Sunday, December 25, 2016

Being Sick on Christmas

So, it turns out that this year you are sick on this most glorious of days!  With an ear infection, of all things (And a pretty nasty virus  - but the ear infection is much worse I think.)  The plague might have been better for you to get at this point.

BUT All is not lost!  Sometimes you will be sick, and sometimes it will fall on the most important of days.  You could get sick on graduation day - you could be sick for Easter - you could get sick on your Honeymoon, or just before you are to get married (Which is why you should always try for a spring or Summer wedding - so that you have less of a chance of getting sick.)  You could be sick on vacation, or other important days.

Just remember that just because you are sick does not mean that the day is any less than it was before you got sick.  This day is just as amazing and wonderful.  :)  Just take it a little bit slower and easier and try to enjoy the little things. You will feel better in no time. :)

Besides, because you are sick - you get to chill with me and Rick and go see Assassins Creed with us. WOOT WOOT!

I Love you - Merry Christmas!

Suicide is NEVER the answer

I recently read this story on Suicide in the Deseret News.  It always makes me so sad when I see another new story about a child, a teen, or any person who feels like the stresses of the world are enough that they need to take their own life.  The act of suicide does not just affect the close family members or even the schools - it has lasting effects on a community, and even on those of us just reading a story about it.

Now, Being an emotional person who has had many ups and downs in my own life,  I can tell you that I have been in their shoes before - I know what it is like to feel like there is no other choice except to take your own life.  I know what it is like to feel as though I am not loved, no one will want me, and that I am the scourge of the earth - destined to walk the road alone and abandoned forever.

A little dramatic?  You may think so, but this is how a person who is being bullied or is feeling depressed and alone truly starts to feel whenever they begin to contemplate suicide.  They no longer care that their mom or their dad or even that their siblings say that they love them.  That's not the point - the point is that they feel helpless, hopeless, unloved, unwanted, and they don't want the love of those people - they want the love of someone else. Many times, they don't even love themselves anymore.  They have either worn themselves and their self esteem down or someone else has, to a point where it feels overwhelming and impossible to fix the situation.  Unfortunately, that someone or that some thing seems completely out of reach for them because they are so deep into their depression that those moments of happiness do seem out of reach.  They want friends that they don't get to have because of the way other people are.  They want to be accepted by their peers.  They want to experience that "Sweeping off the feet" feeling that movies and advertisements and T.V. shows portray all too frequently.  They want something that does not truly exist for anyone.

Which brings me to my other point - Everyone goes through feelings like this.  It's just that some of those people handle it better than others.  Even bullies have feelings of doubt - the way that they handle it is to put others down rather than to sink into their own depression.  It's a Front.

The good news is that if you are ever feeling like this the following will always be true:

1) You are not alone.  Nope - it's true.  You FEEL alone - but you aren't alone.  In fact, if you reach out and talk to people, most of them will tell you that they too have felt the same way that you are feeling.  They might not always have the advice that you are looking for - they might not have the answers, but most likely they understand how you are feeling.  And having someone that you can relate to is half of the battle.  Sometimes it is just nice to be able to talk with someone that has been there too.

2) Regardless of how you are feeling about yourself, you are loved.  And you cannot imagine what it would do to other people if you left them behind.  Not just to me - or Rick - but your Dad, Carli, Kennedy, Grandma!  Not to mention people that you might consider only as acquaintances, those people probably consider you as a friend.  You and I have a way of distancing ourselves from people - we love to be social, but not be committed - it's a fear of getting hurt in the long run or being betrayed in some way. However, if you were to look back over some of these relationships, or if anyone were to ask those other people if they were Friends of yours - they would most likely say that they were. We do not know how important we are to others - sometimes, we are the person that someone else looks forward to seeing.  We are the one that brighten their day - and we don't even know it.

3) You would be missed more than you know.  And not just "oh - how I miss him" but more in a "How can I go on without him?" It would send other people into their own depression.  Sometimes, when these things happen, those people don't recover from it either.

Look - Cyber bullying, it happens.  People are cowards when they are behind the keyboard.  Live bullying, it happens.  People tend to kick others that they feel are weaker than them - or when they are feeling inferior.  Children bully.  Adults bully.  People have a tendency to just be ugly.  However, Bullying is never right.  It's never OK.  I hope that if you are bullied that you remember the points above - that Suicide is not ever, never ever, the answer.  Life gets better after High School.  It gets even better after college.  And life is amazing once you become an adult and have your own family.  Keep Going. Always keep going.

If you see someone else being bullied - stand up for them. Be their friend.  You could be the one person that prevents them from doing the worst thing that they could do.  You could be the one that saves a life.

I love you Suhn - Always be the man that I know you are. Be honorable.  Have Integrity. Be a protector.

Effort put in will yield amazing results

So, you and I both have the personality where we want results and we want them right now. Not in a few months, but right now.  In fact, I would say that because of the way that our brains our wired - we see a problem, and we come up with a solution pretty fast.  However, we have a hard time slowing down to test our solution.  We just want the situation fixed so that we can get the knowledge and move on fast.

This is a small piece of advice that I may elaborate on later - but for now I will keep it simple for you.
ALWAYS Take your time.  Slow down for just a minute.  If you are struggling, ask for help around you.  I promise that if you do you will yield better results much faster.  Kind of like with math - it only took 10 days for you to catch up, while you had been beating your head against the wall for weeks.  10 days. That's all that it takes - just a little bit of patience and a little bit of help and a little bit of time.  This is a recipe that will always work.

Ok - that's all I will say on this for now.  You are doing a great job working at it.  So, keep working at it.

Hydroplaning and what to do in an Automobile Accident

So - THIS happened this year...

We were heading to the Prelude dress rehearsal for the Christmas Choir Concert this year.  The weather was not the best, but rain was not a big deal to drive in.  I have been driving in rain since I started driving - Rain is just part of living in the South.  So, I was not worried - However, I was concerned about the standing water in our lane - but I had slowed down because of the conditions.

If you remember anything about this incident (Or accident), I hope that you will recall that you witnessed NO LESS THAN 10 Miracles in a matter of 90 seconds (or less).  We hydroplaned from the HOV Lane on I-15 across 5 lanes of traffic and the on-ramp of Centerville.  Each lane that we passed through in our death spin, where we did not hit another vehicle and one did not hit us and we did not cause another accident - Each lane was a MIRACLE.  There were 5 lanes and an On Ramp - so 6 Miracles happened all in a row as we spun out of control across I-15.  THEN, we hit the mud and dirt.  Instead of hitting the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) Fence - the fence was already down from a previous accident.  Because of this we did no damage to the car with a metal fence.  Another Miracle.  We then fishtailed in the mud and went trunk end first into the deep ditch - Yet, another miracle. Why?  Because by going in backwards, we did not have airbags deploy on our car which can be very dangerous to someone that sits as close to the steering wheel as myself.

 I looked over at you at asked if you were OK and if anything was broken - and you were fine.  So was I.  2 More Miracles.  We did not end up on the TRAX line - Another Miracle.

Then - as the events unfolded - I found out that no damage had been done to the Oil Pan, the Engine, The Exhaust, or the Muffler of the car. Miracle after Miracle.  We also found out that I did not bend the frame of the car, and only needed an alignment and some body work done to the car.  As you recall - because of the way we went backwards into the ditch, both of the side panels were a teensie bit crinkled and I did bust up my tail light on the passenger side of the car.  That part was not good because the insurance company ended up totaling the car out - but it could have been so much worse than that.

So far the worst thing is that I got a citation and my car was totaled.  (But then again, maybe that was for the best - it is still too soon to tell)  This is probably close to the BEST case scenario, son.  I have not been in a vehicle collision with another vehicle in my entire driving history.  I have had very scary things happen to me with walls, barriers, ditches, but never another car or person.  I thank the LORD for that.  I thank the LORD for seat-belts and for conscious drivers.  I thank the LORD for First Responders who arrived on the scene in less than 3 minutes after we impacted the ditch.  I thank the LORD that we were not hurt and that no one else was hurt.

Which brings me to why I chose to write this blog to you today.  There are a few things that you need to always remember whenever you get into a car and whenever you may be in an accident.  I don't think that anyone in this world will go through their life without having an accident. Accidents happen.  I hope that you will always remember to do the following:

1) Remember to always, always, always wear your seat belt. Seat belts save lives and help to prevent injury or ejection from a vehicle. Make your friends wear theirs in the car - as well as the passengers in your back seat.  Always wear yours - and never ignore the beep that reminds you to put it on.  Make it a habit to buckle up.  And not in the cheezy way like the commercials do - with the whole ridiculous "Dad - buckle up!" And the Thumbs up response.  You know the ones that I am talking about.  It really is serious business and I hope that you will always choose to wear your Seat Belt.
2) Remember that the difference between 80 Miles Per Hour and 75 Miles Per Hour is only arriving 5 minutes later at your destination.  Don't be in such a rush if you can help it.  Give yourself that extra time and enjoy the journey.  I understand that you will have moments where you are rushed and you will speed. Who doesn't do this?  Even Rick has been known to speed on occasion - but do your best to realize that you are not really getting there any faster.  I was not speeding when this happened - you can still Hydroplane going even 40 Miles Per Hour - it's possible... like skipping a stone across the lake - it's about surface area and impact.  But, there is no need to be rushing around when all you are doing is saving just a few MINUTES at best.
3) Always have insurance on your car.  This whole process would have been costly and much more stressful if I had not had coverage on my car.  It is the law that you maintain insurance on your car, but some people try to skirt this or go with the cheapest insurance that they can get. Insurance is expensive monthly, and when you don't get tickets or get into accidents - it can seem un-necessary and ridiculous.  Don't fall for that - these things happen and you will be glad that you had insurance when the time arises.  I have not had the stress that I thought that I would during this season THANKS to having a good Insurance company.
4) When you are in an accident - ALWAYS assess your situation before you move yourself or anyone else.  If you are the driver, check yourself.  Are you alright? Are there any bones broken?  If you can move and you are alright - then you check on your passengers to make sure that everyone is alright. If someone is in pain - do not move them.  Let the first responders do what they need to and help out you or your passengers.  ANY PAIN. Seriously.  I know that there is adrenaline going on - but make sure that you do not move if you are hurt or if someone else is hurt.
5) If everything is alright, feel free to safely exit your vehicle and move the the sidewalk or move somewhere that is safer than where you are.  You should call 911 or the insurance company first to make sure that you have someone on the way.  THEN you call other people.  I know that you were wondering why I did not call Rick or your Dad first when we got into our accident - it is because neither of them would have been able to pull us out of the ditch that we were stuck in.  Always report your accident first and get that process started.  If you recall, it clearly takes people a little bit to get there, assess everything, write up reports, and dig you out of the ditch that you are in.  If the accident is really bad you need to stay put and let the first responders help you out of your car and such.  Our accident was not bad, but we did not exit the vehicle when we went into the ditch until the officer assessed the situation. This is a good thing for you to do if you are ever in an accident.

6) Take pictures.  You did a great job of this during this particular situation.  Adrenaline is pumping and it is easy to forget what happened or not have a clear recollection of events later on.  However, taking pictures during this time is imperative to helping your situation later on should you have to fight anything in court.  (And you may depending on the citation and who may have been involved and the insurance company). So - always take pictures and take a lot of pictures.

7) Comply with the officers and first responders - and be appreciative. They arrive on scenes where things are often much worse than the one that we were involved in. Never admit guilt and do your best not to apologize.  The courts and the insurance company are the ones that deal with that.  I will admit - I did both in our situation. I knew that I was the one that hit the water and I was sorry that I had been the cause of inconvenience and a scary situation for everyone involved.  It's part of my personality to apologize and try to correct the situation. However, you should try not to do this if you can help it.

8) If needed, combat the decision.  The officer said that I had taken down the fence when I slid into the ditch.  Thanks to pictures, a great Mechanic, a wonderful body shop, and us being astute enough to go back to the scene and review the situation - the officer took the fence off - because I had not hit the fence at all.  We weren't sure when it happened, and he had to do his job and give me a ticket for the fence - but if you are reasonable and can show that you did not do something, approach the officer in politeness and let them know that you can show that you did not do something.  Officers and responders are people too, and they can be talked to and reasoned with. If you did not do something that they say you did, make sure that you document it to the best of your ability and then let them know that their decision might be incorrectly based.  This portion of my case was amended to show that I had NOT in fact hit the fence.

9) Be Thankful.  Regardless of the outcome, if you walk away with your life - remember to be thankful.  All of these things, cars, and fences and tires - all of these things are monetary and can be replaced.  Your life cannot be replaced. Be Thankful and remember that things could always have been worse.

I hope that you are safe out there in the world and that I love you.  And just remember... "Oh No! Oh No! Here we go!"

And here we are - 4 Christmases Later

If I understood it correctly, I was asked to pick up blogging again as a certain Christmas present.  I looked over this request several times before I decided to commit to it.  I get so busy with work and life in general that I had stopped blobbing.  Life gets in the way of little things like "Giving advice online" - Not to mention, why would I give advice online when I could easily just pull you aside and nag at you about it?  (Besides, that TRULY is so 
much more fun).  However, the more that I looked and looked at the request, the more I thought that I should pick it back up again.  So, here I am - the first post after three years of starting this Blob for you.

The only main issue that I have is "What in the world to I write about?" I mean, advice typically comes when a situation arises and you need advice immediately.  Coming up with advice about situations that have not arisen is a little bit harder.  So, I hope that I will be able to give sound advice that will last a lifetime.  I do give a disclaimer that It might not always be correct advice, but it is my opinion at the given moment that the post is written.  People learn as they grow older.  Opinions and minds change as perception and experiences occur.  It is just the natural way of the world.  However, there are some pieces of advice that never change - and I hope that I can convey those to you through my words.

Anyway, you have a very Merry Christmas this year!  And that as 2017 continues I hope that the Blob will continue and be everything that you hoped that it would be.  I love you so much !


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Merry Christmas to you

December 25, 2012
Merry Christmas Darrell,

I know that you wanted a “Handwritten” note for Christmas, but I was very concerned that you would not be able to read my terrible handwriting.  So, I have chosen to type a letter to you instead so that way you can ascertain the meaning of all of the awesome letters that are spliced together to form words that have special meanings.  (Ahem, did you get all of that?)

I am glad that you and your sister requested a special letter.  I had been wondering for a long time if this is something you would really want.  I did not realize what a challenge it would be to write all of the wonderful things about you though.  It really is a challenge, but mostly because there are so many amazing things to write and I just want to be sure that I cover them all – because, what would happen if I left something out?  Of course, some things will have to be left out because I don’t really have time to write an entire novel, right?  RIGHT!?!?

So, getting back to the point of the letter - Darrell, my only boy, you are such an amazing person and spirit.  Each and every day you do something new that makes me proud that you are my son.  Having you as a part of my life has been one of the best gifts that I could have ever received.  I love to make lists, and I love being your mom – so I am going to take a moment and list all of the things that I can think of right now that make you an important person to me.  If something gets left out I hope that you can forgive me for forgetting – I am getting a little bit older you know.

Thank you, Darrell, for always being compassionate.  It’s important to care for others and you do this so very well, always taking time to pay attention to the way that people around you are feeling.  As you grow I hope that you will remember to always be kind to others.  You have a poster in your room that says “It’s nice to be important, but it’s more important to be nice.”  You do this so well, and the words on the poster are truer than I can really express here.  It is more important to be nice because when you are kind to others you will find that they are kind back to you.  You will develop friendships and relationships that are invaluable if you make certain to always be compassionate and kind to others – a talent that you already are so very good at.

Thank you so much for your sense of humor; it is one of the best gifts to give others.  The gift of your laughter and jokes – they help me to smile when I am being overly serious.  I love your sense of humor so very much. 

Thank you for being smart, but more importantly, thank you for not being stupid – I appreciate that you take the time to try to think through things and figure things out.  I will admit that you do not think the same way as me all the time, but you are young J you will get there.  Besides, you just need to remember that not everyone thinks exactly the same, and just because we don’t always agree on how to think does not make you wrong or even me wrong – it only makes our ways of thinking different, which can only improve the world around us. 

Thank you for always being polite, opening doors and being respectful to others.  This is an art that is slowly being lost in the world and by you always being polite and gracious; you are only making the world a better place to live and I love living in a world that has you in it.
Thank you for not being afraid to sing and dance in front of other people – these are true joys in life and I hope that you will always hold on to this side of your personality.  Never let anyone tell you that you cannot sing or cannot dance – you may not make it onto American Idol or anything like that, but one of the great joys of this life is music and feeling it course through your soul through Singing and Dancing, and I hope that you will always do both of these things.

Thank you for being artistic and sharing that ability with others.  Remember that when you look at art that others have done, try to see what they were trying to accomplish with their creation – and when you create, make sure that you tag your own personal message to it.  Part of the joy in life is finding the hidden messages that were meant just for us. 

Thank you for finding ways to make others smile.  Thank you for trying your best all the time and for giving the best hugs that a mom can get from a wonderful boy such as yourself.

Thank you for making the effort to try to find positives in each event of each and every day.  I know that this can be very hard and frustrating, but I can tell you that by finding the positives your life will BECOME positive more and more.  You should never let the negative get the best of you – there is far too much of that in this world to waste your precious time on it.  Remember to never say “Never” (And not like Justin Bieber either) because life is way too full of surprises to know anything for certain.  (After all, the world did NOT end last Friday – TOTALLY unexpected!)

Thank you for always taking responsibility for your own actions.  It makes me proud that when you make a mistake you can own up to it.  Thank you for not making promises that you don’t keep – you are a very honorable individual and that will serve you well in your life as you grow and accomplish the goals that you have set out for yourself.

And just a few things that I hope that you will remember as you get older – Always be yourself; who else is better qualified?  No one.  Be original, because copy-cats are boring.  Remember that your Faith and Religion is a personal choice.  Do not just believe something just because other people tell it to you, and I hope you continue to not judge other people for not believing the same way as you; not just in religion but in lots of topics.  You are very good at not judging others, but I really hope that you stay that way.  Remember that you will never be able to please everyone, so do what is most important to you by the dictates of your conscience and try to be as nice as you can to those that your choices may displease.  Remember that you can do anything you want to in the life as long as you are willing to work hard for it – and whatever choice you make, you will always have your family behind you to support that choice.

I know that I will always think of you with so much love and pride for the boy that you are and the man that you are becoming.  You are the finest young man that the world will ever know and I am grateful that you are a part of my life.  Nobody - and I mean NOBODY - in this whole world will ever love you or believe in you as much as your mom does.  Ever.  I love you so very much and I hope that you have the best Christmas!  Enjoy Each and Every Moment!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

You are your own person -

Recently it has come to my attention that my little nugget of fun seems to put himself down when trying to accomplish a task that takes him extra time.  The project is fussed over, large "Sighs" are heard from the next room, and finally - the resigning comment of "I just can't do this" (Or something similar) exits his mouth.  I pondered this for a long while.  Where does this attitude come from?  This "Feeling" like we have to do something the same way that everyone else does it?  This has always perplexed me - so today I wanted to address this issue.

My Dear D-Man - I don't know of how many ways to express this to you but I hope that one day it finally sinks in.  You are your own person and this means that you are going to have your own set of unique experiences and perspectives that no one else will have.

Too often have I heard, "I don't know how do do that." Or "I could never do that myself" - when in fact, you can.  It's all a matter of putting forth the effort - not just the desire to try, but genuine effort.  You might not get it right the first time, the second time, the third or the fourth time, but at SOME time you will accomplish that which you have set out to do.  Never, Never, Never give up.

For example, I have always been the type of person to rely on using recipes.  I don't seem to be able to cook anything by throwing a dash of this and a pinch of that into a pot to make a glorious meal.  I watch people on the Food Network in awe at their amazing abilities and think to myself that I wished I could do that.  What's funny is, I don't have to do it their way - I can still make a great dish, but for me to make it work I have to follow the recipe.

My recipe won't be the same, but the outcome of my dish will be just as delightful.  Your recipe on life will not be the same as anyone else's but it is your own, and as long as you make the most of what you have been given, you will come out with glorious experiences and insights that no one else will have.  As long as you try, and try again sometimes, you will continue to learn and grow and when you look back you will see where you used to be and where you have moved to.  You won't see it at first, but over time with trying you will notice the difference.  I hope that you never compare your own life journey with someone else's - because it doesn't have to be like their journey.  It's your very own gift to make the most of.