Saturday, November 15, 2008

Proposition 8 and Mormons...

I've been seething about this since November 4th. The great state of California passed Proposition 8 which changes the amendment to prohibit marriage between anyone but a man and a woman. This amendment didn't affect me. In fact, I couldn't have cared less if it had passed or not. What I'm sick of hearing is blaming the whole thing on the LDS church. CALIFORNIA passed the proposition, not the MORMONS!! In fact, the percentage of Mormons to all other religions in California is small. So again, it was the voters in California who passed it. The church simply took a stand on the issue. Telling Mormons they can't support a proposition that goes with their beliefs is like telling Oprah she can't support Barack Obama.

All the talk against the church wouldn't bug me so much if the gay alliance groups hadn't started smearing the missionaries. One of my best friends just got home from his mission. His mother died while he was gone. He came home for 10 days to say goodbye to her. He gave up the last month of her life to go back out and finish. To make a video showing two missionaries going into the home of a lesbian couple and tearing up their marriage certificate and trashing their house (which represented them taking away gay rights) took away from what these young men and women are doing. They sacrifice a good chunk of their lives to go teach something they strongly believe in. To say they only go out there to take away people's rights angered me in a way nothing ever has.

I'm one of the first to criticize some of the church's teachings. I've lived on both sides. I went from being a young women's leader to inactive. I went from wholeheartedly believing the stuff I taught the girls to questioning everything. I've had some very hard knocks in my life. One day I had this chubby, independent niece and the next I had a disabled one. And still, I went to church. Niki would go to Primary and Taci would come with me to young women's. Most of the time I would sit there and hold my practically newborn 1 year old niece. When she would become so frustrated because she couldn't get her body to move like it used to, she would scream. When I couldn't stand to hold her any longer because the pain became unbearable, Chris would take her. She would hold her, rock her, and whisper into her ear until she calmed down.

4 months after Taci's ordeal, I moved 45 minutes away from Chris. 5 months after that, my best friend calls and tells me that his mom's breast cancer is back after 10 years of remission. My best friend's mom was Chris. The one person who made me realize that it wasn't about my pain but about helping Taci deal with everything.

At this point, I was taking care of my two nieces but not of myself. I ended up in the hospital. I realized I was no good to anyone if I didn't learn how to take care of myself. Less than a week after that, Grandma and Grandpa moved me to New Mexico. I finally dealt with my childhood. I learned how to be healthy, emotionally.

One day almost exactly a year after hearing of Chris' cancer, I got another call. She's dying. I booked a flight as soon as I could. I had to say goodbye to probably the best person I had ever known. My best friend was there. I could tell that it was tearing him apart. I could see how much he hurt. And I ached for him. His mother, the most important person in his life was dying. And he only had a couple days to say goodbye. But I could also see the determination in his eyes. I could tell he would go back out there and keep sharing the gospel. He truly believed everything he was out there teaching. So after spending 10 days with his family, he went back. He missed his mom's final moments. He missed the funeral. He wasn't there to help comfort his dad and his sisters. He went through the grieving process out in the mission field. He sacrificed so much so he could teach people the beliefs that got him through the death of his mother.

When my Grandpa, the only father I had ever really had, died almost exactly a year from the day my best friend's mom died, he got me through. While still on his mission. He came home to a different life than he had left. Does this sound like a person trying to take away your rights? Someone who would go into your home and wreck everything?

They took it too far with this issue. Maybe the Mormon church shouldn't have taken a stand to support Proposition 8. That was church leaders who made that decision. I'm sick of people making assumptions. Of acting ignorant. There are churches who speak out on this issue every day. If you're gonna go after one, go after all of them. Stop blaming the Mormon church for something the voters in California did. The Mormon church isn't horrible. Maybe naive and idealistic. But they're not the only ones.. Give it a rest and move on. Take steps to get it over ruled or whatever you call it. Stop talking the talk and start walking the walk. Don't moan and groan. Take action. That's what democracy is about!!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

a family's struggle and triumph

One night my sister read a blog to me that she had written about my niece Taci. I thought it was incredible and wanted to share it with others. Here it is.

September 24, 2008 - Wednesday
a daily miracle Current mood: grateful, sad, happy, concerned, relieved, heavy

my days are long and hard, emotionally and physically. it is a struggle to get up in the morning, a task to continue going all day, and a pain to rest at night. the endless chore that has become my daily life started 3 and a half years ago, when i found taci unconscious, lifeless, and colorless. 5 days later, when she awoke from what seemed like an endless sleep, i was not told anything positive. the highest hope i had at that moment, was that she was awake. they said that she had damaged the part of the brain that transported motor skills to the body. she could throw her limbs, chew, swallow, laugh and, most of all, scream. at that moment, i prepared myself to push her around for the rest of my life in a wheelchair with pink streamers. the only thing that gave me hope was her laugh. her cackle could be heard down the halls of primary childrens medical center.

3 weeks after the initial accident i left my husband for my grandma. i could not take care of my 2 children along with myself and a soulless man. he lost himself quickly, as did i, and together we could not function. my gramma and sister were the only people that would help me to handle my burden, and i am eternally grateful to them for the strength that they had when i was so weak.

that little girl could scream. that is all she could do to cope with her ordeal. she would scream and i would cry. i would cry and she would scream. the only comfort she had was being held, and as i would hold my beautiful, uncontrolled child, all i could do to cope was cry. i would medicate her so that she would sleep. during her 4 hour long medicated rest, i would try to rest. it was impossible to sleep, because in my own numbness, my thoughts would wander to the memories of a cheerful, robust being. my tears would stream endlessly.

we immediately started the most basic forms of physical and occupational therapy. we would strap her into torture devices to force her into a standing or sitting position. we would put toys just out of reach to entice her to reach for them. 2 months into this, she began to roll. she would throw her arm over her body, turning her into an invalid human pretzel. she would then throw the other arm out from under her body, successfully turning herself over. this jagged movement turned into rolling. when bragging to the neurologist that this was not a permanent lack of motor skills, he simply told me that her mri said she cant do that. i was not going to tell her that.

she slowly figured out how to throw her arms in a more deliberate manner, and then drag her goal to her. 6 months of pain, and she was off all medication. one week later, she began to situp on her own. shortly after that, i caught her army crawling down the hallway. then real crawling. picking up her own food. pulling herself to a stand. on a magnificent christmas night she stood on her own. walking while holding onto furniture. climbing onto furniture. she fell. alot. for some miraculous reason, she was not deterred. in fact, i believe her failures motivated greatness. when she started walking with a walker, we started talking about getting her her own and pimping it out. pink streamers, personalized plate, the works. her goals were yet again, bigger than mine. over 2 years after her initial injury, she began to walk without it. now she can run and jump and talk and play. she assists in dressing and undressing. she feeds herself without a terrible mess. she knows her alphabet and speaks in sentences. many of the words she speaks are still inaudible to the people that dont listen carefully, but she does speak in sentences. she even talks back. she follows simple directions and learns something new every day.

she is the only person that comes to mind when i think that life is difficult, and yet i dont think that she believes it is. she will still throw fits when she cannot communicate her feelings and wants and needs, but i know many adults who do not have (medical) brain damage who do the same.

as i got home today and lay on my couch, trying to unwind from my day, i listen to her and niki interacting while playing online. "this is fuzzy, can u say fuzzy?" "suzzy." "this is pandi, can u say pandi?" "tandi." this simple act drives me to tears, to realize that in my wallowing of self-pity, i really never realized that i have an incredible helping hand in teaching taci. my favorite picture of my babies is when taci was learning to walk on her own last august, and niki is holding her hand. while taci pushes niki pulls.

in these 3 and a half years, she has been accomplishing greater things than most people could imagine. all the while, i was hurt and fearful. i dreaded each and every day. i have been in darker places than i would ever want to recall. i still fall in to these dark places for short periods of time. i still have tendencies of morbid thoughts. all of this is a realization that the battle is neverending for us. for her. i will watch her struggle for years to come, and i still wonder if her mortal end would have been a better outcome. she is still in the begining of her journey, yet in her 4 and a half years, she has experienced more pain, suffering, and obstacles than any human i have met. she will be striving her whole life to succeed, which she will. i have and will watch her struggle, hurt, cry, and worse. i have forced her to endure pain. i have been the one sitting with her through tantrums. i have been the villain, with only the best of intentions. i make her cry. i have cried many times over with her because the sound of her pain pains me. i have forced her to learn independence. i have had to learn to dicipline her. i have been hit and kicked, and have to understand why.

at some point, she will be torn down by others. ignorant beings will not understand her obstacles. her future is uncertain. i dont know, nor does anyone for that matter, if she will be able to accomplish everything that she wants to. her progress is not sure. she may never fit in. she will most likely be made fun of, and i hope i am prepared enough to comfort her during all of her trials.

This is for those of you who want some hope. When no one gave us hope, Taci did. She defied the doctors and did exactly what she wanted. This shows that doctors don't know everything. It also shows what a single mom of a disabled child goes through. I will never truly comprehend the magnitude of emotions my sister goes through but this at least helps a little.

Friday, November 7, 2008

One Nation under God...

I was pissed about Obama winning. I admit I freaked out. I ranted in my blog. That's what it's for. But I'm over it. Our country is in such bad shape that whoever was to be president wouldn't make much difference. Nobody can fix the economy but the citizens of our country. I don't think we should be putting that on the President. There are certain things he can do to help, but it's the way it is because the banks gave loans to people who couldn't afford to pay them. I don't understand why you would get a mortgage payment that high. If you're paying $600 a month in rent and can barely afford that, you aren't going to be able to afford a $1000 house payment.

As for Obama, I hope he gets into the whitehouse and does what he promises. I'm sure he has the country's well being upper most in his thoughts. And I do think it's pretty awesome that I took part in a vote that made history. Just because I voted for the other guy doesn't mean anything. That's my right as an American. Our soldiers fight in wars so we can have our freedom and our rights. I don't agree with Obama's politics but he's our new president and as such, he deserves my respect. I'm sorry if my other blog offended anyone but I needed to freak just a little. I hope everyone can eventually come together and respect the president and give him a chance. Now is the time that we need to unite. This is history in the making and it could turn out to be the best thing for our country. You never know. Where would our world be without hope? Maybe China? j/k. But really. Without hope, we'd still be part of England. :D

And maybe one day soon, we can get our troops home. My other post made it sound like I want them to stay there forever. I don't. But it needs to be finished or we will find ourself in the same place we were in on 9/11. The terrorists need to know that we mean business and we need to show them that by defeating them. If I could be over there fighting, I would be. I believe in the cause. Yes, there were some mistakes made. When has there ever been a perfect war? When has there been a war where nobody sacrificed their life? NEVER. So let's make their sacrifice worth it and WIN THE WAR! We can't just give up. America may be a lot of things, but we're no quitter!

The girls...

Six years ago last April, my first niece was born. Nakelle Marie. She was my mini-me. She let me hold her and cuddle her. When she started crawling, she started following me around. Two days before she turned two, her little sister was born. Taisyn Dawn. Through my hard emotional days, when I wanted to give up, I'd look at them, at even a picture of them, and everything would be ok. They would be there for me no matter what. They would love me no matter what I did or what was done to me. I found the best thing I could be was an auntie. At one, Taci had a seizure and lost all her motor functions. Up until this point, she was VERY independent. She wouldn't let anyone hold her. She loved doing things on her own. After the accident, she became a Mama's girl and an Auntie's girl. We would hold her for hours and rock in the rocking chair trying to comfort her because she was frustrated that she couldn't move like she used to. And Niki? She's the best sister in the world. If Taci needed anything, she would be right there giving it to her. She watched her baby sister die when she was 3 years old but it didn't damage her. It made her an incredible sister.

I am on my way to see them today. I'm very excited. That's the only thing I miss about southern Utah. I got to see them whenever I wanted. Now it's every couple of months if that. But they still know who I am. That's been my biggest worry. That they'll forget auntie and I'll just be a stranger who pops into their life every once in a while. But my sister put my thoughts at ease as she used me to bribe the kids into doing something she wanted them to. I guess she asked them to do something and they weren't cooperating and she goes "Fine. I guess I'll call auntie and tell her not to come!" As soon as they found out I was coming they got very excited and did what she wanted. Now however late I get there, I get to wake them up and play with them. YAY fun!! The point of this blog was to tell everyone that my nieces, Niki and Taci, saved my life. There were days when I just wanted to lay down and die, when my emotional burdens were so crippling it was almost easier to give up. But I would see their faces and know that I couldn't leave them. I could never leave them here on earth by doing the easy thing. I couldn't leave them with that emotional burden. One of these days I will post a picture of them on here. They're the best.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

We are so screwed!

I've obviously made my opinion clear on who should be president. Obama wasn't it. So I'm a little depressed today. I don't want my guns and ammo taxed 500%. Most criminals don't buy their guns legally so why should the rest of us be punished? And the whole healthcare system. The minute the government starts talking universal, I'm outta here. I'll be on my way to Mexico before they even finish getting the word outta their mouths. I don't want the government deciding when I can see the Dr and what kind of treatments I can get. As for the war in Iraq? I could go on for hours ranting and raving about that. Obama's plan to set a date to pull the troops out is the stupidest war strategy I've ever heard. The terrorists are gonna laugh in our faces. They'll sit in their caves waiting for that day when Obama says it's time to pull out and them BAM!! They'll strike and everyone in America is gonna be whining and crying about how we've lost our citizens when we should've just stayed over there and finished it off. If one stupid democrat had finished what the first Bush had started, we wouldn't be over there. But no, he was too busy getting serviced in the oval office to care about anything else. Come on folks, don't you realize we're repeating history? Yeah, it's cool that we finally voted a black guy into office but shouldn't we look at more than that? Like his politics and his policies? Hell yes we should. He's not gonna change the economy. It's the way it is because banks and credit card companies. If you can't afford $600 a month for rent, you shouldn't go out and get a $1000 mortgage. It just wont work. DUH! And if you can't pay off what you put on your credit card within 3 months you shouldn't put anything on it. Don't blame Bush for that. Or 9/11. Don't act like he planned it and is so happy to send our soldiers over to that horrible country to make sure they don't end up with a leader like Sadam Hussein. They should cheer when they see us coming. But they're raised to believe we're evil. Seriously, I could go on forever with this political shit.

On to a different subject. I almost started blubbering today. A customer had had a heart attack like 2 weeks ago and asked if I knew what a stint was. Grandpa had one a year ago last January. So I was talking about it and almost burst into tears. I must be hormonal or something. I DON'T cry. It's just not me. But I am a little emotional about grandpa cuz his Birthday would've been this coming saturday. And that makes me sad. Hopefully something will be on tv tonight to distract me from my misery!

update: if you're wondering if my sister sent me a picture on halloween, she did. she's a total dits but she usually remembers that stuff!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


My car, Dr. Strangelove, has a busted window motor. This prevented me from passing the safety inspection therefore, Dr. Strangelove was not registered. Hasn't been since May. So saturday I'm on my way to fix the window and all of a sudden there's red, blue, and white flashing lights in my rearview mirror. Scared me to death. "Shit!" I exclaimed. I so did not need that. But I cooperated with the copper. I was actually very nice. I pull any theatrics. I didn't cry or cuss him out. I WAS NICE!! He told me they would have to impound it. That was fine. I understand the laws and that they need to be followed. He then called his little copper friend and they started inventorying my car. The one writing the stuff on the ticket asks, "Have you ever heard of a garbage can?" I'm like what are you talking about? It's not that bad. But I refrained from saying it out loud and instead said, "I'm very busy and don't have a lot of time." him: "How about when you're filling up with gas?" I was too pissed to answer and walked off. Later my friend was like, "You're not supposed to enter the vehicle again after you start pumping the gas. Duh, we learned this in Driver's ed!" It would've been a very clever thing to say at the time. If I hadn't been so pissed, I might have thought of a good comeback. My friend and boss Patti came and got me. We were talking while waiting for the raping tow truck driver to finish hooking up the car and leave and she suggested I just leave the car in there and buy a new one cuz it's pretty much not worth it. The other cop who had been nice up to this point walked up and is like, "You'll want to get your car out as soon as possible or they'll keep charging you." Can you say EAVESDROPPER? You nosy no good cop! I used to like cops. Even wanted to be one. Not anymore. I'll find something else to do. They were jerks and they had no reason to be. My garbage is nobody's damn business but my own! SO THERE you nasty little pigs. Eat my garbage and die!

On a much happier note, I took my friends advice and went and bought a new car. It's so pretty. All shiny and red and it purrs! And I actually sold the Camry. For nothing. They paid the registration and got it out of impound and I signed the title over to them.

Today is elections so I'm sure I'll have a lot to say on the subject tomorrow. Let's just say I want McCain to win cuz I like my guns and I like not having the government decide my healthcare. Seriously!