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Laura's Corner

I work very hard and am attending college to obtain my degree in the Human Service field. Writing makes me feel alive and gives me the opportunity to touch those whom I would not be able to otherwise. Last but not least, I have been blessed with two amazing daughters who love me completely and support my dreams. Feel free to contact me with questions, concerns or feedback.

PAID SICK DAYS!!!

Alright folks, normally my blogs are usually on the serious side.  I finally have decided to break on through to the other side. 

Those of us who work full time are at work more than we are at home.  If you work 8am until 5pm your typical day goes as such.  You probably wake up at 7am unless you have children.  Then you start around 6am.  You get the kids/yourself ready and head out the door.  Sometimes you travel up to an hour to get to work.  You work 9 hours and then head home.  Another hour (and a half if you have to pick up the kids) and you get home.  Rush to make dinner, do homework, family time, check emails and then get ready for bed.  Kiss and hugs and time for bed.  Goodnight John-boy, goodnight Jim-Bob, goodnight Mary-Ellen... 

Now, let me ask this.  Who was the wonderful soul who ever came up with full time as a 9 hour workday?  Why can't full time be closer to 6 hours?  Do you not think we as Americans would have an improved quality of life if we had equal time with our families and in our workplaces?  I mean, honestly, how many of us work full time and wonder where the time goes.  Do you not wish for a moment (or two) that you had more time with your children?  How about those whom have sacrificed their entire lives only to be "downsized" within an hour.   Maybe employers should realize that we are worth a couple of paid sick days per year.  Due to the economy, most folks are working more hours for less pay just to have a job.   Employers are taking full advantage of us knowing that for every job opening, there are at least 500 people vying for the position.  They know that in order to feed our families, we are willing to lower our expectations and will "take what we can get".  No wonder we are getting sick.  Stress is the greatest cause of illness within any individual and it's on the rise.

I can honestly admit, I was so excited to see a line to cast my vote to paid sick time.  In previous companies I have worked for, we had what they called PTO, which was "paid time off".  What this meant was that you were allowed 40 hours per year you worked for a company. So, after 2 years, I had gathered 80 hours and the allowed you to take PTO as you wished.   Most of the time, they "suggested" you request your PTO in advance.  So, what happens when you are sick?  It's not really something you can plan ahead for, right?  Well, it's been awhile since I worked with the PTO company, but I thought we could use this blog to our advantage. 

We all know how strict employers are going to be when this law goes into effect.  I am sure they are going to require doctor's notes, proof of prescriptions and things of that sort.  Yet, how do we get around this?  Suppose you aren't feeling up to par, but not bad enough to visit your doctor.  Let's say you catch the flu and we all know that it takes a couple of days to get back to 80%. 

I think it's time we all pitch in and come up with some fantastic "ideas" for sick days.  Yep, you heard me.  It's time we come together as a nation and help each other out.  Even if we didn't agree on who to vote for, the least we can do is assist one another in this area. 

I am sure more than one of us has already used the "relative who has passed away" excuse to get out of work.  Yet, if we are going to call in "sick", I am calling in the troops.  I am asking those of us who may have "fibbed" to get out of work to comment below for the best excuses ever.   Let's work together so we can get the much needed time off, regardless if we are sick or not.  How about let's say we use an "I am just sick and tired of going to work" excuse.   Or, "After 10 years of service I deserve a day off" excuse. 

I will begin folks.  I will give you an example.  One night, 5 years ago, (notice, I said FIVE years ago), I spent some much needed time with some friends.  We wrapped things up around 2:30am at a friends home and I knew I was pushing it.  Needless to say, after dropping off a girlfriend, I got to sleep at 3:30am and set my alarm for 7:15am.  I knew I would be cutting it close, but felt if I took a cold shower, I would be good to go.  I wake up at 7:15am and hit snooze.  I couldn't do it.  I felt as if I had been hit by the 4 hour sleep truck.  I called in sick.  My excuse was that "my daughter had passed on the flu to myself and I hadn't gotten any sleep".  Not original, but it worked. 

Ok folks, I 'fessed up. so now it's your turn.  The more the merrier.  I would love to hear your ideas about "sick" days.  Let's ban together and help each other out.  Trust me, you may need one of these sooner than later.. 

LATEST GREATEST!

So folks, everyone is wondering how we got into the most recent mess regarding the economy. With employees losing their jobs left and right, everyone is finally feeling the pinch of less income.

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DON'T QUIT!

As usual, I like to blog about controversial issues. This time is no different. I am sure anyone who watches television or listens to the radio has heard the recent story. The State of Nebraska recently revised a law to state that parents were allowed to abandon their “children”, ages 17 and under, to a local hospital, no questions asked.

This particular law is considered a “Save Haven” law. What I found regarding this law is as follows: “Safe haven laws typically allow for a parent or guardian to relinquish parental rights anonymously without risking prosecution for abandonment or neglect. However, each state's laws read differently when it comes to safe haven laws.”

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WHAT ARE YOU THANKFUL FOR?

As Thanksgiving Day soon approaches, many thoughts run through my mind.  As we all know, Thanksgiving started hundreds of years ago and I am sure pictures float through your mind.  From what I researched, history states it as such:  "Our national holiday really stems from the feast held in the autumn of 1621 by the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag to celebrate the colony's first successful harvest."

Yet, today we celebrate for many different reasons.  One, of course, would be tradition.  I am sure all of us look forward to a feast of turkey, gravy and mashed potatoes.  Getting together with family, sitting around the table.  After a couple of hours, everyone is relaxing from those delicious turkey enzymes which seem to stem from the alcohol family. 

I recall my our family get togethers.  Grandpa would carve the turkey.  He did this for many years and eventually passed on the electric blade.  Grandma's home was always warm and full of love.  I do remember one time, that I will never forget.  I was in front of my Uncle Tim.  I love the dark meat on the bird.  I just find it to be more tender and tasty.  I do not recall how much I took, but to this day he insists I cleared the entire platter of dark meat.  He states he will never stand behind me in line again.  I dispute him every time, but I believe this has become somewhat of a joke between us. 

I wonder how many of us take time to reflect on the true meaning of "thanks" giving.  Although we are years past celebrating a certain harvest, I wonder today if most people, like myself, overlook the reason for this season.  Sure, I can admit that I look forward to another day off of work.  Hey, if Thanksgiving falls on a Friday, you have a three day weekend, right?  I am more than thankful for time off. 

Yet, I wonder how many of us really take time to make a mental list of what we are most thankful for.  Sure, I can write the same list as you.  Family, health, home, job, car, food, clothing, just to name a few.  But, if you dig deeper, and think back within the past couple of years, is there something greater you may be missing? 

I know for myself, I am thankful for my heart.  The main reason is because approximately four years ago I was stricken with an irregular heartbeat and was admitted to the hospital.  It took 4 days until they found the right medication.  At that time I was told by my doctor I would be on medication for the rest of my life.  Due to this particular medication, I may never be able to have children again. 

Because of the above situation, I am thankful for my children.  I hate to say "what if", but let's use it this one time.  What if I had become sick earlier in my life and had never had the opportunity to have my daughters?  As I look around, and see so many women who are unable to conceive, I wonder... Why me?  Why was I chosen to have two healthy amazing children?   I am in awe of the fact I have been given the opportunity to bring life into this world. 

I am thankful for my health.  Despite my health situation, my health in general is overall pretty good.  Being able to see, walk, touch, feel, taste, smile, hug are gifts some will never experience.  I think in general that sometimes I take these gifts for granted.  I wonder sometimes what it would be like if one of these were taken from me.  I really don't know how to answer that honestly.  I recall in high school I had a friend who was deaf.  I asked her, "If you had the chance to hear, would you?"  You know what she replied, she stated, "This is all I have ever known, and I would not change it for the world."

I am thankful for the fact I have a roof over my head and food in my belly.  Even I admit, when those commercials come on, I have a strong urge to change the channel.  You know, those particular commercials where you see starving children sitting in a mess of a village.  No running water, walls for protection.  Could you ever imagine?  Could you imagine being a mother wondering how you plan on feeding yourself and your children?  How about the families that sell their son or daughter for $100 in order to survive another year?   I could not imagine the heartache of a mother who believes it is the only way.   To not know if you will ever see your child alive again, or if they are being harmed. 

As I ponder these thoughts, I am brought back to the fact that I have so much to be thankful for.  To be able to give and receive love.  To make a difference in the world around me.  To be able to smile and show my emotions.  To hear every word of gratitude being spoken by my children and friends.  To know that I am loved unconditionally despite. To be able to write and hopefully, make a difference in the lives of others.  Yet, most of all, to have faith in something so much greater than myself.  

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

As Promised...

Alright folks, as you all know, I love to write.  When I was a young girl, I used to write poems.  I believe most of them were heartfelt, especially since they were usually written before, during and after a break-up.  Oh, if puppy love were only so easy in today's world.

Yesterday, I went to our school put luck Thanksgiving dinner.  I heard a young girl speak.  She sounded so much like myself as a teenage girl.  She stood up to thank her teachers for encouraging her to write her poems.  I talked with her after the meal and promised her that if she shared one with me, one of her favorites, I would post it here. Drum roll please......

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