Friday, July 20, 2012

"You didn't build that!" FB Diatribe Turned Blog Post

If you don't like politics, don't read this post!
If you get offended easily because someone
has a different opinion than you, don't read this post!!

After starting to write a status about my irritation at the ridiculous notion
 that businesses owe their success to the government (and everyone else)
I decided to put it on my blog....cause it was several paragraphs long.

If you know me, then you know that I do have strong political leanings
 and opinions, so you won't be shocked by this.
If you don't know me....well, you will a little better after this.
Enjoy your glance into my political ramblings!

Obama is now backtracking (which he's soooo good at) saying that he wasn't referring to businesses but roads and bridges in his now infamous "You didn't build that!" quote. But after reading the original comment I can't see how that is possible...Even so, if that was the case, it would still be the most ridiculous assertion! Shockingly, businesses pay taxes (and a LOT more than most people) and those taxes go to do just roads and bridges (which, by the way, are built by private companies with materials manufactured by private companies), as well as other things. (Please try not to pass out from shock at that incredible revelation) And as they pay for more of the upkeep and maintenance of the same infrastructure than you and I do, I can't see that it has any bearing on their success. Anymore than it does on the success of any person who uses the roads to drive to work, school, the store, etc. Or who uses public utilities like waste water (I assume most people use a toilet now and then?) or water treatment facilities (Ever had a drink of water???) By this definition no one can take credit for anything they accomplish. Got an "A" on a test? You didn't do that! Your teacher taught you, you drank water from the water fountain that kept you alive and hydrated, you drove on public roads to get to your school, you used money printed by the government to purchase food that kept you healthy and alive...The list could go on and on.

The assertion that because someone helped you along the way means you can't take credit for what your intelligence, hard work and ingenuity made possible is patently absurd. If the government is going to claim credit for other's successes it better start taking responsibility for everyone's failures. The government would then be responsible for all crimes committed (the criminal drove on the roads to the crime scene), all business failures (they didn't earn enough of the money printed by the government), all deaths (they drank the water processed by the water treatment plants), etc., etc. If you think that's absurd, then you should feel the same way about the concept as it applies to a successful business.

Of course, businesses use public infrastructure, but so does every person in this country and that is precisely what taxes are for. We all pay to have the opportunity to use them, so I don't see what that has to do with a businesses success anymore than it does in anyone elses life. Success is almost entirely dependent on coming up with a product or service that others want and are willing to pay for and then selling it to them. The argument that it's the customers who make a business successful, while somewhat true, is still dependent on the business owner having something that someone is willing to pay for! That takes creativity and ingenuity; it takes being aware of a need, a want or a problem and finding a way to fill it or solve it; it takes hard work and money and often, long hours. Yes, many people are hardworking and intelligent. They may be ingenious and creative, but unless they take the risk to develop that product or service and then market it and sell it, it doesn't matter. I could do any of that...but I choose not to! I don't want to take the risk or do the work involved. I'm happy that others do and more than happy to pay them for it. So why demonize those who do and profit by it? I don't know of any worker (employee or owner) who doesn't want to make money. We all want to be able to buy the things we need and want. If the product wasn't something that someone was interested in, then the business would fail and the owner/creator wouldn't profit. And yes, I know that employees also play a role, but it's a mutually beneficial relationship. Business owner needs help, employee needs money. Voila! A wonderful relationship is born. No matter how good an employee you are, you can't get paid if there isn't a place to work and use your skills. You show your gratitude for your job by doing your best and your employer shows their gratitude for your dedication and hard work with a paycheck.

I want a business to profit (and as much as possible) because I want them to expand and create more jobs. And any smart business owner does just that because they want to increase their profit. Sure there are bad businesses out there, selfish, greedy owners who pay horribly, or don't pass on their success by creating more jobs, just as there are lazy, selfish poor people who mooch off the system and others, creating a drain on our society. But that doesn't mean we punish all people for the few who may be that way. And at least the business owner earned what he keeps, the mooch on society can't say the same.

Now before anyone points out that there are those out there who do those things or would do those things if only they "had the chance", "had the funds", "had the education", "had the luck, support, etc." that someone else did. I get that. We don't all get the same opportunities, just like we don't all get the same challenges. We are all different. The Lord gives us what we need to become who he wants us to. Sometimes, those who don't "deserve" to become rich, do. And those who do "deserve" to be rich struggle their entire life. It's simply the reality of living in a mortal and imperfect world. As I tell my kiddos on a daily basis, "LIFE IS NOT FAIR, neither was it meant to be!" We do the best we can with what we have then leave the rest to the Lord. If you believe in the atonement then you know that any "unfairness" in life is taken care of through His sacrifice. Those who received and proved unfaithful stewards to those blessings will be held accountable. Those who didn't receive and proved faithful in what they were given will be added to. But I am only responsible for what I have been given and as such, I have no right to complain, be envious or take from someone who has more, no matter how undeserving I may feel they are. Because I am not the best judge of another's heart, intentions, sacrifice or stewardship.

People should be rewarded for what they do and they shouldn't be restricted by those who are jealous of what someone else has. And even if the only assets they have is that they are a great manager and some huge company, built up by others who worked hard and innovated, wants them to be CEO, lucky them! I wish them well and hope they honor that trust. If they don't, then they are subject to laws of the land and ultimately, the laws of God. They owe me nothing outside of what is legally required of them. I will protect their right to be selfish and greedy with what is theirs, because I don't want anyone else to tell me what I should or shouldn't do with what is mine.

If you don't like a company's ethics or product, don't be their customer. Personally, I don't frequent Victoria's Secret or Hardees/Carl's Jr. I feel that VS uses advertising that is simply porn and H/CJ had a marketing campaign awhile ago that I found incredibly distasteful and inappropriate. Granted, they wouldn't notice they don't have my support but I choose not to give them my money. However, if the issue is important enough to enough people, a company will take notice and change or fail. I don't envy other's successes. I am content with what I have been blessed to have and I use it to be as giving and as charitable as I choose and I allow others the same right.

So if you're rich, no matter how you got there, I say, "Way to go! Enjoy it, spend it, save it, share it!" That is your right. If you're not rich (like most of us) the same applies to you. What's yours is yours to do what you choose with. Just don't expect to take what's mine or other's based on your or someone elses definition of what is "fair".

Monday, July 16, 2012

Happy 6th Birthday!

Dear Baby Boy,

Well, another year has come and gone without you here. Each one brings me that much closer to meeting you someday, but it also takes me farther and farther away from the days I had with you. Granted, all those days were spent without me being able to see you except on those occasions where we saw you're grainy image on an ultrasound machine. And then, after that, only one day where I could hold and kiss you. Even then, you were already gone and all that was left was the perfect little body that should have housed your spirit.

I miss you. I think about you everyday. I even got a ring for mother's day to remember you by. It's a simple silver spinner ring that says, "I think of you all the time." You are an invisible part of me and our family.

This past year, I've come to understand so much about what I went through when I lost you. I still have sooo many questions, but I'm afraid those won't be answered until I can meet you and ask the Lord myself.

Sometimes, I ache to hold you just once more. To remember every part of you. I tried to remember the way you looked and felt, to memorize every detail. But mortal memory is fleeting and fades so quickly. I want to look at your tiny fingers and toes; to kiss you on your sweet face. I want to touch the little arches in your feet. Things that I took for granted with your siblings.

Mostly I wish I could hear your voice calling me mommy. Or your cry when you want me. To feel your breath on my cheek or your little hand grasped in mine.

Yeah, I miss you. And I love you as much as each of your brothers and sisters. Just because you aren't here doesn't mean I ever forget you. Just because you didn't live outside my womb, doesn't mean I love you any less. I couldn't love you anymore if you'd lived a day, a month or 80 years. A mother's love doesn't change with time, it's constant, strong and steady.

So, Happy Birthday sweet boy! Know that I love you and miss you everyday, but I look forward to the time that you will be mine forever. And then I will get to hold and kiss and cuddle you for as long as I want!

Your Mommy

Friday, July 13, 2012

Mama Drama

The events that I'm about to relate to you actually happened back at the beginning of June. However, I'm just now blogging about it.
On June 5th....Well, actually it all started the day before that when I got a new prescription for pain meds for my back. See, I have arthritis. Yep, at the ripe old age of 30 I was diagnosed with it and have been getting treatment for it for over a year. However, the back pain from it has been recent developement. Anyway, back to the story. I got a prescription for lortab because my back would get so bad that I couldn't sit, stand or even lie down comfortably. I have had lortab once before and never had a problem with it. So the afternoon of the 4th I took half a dose, just to make sure I didn't have any problems. All was well. That evening I took a full dose....again, just fine. Then dawns the morning of June 5th.

Eddie woke up at 6am so I took a pill then brought him into my bed to sleep for another hour or so. Around 8am I got up and started to get kids ready for their 9am swim lessons. Around 8:30 as I was getting ready to pack everyone into the car I started to feel super "I'm gonna vomit" kind of sick. I thought maybe I just needed something to eat so I got up from the dinning room table where I'd sat to put Eddie's shoes on. I walked out to the laundry room and asked Sterling to grab a box of cereal for me. As I was walking back into the kitchen I got really hot and thought I was gonna puke so I started to walk down the hallway to the bathroom.

Just outside the bathroom I started to see black spots all over my vision. I knew then that I was going to pass out. I sat down against the wall and called for Sterling twice. He said, "What?" I remember trying to decided whether to have him call the ambulance or Rob but decided that if there was something really wrong, it'd be best to have someone there who could do something, instead of having to wait for Rob to get there. Of course, that debate took all of a second and I told him to call 9-1-1. I laid down on the floor, half in half out of the bathroom...and I guess I passed out. Near as I can figure I was out for a few minutes. Sterling called 911 and gave the operator all the info they needed. They then connected him to the ambulance to talk to to them. It's around that point that I woke up. I remember Sterling telling them that I was breathing, that I was 31 and answering some other questions. I also remember him telling the other kids to go sit with me while he took care of Kailyn who was crying...she wanted some candy. ;-) (Yeah, you can tell how concerned she was about it all) Sterling was so calm and level headed. Even in my somewhat disoriented state I remember thinking that.

Within a minute or so the firemen were there followed seconds later by the ambulance crew.  I felt like I'd just woken up. It was soooo strange. I also remember feeling so tired, cold, clammy and sweaty. The EMT asked me questions about what had happened and what medications I was on. He remarked that I looked really pale, which I suspected because of how I felt. He asked if there was anyone who could watch the kids while we went to the hospital. I told them Rob could but it would take 15-20 minutes for him to get there. I called Rob and told him he needed to come home right away. He asked why and I told him that I needed to go to the hospital because I'd passed out. The EMT asked the dispatcher to send out an officer to watch the kids until Rob could get there.

I was able to walk out of the house to the stretcher. As I laid there Eddie was inside the house, standing at the screen door, screaming and crying. The EMT brought him out and set him on my lap and Eddie calmed down right away. (Later, in the ambulance, the EMT said he was just going to let him come with us, but luckily he didn't need to) Our neighbor, two house north, happened to come out of her house just then to take her kids to a day camp. She came over and asked if I needed her to watch my kids. I started crying (not sure why other than I was a little freaked out by everything) and asked if she was able to or if she had to be somewhere. She immeidately said it was fine, no big deal, etc, etc. and got her girls and went in to take care of my kiddos. What a blessing that she was there!

The Cop showed up at about the same time, but was able to go since my neighbor was there. They loaded me up into the ambulance, started my IV line and did all the other stuff they do, then we left. By this time I was completely alert and able to be my normal sarcastic, smart alecky self and the EMT and I had a great conversation on the way to the hospital. He and his partner were both funny and wonderful at their jobs. Once we were at the hospital, I was hooked up to monitors and given IV fluids. They also did an EKG and blood work to check for anything abnormal.

Meanwhile, back on the home front...Danna and Clara were concerned when I didn't show up to swim lessons, so Danna texted me. They were even more concerned when I didn't respond. Rob called John, my brother, to let him know what was going on. At that point he tried to get a hold of Clara but her phone was in her bag and she didn't hear it. He finally called Danna, who happened to be holding her phone and asked to talk to Clara. They were appropriately worried and offered to do whatever they could. (What an awesome sister in law and friend I have!!) Rob was able to get in touch with Clara and Danna to watch the kids so he could come hang out with me until we knew what was going on.

Lucky for me, all my tests came back, as the Dr put it, "stone cold normal". She said she thought I passed out due to taking pain meds on an empty stomach and then standing up just dropped my blood pressure too low. So after being there about and hour or so I was able to come home...with instructions to eat next time I took my pain meds.

And that, my friends is one of the fun days at the ER I have had this summer. I feel incredibly blessed that so many people were there to help me out when I needed it. And I was SO proud of Sterling and his calmness in the situation. I was telling someone how impressed I was with how calm he was and he overheard and exclaimed, "Calm!? I was so scared I was shaking!" He also told me that he'd thought I'd broked my back and that was why I was laying there. The poor boy! But he did everything right. He gave the operator all the information they needed, he took care of his siblings and he took care of me. I am so blessed to have such a wonderful son! Some people have to wonder how their kids will react in an emergency, but I know. I was right there and I know he can handle anything that comes his way.

A Picture Post Update

Over the 4th of July we were so lucky to have my brother Larry
and his wife, Megan, and their son come into town! This is Eddie and his cousin
Allen spending quality time together playing with Allen's
new Weebles bus. It was so great to see Allen again,
even if he didn't remember me, his favorite aunt. I know deep
down he adores me (since I give him his pick of Eddie's old clothes and all)

Also, my brother Scott and his wife Laura came to visit.
Now, I will preface this by saying that I didn't get many pictures
that weekend so although my kids love Megan just as much as Laura,
I don't have any pictures of them with her. Anyway, the kiddos loved spending
time with Laura and Scott and the 4 oldest even got to stay the night at
my mom's so they could hang out with them.
 What awesome Aunts and Uncles
my kids have!!

This is just a super cute picture of Joe and Kailyn.
I did KK's hair in pigtails and I had to get a picture.
She now asks me to put them in her hair everyday!
Of course, she can never remember what they're called so
she puts her fists up on each side of her head and says,
"Momma, do my hair like dis? Like dis, ok Momma?"
They make her look so much more gorwn up :'(

Poor Eddie had a really swollen eyelid. It looked so sad.
It was just from a bug bite, but it looked awful!
Poor guy! It looked a lot better today.

And in other news, Sterling got his very first trumpet.
We'd rented one this last year for band but he really
wants to keep playing in Middle School so we got him
his own. He was so excited! And he even cried when I
had him open it. :-) 

We have a gym membership this year that includes a pool.
So, most everyday, we spend the afternoon at the pool with
our friends. We used to go with the cousins too, but they ditched
us for a 6 week trip to Utah. Hope it was worth it!! ;-)
This is Eddie just being happy in the pool. His favorite thing
to do there is throw people...particularly our friend Danna.
Not sure why.....

And this is my sweet boys playing together. Eddie sure loves
his big brother Sterling. Especially when they wrestle.
Of course I often need to remind him to be careful with his brother.
Otherwise, Eddie can be pretty rough with Sterling!!

And as a result of the cousins taking said vacation, we have the
chance to watch their new dog, Rudy, while my brother is at work during the day.
 They were so inspired by usgetting a cocker spaniel from the shelter,
 they thought they'd go and do the same! Here Rudy is taking Buddy
for a walk around the back yard. They are great friends!!

In other, non picture accompanied news, we've had a couple more losses recently. 
On Monday, Emmy pulled out one of her teeth. Luckily, it was already loose.
But, I think it's the first one she's ever pulled out on her own.
And then tonight, I pulled out Cori's 2nd loose tooth on the bottom!
Again, there was no crying but he did yell a couple times before it came out.
Man, kids are always losing things! ;-)  

Robert Allen