Setting Boundaries


The word wall often carries a negative connotation, but when we take a closer look, there are so many more positives than negatives when it comes to setting boundaries. Everyone needs boundaries, and sometimes, that boundary by necessity might be a wall or a fence.

I love boundaries. They guarantee that others can know where they stand with me and vice versa. My boundaries help to define my rights and inform others as to how not to violate those rights. Boundaries must exist between individuals, groups, and nations, not for the purpose of segregation, but for the purpose of clarification. How else will others know what is acceptable or unacceptable to a person, a group, or a nation?

The truth is, without boundaries, there can be no true respect. There must be clear lines of demarcation, and how well we respect those lines will testify to our respect for that individual, group, or nation.

Lack of respect is one of the main culprits for creating anger and hatred between diverse parties. When one does not recognize and respect the rights of another or choose to advocate the rights of one at the expense of the other, there is sure to be resentments and negativity on the part of the one whose rights are being disenfranchised. Setting a physical boundary can go a long way towards mitigating a great deal of the negativity.

It is not enough, however, to simply set physical boundaries. One must enforce those boundaries because there are always those who take pleasure in overstepping boundaries. Without the ability to enforce even personal boundaries, it is impossible to protect personal rights. Generalize the inability to protect physical boundaries to groups and nations, and no one will be able to claim any rights whatsoever.

For many people, physical boundaries act as a natural deterrent. Sometimes, it is as simple as writing your name on the food you bought that you put in a refrigerator that is being used by others. Sometimes it is a sign that warns trespassers to stay away or be prosecuted.  Those who violate boundaries will choose the soft way first – the house without the sign that says “Beware the dog”, and the neighborhood without the neighborhood watch signs first.

Little signs with fake, scary messages aside, sooner or later the boundary needs to be something a lot more substantial than a sign which may or may not lack bite.

Recently, the maintenance crew at the apartment complex where I live built a beautiful wooden fence to cut off access to the residents of the neighboring complex. Because there was no fencing, the people from that other complex turned my complex into a shortcut to get to the nearby grocery store. The non-residents also used our parking lot which forced residents to park in non-parking areas, thus reaping the reprimand of the landlords over and over again. Additionally, instead of using their dumpsters, the non-residents would often use ours. Surprise, surprise! I haven’t had any problems finding parking spots ever since they built the fence.

None of the residents in my complex were informed that there was going to be new boundary fencing. I imagine that the non-residents weren’t as well. Thankfully, no one protested. They can still come and steal our parking places and fill up our dumpsters, and use the shortcut, but now, it will take a lot more energy.

Speaking of boundaries, we are getting ready to build a big, beautiful, magnificent wall along our southern borders. We need that boundary in place for all the reasons mentioned above and so much more. The liberal world is pushing us towards a homogeneous mess which is completely counter to the cries for diversity. Boundaries preserve diversity, and bridges connect cultures. So, let’s set boundaries and build “bridges”. Those are the ways through which we will be able to maintain true respect for one another.

Open borders or lack of boundaries do not inspire anything but lawlessness, disrespect, hatred, anger, abuse, and ingratitude. On the other hand, there is nothing wrong with having open doors while maintaining executive rights to decide who gets to come in for dinner.




Peanut Vendor


Dad planted the peanuts and harvested them. Mom did the roasting in a dutch oven, set up on three rocks, surrounding a small wood fire.

They were hopeful, and I was embarrassed.

We made a paper funnel from newspaper and closed the small opening at the bottom. Into the much wider mouth, we poured roasted peanuts still encased in their salted shells. We filled it up and folded the top closed.

They were excited, and I was anxious.

Monday morning arrived, and along with the weekly school allowance came a half dozen packed, peanut funnels.

“Sell these to your classmates, and bring the money home,” said Mom and Dad.

And now I was ashamed.

Oh, God. I was in the ninth grade, and now, if my friends didn’t already know it, I was almost worse than dirt-poor. I was the poor, anxious, embarrassed, reluctant peanut vendor, self-consciously and reluctantly hawking my goods during the lunch break.

It was a very short-lived career. I sold only a few peanut funnels here and there. I was just too self-conscious and ashamed to encourage much interest in my product.

I wish now that I could have seen myself as a funnel for prosperity to my beautiful family. A wrong attitude and a wrong mindset made me the suckiest peanut vendor ever.

But guess what I discovered? We are all funnels for good or for bad. Hopefully, with the right mindset, we will choose to lean more towards good rather than bad.




Funnel – Daily Post

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F-Bomb Explosion


Does anyone ever wonder how people came up with cuss words? I don’t happen to use profanity, but it seems I am surrounded by those who do.

Cuss words don’t make a whole lot of sense to me, but I still laugh when I’m watching an American show and they have a fake rastaman with a fake Jamaican accent hollering, “Bumboclaat!” I know that “claat” means cloth, but what in heaven’s name is a “bumbo”? Where did it come from, and who came up with it?

That’s the thing about cuss words. Most of the people using them probably have no idea what they really mean and what their origins are.

On the other hand, most people have a pretty good idea what the most popular cuss word – the infamous F-word, means. I don’t use it, but it is becoming such a mainstream word that I have wondered about its origins a time or two.

How many people know that it’s really an acronym? I certainly didn’t until today when a friend off-handedly mentioned it in a conversation we were having. He said it meant “Fornication under consent of the king.” He said that some kings would reward returning warriors with a girl with whom to fornicate the night away.

He also mentioned that the same acronym was written in Indiana law as “Fornication Under Carnal Knowledge.”

This is definitely one of those things that make you go,”Huh.” Maybe the F-word could be used to stir up some interest in history. The next time I hear someone close to me use it, I just might go all historian on whoever it happens to be. On the other hand, I just might respond in kind and tell them to go “fornicate under carnal knowledge” with themselves. Somehow, that doesn’t pack the same punch, does it?

Oh, dear! I think people would stop cussing if they were forced to say it the long way! Of course, that wouldn’t be such a bad thing at all.

I must admit that apart from doing a quick Google search to confirm what my friend told me, no deep research went into this effort. This is mostly a conversation between friends. I definitely still plan on being mum when it comes to pronouncing the f-word.

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The Storm

Passing Through The Storm (1)

Storms are inevitable. They buffet us day and night in different forms. They are the forces of nature around us or the forces of our own unchecked natures. They can be external or internal, physical or spiritual. Sometimes, they show up as disagreements between lovers and friends or they strike suddenly in the form of personal tragedies.

I think about Horatio G. Spafford who experienced one tragic storm after another: losing his young son to pneumonia, much of his property to the Great Chicago Fire, and his four daughters to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.

This was a man who could see no other viable option but to go through each of those storms as they came, with unflinching faith in the goodness of his God. As he stood on the deck of the vessel carrying him to England to join his wife, he looked out on the smooth, glassy water where the ship transporting his family had sunk, and he could say, no matter what, that his soul was okay.

Spafford’s story is one of many, but few come through with the kind of spirit and heart this man displayed. Roughly 145 years ago, while on his trip to England to reunite with his wife, Mr. Spafford wrote the lyrics to the famous hymn, “It is Well with My Soul.” It is a song that breathes comfort, hope, and a trust that refuses to question the fairness of the Divine One.

We still sing his song, today. The words of his timeless lyrics were not merely written. They were forged through his fiery trials and have lasted and endured to remind us that even though we do not choose the storms, it can, indeed, be well with our souls.


Warm Reads on Cold Winter Nights

Grab a mug of hot chocolate. Cuddle up under a fluffy, Sherpa blanket, and cozy up to your tablet to get some “warm reads.” Borrow How They Met by Charlene Mathis for free on your Kindle, or purchase it for $2.99. If you’re like me and like the smell and feel of a real  book in your hands, you can purchase the paperback version. Happy reading, and be sure to let me know how you feel afterward.How They Met Cover


New Year Resolutions

How They Met Cover

Last year, I made only one New Year’s Resolution. This has been quite a journey, but I am happy to say that I have done it! Last year, I was determined that I was going to write and publish a book. I started at the beginning of the year, and several discarded manuscript later, I finally produced something I was proud to share with others.

If there is one thing I have learned from going through the various processes leading to my becoming an author and independent publisher, it is that it isn’t enough to just say you want to do something. You have to actually start doing it. Come up with a plan, and bring your friends and family in on it. Engage your support base, network, and put some good, old elbow grease into the project.

There will be challenges. Some of them will seem almost insurmountable. They come, wanting you to agree with them. Whatever you do, don’t agree. Don’t give up. Publishing my ebook and paperback took longer than anticipated. All the huge obstacles started to get in my way, and I had to fight the discouragement. I pressed through and discovered that the timing was just about perfect.

I submitted my manuscript and published my ebook at 9:29 pm on New Year’s Eve. I submitted the print manuscript on New Year’s Day. Now, I am at the pinnacle, so where do I go from here? I can certainly cross book-writing and self-publishing off the bucket list, but I can also set the bar higher and write another book, and another, and another. I like that idea very much.

For anyone who is interested, the title of my book is How They Met by Charlene Mathis available in paperback and as an ebook. If you have a Kindle device, you can borrow it for free, or you can have a free sample downloaded to any device.

Avoid the Stress of Open Enrollment

It is fall once more, and another Open Enrollment period is about to begin in a matter of a few short weeks. This will not matter to some people, but for a great many, this particular Open Enrollment Period will consist of a number of challenges.

funwithfamMany people are losing their health coverage by the end of the year, and most will not be able to get coverage for 2018 on the marketplace due to the massive exodus of many of the major carriers. Indiana’s biggest carrier, Anthem has pulled out of the Indiana marketplace leaving little or no choices for coverage on the marketplace for Indiana residents. Other States are facting the same issues all across the nation.

We are looking to Washington DC to fix our healthcare situation, but the government seems to be at a loss as to what to do. Meanwhile, people are still getting sick, and accidents are still happening. Babies are being born, and death is an everyday occurrence. Life is still going on, folks, and those who can’t keep up are going to be left behind. That is where I come in. My job is to keep up with the rapid changes that are going on in the health insurance industry so that you don’t have to. Instead, you can concentrate on things that are more important to you while you let your broker worry about the insurance stuff.

Now more than ever, establishing a relationship with a good broker will go a long way towards building your peace of mind when it comes to finding the coverage you need. Having a broker could help to relieve some stress which will positively enhance and support your health. In case you do not know, most hospital and doctor visits are due to stress-related issues. Lower your stress levels and learn to manage and cope with the remainder of your stress by using the assistance of a knowlegable broker for your health and life insurance needs.

Just remember that having an insurance broker work with you will not cost you anymore than what you would have paid if you did the work of finding your own coverage. Your insurance broker is not a middle-man who gets paid by both parties. The insurance company pays the broker at no extra cost to you since the parameters for the cost of your coverage are already preset and includes the agent commission whether you use a broker or not.

One thing that you may or may not be aware of is the fact that the 2018 Open Enrollment this year will begin November 1, 2017 and end December 31,2017, but for some States such as Connecticut, Open Enrollment will be ending on December 22, 2017. We have little time in which to work; however, the good news is that since most people cannot depend on getting health coverage for 2018 on the ACA Marketplace, we are not held captive by the Open Enrollment Period anyway.

If you are in good health, depending on where you are, you can get coverage right now for 2018. Call or email me for a  quote. If you have health issues, we can still get you coverage now, and you will not have to worry about not getting coverage on the Marketplace.

In addition, when you call or email, don’t forget to ask for a life insurance quote and how you can get your will, living will, power of attorney done and also protect and/or restore your medical identity. It is worth it to protect your health and wellbeing as well as that of your loved ones.

I hope to hear from you soon.

To Your Health!

Camille Goldman

Licensed Independent Insurance Broker