

Wall Out Prevention…

I am a person that is outside of the norm.  In my mind’s eye, I see everything as possible to achieve. This outlook has caused me to become manic on three different occasions due to my mind speeding up to accomplish the impossible. The impossible being the outcome of survival.

 This is very unhealthy  due to the  body’s metabolic systems start to  shut down making it possible for stress to kill.  The flight or fight response takes over.   Peristalic ability comes to a stand still and must take laxatives.  I have to concentrate very hard to even urinate. Three times I have totally stopped urinating and catheterization intervened on my behalf.  My mind spins so fast that sleep evades me.  I eat  more calories , more often to keep nutrionally sound.  Do stress relieve things over and over to survive the stress of my mind doing the impossible.  Talk non-stop to clear my brain of all thoughts so my body can catch up. If no one hears me,  my thoughts go even faster until it is  harder for me to understand them. Anyone that has ever talked in word salad  might  possibly relate.

 One thing that helps when my mind is spinning out of control is the medication, trileptal. It is an anticonvulsant that slows down the sodium ions at the synapse.  It actually blocks some of the sodium ions.  This in return slows down the thought process to alow the body catch up to the mind.  One major side effect of trileptal is  hyponatremia . Where my psychiatrist told me simply to  increase  salt intake.

  The downside of trileptal is that according to how much your mind is reeling is proporionate to how much of the medicine is taken for therapuetic effect.  You could sleep for days if you are not manic enough to take the amount prescribed.  Also, not many psychiatrist prescribe or manage this medication . The psychiatrist that prescribed it to me was only an inpatient doctor. He does not see patients unless   hospitalization occurs.   That doctor told me  the medication  is manageable logically to the hypomania, decreasing as you slow down. He said also to stay away from my mother,  the trigger, as much as possible.  Which was impossible back then due to her having custody of my son. My mind continued to do the impossible to survive. 

 Anyway, this is one reason why bi-polar manic patients get off of their meds and wall out and act like lunatics. Could someone invent the profession  medication manager? And become specific to what medicine they manage?  Be listed in the yellow pages, trileptal management for mania. That would  help to prevent me from becoming manic to the 3rd degree. In which,   psychotic episodes and hallucinations are included.  At a time when  the trigger to my mania was tracking me down like a blood hound,  my mania increased just trying to get away from her.

Love Conquers All…..

  I was up all night long one night praying to God. I was telling him that I was so lonely and wanted to meet someone I could share my thoughts, dreams and desires. Who loves me unconditionally.  Someone that would fill my room full of flowers for no other reason but that they love me. Someone intelligent. Someone I could trust completely etc…..  I was very specific as to my qualifications.

The very next day on my best friend’s mother’s boyfriend’s porch I met that man.  It was love at first sight.  We only had a short conversation because he was about to leave to go to California, and I was just on a lunch break from work. We exchanged phone numbers.   We conversed on the phone.  He sent me gifts because he is so sweet. I could tell by talking to him he was the baby boy of sisters.  Finally after about 7 months we met again in person. It was the most fun I had in years just watching a basketball game.  Our love grew by leaps and bounds. Now I love him more than ever and will never stop. He is everything that I prayed to God to send me for a mate and more.  Nobody in this world can change that opinion but me.  I love him dearly. He came into my life at a time when I had nobody. My mom had taken my son.  I can’t even describe the hurt and loneliness.  When I got out of the mental hospital and unpacked boxes in my new little rent back house.  Not one box had anything of my son’s in it.  It was a month away from Christmas and my parents had thrown out my Christmas tree saying they thought it was trash.  My nursing shoes that I had worn all throughout LPN school that were ya worn out on the sole but looked still brand new on the top ,I spent half a months income on, were so special to me because in clinical you are even graded on your shoes.  I spent many mornings polishing and cleaning those shoes. My mom had just thrown them away. Her only statement was I threw out everything I thought was trash.  That was the loneliest time of my life.  This is the time period that I met Reginald. We fell in love even with all this stress.

My love is amazing. He shares everything including his thoughts and dreams. He loves me just because of who I am not because of who I was or who I will be. He cooks like a master chief. Loves to spend time together. Has patience to wait for me. Does little things just to see me smile. Tells me when he thinks I am dead wrong. Lets me think dream and become independent of my own feelings. He is very mature and still young at heart. He is very intelligent and gives good advice. I love him so much. No matter how far apart physically we are he is close to my heart. My life seems complete satisfaction in knowing him. He does not argue, fuss, or fight. He is so sweet.

The first person I think of when someone asks me about love is God. He can do all the above and more. The second person I think of when someone asks me about love is Reginald whom I was thinking of when I wrote that whom can do all that. The third Peoples I think of when someone asks me about love are my children whom I wish could do all the above they can do some of the above some of the time……

Anything Worth Doing is Worth Doing Well….

I always try to do my best. Looking back I can see where not always my best was my complete best but the best when considering all other things happening at the time.  If I would have done less than my best at the time, I would have failed.

  The year was 2003.  I was in my second semester of  Practical Nursing School. The best nursing school Arkansas has to offer. I was one in 30 of over 400 applicants chosen by way of test score. This practical nurse school has more clinical hours than any nurse program in the state including all degrees. A grueling 30 clinical hours per week, scrutinized by even your appearance.

  The second semester is the start of clinicals.  Three 10 hour clinical days and two days of classes per week. Test taken every class day. One of the classes taken was Geriatrics.  It was a four-week class consisting of 4 exams, taught by the Director of the program.  This semester started at a time when the 162 dollars a month income was crippling me. My electric and water had been shut off at the same time.

  So me and my son went and stayed at the homeless shelter.  I obtained full-time employment at a Nursing Home as a Certified Nursing Assistant.  The pay-day fell  to where I would  work a month before getting enough pay to pay the electric bill.   Employees were paid bi-weekly  with one payday held back.   Starting on the second week of the payperiod, brought the sum total of my first check to only like 50 dollars.  Therefore, me and my son stayed a month in the homeless shelter. That, by the way, charges people 60 dollars a week to live there. It isn’t free like most people think.  I worked night shift then. Then went straight to clinical from work.

 In my geriatric class, I missed one class day because of a transportation issue.  It happened to be a test day. I learned the hard way in nursing school, you can not make up a test. You get an 0 regardless of the reason you missed the test. Even if you are deathly ill, you are supposed to come to the college with a mask on and take the test on the day of the test. If not, you get F, no matter what.

  In this nursing program, you can not make less than 75 percent in any class or you fail.  Well, this made it near impossible for me considering there were only 4 exams; and I had zero on one. That meant I would have to make 100 percent on all the other test; in which, I had already made a 98 percent on one.

  I was not stopping.  I  came too far to turn away.  The professor gave an extra assignment to write a research paper on anything to do with geriatrics.  This paper would count as 100 points like an extra test grade. If you choose not to do it, you only have the four grades. 

The day before due, I moved back to home without the electricity being on two days before payday because my son witnessed first hand a man trying to kill another man.  A man walked up in the mens dorm and  went to beating another man with a 4 X 4.  I decided my son and I could camp out for 2 days better than that shiz.  

 After college that day, I went to the library checked out three books.  One of the books was about the normal aging brain.  I think it was entitled something like The Greying of America.  Anyways, I went home to  no electricity.  My neighbor on the other side of the duplex ran an extension cord to my side.  I took a nap woke up then scanned over the books and chose the normal aging brain theme to write my paper.  In fact, I titled my paper Normal Aging Brain. 

 I became sleepy because for some reason reading makes me sleepy.  I went to sleep then woke up about 9pm.  I wrote non-stop free writing my paper on the back of some old handouts.  I was so poor at the time, I could not afford paper lol. I wrote five pages of small print non stop. I finished about 4 o’clock in the morning.   My son and I then hurried for school for it was a must to  arrive  in time to type the paper before class started.  The paper was due when class starts and  late assignments were not accepted.  I did just that. I am not a very fast typist either.  I just typed it word for word like I had it written.  No time for spell check.  I barely finished in time for class. 

 Well in Geriatrics, I made one zero.  My other test were A’s ranging between 95 to 99 percent.  The professor gave me a 100 percent on the research paper. She even made the comment , ” I like your references and family details to make your points.”  That was the first and only research paper I had ever written.  I made a 76 percent in Geriatrics passing that class by one measly point.  I was so happy. I felt like I could do anything after that.  I cried though because that same class a class mate failed. For some odd reason, she did not do the research paper.  I cried and cried because I could not even begin to phantom what kind of hard times would have made it impossible for her to do that. 

Inside that research paper, I had written about my father, Grandmother, and Great Aunt Goldie and how old age is different to everyone.  Also about memories; there are studies according to the book that the brain’s area for long-term memories increases instead of decreases as you age and also causes the older person to think more abstractly and get the point of literature and wisdom of things that a younger person can’t understand yet. Also it stated the short-term memory area shrinks and so it makes your elders just know things without remembering how or whatforth they know it lol.  So when my mom says “just because I said so”  She has the wisdom well above my years and just knows without remembering why.

  Also  this quote was in my paper from my Great Aunt  Goldie ” make happy memories now, because when you are old memories are all you have left” . My Great Aunt Goldie was a retired licensed Pratical Nurse. She loved life. She continued her whole life doing her favorite things hunting, cooking with the pots on the table lol, she drove, talked on the phone 24/7 to friends, said words like poop, etc… in contrast her sister my Grandmother Ruby never drove in her life, had a business degree but never employed other than babysitting, always said things like putting pots on the table is trifling, and that’s not ladylike.  It was like my Great Aunt Goldie had broken away from tradition in her generation. 

 Well my Great Aunt Goldie died during my nursing school my last semester.  I was almost to the breaking  point.  I could not even miss 5 minutes of class or clinical or I would of failed. Only 3 days are allowed throughout the program.  I had been up singing along to the song Send Me an Angel at midnight. The next day I randomly called my mom and she told me that my Great Aunt Goldie died at midnight the night before.  I believe she is truly one of my angels.  I could not attend the funeral. Not only because of  not being able to miss the class time, I was also too poor for the gas to go; and when I thought about it, I know my Aunt definitely wanted me to pass nursing school.  

Pine Bluff Commercial – Pine Bluff, AR

Goldie Stanley Lewis