…If you smell something, say something…

While not an avid, nightly, Daily Show with Jon Stewart watcher, I enjoyed watching him from time to time. I barely have the time to watch the few shows we do DVR, so adding a nightly show to the mix is not in the cards for us. In any case, the man is an inspiration and is hilarious. I am sad to know his show is over. In all the pleas from his fans to not end his show, I came across this quote:

“The best defense against bullshit is vigilance. So if you smell something, say something.” – Jon Stewart

Ah, well put, Jon. Well put. I love it. I am a fan of saying something — always. I am that person that 99% of the time is going to call you out on your bullshit. Why live life without being honest, transparent, and authentic? That does not mean it is always easy for me. Most of the time if I do not say something it eats away at me. While I am not yet a parent, I know all the times I have been told by my own parents, or in childcare situations, that if you let kids get away with something and you let time pass then the teaching moment is over. In most cases I agree. However, what matters most is that you say something.

Be it your spouse, your friend, a family member we so often let things sit inside and agonize over them. We get frustrated, we get angry, and often if we were just open and honest with the other person it resolves itself. They might respond by telling you how grateful they are for your transparency, they might be angry (and really that is their thing to work out), or they might even laugh at you thinking how absurd that such a thing bothered you. Whatever the result, it is good to get it off our chests and not let it fester inside.

Thank you, Jon, for your wisdom and for making us laugh for the past 16 years.

Unpaid maternity leave is a sad reality

I love those days when I find similar articles, ideas, and inspiration from different sources. If you have read my blog over the past few months you will see a trend of blog posts about women not being given paid leave after having a baby. It was not something I knew much about until my sister and friends started having babies and didn’t resonate as much until Chris and I started thinking about having a family one day.

As I get older and older, a certain political issue may have a different meaning to me. Once you own your own home you start to look at different laws and legislation differently then when you rented. As you endeavor towards different aspects of your life, your world view expands or maybe contracts (although I hope it only expands). Our country’s unpaid maternity leave standards is something that I still do not understand. How does it show a woman (aka a mother) that not only does her contribution at work matter, but it matters that she (and her husband) take time to take care of their newborn and not worry about paying the bills for those first few ever so important days and months of their baby’s life?

This is why I loved finding these two videos today as a response to Mother’s Day and unpaid maternity leave. The first is actually a clever campaign video from Hillary Clinton. She is right when she says: “It is outrageous that America is the only country in the developed world that does not have paid leave.” and “We can do a lot if we do it together.”

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The below video, from John Oliver on Last Week Tonight, gives his take on America’s unpaid leave policy for women. It is quite hilarious. He shares different examples of women and when they go back to work, and the fact that they get 12 weeks of unpaid leave. I love his comment about the woman who had a baby on Friday and went back to work on Monday. He says: “You have definitely got everyone’s bullshit ‘what-I-did-over-the-weekend story’ beat.”

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Another great line is at 10:30 into the video: “Get the f#$% back to work. Seriously. Because you can’t personally afford to take the time off you want, we are going to need you to bring your exhausted ass back to work and show us that can-do attitude that moms are famous for.” It makes a statement while also being funny.

Unapologetically herself.

Ah, I found a quote that I love, love, love.

“There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful, than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection. To me, that is the true essence of beauty.” ― Steve Maraboli

Thank you to catscaffeinecake for sharing this quote on your blog. It makes me smile, and it makes me relish being a woman, and having no qualms whatsoever for being myself. There was a time in my life when I was more introverted, occasionally quiet, and not so excited to talk about my life. Now I imagine Chris is often wondering when I am going to shut up. Although when I am quiet, I think it makes him squirm a bit. Why? Because he loves when I am unapologetically myself, loudness and all.

A colleague recently told me my nickname should be Tami without the “A”, so TMI (too much information). He is right. I probably do go overboard with sharing whatever is on my mind. I do not have a filter, and definitely know that there are some situations when I should keep my mouth shut. There are other situations when I feel so comfortable, that I do not censor myself and I am sure that those around me are sometimes shocked with what comes out of my mouth.

What if everyone was unapologetically themselves? Would we trust others more because we knew that they were being completely transparent with us? No games played, just each of us being true to ourselves and those around us. We would all be more comfortable with each other, not worried about our flaws or inadequacies, with little care to what others thought.

I think when others are unapologetically themselves it is attractive. What do you think?

We do what we can with what we have

I subscribe to Runner’s World, and when I came across the story of this precious man, I started reading and could not look away from my screen. By the end of the article, there were tears streaming down my face. Against all odds, somehow we all do what we can with what we have each day. Sometimes though I think we have to look at the stories of others to get over ourselves. Bret Dunlap is a man with a story. He has persevered in life, after doctors did not think he would live. He has made a life for himself and eventually that life led to him running.

You hear of that many times, someone is in an accident and almost dies, and somehow is able to come back and kick ass at life. What we do not always see is that it is not easy, that sometimes even against all odds life is harder than one could ever imagine. Bret’s story inspires me. It inspires me to want to do more. My body was not shattered. When I complain about the slightest of pains after a run, or just on a normal day, I need to think of Bret. I cannot even imagine what his path was like to rehabilitation. Have you read his story yet?

If not, you might think my blog today is rambling on, but I hope you take the time to read it. It will make you look at your day differently. It will make you appreciate your legs and your toes, and your back, and your feet. It will make you appreciate that people do not look at you funny. It will make you look at the things you are scared of and maybe take a risk and go and do them. Yes, we do what we can with what we have, but maybe, just maybe we should do more than we can with what we have. Maybe we should push ourselves harder because we can.

First Day of Spring!!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...It is March 20, 2012, and the FIRST DAY OF SPRING! I am so excited. I cannot wait for days and days of sunshine. The stems of my daffodils are up, as are my snow caps. The leaves are getting bigger and bigger on my hydrangeas, and my hostas and irises are just sticking their heads out of the ground. In the front, the weeping cherry tree has small, light pink buds opening up. And yet, we had snow flurries on Sunday and actual snow just a few miles away yesterday morning. Each time the snow hits, I pray my green budding friends will continue to bloom. I am not much of a green thumb. I tend to kill most indoor plants (my husband keeps them hydrated because I forget). What?! Sound strange? If something does not yell for my attention, I can easily forget about it. Which means quiet plants = no watering. Somehow I have managed to keep the plants in the backyard alive. Although I do not think I can take all the credit. It must be our sprinkler or maybe Chris is really watching over them.

My green budding friends mean that soon I will be able to break out my Chaco flip-flops! I cannot wait. In honor of Spring, here are a few ideas I wanted to share with you. (Click on the image to read quotes more easily).

a few ideas on Spring and renewal...

Enjoy!