porn awareness resolution

My Journey of Advocacy: Dealing with Disappointment

In January 2017, I appeared before the Virginia legislature in support of Porn Awareness Resolution HJ549. I felt like an Esther who went before the king, risking censure. But I knew that I was “brought to the kingdom for such a time as this.” I was allowed to give my testimony in front of one committee. The vote was unanimous. Unfortunately, while the resolution passed the full House, it failed to pass the Senate Committee.

This was a great disappointment, but I had to let go of it. When I found out for sure that there was not another chance, I couldn’t invite my state representatives to a banquet like Esther did. I chose to be Christ-like and that meant instead of bashing and railing about the injustice, I had to accept defeat gracefully.

It’s so easy to attack people, but I didn’t want to do that. So I purposely went online and posted a thank you to the members who said “yes” to this porn awareness resolution. I posted on my Facebook wall:

Huge THANK YOU to 82 VA House of Delegates Members voting “Yes!” to the Porn Awareness Resolution, in spite of inaction in the Senate!

I believed that was the Christ-like thing to do instead. It was a conscious decision. I mentioned the 82 members specifically (there are 100 people in the body) because I’m hoping that when the elections come up this year, people might ask the candidates running for re-election:

“Did you vote for the Porn Awareness Resolution?” If they say yes, that’s a positive. If they say no, that’s an opportunity for the general public to ask “Why? Do you approve of porn? Do you think it’s not damaging?”

Over the years, I’ve learned some dynamics of how legislative bodies work. These are just men and women who live in our community who we have voted into office.

I’m trying to use my voice under the umbrella of showing a Christ-like attitude. Because of the Women’s March (which seemed outrageous from what I saw), I deliberately wanted to be the complete opposite in my approach.

People start tuning out the obnoxiousness in life. I wanted to be that light that would shine for Christ as I stepped out. Then I could accept the outcome and let it go.

Celebrate Each Success

the piano guysRather than feel defeated, I decided to go celebrate at The Piano Guys Concert.

This is me saying to myself, “Okay, you have to face the fact that it didn’t go through. It’s not going to go through. Just relax in that space.” I feel like I have the Lord’s blessing on my efforts; and the comments on Facebook, and in person, for the most part, have been supportive.

Now something exciting has happened!  I received an email asking me and others to launch this initiative in other states. It already passed in Utah and South Dakota. We want the Porn Awareness Resolution in all 50 states. So I posted the invitation on my Facebook page. If God wants it to go further than me, the work I did is a stepping stone to make that happen. I don’t have to be the one to do it. I stood up in Virginia. I don’t have to do it everywhere. The National Center on Sexual Exploitation intends to lead the movement. It’s where I found all my research and facts (www.endsexualexploitation.org).  I encourage anyone reading this who wishes to get involved to contact them and do what you can to raise awareness in your state. For more information click here.

Peaceful Passage by Kim West My Review

My Book Review: Peaceful Passage by Kim West, PhD

Kim West, PhD claims on the cover of her book, Peaceful Passage, it is “The essential guide to navigating the emotional storms and daily logistics of an at-home-end-of-life journey.” It’s true.

I have been both a long-distance and local caregiver for my parents and in-laws over a 20 year span. I was curious about Kim’s experiences and advice, partnering with hospice. She shares their love, caring, availability and wisdom in glowing, admirable, respectful, compassionate terms. She echoes my own feelings of gratitude for those who so willingly serve strangers to become family for a time.

Kim allows herself to be vulnerable as she shares the roller coaster of emotions she felt as a daughter. Kim’s end-of-life awareness relating to her mother pounced upon her quickly. Not much warning. Little time to prepare.

My current situation involves a chronic disease, gradually progressing towards the end-of-life. My caregiver bookend is my husband, challenged by his benign brain tumor.

Kim emphasizes 3 universal pieces of wisdom:
1) Everyone goes through this journey in their own way. Realize it may not be your way.
2) “The goal is to make your loved one’s end of life journey comfortable and not simply prolong their life.” As a caregiver, it is a tough challenge to remember quality over extension.
3) “Let (your loved one) keep control in as many ways as possible as long as possible.” Torn between a desire to help, yet allow their independence, is a thin line when their decisions and desires are often more stubborn than wise.

In Peaceful Passage, Kim West, guides the reader through multiple options “to help you and your loved one finish well.” Physically, Emotionally. Spiritually. She reveals her journals and stories to emphasize the importance of taking this journey with God and hospice. Never alone.

Kim provides vital tips and resources. At the end of each distinctive chapter she offers a workbook to record personal application and reflections. All are tools which supply a map for your journey and leave a treasured legacy at the finish.

I will give a copy of this book to each of my adult children and my husband, for them to read when they are ready. That moment is not now, but later-when circumstances demand knowledge for action. Kim’s book can help strengthen and empower them.

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book to review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with FTC Regulations. I am part of The CWA Review Crew. Judi G. Reid, www.womenofvalue.org.

HONORING ANN WITH DANCE

How can you honor your grandmother at her memorial service? Participate with a message that was meaningful to her. Today Keren chose to dance before us. The photo of Ann looked down on her lovingly as she danced to the music

Even when we don’t understand the reasons why, God is faithful. He never wastes the pain we go through. Trust Him. Thank you Keren for your message of hope in Christ.