About Me

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My passion is helping others defend themselves and their families. I am an NRA Certified pistol instructor, a NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - North Cincinnati, and the state leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - Ohio. I also have a heart for the Lakota people and lead mission teams to the Pine Ridge Reservation each year, am founder and director of Backpacks For Pine Ridge,, and do various volunteer work in my own community. My greatest joy is being a grandma and hanging out with my husband of 30+ years.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Why I Dropped Out of School - #1

I mentioned in the Thursday 13 that I had dropped out of a whopping 5 schools in my lifetime - something I thought I would explain, not because I feel the need to explain what I do, but because in sharing those stories, I am sharing part of my life's story. And since there are 5 schools, I'd better have mercy on anyone reading and break it down into 5 posts. :) So, without further elaboration, here I go...

It was the summer after high school and I was planning to go to Art School, namely the Art Academy of Cincinnati. Ever since I was a little kid I had wanted to be an artist. When I was really little I wanted to be an artist "so I could make a lot of money and give it away to poor kids". When I was older, in my teens, I wanted to be an artist because, "I wanted to be successful at something I was good at". By that time in life I had lost my childhood innocence and due to a bad experience in church*, had left my faith behind.

It was 1979, the summer after high school, a friend from my hometown was visiting for a few weeks. She had broken up with her boyfriend and wanted to "go meet some guys". I, on the other hand, was bummed out over their breakup and wanted to stay home and mope. She won and we went to a local spot where I assured her she would indeed meet some guys. As we were leaving there that evening I noticed that a car seemed to be following me. Rather than drive home and lead them to my house, I drove around trying to lose them. It turned into a chase and a dangerous one at that. I was livid as I purposely drove back to the parking lot of the bar we had left to confront this jerk. I am quite sure he had little doubt as to how ticked off I was. Three weeks later we were engaged.

I had thought he was good for me. He was clean cut, a buisness man working in management, and he didn't smoke, drink or do drugs. I did all three but not when I was with him which is why I thought he was good for me.

As Summer turned into Fall, I started at the Art Academy just as things were beginning to deteriorate in my relationship with Greg (name changed to protect the guilty). In the beginning he had been "too good to be true", which I've learned is always a bad sign. In this case it was a very bad sign. He slowly became more and more insecure, jealous, and controlling. He used verbal, emotional, and finally physical abuse as means to control virtually everything about my life. I was not allowed to see friends and eventually dropped out of Art School because "no woman of his was going to work". The end finally came after the kicked me down a flight of stairs knocking me unconscious. I figured either divorce or death were in my near future and neither sounded like a good option, so I left.

After the break up I found myself out of work, out of school, and no longer getting married. My mother was had gone through 5 major surgeries in 4 months time and had been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. My best friend was missing, presumably the victim of foul play. It was time for a change.

*Note: Looking back I do not blame that church for what happened. It was simply an unfortunate misinterpretation of the pastor's intent. As of this year my husband and I will have served in that same church for 19 years.

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