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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Believe in yourself

I was feeling empowered this morning. I'm not sure if it's this beautiful sunny weather or if it's just because I feel 2015 has so many opportunities waiting to be opened. When I think about my past, and the puddles I jumped through to get to where I am today, I feel good. I've written this before and I keep coming back to this moment I had during a first aid practical exam. I had this full packaging on a code 3 patient I needed to do within fifteen minutes. I had to assess, stabilize and package. It was my first time having a practical exam in front of an examiner. I weeped during the whole exam. Afterwords the examiner asked me, "Carrie, why were you crying?" I explained that I failed. "I didn't package in time" The examiner pulled me aside and said, "Carrie you received 100% and you will make an excellent first aider" The reason why I keep referring to this story so vividly stored in my mind is because that moment taught me a lesson. Not to doubt yourself. If you want something badly enough, if you want changes in your life, if you want your path to veer slightly in a different direction or you just want to succeed within something new- you need to take the action, do the work and most importantly believe in yourself. I use this little personal story with every one that is struggling with themselves. I use my personal experiences to support our children. It's real. It's very empowering to know, to believe that anything is possible if you don't quit. I came across this quote this morning stating, "When something is important enough, you do it, even if the odds are not in your favor" - Elon Musk. Like climbing a mountain......every one has to start at the bottom. It doesn't matter your level of fitness, it's if you quit or not that counts. The people at the top are the ones that persevered regardless their challenges. Like adoption. The process can be very emotionally challenging. I believe it needs to be because if potential adoptive parents can't handle the process, they might not be able to handle new children either. Like First Aid. If you can't handle the practical exams. You might not be able to handle a real scenario and a life depends on it. It's important to persevere. You need that level of dedication. Commitment. Determination. It's important to have that passion. AND if you have that passion for something, you need to believe in yourself and hike towards the top and retrieve. This is an important attribute to learn to keep - believing in yourself.  This is my message for this post. For example.....our family started "Emily's Angel's" back in September 2014. Our goal was $5000.00 and honestly, I thought it was a realistic goal however a possible hard one to achieve while selling our first angels at only .30 cents each. Today we are only $400.00 shy of our goal while not only succeeding our fundraiser, we impacted many individual lives with challenges of their own. Today while awakening feeling empowered I was questioning myself, "What's next!?" Because with determination (as I well know) anything is possible. Stay tuned, a new year is about to emerge and I hope that your life is full of endless opportunities too! If not, what's stopping you? 

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Dance daily, we are in control!

It was an excellent weekend.  Over a hundred of us gathered together and celebrated a friend of ours birthday on Saturday night. She turned seventy and dedicated her birthday to our daughter. It was a stroller-fundraiser. Held at a restaurant with a dance floor there was live music, plenty to eat (especially cupcakes) a raffle, a silent auction and dancing! It was a great night of family and friends. We raised $1000.00! I want to thank every one that came out and enjoyed the evening with us, celebrating a beautiful woman's birthday and supporting a strong beautiful little girl's goal to endless mobility with a all terrain jogging stroller. We are only $500.00 away from our goal and our daughter's stroller is on its way! I wrote a speech a week prior to this evening. I carried it around in my purse. With eye infections and dim lights I had a hard time staying on track speaking from my notes. At one point my friend brought a light to shine, then finally I squished it into a ball and threw it on the floor. I learned something during this moment. Even though my written words were from my heart, my heart just needed to speak without concentrating on my written planned out words. I did however feel I forgot a lot within the frazzle of the moment. Throughout our lives we meet people, sometimes they're in our lives forever, sometimes they're not. Throughout our lives sometimes what we want doesn't pan out, or maybe it does all just fall into place. From one challenge to the next, to a less rocky road, life just happens and like that moment when I threw my written speech on the floor, it was a moment when it all came together. I had a friend (a sister) stand beside me shining a light, I had friends and family that circled me, I was standing in a place full of love and support. You know, I can't appreciate people enough. No speech will express this. For Judy, "Happy Birthday" - you're an inspiring wise and compassionate woman that is full of life. I would love to learn more from you. You've raised a beautiful daughter inside and out, and that's something to dance about! I'm going to share a photo reflection of the night. I hope you enjoy the pictures! Remember, live in the moment and if anything, tomorrow is another day - that is my tip - and that is how we do it and it works!

The raffle table
The beautiful cupcake table
Emily's Angel's Birthday Cake!
The Angel table!
The dance floor!
The dinner tables
My one son, "the dancing star" and my one daughter "Emily" and I
"The two" that made the night! Emily and Judy!

Anything you want in life is achievable. However nothing comes easily. We are in control on how we perceive, what we allow in our hearts and how we deal with situations. For my daughter, she's one of the strongest little girls I know. Through all her challenges, she remains bright and beautiful. As Judy, she doesn't let anything stop her - she lives to her fullest. Cheers to two individuals that remind us daily to dance!

AND "Happy twelve birthday to one of our sons!" 

 This son above is pretty special. He helps without being asked all the time. He has a very kind heart, and a gentle soul. I truly believe this boy is going to grow up and make a difference in our world. One of the biggest biggest and most important teachings that I believe children should learn is compassion and acceptance for all. This little twelve year old already has it. Proud of him I am.  

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The ole pocket book

Time flies. I just wanted to write and say we're still alive. We've been busy busy busy. During our busy schedule I added two doctor appointments for my granddaughter and I. Those appointments were horrible. That doctor (A substitute, a locum, a ?) shouldn't be a doctor. It was about her pocket book not about our care. I know, I're probably thinking I'm over reacting however there were several other patients that felt the same way. With not getting into great detail, I wrote a complaint letter. I held off on any further tests and treatment. I'm usually not the one to rock the boat. "Stir the waters" I usually let things slide. However I thought.....I can't. I can't let this one slide. The way I was treated was unacceptable. I thought if I didn't address the issue, that this doctor would continue practicing. My complaint letter might not stop this doctor from practicing however I hope that I as a patient will be heard. After all, our care is paid for. With writing I feel better. It's my release. The complaint letter eased my soul. No matter what the outcome I within my heart did what's right. Not only was I upset with a doctor, I was upset with a pharmacy. We had one son on medication for his kidney, and now our daughter on medication for an infection in her leg plus my husband takes medication daily. The pharmacy missed calculated in their millimeters for liquid, and missed calculated in their counting for pills. Not once but several days over. We had to return sometimes twice a day to straighten out medication. It was frustrating. The whole week was. I must say it's getting better. (I think) We have x-rays and a follow up this Friday for our daughter that recently had surgery. I'm anticipating good news and a great appointment with our daughters surgeon. In fact today we had a dentist appointment for twelve of our children. I was told that our previous dentist retired and that we have a new one. My first thoughts were, "Oh boy" We were there for two hours, and all our children were seen. I was explained and shown absolutely everything. Not to mention this dentist is adding preventive cavity work on all our children's teeth. He was excellent. Out of twelve children, there was only four cavities found. This dentist was professional, explanatory, efficient, organized and most importantly compassionate. He even mentioned that if our insurance was maxed, he would cover the rest. I asked, "What?" and yes I heard right. I explained to him that never in my life have I heard such a generous suggestion as his and I complimented him saying he was the best dentist I've ever seen. Not because of his offer but on how he handled our bunch. Everything went perfectly. Funny, he said that he's never worked on twelve children one after another like triage, every room had three of our children sitting in it. He was pleasantly surprised. Even our three year old just laid down and opened his mouth. You know.....the biggest part in any profession working with people is the connection. That initial approach, that compassionate nature. There is nothing worse then walking into a medical room feeling uncomfortable, then having to proceed explaining your personal issues. There's a trust. An aura that needs to surround both yourself and that person you're trusting your life with. It doesn't matter if it's a doctor, a dentist, a councilor, an employer or a friend. Whoever it is that you're trusting, there needs to be an all around respect and a level of connection from one to another. I miss working in the first aid room. I understand and know the respect that needs to happen. For me today, it was great to see a dentist being just a compassionate person while working within his profession. People come first, not the pocket book - the pocket book follows after developing the clientele by person to person connection. I love our new dentist, no complaints there. With every genuine deep down good person comes prosperity.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

New moon brings sand dollar dream catchers!

Update - Our son does have a kidney infection. He's now on medication and will see his urologist in the near future.

There's a new moon on February 18th and I can't help but think that is the reason for escalated behaviors. I'm not just suggesting our children, I'm suggesting individuals in general. (Including myself) I've been feeling "out of sorts" and not on top of my game. "My positive self" It's more likely due to the fact that I'm not getting out enjoying one hour a day outdoors. However that doesn't solve everyone else's behaviors. lol I'm going to blame the new moon. It's said that the new moon helps clear the patterns of issues in our life. While each month we have a new moon, it requires a new starting point. A new project and to clear the negatives to make us feel better and more willing to move forward. Perhaps that's why the week before a new moon there seems to be more issues and because our bodies are made up of 90% water and the moon flows with the tides we therefore become more emotional with our reactions. I guess we need to honor the fact that our subconscious feelings don't always line up with our conscious realities and a lot of times everything is just a nonsense battle hence why a new project or idea should be entertained. Sounds like a bunch of blubber the way I tried to explain it but heh it's that kind of crazy week and me not making much sense is perfectly understandable. At least I try find reasoning into everything before blaming people. Regardless if it's due to the moon, or being brainwashed, a mental illness or just physically feeling under the weather - reality is we all need an outlet. We need to clear everything negative within ourselves (without passing blame) to continue into a positive future. So this new moon I'm going to breathe.....I'm not going to relive the past, nor relive this week or feel horrible because I've missed out on some outdoor time, nor feel guilty about what once was. I'm going to open some new doors, new projects and help my children to do the same. For one of our new projects we are making and selling sand dollar dream catchers. Absolutely beautiful. (I think) Here is our first one made. 
Now I've learned with our last project that some people didn't like the fact we were collecting shells. I did call Ocean and Fisheries and for the amount of shells we were collecting, we weren't doing any harm. For this project we are not collecting anything. The sand dollars were given to us already bleached. We decided to make something unique. Sand dollar dream catchers. I also know that some people don't like what dream catchers represent. Dream catchers are believed to come from the Ojibwa Chippewa tribe and traditionally dream catchers are only a few inches in diameter. The Native Americans believe that our night air is filled with good and bad dreams. (Which they are) So the legend with the dream catcher is that it captures and filters the bad dreams. The dream catcher only allows through the good dreams. It's interesting learning about other cultures. Our children have an aboriginal heritage and I find the Native beliefs quite fascinating. I love designing their crafts and learning more about their aboriginal history. Dream catchers are made with careful thought, and is suppose to be a sacred object. The whole dream catcher has meaning and if you have received a dream catcher it represents the four elements of life. Earth, water, fire and air while not only wishing positive dreams, a happy dreamful life. Sounds like a great project to start during a new moon, after infections, illnesses and some negative experiences this past week. If you're interested in a sand dollar dream catcher, we will be selling them for $35.00. What will the new moon bring you!? 

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Wow....My kids?!

I haven't written for awhile because I'm a 24/7 nurse. Adding homeschooling. Maintaining our home. Meals. While taking turns driving five nights a week with my husband. My husband lately can't work. We are above water however this week was hard. Our little Emily had severe constipation after having severe diarrhea from the medication she was on. It's one extreme to the next. We were dealing with trying to get a uncontaminated sample of her diarrhea to giving her suppositories to stop constipation. There was nights where there was no sleep. It was endless screaming. One month later I'm still changing dressings on one side where her incisions split. They seep. It's a fresh bright red that doesn't seem to heal. However it's "normal" The endless transporting, diaper changing and physio that we persevere daily seems to be our daughter's non-tolerance point however we know what's best for her. What we deal with daily has become our normal, not to say our normal isn't so normal. (If you know what I mean) The food intake is minimal for our daughter, she has now developed a cold. For the past week I've been moving forward with my neck and left shoulder completely kinked. Mentally I'm coping. Physically my upper body feels tense and stressed. Having a larger family I sometimes think our numbers are against us. One of our older sons went through a lung surgery after having three spontaneous pneumothoraxes. Tonight.....while I write, my husband is at the hospital with one of our sons. When he was a baby he had a severe blood infection killing one of his kidneys. So he only has one kidney. Not an issue. We can survive with one kidney. It is detrimental that we keep that one kidney healthy. Tonight I wait while my husband and son is at emergency hoping that he just needs medication for a kidney infection. Our son came down with all the symptoms of a kidney infection, at least from a six year old description. As I write....I can't help think that scenarios run in threes and what does this really mean for us. Surgeries or incidences? Or does running in threes mean absolutely nothing? Is it just a hoax, or a superstition like worrying about a black cat crossing our path. It's silly. I love having a large family. I even love our complications. I learn. I experience therefore I can teach. I can lead. I do question "What does our future entail?" How many experiences will we have above others? For now I don't have any answers. We are literally just living one day at a time. What I do know right now.....I have a supportive large family. Tonight as we wait I had one of my other sons state, "Mom, if my brother needs a kidney transplant, I will.... if I can donate" - that's my proud moment for tonight. See, I could be having a "moment" one of those negative moments that I've felt before. "Worrying" And as ironic as this might be right now....while I wait diagnoses. I know everything will be "ok"... I'm just so proud of my children.... coming from where they've come from, while molding together and now offering organs for each other. Above all challenges, all behaviors, that's MY kids! My kids?! My "wow" moment while I wait.........

Sunday, February 1, 2015


I have a little experiment. To start, please answer the questions below.....

A. Who is this?
 B. Who is this?
 C. Who is this?
 D. Who is this?
 E. What do you think the story is behind this house?
 F. If you saw someone driving this? What would you be thinking?
G. Who's this? Would you befriend this guy?

 H. What is the story with this trailer?
 I. Who is this? 

The reason why I've randomly selected the pictures above while adding questions is because I was curious about your first impressions. (Not that I can see them) However you can share by commenting afterwords. So this little experiment is just for you - unless you're interested in sharing. Here are the answers for the above following pictures. A. This man is a hard working single father. He does everything for his five little children. B. This sweet Grandma went to jail for murdering her whole family. C. This man is homeless. However he's not drug addicted. He served our Country and has post traumatic stress disorder. D. Jeeze - that's me! I have sixteen children. I was a first aider, I can save your life. I home school. I write. I advocate. E. The owner of this house is bankrupt. It's seized by the bank. F. I would drive this truck as is. In fact, it's a work project. G. This guy is a heart surgeon. I hope you would befriend him. H. A millionaire lives in this trailer. He travels the world and supports several charities. I. This lady is indeed a defense lawyer. However she keeps nothing confidential. She's opinionated. Judgmental and arrogant. You can't trust her. 

Our society is so quick to assume. Every weekend lately my husband takes five of our sons skating. Something to do during the colder weather. Today he was told in front of our children that there is funds available for your foster family to skate. I can see why someone would propose this. My husband is dressed in his work clothes that are stained, they have holes (for extra air conditioning) he drives our old beater green 1995 ford van with 400,000 km and our children have different colored skin. Of course......we indeed fit that profile. I suppose it was thoughtful to mention we could get funding for the $15.00 dollar cost for our children to go skating. What bothers me is the lack of common sense. Five of our sons was standing there with their father excited to go skating. In front of our children someone has to comment....just automatically assuming we are poor, and we are a foster family. Some of us believe we are living in an accepting, non-judgmental world, that's definitely not the case. This world, "our society" is so judgmental. Guaranteed most people wouldn't want to befriend A, D or G but would letter B or I in the pictures above. If my husband was wearing a suit (note - that will never happen, he doesn't own one) but if he was wearing a suit "lol" - I bet the funding proposal wouldn't have happened. IF all our children were "white" I bet the "foster family" comment wouldn't have happened either. Can I change this? I can't change judgments BUT I can educate and I can advocate. That's why I decided to write this little experiment. I can't stress enough to not judge a book by its cover. Don't judge a family by its color, by their size or by their clothes, or what they're driving. Don't judge. Don't assume. You know what they say about assuming right? You make an ass out of you and me. Ass/u/me and this has happened to us more then once. Hence why I have stickers on my van, why I started blogging years ago - why I advocate for difference. So when assumptions like this happen in front of our children, we are prepared for a sensible, and a more educational rebuttal. Concluding my husband today clarified politely that he didn't need funding for his children, "Thank you anyway"