Wednesday, January 26, 2011

We need to have perspective

Being in career field that I am in I often here "It's not fair" which causes me to have an internal eye roll but a sympathetic nod on the outside. Well until I get to know my clients and then I do give them a real eye roll and tell them to get a grip and threaten to smack them upside the head. I think I have noticed more "it's not fair" statements or sentiments in the last few days than I ever have in my life. I am not one to play the "it's not fair" card in my own life. I see it much like the Joker card in a real deck of cards, not real useful unless you want to play some kinda weird game.

*okie notices the confused look on her readers faces* YES THIS MAYBE CRAFT RELATED! So just hear me out....unless you want to leave *okie points to the door* but don't grab one of the cookies, those are for people who stay and read the whole post! *okie sighs and continues*

Being on the Cricut message board I get to hear the "It's not fair" thing quite often *okie wishes she had a nickel for each time because she would be bloggin about this on a brand new computer* and with it being the time of the year for the winter CHA I am ready to hear it more. There are always people who get to go to CHA and they get some really neat goodies, meet famous scrappy crafty people, have wonderful stories to tell and create some great memories. Then there are those who could have gone but for one reason or another didn't and they start hollering "It's not fair". Of course I have little sympathy for that line and I want to tell you something that happened this week that I truly felt like screaming "IT IS NOT FAIR!!" And I am hoping to share this only to help other change their perspective about fairness in our world.

I had a session this week with a person we shall call Rover. Rover tells me that he will be leaving next month because the Coast Guard need him to do an sniper assignment. Knowing circumstances of Rover's life I knew this could NOT be true and started to confront the situation as to keep him from extending the fabrication any further. He was not pleased with my confrontation but we were able to get to the real truth. Rover wants to be in the military. He wants to serve and protect this country. He wants this more than anything in the world. But the sad truth is that Rover will never be able to do so because of he lacks the mental capacities to do so and through process he was able to admit this. Now here is where I wanted to scream...Rover turns to me and says "Why do I have to be this way? Why can't I be normal so I can serve my country. That is all I want to do. I know I am MR but I am high level. I just want to protect our country". At this point I had to muster ever bit of professional fiber in my being to maintain my composure and tell him "I don't know why you have to be MR. Some people are and some people are not. There are some things in life we have to accept and this is one of those things in your life that you will have to accept. You still have a role in life. There are things you do here that are very helpful to others". But I just so wanted to scream "IT'S NOT FAIR!"

Okay okay so my point to all of this is, next time you feel like something isn't fair because you don't get to get something for free, or attend an event you would like to, buy a new awesome crafty tool, etc. I would like for you to change your perspective a little and think of Rover and how all he wanted to do was serve his country and had to accept it will never happen for him because he is intelligent enough to know his mental development is delayed but not intelligent enough to serve the country he loves. And that my friends...is truly NOT FAIR!

78 comments:

  1. Wow! That is a great analogy. I am so sorry that "Rover" can't help as he wants to. Yes, so many people take things for granted that it makes us ALL seem greedy and selfish. You are a wonderful person that you are able to help him (and show others they shouldn't be so wanting!). Great post. Thanks for sharing.

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  2. Amen! I completely agree, put the big girl (or boy) panties on and truly appreciate all you have and are blessed with. Thank you for such an eloquent post my Circle Sister.

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  3. Great Post Okie!! I so totally agree!

    Debi

    http://cards-by-montana-reflections.blogspot.com/

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  4. Well spoken (or written). It is so true...whenever I'm feeling sorry for myself I usually get whopped up aside the head with a story from someone who has a real problem and I snap myself out of it and realize just how good my life is.

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  5. Okie - that was a very valid point. When I begin to feel a pity party coming on... I remind myself of all the blessings that I do have. My mother had a saying... I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet. Perspective!

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  6. Thank you so much for this post!!!

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  7. Thanks Okie for putting things into perspective. I personally can't get onto the board to hear all of the its not fair, so probably a good thing. But for a person to truly want to do this for his country but can't due to sad circumstances really isn't fair. I do hope he will find something in his life to make him feel fulfilled.

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  8. Very very true! During my masters program, I went to a few teaching conventions where they gave out lotsa free goodies and I was embarrased by the way some of my classmates acted. I do my best not to fall into this mindset, but if it happens, from now on I will think of this story to snap myself out of it!

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  9. Okie, Great post!! So true and valid.

    Thanks for sharing!!

    Liz

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  10. Here, here.

    Now where do I pick up my cookie? I hope there is chocolate involved in some form.

    Michelle R.

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  11. I totally agree, well stated. I believe that is the main part of what is wrong with our country, to many want "something" for "nothing", but there is always a price to pay, nothing, absolutely nothing is free!

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  12. Having taught special education and been fortunate to see some children achieve Rover status and others pass away because of chronic illness.. Amen.

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  13. great post and putting things in perspective.

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  14. I teach special education students in a high school and deal with "Rover;s" situation every day. It really is a reminder to be greatful for whatever we are/have... When the only thing you want and the one thing you cannot have (ever!) is just to be "normal" the world is not a nice place. Rover has by sympathy.

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  15. okay, okie....got a surprise on my blog for you!
    http://thescrapbookspeedway.blogspot.com/2011/01/thrilling-thursday.html

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  16. So true. Great example, thanks for sharing and keep up the good works.

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  17. This is about the most awesome-ist *is that a word* post I have ever read. I totally comend "Rover". Thank you for shining the light.

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  18. Very well said! I completely agree with you. I teach special ed and it is so difficult for the students who have such great dreams, large or small, and realize they will probably have to settle for something "less". It is the absolute definition of "not fair"!

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  19. This is so similar to a training seminar we had at our school this summer over the FISH philosophy. One thing I carried away was the point we really don't want true fairness. Fairness (by the worlds definition which equals sameness) would mean all of us and our family members would suffer all of the atrocities that anyone else has ever faced. I certainly no longer play the "fairness" card, but it is my hope there is always mercy in everything...
    Thanks for the gut check Okie!

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  20. My grandson has been in and out of the hospital for the past two years. Was healthy and an athlete up until he was 13 and now very ill. One stretch was for 95 days. This last time he went in was Dec. 18. Now at the NIH in DC. Far from us. It's not fair. But also not fair is his mother who is trying to keep a job and also be with her now 15 yr old son. When ever I start to complain to myself, I try and think how happy she would be to just be able to live my mundane life and not live in a hospital with her very sick son. God bless you for remind us all what is important.

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  21. Great story Okie and I hope it hits a nerve with some of those people you're referring too.

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  22. Well said ... life is too short for whining ... especially about things that really don't matter!!

    Hugs to you Okie!!

    Jo xx

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  23. What a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing with us. I too have had the "it's not fair" mood strike me, however, I remember by twin brother who was born second and had severe physical and mental disabilities. All I have to do is think of my twin and I realize, my life is not so bad.

    When I think life is not fair, I realize, I walk, i talk, and I get to do all the things my twin could not.

    The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, but that does not make the grass any better.

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  24. WELL SAID OKIE! Sometimes we forget to be thankful for what we have. I thank God everyday that I can walk,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,and never once have said to myself that is not fair! as I am disabled and need a walker but that is perfectly OK I can WALK as this just happened about 3 years ago so I know how it is

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  25. Thank you for being who you are and caring for others.

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  26. Great story and lesson for us. WE should all be more appreciative of what we have and can do and much less whiny about what we don't have.
    Thanks for sharing,
    Cindy :)

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  27. Awesome post! I get tired of the whiners. My husband and I were discussing this this morning. He is in a union and his coworkers for the most part want a lot of perk for a little work. I'd really like to just say "Be thankful you even have a job dammit."

    Bah.

    Anyways, Is 'Rover' able to serve his country in other ways that might satisfy his need? I hope so :)

    and ...

    Where is my cookie??

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  28. Hi Okie, love your story, I have conversations about life not being fair with my son all the time, he was born at 26 weeks and has cerebral palsy which causes his to have mobility problems. He now 16 often gets frustrated about what he is allowed to do mobility wise both as school throw health and safety at his to prevent him trying to do alot of things and he also gets frustrated when he see's or hears his friends planning things he know it would be physically impractical or at best extremely hard for him to join in witrh even if he's invited. I listen to his frustrations and can empathise and help as best I can but then he see's something on tv or reads and comes back with there is always someone worse off than himself and that puts things and his frustrations into perspective, even though he still struggles. It wouldn't do anyone any harm to just once in a while sit and think of all the positive things they have in their life and cherish what they have and think how hard life is for some people when at every corner their dreams are dashed through no fault of their own and something completely out of their control. Alot could be said for walking a mile in someone less fortunates shoes, and when my son who is at main stream school was bullied and the bullies mess with his wheelchair instedad of the punishment the bullies recieved which was to my mind in consequential they should each have had to spend a day in the wheelchair that school has for emergencies and then they would have had a different out look on life.

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  29. You go girl..... I so agree !!!
    I hear that so often just speaking to people in general.. "It's not fair!" I always ask "what isn't fair?" You're not on the street, you have a warm bed to sleep in, you have food in your belly....everything else is just a perk. I truly believe we all have a purpose in life....it's up to us to figure out that purpose.
    Well said Okie!!!

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  30. Okie, I agree with you completely! It's just NOT FAIR. But I've always said "Life's not fair and that's not fair". Pretty lame, I know but that about sums it up. Can I just say that I look for your post every morning when I open email and just love your posts. I love a sense of humor!! Makes life sooooooo much easier.
    Huge Hugs to you.

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  31. People can be so unappreciative. Our modern society is all about dwelling on the negatives and complaining & whining about it relentlessly instead of taking steps to make a positive impact.

    I check the MB's occasionally, but I can't deal with posting there cause the people there are so 'high school'... you know what I mean? Then they complain about people like me who "lurk" as they call it. Whatever.

    Thanks Okie for the inspirational speech and for always having a positive outlook. Unfortunately, I'm betting the whiners who really need to hear this story are not the ones who follow your blog. They're too busy spreading negativity.

    I hope Rover finds a way he can "serve" his country without enlisting. There must be something he can do to feel like he is part of the whole picture.

    Hey, can you email me a cookie? I hope it has chocolate chips!!! :)

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  32. Shirley - absolutely perfect!! You said it perfectly - I couldnt agree more!!

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  33. Okie, please let Rover know that he has impacted a great many people and reminded us how lucky we are. There is a place and a reason for Rover and the life he must lead. Let him know we care. Thank you so much for making me cry this morning and reminding me of the wonderful life I and my kids have. You are truly a blessing in this young mans life.

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  34. Okie,

    I read your story with great interest and it was a moving one. I have a daughter that has been diagnosed with several "issues" and I know what a struggle it can be when one wants to do something but does not have the mental capacity to do so. At present, she is barely making it through high school, cries constantly about how she hates school, yet she desparetly wants to be a doctor! I've never stopped her from trying anything. From early on I've told her that God made her that way for a reason and, although we may not know the reason yet, if God wanted her that way, then we had to embrace the fact that he considered her special enough and strong enough for what He had planned. Of course, faith plays an important part of our lives so it was easier for her to accept this. If your know that you are talking to someone of faith, it may be a way to ease the burden.

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  35. Okie - thanks so much for the "slap up the side of the head"!! I needed it this week!

    jackie

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  36. Thank you Okie!

    We all need to count our blessings and quit being so spoiled!!!

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  37. Thanks for the perspective Okie - I'll keep Rover in my thoughts. I agree with another comment, there is a purpose to everyone's life and happy are those who understand their purpose. You do amazingly difficult work, which I admire.

    Jackie

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  38. GREAT post, Okie! It really does sum up life. We all want more than we need but don't recognize what we have. For me, I am grateful I have Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, and my awesome family. I would too like more but I have been blessed beyond belief.
    Thanks for putting it all in perspective!
    Susan

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  39. What a great story, thank you so much for sharing!

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  40. Thanks sweetie!I think God made Rover just as he is.And he gave him you a wonderful friend who cared enough to talk to him instead of shut him up. Bless you. Have not been on message board very much. My Kindle! I can scrap it reads to me but leaves me with no desire to hear the gripes on the board. Just read or hear the end of my book. I am such a book worm!

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  41. Thank you so much for sharing. I don't know if you read all these comments, but boy, you are so right on target. My DH has been a HS teacher for 31 years. Our DD is in her first year of teaching HS. Talk about students and parents complining that "life isn't fair!" Life is "not fair" but sometimes we just need to pull up our big girl and boy panties and get over it, and do our best usting the talents and gifts God did give us instead of look for excuses to fail. I appreciate Kelly's outlook who has encouraged her daughter to embrace who she is instead of dwell on who she isn't

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  42. Amen to that! I totally agree with you Okie! I think there are wayyyy to many people saying it's not fair! When really it is plenty fair and they need to move on from it... Your story was uplifting and I would like to know where Okie put those dang cookies???? I read the Whole thing now where is my cookie??? It better be chocolate chip... Me like Chocolate chip cookies!!! :o)

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  43. Beautiful Post Okie ... Gives us all a lot to think about.

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  44. Thanks so much for sharing that... It does indeed help to have a little perspective slapped into us now and then. Tell Rover that his attitude is more than exemplary!

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  45. Well said. I couldn't agree more. I think people have this overwhelming sense of entitlement and I really do feel that people have become very spoiled because of it.

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  46. Oh you really are so right! Such a sad truth. We all need to appreciate what we have. Thanks for the reminder.

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  47. Okie, even though this post is very unlike your usual, it was great. If it is a true story, maybe you can help Rover find ways to volunteer, making cards, or other stuff to send to troops or whatever. By the way, are you a therapist or something? What is your day job? Maybe instead of the promise of a cookie, you could have offered us "whiners" some cheese! But I love cookies better. Keep up the great blog. Luv ya.

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  48. I always love your blog & look forward to seeing it in my inbox. This post just made the addiction worse! Thanks for everything you do & share with us!

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  49. WOW - Thanks for a very wonderful and enlightening post!!!!!!!!!!

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  50. This is the reason I read your blog. You just have a wonderful
    perspective on life.

    Thank you

    Thank you

    fergie

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  51. Just one word ....

    BRAVO!
    (and with it, a standing ovation)

    Hugz,
    Carol

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  52. Okie,
    Thanks for sharing this analogy today. I've been in an "its not fair" funk for a few days myself.

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  53. Well said! And truthfully, anyone in so-called 3rd-world countries could look at ALL of us and say, "It's not fair!" to our rich way of life, no matter what difficulties each of us may have to bear.

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  54. It is not fair that I have to spend a lot of time emptying out my craft room (whole room!) to paint and redecorate it and organize it to the max--not fair because I could afford to buy all that stuff in the first place, and not fair that when I was laid off from work we could afford to have me spend more time with my retired husband traveling! You bet it is not fair--we have WAYYYY more than we ever could deserve, and that is better than fair!

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  55. Amen! It isn't fair that Rover cannot serve our country. He sounds like a good person. I pray he will find happiness in his life.
    I see people every day who are struggling with aging, illness etc. I am constantly amazed by the grace they show while dealing with their struggles. I did not really know the meaning of the word "grace" until I learned it from them.
    Thanks for your blog, Okie.

    Deana L.

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  56. I so agree with you. I have 3 friends who are suffering with cancer and not really winning the battle so everything else just is not that important.

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  57. OK .. you are not the right gender .. but I am in LOVE with you. With the way you shook us ALL up with the truth. I too will keep Rover and the Rover's I know deeply in my mind and heart .. and I pray (other than the deaths of my hubby, son and granddaughter) I'll NEVER WHINE 'IT ISN'T FAIR when I don't get my way or some STUFF I think I need.
    You is awesome. Joyce

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  58. Great post, Okie!!! When my kids were little and would say, "It's not fair," my husband would always tell them..."Life's not fair, get use to it." They hated hearing that, but now they are grown and they see that it is true.

    Hey, thanks for the cookies. I took the ones from those who left the door. Good stuff!

    Mary R.
    Chattanooga, TN

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  59. Thank you and please thank Rover for me. His desire to serve his country and help protect me and my loved ones IS appreciated. I'm sure that God has a greater plan for him.
    The next time someone feels that "It's not fair " they should stop and think about all the Rover's. Think about all the little children that are abused and died at a young age because of a choice that was made by the parent. A decision that they had no part or say in making.
    If they want to cry "It's not fair" then let them cry for someone dying of cancer and suffering. Let them cry for all the Rovers. Not because they didn't get a free perk or trip that they very well could afford if they really wanted it and wanted to make the necessary sacrifices to obtain it.

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  60. You said it. We should all pull up our britches and get on with things. I need to examine which parts of my life I am whining about. We tend to find ways to justify it if it is happening to us. I think we all have stuff we just need to "build a bridge" and GET OVER. We can be more productive that way. Onward and upward Okie. (And I thought you were just a crafty smartazz. You are all that and a bag of chips!)
    -waving from Arkansas!!!

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  61. Thanks for telling it like it is!!

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  62. Awww Okie, poor Rover (Really? Rover?) That almost made me cry.

    Kathy Wyatt

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  63. No one ever said it would be fair. Thanks Okie! As someone else said we are lucky it's not fair. We are lucky God is merciful and full of grace. What would we do if we got what we deserved?

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  64. Amen Okie... So deep and true! Bless you my friend!

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  65. Thank you for an awesome post Okie! You said it all so well. Instead of focusing on what other's have that we don't, we should focus on everything we DO have. I know that I life a very blessed life and wouldn't change a thing. Thanks for putting this into prospective!

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  66. Great post, Okie. Life truly isn't fair. And I truly feel for Rover.

    But I'd like to add another perspective. I'm not one to whine it's not fair over something as trivial as CHA benefits. However, maybe people wouldn't feel left out if the participants didn't go around "bragging" (maybe that's not the correct term) about all the things they get for free. I mean for me, it gets to be a big eye roll moment during CHA when I read all the blog posts and see the videos just going on and on about what they got. And it's truly pathetic how these grown women behave like children when they should be professionals representing their businesses. I'd prefer it if they just stick to reporting the event and the releases.
    Just think if soldiers ran around telling Rover how great it is to serve and how they couldn't imagine not doing it, and they showed him videos or all the fun things they get to do that he doesn't, blah, blah, blah. Wouldn't that make Rover feel worse?
    We need to be understanding of everyone's perspective and understand how our actions may hurt others. And someone will always get their feelings hurt. It's just human nature.

    I'll get off my soapbox now. Thanks for the awesome post.

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  67. Amen Sister!!! just like I tell my dd..we can't ask "why" or say "its not fair" that she got CA and can't have children, but others can but choose to abort??? all I can say to her and others..lets just work with what we do have with a joyful heart and move forward...thanks for sharing a bit of reality with us

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  68. Well said, Okie. Thanks for the message.--Ryansmaama
    gkburrow@cmaaccess.com

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  69. Ahhh Okie, I read your post and cried... because of my Brother & my own little man. I am truly greatful you are in his life to help him and pehaps stear him in a direction where he can help others like he so wants to. Thanks for the post. Hugs

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  70. Your response to Rover was amazing.

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