Wednesday, August 24, 2011

My two cents...may not be worth much, but they are mine...

So, with the political climate heating up again - I figured I would put my two cents in...again. 

No, seriously, keep reading.

Most of my adult life I have been staunchly conservative.

Staunchly conservative as in not listening to anyone's opinion.

And I would like to mention at this point that I think almost EVERYONE on the right or the left is like that (regardless if they will admit it) but that's neither here nor there, just trying to lessen the blows I may take for writing this one...

But in the last five years my opinion has changed on much.

We bought a house.  5 years later it sold for 70,000 more than we bought it for.  Now, 3 years after our sale it is worth 40,000 less than what they bought it for.  Ouch for them, perfect timing for us.

Bush was president when we bought.  Bush was president when we sold.  Obama is president now.

3 years ago, Dave got a promotion for 25000 more than what he was making.  Now, he's back to what he was making before the promotion.

Bush was president when he got the promotion.  Obama is president now.

5 years ago, Dave got a job based on experience and was paid accordingly.  Now, Dave doesn't get jobs because of his experience and is paid significantly less than "accordingly," because we are desperate.

Bush was president then.  Obama is president now.

5 years ago, my mom was getting free home health care through medicaid.  Now she has to pay a significant portion of her very fixed budget to have home health.

Bush was president then.  Obama is president now.

And then there is the abortion card.  I just can't change my mind on that one.  It's biblical.  And whether or not you agree with me, I believe it's murder...not a choice.  Moving on...

Anyway - but here we go...

5 years ago our family had private health insurance.  It wasn't phenomenal but it covered us enough for 350 a month.  Then Dave got sick.  In order for him to get health insurance now (since even his group plans) won't cover pre-existing conditions, he would have to buy a "special" plan for about 500 a addition to what our family would pay for the rest of ours.

Obama's health care plan, from what I understand, would be the closest thing we will come to with having an affordable option for Dave.

When we had Will, he had to be life flighted to Spokane and spend 2 weeks in the hospital.  Had we not been on medicaid, the bills would be insurmountable.

All those liberal programs that Dave and I both wrote off as "just for lazy people," have kept us afloat and surviving through this time...and Dave and I are anything but lazy.

In an ideal world, Dave would have a job that would pay him accordingly so that we wouldn't have to utilize those programs and health care would be offered to everyone - especially those who desperately need to be under a doctors care.

However, our world is not ideal.  And our country is financially screwed up...I get that.  But, now that I understand the importance of all the liberal programs for people, the social aid of it, being a help when you need it and not misused as a crutch - I'm torn.

So, I see benefit from both sides of the line.  But really,are any of our politicians focusing on the issues or are they just focusing on their opinions? 

A few months ago in Idaho they were having some pretty heated debates over education.  Night and day between the liberal opinion and their facts versus the conservative opinion and their facts.  I even wrote our conservative politicians in Idaho to get more information so I could be actually informed and I was treated rudely and as a nuisance because I asked questions.

So, are we actually wanting to solve the problems or are we just wanting to be right and hold power?

Because, this will be the first time, when we reelect, that I will purposefully not vote for a republican because they chose to be shady and rude when asked about facts.

Politicians work for the people, well, at least they are supposed to.  I wish they would stop pushing agendas and solve problems...on both sides.

That, and keep babies alive.

The end.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Hauling Dirt and Building Foundations

So, there's this piece of land by my gym that I pass everyday.

Okay, most days.

Fine, I haven't been there in a week and I'm eating a huge candy bar as I type this...don't judge.

Regardless, a huge piece of land across the street from the gym.  This piece of land is supposed to be the future home of a grocery store that once it is here I will not understand how I lived without it and its bulk bins of spices.

But, nothing has been happening.

For awhile, the dozers and excavators and all those big machine type things were working away.  And then nothing.  Just recently, they started moving again...but let's be honest.  Really, they are just moving dirt from one part of the land to the other part of the land.

No progress.

Quite honestly, I've given up on this amazing store and their bulk spice bins ever being in my town.

However, as I was driving by the land (and the gym as well, presumably doing something much more enjoyable) the other day, I glanced over and then something occurred to me.

That land is a lot like my life.

See, I have this time table for my life...this plan.  And I want things done in a certain amount of time.  I also like them done without hiccups and issues.  And then, when my plans, my time tables, don't pan out - I get frustrated.  I write it off.  I count it as failure.

But the other day when I saw that land, I realized it's not failure.  It's not all for not, they are building the foundation.  Making sure it is straight and level.  They are taking their time to make sure it is done right (because really, do bulk bins of spices deserve anything less?)  Now, I know that construction was halted for a while.  Nothing moved.  No ground was excavated.  By all accounts, the land stood in pause.

See, God is building a foundation in my life.  Sometimes, I feel that by this point on my time table, I should have a sky scraper standing on the figurative land of my life.  But more often than not, I feel like I'm having dirt moved from one side of me to the other.  No progress.  No movement.  And yet there is.

God's making sure I have a good foundation.

I'm quite certain that there has been possibly a nice little house built once or twice on the foundation of my life, but it gets torn down. 

By me.

And my little time table and plans and fits and tantrums.

And I'm quite certain that in that time when there was nothing happening on that land, there was someone, somewhere fighting for the future store to be built.  In the same way, when I feel like nothing is happening in my life, something is happening - just not for me to see.

I'm learning this year how to be patient.  I'm learning to accept that God's time table is much more accurate than my time table.  And I'm resting, or tying to rest...ok, really I'm crying like a baby who doesn't want to rest, but I'm trying to rest in the fact that God's ways really are better than my ways.  And I'm trying, with all my might, to not get impatient with the building of the foundation.

Because really, if bulk spice bins deserve it - how much more do I deserve a strong foundation...on the rock.

Friday, August 5, 2011

God's timing: Kindergarten, job hunts, and having babies

I love God's timing.

Ok, really, that was insanely sarcastic.  Because actually, most times, I don't.

I, as you all know, would like things to be neatly done on my schedule...right.on.time.

How many of you remember this post? What to do, what to do?  Remember?  The nice little fertility office called and asked what my plans were - and I was freaking out over what to do.

Well, let me sum it up for you.

We transferred them.  We signed all 479 papers to have the two embryos transferred one floor up in the same building so as to avoid making an actual decision about what to do with them, and signed another little paper that we would provide payment promptly.

Then that whole God's timing thing...

We then started our worse economic year of our marriage to date.

So they never got paid.

Nice, I know.  But while they are being "babysat" in a freezer, we have four warm ones running around like crazy needing to be fed and clothed CONSTANTLY...and they take precedent.

And then we got a letter.

"Your embryos will be discarded if we don't receive payment."

Great.  But we have no money.  We have no viable option to pay them.  So I do nothing and pray that God's will be done (Which is totally an easy prayer when there is no viable option other than God doing His thing.)

Then we receive another letter about a month later saying they are going to send us to collections over it.

Great.  We have no money.  Now we are going to get harassing phone calls about paying for our frozen babies.  But, we have no viable option to pay them.  So I do nothing and pray that God's will be done...again.

Then we receive another letter saying, "Please sign your renewal contract for the storage of your 2 embryos until August 2012, with an additional 350 dollars in addition to the 475 you owe us from last year."

Great.  They didn't throw them away.  Praise God.  But, we have no money.  So I do nothing and pray that God's will be done...again.

But then, I did it.  I called an embryo adoption center...because let's face it - I'm just as overwhelmed as I was when I first posted about this (except Luke hasn't driven the van recently) and financially another kid or 2 more kids for that matter right now would just not be smart (by all worldly standards, right?)

As I spoke to them, they informed me all about how embryo adoptions are open adoptions now.  Our embryos would be mixed with other embryos and if ours took they would let us know after the baby(ies) were born and we could get pictures, even have visitation...


I would go to jail.  I would kidnap my child.  I don't care if it is June Cleaver parenting my kid- seeing my children's pictures calling someone else Mommy?

What would happen if when they turned 18 they showed up and saw our family, the 6 of us, and wondered why they weren't good enough to keep?  We are a happy family.  We aren't in crisis.  We love our children with all of our hearts - we would just have to tell them that 6 kids were just not part of the, well, our plan - and that just doesn't seem like a good enough reason.

So, then the head guy of the cryobank (the place that's babysitting the embryos) calls me and leaves a message to call him back immediately.

Nice.  Now, I can't avoid any longer...

So, I sit down with Dave.  We discuss.  No easy words.  And after two hours of heartfelt communication, we finally made our decision - the only decision that we felt would be honoring to crazy and irresponsible it may seem to the whole world.

We are going to have the embryos me.

I called the guy.  I told him the truth.  I had been avoiding him.  He nicely agreed to a payment plan until we get our tax return (GOD, PLEASE BE A BIG TAX RETURN)  and paid them off in full...and our monthly payment is 75.00

There goes that God's timing thing again.

School is about to start.  School supplies, school clothes, school shoes - I'm overwhelmed people.

Dave is frantically looking for another job that will be more stable (since we all know how well bookstores are going right now) and we are quite literally living from paycheck to paycheck.  And now, we have 75 dollars going out extra each month.

Ok, God.  Your will be done...(which is quite an easy prayer when you have no other viable option)

And then a friend calls me and asks if I will watch her son when school starts - FOR PAY!

Prayer answered.

Dave and I just looked at each other in shock. 

God provided.

Then, we went to Luke's best little buddy's birthday party yesterday.  The paperwork is on our counter.  We have to send him 75.00 this week (before the next paycheck) and although my desire for comfort is still there, I'm learning how to be content with God's matter how uncomfortable it is.  All of a sudden my friend (who was hosting the party) handed me 200.00 saying it wasn't from her, she was just a messenger.

Prayer answered.

When I handed Dave the money last night he looked at me with a questioning look.  I told him what had happened.  He looked at me in shock.

God provided.

So, here we are.  God provided again - in such miraculous ways, like He has done over and over again this year as we have been hit so hard economically.

We have no idea how we are going to pay for the actual transfer (about 5000.00) but we are confident that we have finally made the best, the right, the only decision we could make...and give them a chance at life - and we are just as confident that God will somehow, how crazy and uncomfortable it may be, provide for that to be done.

The thought of 5000 dollars right now is beyond comprehension.

The thought of the possibility of two more children, making us a family of 8, is unimaginable to me - especially since I have shouted from the rooftops since Will was born, "I AM DONE WITH HAVING CHILDREN!"

The thought of brand new school clothes for my kids seemed impossible and now, we have a pile that keeps growing as other families are blessing my family, and humbling us greatly.

The thought that we would make it 5 months without income seemed ridiculous.  And now in hindsight, I see how God worked miracles the entire time, providing and sustaining our family.

And after that...after being so freshly aware of God's greatness when we succumb to the fact that God is always the only viable option...after that, 5000 dollars doesn't seem so insurmountable.

Two more kids doesn't seem so overwhelming (although I will need prayer for my mental health) when I am made so aware of how God loves me and the 4 kids we have so much - that I am confident that how much more He will take care of us when there are, possibly 2 more.

I don't know what lies ahead...I think I'm done making plans since they never seem to go the way I planned.  But what I do know is that God is the only viable option, and He will provide.

Do you know that?