Posts Tagged ‘self-esteem’

It was by far the oddest setting she had ever experienced.  The room was full of Democrats and Republicans, energetic, idealistic youth, middle-aged mortgage holders with job woes and the calmer, slower elderly battling arthritis and other ailments. It was not her definition of an ideal party.

She watched from  her corner perch. People flowed through the kitchen, dropping off dishes full of treats as they exchanged hugs. Wine and conversation flourished. Music exploded from a nearby speaker as young cousins ran hand in hand. Doctors, Lawyers and Judges clinked glasses with waitresses, mechanics and store clerks. Drinks flowed, food disappeared and laughter grew. One by one the group migrated to the festive living room.

It was here people handed each other brightly wrapped packages. It was here they related stories of their past. It was here they passed out more hugs than gifts. It was here she realized that she was going to like the family she married into. It was here she discovered the values that shaped the man she loved. It was here that she realized she loved her new family.  It was here that her husband pulled her into the group for a hug. It was here that she realized the perfect gift didn’t have to come from a store. It was the ideal party.


Join the Friday Fictioneers, a wonderful group of writers who submit a 100 word story or poem based on a weekly photo. This is flash fiction at it’s finest. You can read submissions or add your work HERE.  Comments welcome, as long as they are respectful and helpful, not hateful.

Congrats Madison! Marriage is cool with the right person!

Category: Fiction//Drama

Words: 84

Rating: PG

Marriage  was death, a stance she had clung to for years. Then came Jim. The last four years had been fun, comfortable and full of love, thanks to him. He had proposed seven times, but this time was different. Something in his eyes seemed to say “we either take this step, or we’re through.”

Realizing she couldn’t live without him, she said yes. That was yesterday, this morning, she took a deep breath and entered the shop, hoping to find a gown. Realizing she was opening more than one door.

Submit a poem or short story of 100 words or less, inspired by a weekly photo in this fun, flash fiction group. You can read submissions or add your work HERE, or click on the little blue guy at the bottom. Writing tips, typo alerts and comments welcome, as long as they are respectful and helpful, not hateful.

Category: Writing

Words: 98

Rating: PG-13


 copyright el appleby

“Talk about brain-dead!” she shouted. 

Every week a small group of talented writers gathered together over a shared photo prompt, to write a story. Only this week, NOTHING! She gazed at the picture and thought about teen fads, twisted kids with sewing needles, serial killers who left odd clues and particle accelerators, but still she drew a blank! What was left? A circus train accident? Cloning, genetic mutation?

Flipping her computer the bird, she grabbed a beer, signed off and leaned into her lounge chair to watch the frogs around her pond.

“Maybe next week,” she muttered.

I already released two kids into the world. One is gone, and one is near with his spouse and kids. Now I am raising three grand kids. It doesn’t get any easier. The oldest has turned eighteen, he was dragged through high school kicking and screaming, but we pulled him through. He is done with all high school classes and all that is left is the graduation ceremony. He attends the local vocational school, specializing in Aviation and Aeronautics. He is a math and engineering whiz who thinks far beyond my capabilities. He will graduate from there in less than three weeks.

However, he is still young!  Even though he is eighteen and almost done with school, I could pull out the  “it’s a school night” excuse to enforce a curfew, but he was always home at least an hour before his curfew.  As a parent, I LOVED this! He was home and all was right with the world. Time after time I would give him permission to stay out late on a Friday or Saturday night, but he would be home by ten or eleven.

He works flight simulators like some of us breathe. His brain is a human calculator. He doesn’t drive, smoke or drink. He is home after school each day and is here until bed. He has friends over and they work on computers, listen to music and eat. He is a good kid with little world experience. I tried to push him out of the nest, urged him to join clubs, go to friends houses or get a job, but he was happiest at home. I know that I have to shove him into the world. He has to drive , get a job, a place to live, form relationships.

But, the mommy in me was pleased that he was home safe and I didn’t have to worry. Then today came! He left here at 7 pm with a friend and at midnight he still wasn’t home. I was thrilled and nervous at the same time. He is over eighteen and able to stay out as late as he wants, but you can’t turn off the worry or desire to have your chickens in the coop before bed. I had to. He is a hard-working man, with above average intelligence who was taught core values.

He came home, later than usual tonight, and I found out why. In the late 1970’s a “friend” stole a large portion of my vinyl record collection. I know they sold them for drugs but didn’t have valid proof, I let it go, but I have always mourned the loss of those albums. Many were gifts from friends, my mom, aunts and cousins. Turns out, my boy was out scouring second-hand shops and music outlets for these records. He purchased many for mother’s day! He only gave me three as a teaser, but he left my mouth-watering!

This encounter left me a greater gift. I know that his heart, and head are in the right place. He is ready to enter the world, meet women and pursue a career. He is green, but he is well armed. My conversations with him have shown me that he is an intelligent man. He is open-minded and tolerant. He has a strong work ethic. He embraces music and the written word. He has a soft spot for animals and children. He is a computer geek and math whiz who talks about aeronautics as easy as as I take a breath. He is good with people and adjusts to each circumstance. He will make mistakes,and ask for help and I will stand by and let him, it’s my job.

Once again, I have to release the hand of a boy and let the world have the man. I can still see him running over the yard, his golden curls bouncing in the sun.  He will do great things and I have to back away and let him do it.

Submit a poem or short story of 100 words or less, inspired by a weekly photo in this fun, flash fiction group. You can read submissions or add your work HERE, or click on the little blue guy at the bottom.

Writing tips, typo alerts and comments welcome, as long as they are respectful and helpful, not hateful.

Category: Drama?
Words: 99
Rating: PG

kent-bonhamCopyright Kent-Bonham

In his youth the balconies resembled glasses, spying on his every move. His mother peered through, calling out if he wandered close to the street. His fondest wish was for her to let him alone.

Thirty years later, his young son in tow, he fought tears as the building watched their approach. Watching no longer, Mom was in bed, nearing the end. He took her hand as he kept a watchful eye on his young son, riding a bike  on the walk below.  Gratitude and love stung his eyes.

Submit your poem or a short story of 100 words or less, inspired by a weekly photo in this fun, flash fiction group. You can read submissions or submit your work HERE, or click on the little blue guy at the bottom.

Writing tips, typo alerts and comments welcome, as long as they are respectful and helpful, not hateful.



Fleeing the mesh of cubicles she found a bench at the zoo and opened her lunch. She was munching chips when she spotted the wasp nest. Damn if it didn’t look like her office, cubicle and after cubicle linked together, each soul isolated from the other.

But the nest was shriveled, dark, dead. If she didn’t get out, she would end up like that nest. Snatching her belongings she headed back to the office to update her resume. Maybe some night classes were in order as well.










In many ways, life in the U.S. requires you to be two separate  people. One who lives by the laws of the land, and one who bases their  existence on their spiritual beliefs. Laws and beliefs rarely merge, not with the plethora of beliefs in the world.  Our current system of government will only work if we base law, on law, and human rights, not a religious book, there are simple too many of them with varying ideals.  All are different, giving different rights to different people.  Woman can be spiritual leaders in some, not in others. Women must cover their head or face in some, not in others. Some allow playing cards, dancing or drinking, others don’t. There is no way this country can be run by religious standards and please, or serve its blended population.  Our law makers need to remove the name tags from their lapels, the ones that denote their beliefs and base their votes on human rights and compassion. In the end, the fate of a person’s soul is in their hands, not the governments. If Christian, you won’t go to hell for allowing such marriages, you will be following your own scripture, you remember, the part about “thou shall not judge.”

Americans cling to the  basic rights in the constitution, such as free speech. Journalist are protected, so is the Klu Klux Klan who are allowed to rally and broadcast over radio and T.V. We hate what they stand for, but they have that right and our courts defend that right. They need to extend this same level of defense to the LGBT community.

The right to bear arms is also in the constitution, although I doubt that our ancestors anticipated automatic weapons with ammunition drums that could kill mass amounts of people if you are pissed. But! This right is in the constitution and the courts and government defend it!

This brings us to the “All are equal,” part of the constitution, this means ALL of us!  It is there in black and white, pen and ink, taught in history classes everywhere. You can be black, white, Asian, skinhead, Klan, gay, straight, poor, rich… all are equal in the eyes of the law. In my book this means that ALL people should have equal access to the same rights and benefits as their fellow citizens. All of us should not only reap the same benefits, but pay the same penalties if we break the law.

Equal is equal. If people of every religious conviction are allowed to marry, then LGBT’s should have the same right. Religious conservatives bang their fist, claiming it is a sin to be gay and marriage is not allowed. This takes us full circle, back to the “all are created equal” thing again. Under our constitution we are all equal, so if one set of perceived sinners is denied marriage, then all sinners should be denied marriage. If a Lesbian sinner isn’t allowed to wed, than neither should a murderer, thief, rapist, slob or over-eater. Sin is sin, either we make all marriages of anyone committing a sin null and void, or we  all marry! As I see if, if we base marriage on sin, none of us would have a valid marriage. Who hasn’t seen an attractive person and experienced a minute of lust? Or how many of us found five bucks on the street and kept it? Who hasn’t told a lie?

Does this seem ridiculous? It should, denying human rights on perceived sin would sink the whole lot of us. Think about it, stealing, gluttony, envy, lust, sloth…

Oh, I hear the gasp of those saying “My marriage is valid, my Bible/holy book says so.”  This is another right you get to have thanks to the constitution, freedom of religion! This is your belief, it forms your life, validates your marriage and makes your kids legit and accepted. I would fight for your right to keep this religion, but DO NOT force your ideals on me or use it to create laws that hurt those with differing beliefs. I don’t agree with a lot of religious doctrine, Muslim women hiding under layers of cloth, unable to drive or attend school. Catholic women treated like second class citizens, unable to preach, hold office or form policy. I don’t agree with a lot of them, and I don’t condone them, but I will fight to the end to maintain their right to practice these views without punishment. So, why can’t they show the gay community the same consideration. You don’t have to like it, or condone it, but you don’t have to reach out in hate and try to stop them.

You can do what you want within your own family. Impart your beliefs on your children, teach them your values, shun criminals, technology or gay people, what you can’t do, is force those views on the rest of the country.  I find it hard to believe that the god you stand behind would line up to throw stones at a person or make them feel like a lesser being for being who they are. I can’t help but think the deity you cling to would be shamed by hate mongering or denial of human rights. They would most likely extend a hand and try to help someone.

You can only take care of your own soul, other’s belong to their owners. Don’t try to pass moral laws to deny them human dignity and happiness. Remember that “do not judge” clause in the holy book? It is holier to reserve judgement and be kind to others. If they made a wrong turn they will face it on their own.

Take a look in the mirror, just who are the haters. I don’t see the LGBT community staging pickets to take away your rights, or make your marriage void, all they ask is that you live your life and let them live theirs. Maybe they should file a lawsuit, demanding that the government void the marriage of anyone who has ever stolen, abused, murdered, molested a child, lied, became a glutton, envied a neighbor or lived in a pig sty. Sinners! All of them sinners, sinners may not be married in this country.

Tell a man who cheated on his wife his marriage is void. That he has no rights to his children. Tell a a woman with food issues, who is overweight due to gluttony that she is not allowed to visit the man she loves in the hospital before he dies because her marriage isn’t valid and she has no say so over his health care. Watch a woman who stole once, out of desperation that she has to move out of the house she has shared with her mate for thirty years because she is not his legal mate due to her theft and has no right to the house.

This is what basing marriage rights on sin could mean. We have NO right to punish one group perceived as sinners while allowing those who cheat, murder, molest or steal, enjoy the “All are created equal” clause in the constitution. Change the constitution to deny marriage to all sinners in the eyes of the majority, or allow all who committed a sin equal rights.

We have to pick one path, the Constitution, or a holy book.  But what holy book? There are so many of them and choosing just one would throw this country into chaos. Cliche here… “Get the government out of our bedrooms.”  Stick to the written constitution and leave an individuals soul in their own hands. Either we all marry or none of us do.

Life is short, and all you really have is who you love, and who loves you. The government has no business telling us who that should be. Neither do my fellow citizens.

I know people will read this and want to see who penned it.  Some will shake their heads and claim it is the work of a militant, feminist Lesbian, ready to pass my words off as those of a nut. I don’t think who, or what I am is important, the ideal is important. I could be gay, bi or straight, none of these “labels” mar my ability to recognize right from wrong or basic rights from prejudice and hate.  Law is law and religion is religion, they will never mix, and shouldn’t. I want a government that tends to people rights whether it fits their personal belief system or not. You have the right to practice your beliefs, and adhere to them in your life and that of your family, and I will fight for that right! What you don’t have, is the right to impose those beliefs on the rest of us.

I know that passing a law will not stop the haters but it is a move in the right direction. If we give our kids a good example they will learn as will the generations behind us.

Jane Kohler 2013