Category Archives: Mawidge

Moving In, Moving On

Well hello there, people! I’m back! I’ve done another of my disappearing acts, and its again due to a lot of stuff that’s been going on. I’m trying to consider whether I should end this blog, continue, or start a new one, where I won’t be anonymous, and the focus might have changed.

Not that it won’t be full of Catholic ranting. Of course, that remains a constant.

So, what’s with the long absence? Well, I’ve quit my job at the call center. It was either that, or I’d get fired for being nothing more than a temp worker. Plus, I had no ambition to become a permanent member of a business devoted to scamming the ignorant out of money, while claiming to help them.

Anyway, bitterness about that stupid low  paying job aside, other things have been going on. The wedding is no longer going to be held in Mexico. It was excruciatingly difficult to hear the lawyer let us know our options and to realize that going to Mexico would be a bad idea. Yeah, my fiance is illegal. Go bitch about it on YouTube or something because I don’t freaking care.

Because of that we’ve had to re-plan the entire wedding, and our budget, and everything. On the one hand, its great, because a certain maid of awesomeness won’t have to blow her money on a trip to Mexico, and I get some more control over decorations. On the other hand, its heart breaking. Mr. Serrano misses his mother, grandfather, and siblings so much, and he’s losing hope that he’ll ever see them again. I cried for days, feeling guilty that in an indirect manner, it is my fault he’s not with them now. He doesn’t blame me, and I don’t blame myself anymore, but its not fair that his mother can’t see her oldest son married. I’ll find a way to make it up to her- she seems to be an awesome woman from what I can see in the photographs.

However, the wedding is now bumped up to September, which has me excited!!!! In an unprecedented show of generosity my parents are allowing the party to take place on the farm, so I’m going to have a wedding that looks like it came out of Real Simple. We had had to break the news to them about Mr. Serrano’s status, and they took it well. In fact, they had assumed he was illegal anyways.

Thanks, Mom. Glad to know you really did mean all your racist comments in the past months before we said anything.

But, count your blessings, right?

For a while, it actually seemed like my family was going to act like a family. I was cautiously surprised and happy, but I’m always cautious when it comes to them. Just like I feared, the initial glow wore off, and life went back to “normal”. Then, Mr. Serrano finally got his own apartment!

The previous tenants were something else. Let’s just say I can’t stand white trash, especially anyone who buys enough cigs and booze to keep them stocked forever, but can’t be bothered to clothe, feed, and love their kids. My family has screwed up royally, but at least they weren’t alcoholics. Thank God. The trash people finally moved out, after dragging their heels for months, making excuses, and finally actually trying to squat in the apartment. They DID have another place they could stay- this one was just “better”.

We were insanely happy to get that apartment. Mr. Serrano’s stepmother is pretty much straight out of Hansel and Gretel, and probably invented frenemies. I savored the look on her face when she saw me cleaning in the kitchen window (they’re our next door neighbors…so charming). I was especially happy in a triumphant way (probably not the best moral way either) because the charming old hag had tried to pawn the apartment off onto someone else, just to make sure she could keep her stepson paying her bills and on her couch, rather than a real bed.

This was right around the time we went to visit the lawyer, and since I got us so lost down in Chicago area that he had to pay 30.00 in toll fees (not kidding) I figured I’d stay the week over at his house and clean it up while he went to work. I needed a project to keep my mind off the stress, and re-doing a house sounded like fun.

That is where the trouble started. It didn’t matter how much I told my parents I was waiting till marriage to move in with him, and it didn’t matter that the stuff I had in my room I had saved for him, which is why it was being moved out. Every day that I came home, I was asked when I was moving out. The verbal abuse got worse, and my ever-charming ever-honest brother fell back into his habit of calling me a bitch. Mom literally ignored my existance, which I guess is better than her usual screaming (although screaming did occasionally happen).

Without even intending to, without wanting to, I ended up living in Mr. Serrano’s apartment. The first few weeks I was amazed. I woke up, and no one was going to scream at me. Nobody was yelling at me, glaring at me, or calling me names. In fact, I got a peck on the cheek and a “good morning, I love you”. Its taking a while to get rid of some of my bad habits- like skipping breakfast. I can’t eat at home. If I eat at home, I’m “stealing” from whoever Mom is favoring at the moment, which means I eat out or not at all. It took me a few days to leave my bedroom with confidence- inside I still expected to be criticized for something.

I started to feel something I haven’t felt in a long time- freedom and happiness.

I can listen to Catholic Radio, pray, listen to music, cook, go take a walk, eat, drink, be happy!!

But… at the back of my mind I kept getting nudged. This was beautiful, and wonderful…but I had said nothing to my priest. In fact, I avoided the subject entirely. I didn’t want to lie. I didn’t want to tell the truth. Then my friends started nudging me. The universe was nudging me.

In short, God was like “okay, you’ve had your fun. Now trust me and go talk to my priest!!!”

So I did, even though its instinct now for me to not trust authority (lol, and I end up Catholic. wtf) I went and talked with him. I had this whole prepared speech in my head which of course fell apart as soon as I tried to speak (complete with crying, which I hate doing in front of men. They are wayyyyy too vulnerable to it). He thought at first it was financial.

HA! Nope, actually the money saved is a bit less, since starting an apartment is expensive.

Its humiliating. Its absolutely embarrassing to explain to someone that your mother is abusive, your father doesn’t really care, and that your brother has been trained to join in. Its worse when you have to do it to someone you consider an authority, because you’ve been trained your entire life to believe that no one in authority thinks you are worth anything, and everyone believes you’re a liar. The irony is that you believe that if anyone does believe you, they’ll think that you’re less of a person for what you lived through- that you’ll be just like the people who raised you.

I didn’t even have to explain everything like I had thought I would have to. Father did ask about my dad, and his role, and whether my dad is abused himself. (I guess, in a way, he is. Mom *does* bully him a lot.) In all honesty, the actual talk was very short, and I didn’t have to come up with a litany to explain what goes on in my house. I think, perhaps, Father knew, at least a little bit. It makes me wonder how many people have known that I’ve never told. It did “help” that I’d already moved out, but I was prepared to move back in again with my “family” if the priest said otherwise.

I can’t believe it. God must have been behind this, because when I finally could move out, I tried not to. I wanted to do what He wanted me to do, or what I thought He wanted me to do…and I still ended up moved out.

Thank God. I’m never coming back. I’m free.

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Filed under Catholic, Mawidge, Mr. Serrano, Mr. Serrano and other fun stuff

Chastity and Martyrdom

Okay, its been a while. When Sister Allie gets churns out a blog post quicker than I do, that means I’ve REALLY neglected my blog.I’ve all but abandoned my “Catholic Culture Of The Month”. You know, because its not like Catholics are diverse or anything. Has nothing at all to do with being busy.

I have 11 months to go until I get married. 11!!! The closer it gets to the date, the more that Mr. Serrano and I struggle with chastity. Sometimes we fall into sin (get your mind out of your judgemental gutter, I’m still virgin.) One of the issues we are having is due to perception. Mr. Serrano is very new as a Catholic, and for most of his life has been able to enjoy the company of people who respect him. I never thought I would say this, but thank God for my abusive, condescending, belittling family, especially when so much of the abuse centers around my religion. Why do I say thank you? Because overcoming that horrid obstacle has made me realize that yes, indeed, I will be hated just for being a real, practicing, breathing Catholic. Mr. Serrano, on the other hand, doesn’t have that benefit.

Whereas I have scars, callouses, and scabs, Mr. Serrano has fresh, pink, baby skin when it comes to Catholicism. It hurts, a lot, when people not only do not understand what you believe, but they refuse to allow you to believe it. Everyone has freedom of choice- until you become a Catholic. Everyone will be tolerant of you- until you become a Catholic. That goes double, even triple if you are honestly working out your salvation and attempting to align yourself to Christ. I’m used to and resigned to the fact that any time I mention I’m Catholic, or bring up a Catholic issue, that it will be an excuse to allow a barrage of trashy, abusive, and snarky insults to be thrown right into my face. Mr. Serrano is only just starting to realize that. Part of me wants to protect him, the other part knows that he must go through this.

Why else did I go through Confirmation? Why else will he go through Confirmation?

The problem we are having now is this annoying as heck thing they call Machismo. Its like the Hispanic version of Chauvinism. Sometimes its good (man is the head of the household, man will provide, man will not be emasculated because of some shrill feminist psycho woman who looks like a man, man will be polite and courteous and not act like a whiny little hipster) and sometimes its an improvement on Chauvinism (man will take care to not look like a slob). But then it takes a perfectly good thing and makes it into a nasty little shadow of what it should be. This is especially true with modern chauvinism/machismo.

Now, more than ever, women are nothing more than sexual play toys that can sometimes think cute things. Thanks, liberal feminism! Now that we’re all sexually liberated, we’re no longer as seen as possible mothers, builders of society (yeah, that was another idea that got thrown out by liberal feminism) or anything all that special. We’re bodies, and we have to at all times remain F***able.  I imagine that is why pregnant women are once again being shoved away from the public eye, as if they were shameful.

Machismo has adopted the idea of “women = bigger, wetter sex toy even more than it had already done so in the past. So Mr. Serrano has to deal with all manner of dirty jokes and winks and nods about what we’re (not) doing in the bedroom.

I understand. I feel it. But at the same time, I want to scream.

He has been going along with it. Rather than come out and say “Actually, its none of your business what we do” (actually, he does say that part) or, even better “You know, I respect my future wife and future mother of my children to wait until our marriage day before I touch her, because that is what REAL MEN are supposed to do” he plays along. He neither says yes, or no, but he still plays along, and this hurts me a lot. Come on Mr. Serrano, protect us!

I’d like to have a male perspective on this. I know that pressure and competition with guys is very strong and very powerful. However, I’m left sitting, wondering why my opinion seems to matter less or is only equal to that of his friends and other men. It makes me feel ashamed, like I’m somehow less of a woman for not acting in the way society would have me do, and exposing him to ridicule. Am I just looking at this from a skewed way?

It makes me so incredibly sad, because I really want to find those ignorant fools and yell at them “You idiots! LOOK at how you treat your girlfriend, your live-in girlfriend, or your wife, or your main screw of the moment. LOOK! Is that taking care of your woman? Are you going to take care of her entirely when she is pregnant, or will you leave just like your father, or your uncle, or your grandfather? Is that honoring her? How can you honor yourself when you cannot honor a fellow sister in Christ? LOOK at Mr. Serrano! LOOK at him! I respect him, love him, and honor him. All other men that I know are nothing compared to him. I think he’s a hero! LOOK at how much he is sacrificing to be with me! How dare you belittle him! A real man knows when to keep it in his pants, rather than disrespecting himself and laying with whatever pair of legs seems most compliant. Mr. Serrano is a REAL MAN!”

Yes, I’m disappointed in Mr. Serrano that it doesn’t look like he’s standing up to the criticism, and yes I feel like I’m not being protected at this moment…but still, I’m so damn proud of him, especially when this sort of stuff doesn’t come easily. He wasn’t raised to be Catholic.

Many people say that Catholicism has odd hang-ups about sexuality. That we are obsessed with sex. I think that’s wrong. We accept sex as a fact of life (duh) and we are concerned about it, but we’re not the ones constantly preening ourselves to look “sexier”. We accept death just as we accept life, and aging is considered beautifully difficult. I believe our views on sex are the exact reason why we can look at any person, regardless of age or ability, and consider them beautiful- we haven’t made sex the be-all, end-all of existence.

I have never met a practicing Catholic who has straight up asked if I were virgin, or has inquired about my favorite sexual positions, nor has ever tried to evaluate me based on how “fu***able” I am. But I have met people who are “with the times” who do nothing but that, then imply that since I haven’t had sex I can’t possibly be in love. That Mr. Serrano can’t possibly just be with me, and not with a couple of other girls. I’ve never had a Catholic tell me “he’s going to leave you as soon as he find a real woman, not just a girl”.

Three things: I wasn’t aware that love = trying a penis on for size, I’m confident that Mr. Serrano is not a monkey, and won’t just stick his sex organ into whatever black hole that pops up, and for Feminism’s sake, I thought we were supposed to get rid of the idea that women can’t be women unless they’ve had their hymen removed by some male!!!!!!!!!

Misconceptions aside, I think a big part of the reason that we as Catholics have so many martyrs is because of our ideas on chastity. The world would have us limit our bodies, our sexes, and our procreation to nothing more than a disgusting shadow of what love is. The world’s version of love is like that Alejandro song by Lady Gaga- super catchy, very sexy, and absolutely full of mind-numbing garbage. God, on the other hand, is calling us to lift ourselves up. Jesus was right- the world hated Him before it hated us, and its only going to hate us more. As the world falls deeper into sin, the people who cling to God (whether Catholic, or Protestant, or whatever) are going to be attacked more and more.

I’m not trying to take on a crown I know is too big for my head, but Mr. Serrano and I, and other engaged couples living by Church teaching, as well as anyone who defends marriage even by just existing, are about to become martyrs, in our own little ways.

Especially when stuff like this happens:

http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/the-parable-of-the-kosher-deli/

Please take time to sign the petition:

https://www.stophhs.com/

And please write/email your senators!

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Filed under abortion, Catholic, Mawidge, Mr. Serrano and other fun stuff, Religion

The Interview: Father Caffeinator

No, there isn’t (to my knowledge) anyone I know named Father Caffeinator. That’s just my name for the wonderful priest who did I and Mr.Serrano’s interview. If you met him, you would understand. He’s old. But his energy is WOW. Maybe incense really is Catholic crack or something, or so says Sister Allie.

However, I’d like to write  a quick letter (that hopefully I will be able to say) to Father Caffeinator.

Dear Father Caffeinator,

Thank you so much for being understanding and not judging us (while still being truly Catholic the whole way through) and for having the grace to realize we were scared of this interview. You shared a bit about your personal life, and it really helped. THANK YOU.

However, I need to clarify something. I don’t believe I was very clear about a particular question. I was afraid you’d get this idea that I’m a saint, or that I think I’m a saint. I’m not. I swear, I’m lazy, rebellious at times, and its not unheard of for me to miss Mass. Because I’m lazy. And sleepy. And the bed is realllllyyyy comfortable. Yes, that isn’t an excuse.

However, when you asked if I was a practicing Catholic, here is what I wanted to say: Father, I have a shrine in my room. Almost half the shrine is images of Mary. I do know exactly what happened at Fatima, and it scares the crap out of me reading the prophecy because I don’t think we’re done yet. I also have basically turned my cubicle at work into a shrine. I have so many medals I’m going to start giving them away. I have 4 rosaries, and struggle praying the rosary due to a) laziness, and b) ADHD. I have holy water on my mini shrine. However, there are two hanging on my rear view mirror and I’m not sure if that is okay with the Church but they are a huge comfort to me when driving. Especially since my area is crawling with demons. Yes, I just said demons. Demons are just fallen angels with a big, stupid, idiotic bone to pick with God and also happen to want to drag me down to Hell. Speaking of which, I LOVE the Saint Michael prayer after Mass. WE NEED IT BADLY. I watch EWTN all the time, or at least when the creepy children’s programs from other countries don’t come on. (Its the dubbing. The dubbing and interpretation needs to get better and less creepy.) When I get super worried, I start praying parts of the Divine Mercy prayer. I read NCR (National Catholic Register) and I get the urge to burn almost every copy of NCR (National Catholic Reporter) that I see. I have actually considered burning some books (even though I’m rather against censorship in most cases) especially the “Catholic Girl’s Guide To Sex”. Please don’t read it. Its depressing, sick, and does a great job of degrading women and teenagers into nothing more than sex toys with the ability to sometimes think. I go to Adoration a lot more than the average 20 something, I’ve written a letter to Mother Angelica (concerning LOL cats, of all things), and I’m obsessed with collecting theology books. If I could, I’d get a degree in theology. I actually take the Pope seriously, and I love both JPII and Papa Bene. I’ve actually read their stuff. And I wasn’t forced to. I go to Mass at your parish because for once I actually feel like I’m in a real Catholic church building, and because this is a very Catholic community. Not to mention I haven’t seen much (if any) of the following: holding hands during the Our Father, pointing and laughing at women in veils, guitars, liturgical craziness, girls with “shorts” I’m sure I saw sold at WalMart as underwear, gay pride buttons, etc. I also haven’t heard: adlibbing the Mass to the point where I have to sit down and think really hard about what the difference is between invalid and illicit, clapping, and anything even smelling of condescension. I’m also struggling with the difference between irreverence and funny. I feel really bad about not giving a lot during Mass, and I really really really want to do something to help out- I just don’t know where I fit in. Did I mention the veils? I like them. I’d like to wear them more often. And when I have daughters, I’d love for them to have the option of wearing them. Speaking of daughters, Mr. Serrano and I don’t want to use contraception. We’d love to learn about NFP though, especially since it’d be nice to know what all those dumb SEX IS AWESOME/LEARNING ABOUT YOUR BODY IS A PROLIFE LIE avoided telling me about my own body that I supposedly have so much control over. I went to March for Life last year, and I spent almost the entire time in the Shrine, pretty much getting high off of Jesus, Mary, the Saints, and all of the beautiful habits EVERYWHERE. I am a revert, so I’m rough on the edges. Catholic etiquette is something I fail at consistently. I have to go to Confession every week because that’s about how often I fall into mortal sin, and even if I weren’t, I’d still be going because mortal sin is remarkably easy to fall into. By the way, its embarrassing to have to admit the same, freaking, annoying mortal sin EVERY WEEK, but I’m doing it. I’m also going to Mass, and even when I was mired in mortal sin and afraid to go to Confession I STILL went to Mass. Except for when I was lazy.  And yes, I’ve definitely confessed that. I have no idea what a practicing Catholic is, for me, personally. Do you mean someone who isn’t creating Epic Catholic Fails all over the place or someone who is giving it her best shot? Hopefully you mean the second option. All I can tell you is that, yes, I’m “practicing” in the sense that I’m trying as hard as I can some days and failing entirely on others, but overall I’m as much in love with my faith as I am Mr. Serrano. I’m obsessed with all things Catholic, and the Church is the one place I’ve been able to call home.

 

Yeah…Lol now hopefully I don’t get some “progressive” (what an oxymoron there) Catholic who decides to take this little letter and run with it, claiming that I must be close to tolerant or something. Either that or a “see? Practicing Catholics are obsolete”. I think not. If I’m not a practicing Catholic yet I’ll just spend the rest of my life attempting to be one.

Booyah.

Also, it was really fun asking the question about whether or not Mr. Serrano and I are able to have babies. “You don’t know until you try!”. rofls…I think Fr. Caffeintaor just about died….

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Filed under Catholic, Mawidge, Mr. Serrano and other fun stuff, Religion

Books, Dating, Sex- Let’s Get Our Nerdy On

Okay, per some comments written below by R.A. Salvatore, I’ve gone through and edited this thing. I meant to make it shorter, and failed. So have fun. Oh, and did all 3 of you know that I rant on this blog? I know, right? I didn’t know either.

P.S. Sister Allie, if you were the real person who left that comment, know that revenge comes in the form of photoshop, a man’s speedo, and a certain arch-bishop dancing to “My God is An Awesome God”.
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Now there’s a title to attract some people. Especially people who write things like “Mexican Perv” into the search engines and then find my little blog. Is that some sort of whacked out fetish straight from rule 34?

Even though I’m not a huge fan of Simcha Fischer’s blog over at NCR,  I still read it from time to time. Some of her stuff is pretty good. I won’t link to it here since I’m not in favor of being a traffic vacuum, but the post I read was “Dangerous Books For Teenage Girls”.

There was a comment down below the piece, in which it was implied that “you can’t judge whether a book is good or bad unless you’ve read it” which is better known as “you can’t judge a book by its cover”.

Maybe because us humans, especially American humans, are just now finally dragging ourselves out of the “let’s judge everybody by nonsensical bullshit like wealth and how many baby trees died to make my car” we have catapulted all the way over to the other, open-minded side. By open-minded I mean we’ve completely lost our minds, and now pretty much anyone can crap out a “novel” and call it good. And we still judge by wealth. Don’t believe me? Guess what one of the reasons for keeping abortion legalized is… I’m sure it has nothing at all to do with getting rid of poor people.

It seems like “open mind, insert crap” has taken hold in dating as well. I’m 24, a virgin, pretty damn proud of it, and am getting married to a beautiful man- who was also my first kiss. I have never been with anyone else, and I didn’t date in high school.

shhhhh….did you hear that? That was the sound of a thousand feminazi heads exploding….

“Open Mind” sickens me. One thing I’ve learned about books and men is that sometimes you really should judge a book by its cover. If its got some sort of rebel looking girl pretty much dressed up in a hipster’s leather fetish outfit (Girl With A Dragon Tatoo) I know I’m probably not going to like it- even if the writing is good. I’m probably going to read a lot of things that conflict with my faith, and quite frankly everything conflicts with faith once you leave the sanctuary of the Mass.

It’s okay to judge a book by its cover! How men (or women) dress themselves says a lot about who they are, and who they see themselves as. Chances are the 30 year old in cargo pants, an over-sized T-shirt, his hat hung backwards and his slang from somewhere out of an 80’s blaxploitation flim is, 999 times out of 1000, a loser. Chances are that guy in highschool who looks so hot but hangs a Confederate flag in his truck is less interested in history than he is in being a jackass. Chances are that girl who doesn’t wear underwear under her skirt that’s short enough and thin enough to see through actually is looking for nothing good. (Yeah, I know, shock right? Because women can’t possibly be just as horny as men!)

But then, there are some books, and some dates, that open your mind to things that you never thought of before. Girl With A Dragon Tatoo might put some things into light for me that I’d never have considered otherwise. Reading the Quran ended up teaching me that I love the rhythm of Arabic poetry and composition, even if I’m pretty sure Mohammed was definitely not talking to anything remotely God-like. Having an unrequited crush on an Atheist taught me that emotional love conquers good reason, and that it really is a better idea to find someone who shares your beliefs.

Then there are books and boys that seem fun at the time, but are realized to be a big waste of effort later on. Facebook, for example. A better example of this in my personal life is R.A. Salvatore’s Drizzt series. I was obsessed with this series. I spent what little money I had on it. I watched for the release of every new title, scoured the libraries, viewed pages and pages and pages of horrific fan “art” and “literature”. I bemoaned the craptastic “art” that took my lovely Mary Sue (Drizzt, and I liked him as a Mary Sue) from a young, dark elf with lots of muscles and oozing teenage hawtness with his pretty purple eyes and spat him out as some old white human with wrinkles and what might possibly have been mange. I don’t even like the series anymore, and I still feel an urge to set things on fire with my mind when I see those covers.

Was I entertained by these books? Oh definitely. They even got me through some rough times, as I could connect with the outcast with a penchant for self-pity, but of course, was totally awesome secretly. Like, you have no idea how awesome. Like, yeah. So cool.  But were these books good for me? Did they nourish my soul? Get me to contemplate God and the transcendent?

I’m going to go with a no. For one thing the books seem to be extremely anti-Catholic (if not anti-organized religion), absolutely misogynist, anti-authoritarian, History Channel blunt about it. Sure, transcendence gets talked about…except the gods and goddesses are as banal as the Greek gods and goddesses. Drizzt got me through some very rough times, but would I have fared better reading Chesterton, C.S. Lewis, Tolkien? Perhaps instead of listening to a lot of wine and cheese, and watching one beloved character foist his supposedly “unselfish” sacrifice unto another, I could have learned about the more realistic mutual self-giving of Arwen and Aragorn.

For the 3 or 5 (?) of you reading this lonely little blog who’ve never read the Forgotton Realms series, what basically happens is that Cattie-brie and Drizzt have a years and years long “it’s complicated” relationship. Drizzt can basically live for something like 1000 years or whatever, while poor human Cattie-brie can live maybe a hundred (although not likely, living among a world full of evil characters that would kill for a chance to make Drizzt cry). So instead of realizing that Cattie-brie has a choice in the matter, and that she can probably assess her ability to handle such a situation (perhaps her addled female mind can’t handle the stress) Drizzt does the manly thing and “sacrifices” himself. Or rather, being scared of his own insecurities and inability to control the future, yet still not trusting anyone beyond himself, he drags out the “complicated” status of the relationship for years. Its like college, only it takes a decade and a half or more.

Or, just like college.

I could have read City of God or Beowulf or Dante’s Inferno or The Dog Died At Midnight or Father Amorth’s book on posession and demons.  I could have at least been spared when the books lost their soul and became a heap of pages that equated Orcs with black people (really? The orcs get to be Black??) and settlers with the fair (and edging ever so closer to delightsome) people of Ten-Towns. There’s even a racist/species-ist group called the…*eye roll* C.C.C. I’m sure that wasn’t a reference at all to a real life consonant loving, genocidal group of idiots who are running out of slogans as fast as they are genes. Oh, and Drizzt goes from loveable, whiny Mary Sue to David Carusso.

White, Wrinkly, And Nothing Like Drizzt. Its Like The Artist Decided To Write.

Instead of reading actual literature that would have challenged my thoughts and beliefs, I ingested junk-food for the soul that confused me spiritually, and warped my view of the world. And exposed me to David Carusso. THE HORROR!

Sadly, the misogyny of the books stunk like that bog in the Labyrinth. The series begins with a female dominated society of dark elves. Bar none, they’re all pretty much horrific little harpies running around controlling the hapless males. Malice (the most subtly named character since Maleficent) is the mother of Drizzt (and his Aunt, too, and wow that was awkward when that dawned on me) who just about kills off cute baby Drizzt because he’s boy number three. She, and his sisters, are all perfectly evil, except one random female who later on kills his father, technically his sexually abused Uncle. (This hit me worse than when I figured out that Luke and Leia were twins and I couldn’t get that kissing scene out of my head. WTF LUCAS???).

Possibly due to the gender defined, hierarchical, matriarchal society, with lots of rules that make no sense (at least it doesn’t get called the “Magisterium” like Pulman did with his books, because I guess then it wouldn’t be so “subtle”) the one good sister who didn’t beat Drizzt as much when he was a little kid goes through with the human sacrifice of her brother’s (and possibly her) father. Not that this is at all similar to some sort of Christ figure, being sacrificed by a horrible oppressive society that includes lots of priests priestesses, nor is it at all similar to that tired, beaten, old straw man who cries out that Catholics are re-sacrificing Christ.

Then, on the other hand of the misogyny person…figure…thing… you have the Perfect Women. Alustriel is all pretty, all wise, and pretty much just echos Drizzt alot. Mielikki is Drizzt’s personal goddess, apparently made from thoughts, impressions, and ideals just like dragons but she’s so damn perfect there’s no real contact with her other than as a unicorn, since avatars are “too accessible” to be real. Because, you know, a personal God who came down as a man is too disgusting to fathom. Oddly enough, that sounds like an ancient Roman rant… Anyway, the one “good” woman who has a character in the books is Cattie-brie. Even she’s pretty incorruptible though, other than when she gets possessed by a crystal shard.

Then she pretty much amps up the creepy by just about raping poor Drizzt, but of course its not her, its the pretty shiny thing controlling her mind making her go all seckshy. If this sounds like a diamond commercial to you, I’ll have you know that it didn’t last forever. The pretty shiny thing, after all, was just a sword.

When Cattie-brie and Drizzt FINALLY go from “It’s complicated” to “in a relationship” and finally to “married”-she dies. After waiting until she’s pretty darn past the years when bearing a child would be a heck of a lot easier (try 20? 23? 25? 28? NO, we have to wait until 30 or above!!)  the annoying couple finally tie the knot, having earned their master’s degrees in drama. But then, poor female Catti-brie has to catch a plague and die. And then she gets stuck in another plane of existence, along with annoying little Regis (do not get me started), as a reward to Drizzt for his years of fairly blatant agnosticism service to Mielikki.

So now in this Forgotten Realms universe we girl nerds are left with pure evil pretty girl,  flat echo-y pretty girl, and absolutely gorgeous good girl who doesn’t even exist in a real body for models. Wrap it up with a few totally obvious subtle digs at the Church (The Weeping Friars, which if you read the books sounds like every lead-up to an oft repeated half-truth about indulgences or even the complete crap about a female pope) and you have a wonderful cocktail of things that maybe shouldn’t be ingested indiscriminately by a teenage young lady.

I ended my relationship with that particular book series like it was a mildly-retarded man-boy, and I had just woke up at the theater wondering “wait, I wasted how many of my years with you?”. It looked like a great idea at the time, and it brought some comfort through some difficult years. However, it was junk food for my soul. Instead of forcing me out of myself, it lead me down the selfish, depressing road of agnosticism. My agnosticism could have ended a lot quicker if someone had dropped by and perhaps handed me Orthodoxy by Chesterton, or Screwtape by C.S. Lewis.

 

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A Job And Announcement

Well, let me start off by saying that trolling Google for images is kind of risky, even if Web of Trust supposedly has your back. I lost my draft of this post…

Any-flipping-who…. I have a new job. Its awesome. Mainly because I get paid, get to wear office clothing, and it doesn’t involve being stuck in a factory with sweaty old men who try to find ways to touch my boobs. No really- true story. Temp guys can be g-r-o-s-s…

Since my hours are weird, I’ve been having trouble sleeping. However, I am getting paid, and that makes me happeh, to borrow a phrase.

I also have something to announce! I announce that Mr. Serrano and I announced our marriage (future) to the parents (aka Los Classy). How did it go? Sit down, child of God, and I shall tell you the tale! With pictures!

Well, in the morning we go to Mass. Unfortunately its in Saint Happy Clappy’s parish, so Trinity Sunday is all about the Creator, Redeemer, Spirit, and how Trinity Sunday has NOTHING TO DO WITH THEOLOGY. At the word “Creator” used in place of Father, I suddenly lost all appetite for interpreting for my dear fiance. Normally I do some simultaneous interpretation during English Mass for Mr. Serrano- good for practice and good for the soul. This time? Not so much.

So, after the Mass, we go home, garden a bit, take showers (separately, you pervs) and go to my grandfather’s Father’s day party.

It was like this, only with a Mexican.

Ignoring racist comments from one of the uncles who leaves classy messages all over my facebook and certainly never trolls leaving behind racist comments, we have an actually sort of pleasant party and eventually head home.

Having invited my parents out to dinner at a nice restaurant, we dressed nicely and checked to make sure we could pay for their orders. I also splashed us with Holy Water, figuring it couldn’t hurt. The dinner went well, other than my mother. The first few seconds of this video are 100% my crazy as heck mother, the rest is a montage of my life with them in restaurants.

She was pissed because her diet coke wasn’t on the table 2 seconds after we got our food at the buffet. She also yelled at a random waiter, who had no clue who the heck we were. Lets just say I kissed my favorite tea goodbye. Thanks, MOM. (The people know me there and I always leave a nice tip. So, I generally get the really good jasmine tea. Adios, dear tea…)

Eventually, we got around to actually saying something. Mr. Serrano had eaten a grand total of 1 plate, because he was ready to crap his pants he was so freaked out. I wasn’t freaked out until we had to say something- and we had to say it on the fly because Los Classy was moving out.

So…it went like this. “I would like to ask your daughter’s hand in marriage”

............

………….And we’re getting married in MEXICO.

Actually, they couldn't even get that out...

So? Besides the looks of shock, what were their reactions? Well, my internet friends, that is how we come by the new name “Los Classy”.

In bullet point, here were their reactions:

  • You do know our daughter has $tudent debt, right?
  • I appreciate you asking for this…
  • We weren’t expecting this right now…(its early)
  • We will talk about the financial $ituation.
  • Let’s talk about the financial $$$$ituation.
  • Are you pregnant?
  • How are you going to live in Mexico, do you have any money?
  • Money.
  • $$$$$$.
  • Dinero.
  • Great for you…I guess.
  • Happy Father’s day to me, eh?/sarcasm
  • This could just take her off our hands…

Isn’t that sweet? Isn’t that classy? Doesn’t that just speak volumes about where my parents stand on marriage? Noticeably absent was any real sense of joy. No congratulations, no welcome to the family, nothing. Oh, Los Classy did look at my ring (which they were surprised we had already picked out) and I could immediately tell my mother was trying to figure out how much it cost. NICE.

Don’t get me wrong- this went 4billion times better than I thought it would be. Mr. Serrano and I ended the night laughing and watching a movie at the theater.

However, I was still incredibly, incredibly, incredibly disappointed and sad. My parents think the only reason people get married is because there’s been an “oops” baby- not because two loving people plan out a life together. Perhaps their talk of money is grounded in caring about what happens to us…but the way in which it was brought up made me feel like a cow, and a dishonest cow at that.

My parents are not proud of me. I could be a Saint, and they would still find me less than the family dog. I’ve known that for a long time, but it still hurts when it gets waved in my face. Its so glaringly obvious that they don’t know me- seriously, anyone stumbling across this blog probably knows me better than my own parents. If they knew me, they’d know how strong my faith and love are, and how I never hide anything from Mr. Serrano.

Things were okay for a few days after the announcement. I thought that I was finally safe to gush. I thought that I could hope, and dream, and make plans. I thought my mother was serious when she said that I could live in the house until marriage in order to save money- for about 1o seconds she acted like a real mom. Probably while I was thinking of saving my chastity by avoiding living together before marriage, she was only thinking of avoiding a pregnancy.

Like the one she had with me. The one where I supposedly came and ruined her so much better before me life.

But just like normal, she started screaming at me the other day. Screeching, like a demon. Accusing me of every disgusting thing she could think of. Emotionally manipulating me, guilting me, making me feel like an ant because I am happy and she isn’t. She’s far too good at sabotaging happiness to let something like that into her, or anyone else’s life. I had to let her know that I would not discuss anything with her until I had Mr. Serrano’s permission, and that if she screamed, yelled, or in any way made either of us feel uncomfortable, the end result would be us leaving the room or the house. We are not going to fight, argue, or act like children- we will just remove ourselves from the situation. She took back a gift she gave me, forcing me to pay for it with the last of the quarters, dimes, and small bills that I had left over from saving for the wedding. Yes, in my house this is “normal”.

I do not want to accept any more “gifts” from her again, even if I need them. Her gifts always come with something attached. I can live without them. I’d prefer to live without them. I want to tell her that I will no longer accept gifts from anyone in the family, but that would provoke her.

As for my father, he’s the usual ball-less wonder. Now that he gets what he wants from his wife, and with the Mormon carrot held out in front of him, he’s even more useless than before. You can bet money that he is going to be on “her side”, and is still not going to realize that by him choosing sides, he is only allowing the family to disintegrate more. He’ll probably try to “talk” on the weekend, in which he’ll once more drone on and on in his lecture about how I can’t “stir things up”, “rock the boat”, or “fight” against my mother. Every excuse will be afforded to her, from her (absolutely) horrific childhood, to her diabetes, to her being fat, to her having mental problems. Every effort will be made to downplay what is ultimately emotional abuse.

The end result of it all is that I’m done. I’m finished. I give up.

Today, I loaded up some books that I no longer read (re: 3 boxes full of them) and carried them out. Mother asked with a bit of astonishment, a slight how dare you, and some hope, if I was moving out.

“Nope.” I said. Not yet…

I might have to get a dispensation after I move in with Mr. Serrano. I don’t want to do it. I think living together before marriage is a sin, if not a close occasion of it. I worry about how well we can keep chaste together when we’ll see each other every morning, and every night for nearly 2 years.

I’m not moving in with my fiance because I think it will make our marriage stronger, or because I believe in a “trial marriage” (WHICH I DON’T), or because I’m in love with my fiance. It isn’t for fun, enjoyment, or because I would love to wake up every morning and go to bed every night under the same roof as the man that I love.

I’m moving in with Mr. Serrano as soon as possible, because my home life here is so crazy that I am not safe. I can’t sleep, eat, use the bathroom, clean clothing, or do anything in this house because I am always scared of being screamed at. Its beyond stressful, and it affects me spiritually.

I can’t pray as well; I swear a lot; I’m deeply angry to the point of rage. I’m depressed; my chest is constantly heavy, I plan my day around who I have to avoid. My quality of work suffers due to stress, I find myself wishing and wishing that I had a real mother. I try to think of the Virgin Mary as my mother. I try not to think of my father. I don’t pay attention to my appearance, I eat very little (and not very well) and I lock myself in my room when I’m not working or on a date. There’s not even much time for dates now, due to work. I constantly check to see who’s home when I return, and I breathe a sigh of relief if for once the mother isn’t around. I shout for joy (literally) when nobody is around, because then I’m free to cook myself dinner, eat, and take a shower without feeling threatened.

When I finally find the energy to go to Adoration, I can’t pray. I try, but all I can do is embarrass myself by crying in front of old Polish church ladies. I don’t know if they see it or not, but I do know that one of the kneelers was left wet. I’m a quiet crier though.

What’s worse- living in a near occasion of sin or allowing myself to be abused? I can leave the room, but I’ll be followed. I’ll be hounded by one or the other of them, and I know the wide range of manipulation that they will use to get me to bend to their will. They blame my guilt and paranoia on the Church. In reality, it was a priest (or many) who sat me down and told me that I was a “beloved daughter of God” and that I need to accept forgiveness, and accept that God doesn’t blame me- only loves me. There’s right, and wrong, but God forgives when you ask. It was a revelation to find out that I am loved no matter what I do, and there are no buts with God.

Whenever I’m in despair now, I try to meditate on the Divine Mercy. I try to love my parents. Can you love without feeling it? Perhaps that is what I’m going to have to learn to do.

However, I need to get out. The good thing is, besides God and the Saints, I’ve got wonderful friends and a fiance who all love me here on Earth. In spite of it all, Mr. Serrano and I actually have a healthy relationship. It takes a lot of work, but its worth it.

As soon as possible, I’m leaving. I just want it on record that I’m not leaving to live with Mr. Serrano like most people of my generation would do it- for frivolous reasons. I’m doing it because I don’t believe there’s another option. Stay here and suffer? Allow my abuse? Part of me says to go for it- become a saint through suffering. The other part of me says that I should do what I can to remain whole- and the family is taking me piece by piece. How can I be a proper wife and mother if I’m emotionally crippled by the time that I marry? How can I plan a wedding when the mention of it will send her into a rage?

Its time to be free. I can’t wait to move in, in some ways. There are three bedrooms in the house, so one will be mine, one will be his, and one can be a combination library/prayer room. I will also be able to put some cookbooks to use (finally!) and will be teaching Mr. Serrano his RCIA book (we had to stop meetings, because of issues with schedules of work).

Things are going to get better.

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My Golden Wedding Band…

Well, actually that has yet to come! However, Mr. Serrano finally formally proposed to me, ring and all, after months of pestering. I will remember his proposal forever…especially as it had 3 stages:

  1. Propose over Skype while I’m in Japan. I think he’s joking (we’d only been going out a few months). He pretty much blocked it from his memory, but when I realized that it was not a joke, and stopped laughing, all I could think was  “Yes”.
  2. While relaxing at one of the Mexican festivals in our area, in the ambiance of music, food, laughter, and the beer tent, he casually looked at me and asked if I would like a party like that for my wedding. My jaw dropped, time stood still, I grinned, and the answer was “Yes” again.
  3. Finally, after months going on years of pestering about a formal proposal, because I’m itching to show that its official, and after planning our announcement to my parents, we go and buy the ring. I pick out 3 rings I like, and he secretly picks the one he likes among them all. Then, at the classiest establishment known to Earth, Texas Roadhouse, he proposed. Formally. The song “On the Road Again” was playing, and peanuts littered the floor.I could not ask for a better formal proposal. I laughed and joked, saying…”Nahhhhh”, and eventually “caved”. The entire 3 steps of Proposal were awesome.

I have to say, Mr. Serrano picked out the ring I liked best (he has good taste, and what’s more he saw my eyes go round when I saw it). It also didn’t cost too much. Its simple, elegant, and made of silver and diamonds (I’m a silver kind of gal). What I like most about it is the symbolism I can read into it.

The ring twists in a figure eight, the number of infinity, eternity, and the Virgin Mary. Its also my personal good luck number. 3 diamonds symbolize the Holy Trinity- Father, Son, Holy Spirit- all encircled in one loop. 3 more tiny diamonds on one side and 3 tiny diamonds on the other join the Trinity stones to make the number 7- completeness and holiness. And then you have all the other awesome symbols of the ring that are more traditional!

We’ve been planning on how to tell my parents for months, and we’ve finally decided on next weekend. I honestly don’t know how it is going to go. My family seem to like him, and don’t seem too racist, but one of my worries is that they’ll accept him- because now he’s getting rid of the useless daughter for them. I’d hate for that to be the reason, but I guess its better than trying to actively destroy our relationship.

Time will tell. Hopefully all goes well. And, true to my Catholic revert self, I’ve got to go see about getting this doohicky blessed! Not only that, but now I get to search for a wedding band for Mr. Serrano…that is going to be fun. He, apparently, is a gold man, so we aren’t going to match. OH NO! So far our marriage is breaking every one of society’s stupid rules, which puts me in a great mood. ^_^

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Undercover Fiancee, Hypothetical Kids, and Education

I am an undercover fiancee. However, I blow my cover all the time- to the wrong people. I tell the internet, my hair stylist, my friends, and random strangers on the bus that I’m getting married.

We are saving money, and have even transferred it to a bank account.

All of Mexico probably already knows.

The police even know.

But my entire family does not- most especially my parents in particular.

Ohhh don’t get me wrong. I’m sure they know unofficially- I’ve been dating Mr. Serrano for 3 years now, and its obvious we love each other. So it probably won’t come as a surprise- or will it?

The thing is, I think I tell everyone but them right now because its like some sort of a confession. I feel guilty, I feel like I should be able to tell them everything, and I know some people consider me to be some sort of sniveling little child for failing to do so. (I’m looking at *you* Office Queen). As fast as I announce my marriage, I follow it up immediately with the obligatory information that my family doesn’t know.

And the thing is, with a normal family this is something that I would have told months ago. Mr. Serrano and I would both love to break the silence, and announce our engagement. In a normal family, this would work out.

But I don’t have a normal family. I have an emotionally abusive mother who was physically abusive in the past, and Hell itself will either freeze or thaw before she finally admits even to herself that she was so. I have a father that is submissive, and follows that carrot of sanity dangled on a stick- he hopes and hopes that someone, something will save her, be it the Mormons or psychiatric drugs. Both of them feed off of misery and stress, and I honestly think that they don’t see themselves as living if they aren’t suffering.

People wonder why I can be so negative. My family is the answer. Its rather difficult to develop positive views when you’re constantly bombarded with negative ones, even the negative ones that are dressed up to look positive. People wonder why I can laugh at absolutely anything- again, my family is the answer. If all your positives were negatives in disguise, you’d have to grab a sense of humor to survive.

If I were to tell my parents right now, they’d have very good reasons against getting married. Financial stability would be a major roadblock, and it is a major roadblock, and it would be brought up. I’m still living with these people! The reasons wouldn’t be too far off. For some people, I could see how it would worry them that Mr. Serrano is my first long-term relationship. I wouldn’t agree (seriously, do I need to try every flavor in the ice-cream shop to know that chocolate covered lemon in a small cone with rootbeer is my favorite?) but I could see the reasoning.

What I would not be able to handle would be the constant flow of negativity. I will never make my parents happy. At least, I will never please them if I follow my heart. I know that they will criticize everything down to how much I pay for a dress to the fact that I haven’t had sex yet (although I’ve purposely made suspicious noises which has taken off the pressure slightly). The more I discern marriage, the more I realize that my values are completely different from my parents’.

I believe in waiting for sex until marriage, marrying in the Church, that marriage is actually worth something, and that I shouldn’t limit the number of children I have by using contraception. I believe in marrying sooner rather than later, that marriage is a spiritual partnership, that the man is the head of household, and that my worth has nothing to do with the dollar signs I trail behind my name. I believe that unlike my parents, Mr. Serrano and I are going about this the right way. We are discerning, talking, discussing children, finances, education, religion, and family.

We are not screwing like bunnies, making “oopsies” and then discussing those things well after conception has occurred. We’re doing pretty damn well, although I honestly would appreciate advice. Can’t say I’ll follow it, but food for the brain is delicious to the soul. I know that on some level, my parents are just wanting the best for me, but the way it comes out is often patronizing, and quite frankly humiliating.

So, hopefully, Mr. Serrano and I will announce it this July or December- whichever month has at least one of us living on our own. Who knows, I might be a bad Catholic and co-habit with him.  I would rather not, but if the fallout from announcing something that should be joyful proves more nuclear than squee, living with Mr. Serrano might not be such a bad idea. I really hope that its not a sin… Mr. Serrano and I won’t be having sex…but I will be saving my sanity. I suppose we could even have separate rooms, and introduce someone else to the house so that there is more accountability (and less rent to pay).

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