Last night I was watching Glenn Beck. He talked about a defining moment when you changed a major thing in your life. He said that if you didn’t have an exact moment when that change occurred that you could point to, you most likely didn’t change a thing but the words coming out of your mouth.

I’m not sure why those words resonated with me. Perhaps because I have fundamentally changed so many things in my life over the last 5 years. Perhaps because I can recall every time I made the conscious change in my thinking. Regardless, I know my journey has been one of transformation for me and not for others.
See, before 2008 I was wholly liberal. Abortion was a woman’s choice, illegal immigrants were just looking for something better and government was my friend. Only, that’s not the whole story.
My beliefs were shaped…no, I allowed them to be shaped…by those around me. When Reagan ran against Mondale, I only knew about Mondale. And I only knew about Mondale because his running mate was Geraldine Ferraro. This is important because my mom fancies herself a feminist and my sister’s name is Geraldine. So clearly, that ticket was the better of the two.
My first time voting was for Bill Clinton. I was so excited to vote and I wanted to make my parents proud of me, so I voted democratic all the way. I even wore a t shirt that said something akin to “Everyone should vote!” I don’t believe that anymore either.
In 2007 I went to work on Hillary Clinton’s campaign. It was exciting! I had my mother’s love and encouragement, and I was working toward helping make history. Then Obama happened.
I guess I should thank him. Without his presence on the political scene I would have never questioned anything. But question I did when I saw people bussed into my precinct to vote. When I heard the Union members say they were barred from voting if they had Clinton materials in their hands, or said they were voting for her. And most of all, when Obama said he wanted to “fundamentally change the United States of America”. That scared me.
I love this country fiercely. I have lived in two other countries and traveled extensively. While I enjoy going other places, I can’t imagine living anywhere else but here. We have freedoms almost unheard of elsewhere and diversity galore. If I want to live somewhere tropical, or desert, or arctic, I can. So to hear a potential president say that all needed to change made me sit up and take notice.
It also made me take stock. This man represented my core beliefs…and I didn’t like what he was saying. So I made everyone in my life shut up, I closed myself off from people and I read. I read articles, books, the constitution and blogs. I studied the pros and cons of several “hot topics”. But mostly, I listened to the other side. 
My defining moment? My husband had Rush Limbaugh on. I can’t tell you the topic or what was being said. What I can tell you is that I commented on it, and 2 seconds later Rush said EXACTLY what I had just said. Whoa…talk about a 180. I agreed with Rush. No, Rush agreed with my opinion! After all, I said it first.
I had found what I truly stood for. It didn’t matter what anyone else thought. My conclusions were my own. They came from an obscene amount of research and questioning. It’s hard to rattle someone when they come to their own conclusions, and I am NOT going to be rattled ever again!