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571st Friday Blog Roundup

This has been a hard week to stomach social media and politics and opinions of the general public. It’s not that I haven’t observed disturbing statements on Facebook prior to this point, but I’ve been more disillusioned with politicians and citizens in general when it comes to discussion concerning the Syrian refugees.

These are people who have nothing, who have lost everything, who are terrified and uncomfortable and have been living with uncertainty for months or years or lifetimes, all because they were born in a certain place at a certain time.  This could be you if you had been born to a different family.

None of us know how our lives will turn out; how current events will change our situation.  It would behoove us to show compassion.  When people show compassion, it is much more likely that compassion will be there waiting for you when you need it.  If people withhold compassion, it perpetuates a system void of kindness.

I don’t know.  I had to shut down Twitter and Facebook a few times this week, which rarely happens.  Sometimes the conversation online saves me.  But then there are weeks like this week where words harm more than help.

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Stop procrastinating.  Go make your backups.  Don’t have regrets.

Seriously.  Stop what you’re doing for a moment.  It will take you fifteen minutes, tops.  But you will have peace of mind for days and days.  It’s the gift to yourself that keeps on giving.

As always, add any new thoughts to the Friday Backup post and peruse new comments in order to find out about methods, plug-ins, and devices that help you quickly back up your data and accounts.

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And now the blogs…

But first, second helpings of the posts that appeared in the open comment thread last week.  In order to read the description before clicking over, please return to the open thread:

  • Circle Game” (Stirrup Queens) — thanks, Infertile Girl!

Okay, now my choices this week.

Searching for Our Silver Lining draws a parallel between the hatred displayed in Paris and tensions within her family.  She writes, “One thing that continues to baffle is how insistent those who foster hate and anger are of their position. There’s a certain pride they take in causing destruction and pain, as if it somehow justifies their own feelings.”  This idea of creating pain to justify their own pain stuck with me for a long time after reading this post.

Waiting for Baby Bray has a very raw post about hitting her lowest point and feeling broken.  I love this post for its honesty.  It takes a lot of strength to be able to write a post like this; to know yourself this well and to give this piece of yourself to others in case stating the words helps someone else, too.

My Path to Mommyhood has a post about mourning the finality of never being pregnant.  It has been happening in stages, and reaching this recent level comes about from needing to make a decision about frozen embryos.  She comes to a place of peace by the end of the post: “I will move through this, I will heal and not be split, no matter how infinitesimally, between the hope for a pregnancy and the reality and beauty of adoption as our best choice for parenthood.”

Lastly, Infertile Fantasies is in the process of donating her frozen embryos, and she writes about infertility from the other side this time as a donor.  She writes about finding other donors, and what she is learning from the conversation: “We can tell you that embryo donation is harder than you think. And not always the right decision. And other times, despite the difficulties, it is.”  Moreover, I love that she links to a decision tool.  There needs to be more conversation, more consideration, more support in helping people decide what to do with their frozen embryos.

The roundup to the Roundup: I can’t handle reading what some people are sending out into the world.  Your weekly backup nudge.  And lots of great posts to read.  So what did you find this week?  Please use a permalink to the blog post (written between November 13th and 20th) and not the blog’s main url. Not understanding why I’m asking you what you found this week?  Read the original open thread post here.

19 comments

1 35jupiterdrive { 11.20.15 at 9:00 am }

I know exactly what you mean. I am ashamed & shocked by this. All of these people have immigrants as ancestors. All of them. They do not speak for me.

2 35jupiterdrive { 11.20.15 at 9:02 am }

Ps nominating this post for next week’s roundup.

3 a { 11.20.15 at 9:06 am }

I just wish people had perspective. I know we live in the safest times in my lifetime. I can go about my life feeling pretty secure. I also know that we have just as much to fear from random citizens intent on committing crimes or on righting whatever perceived societal wrongs they feel they’ve been experiencing as we do from possible refugee terrorist plants (sounds like a summer blockbuster movie plot. That should tell us all something). Life is a series of risks. Let’s not be cruel to others based on out-of-proportion fears of something that has an incredibly small chance of happening.

4 Working mom of 2 { 11.20.15 at 10:26 am }

Yes. I can’t believe people are talking about internment and a registry for people of one religion ala 1930s Germany. All the hate hurts my heart.

5 Beth { 11.20.15 at 11:19 am }

Agreed… i had no idea just how much ugliness was out there until recent events brought out all the crazy. I’ve been annoyed by facebook for a while and have been considering just shutting it down and I’m pretty sure the Syrian refugee crisis is what is going to push me over the edge. Good heavens, people, be thankful for the blessings of simply being born here and have some compassion.

6 Tiara { 11.20.15 at 11:20 am }

This. This. Yes, yes, yes. I have been very disillusioned by the reactions this week. It’s made me profoundly sad.

7 apluseffort { 11.20.15 at 12:31 pm }

I was horrified to see a relative post a meme that referred to Syrians as “inbred savages” and then I was glad to see that he got significant pushback, even from his wife. Then again, he never gets pushback from anyone but me on his problemmatic #BlackLivesMatter posts. I feel more and more that I could do without being Facebook friends with relatives :/

8 torthúil { 11.20.15 at 5:03 pm }

It seems to me that a lot of people people are angry and worried after the Paris terrorist attacks, and they’ve latched onto the idea of keeping out refugees as an easy solution. Which is isn’t. I wish this whole situation would lead to an open (if fiery) discussion of what immigration, citizenship, integration, assimilation means in the 21st century. But I don’t think that will happen, and I think we’ll just see people get more and more divided and less able to talk to each other, at least on social media.

9 torthúil { 11.20.15 at 5:06 pm }

correction: “Which it isn’t” (an easy solution).

I find social media more and more about posturing, and propaganda. It’s very tiresome.

10 Lori Lavender Luz { 11.20.15 at 5:17 pm }

I agree that it’s been a hard week online. The red cup last week looks downright quaint now.

11 Justine { 11.20.15 at 7:26 pm }

As usual, what’s been happening on my own campus has eclipsed what’s happening in the world, but they are tied to one another: people having no compassion, people deciding that people aren’t people, people who don’t care to listen, deeply. Unfortunately, I couldn’t sign off FB/Twitter because that’s how we were keeping track of what was happening with our students. But I’m mentally and emotionally drained, and I wasn’t even the one in the room where the conversations were happening. Sending out some love to y’all.

12 Stephanie (Travelcraft Journal) { 11.20.15 at 7:34 pm }

Totally agree. And definitely limited my social media time this week – so stressful!

Grateful for the rationality and compassion in this little corner of the internets. 🙂

13 Mali { 11.20.15 at 11:13 pm }

Nicely said Mel. I’m lucky, I think. Most of my Fb friends think along the same lines that I do. I’ve seen a lot of hatred and anger on some of my friend’s posts though, so I’m trying to limit what I read there. Or how I respond. Because I’ve seen a lot of love and beauty too.

What I do know though is that I cannot imagine going through what most of the Syrian refugees have endured. I’ve been to refugee resettlement camps in Cambodia (many years ago now), and I’ve talked to Cambodian refugees and heard their stories. I remember a nurse ten years earlier telling me that none of the children at the camps knew how to play. When they drew pictures, they drew pictures of scary men with guns. Thirty years on, the Syrian children today are (I am sure) drawing pictures of dangerous boats, of bombs, and of scary men with guns. That hurts us all. Surely we can have compassion for that.

14 Mali { 11.20.15 at 11:37 pm }

Adding in a post I’ve just read about the Paris attacks. It’s a very personal perspective from The Barreness – http://the-barreness.blogspot.co.nz/2015/11/i-was-that-girl.html

15 Cristy { 11.21.15 at 2:17 pm }

Outside of the blogging world, I’m not connected to social media. But what I have seen both from media and interactions with students has scared me. How fast people are to pass judgement when they could easily change places with those they are harsh with. It is this mindset of justifying rage and anger over empathy; revenge over peace.

It is a primal reaction for those who are scared to lash out and villanize. That’s a conversation we need to start pushing: one where villanizing hate and revenge makes clear that we need to promote forgiveness and empathy.

16 Northern Star { 11.21.15 at 11:59 pm }

So glad to see Cristy’s post front and centre! Profound.

17 Jess { 11.23.15 at 8:22 pm }

I stayed off Facebook for a lot of this week, and was incredibly disheartened by FAMILY members of mine who freely spread hate and bigotry through memes and messages on social media. I don’t get it. The refugees are fleeing from the SAME PEOPLE who perpetrate violence. I actually overheard someone at school say, “Why don’t we just drop a bomb on the whole area like we did in Japan?” I am so hoping that I misheard that, although I’m not sure how I could have given the very specific context, because it made me feel so sad for the state of humanity that it can be dismissed so quickly. That said, thanks for the inclusion in the Round-Up!

18 loribeth { 11.23.15 at 9:04 pm }

I just keep thinking, what if the shoe was on the other foot? What if it was us who watched our homes & neighbourhoods bombed into rubble and had armed militants roaming around with guns? Wouldn’t we want to get the heck out of there? Wouldn’t we hope that people would be kind and welcoming to us? The vast, vast majority of those refugees don’t want to make trouble. They just want a roof over their heads, and a job and a place to live where their kids can grow up in peace & safety and make a good life for themselves, just like us. It’s when they feel unwelcome and rejected and shunned and don’t see a better life ahead that alienation & radicalization start to take root.

19 Amber { 11.26.15 at 12:05 am }

I saw a post this week that was perfect. It said how ironic it is that this week of all weeks, while we are celebrating Thanksgiving, that there is so much hate for the refugees. It showed a picture of the pilgrims (refugees of that time) and the Indians feasting together, which is what this holiday is all about, and a comparison picture today about us closing doors to the Syrian refugees.

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