Did you all watch the YouTube vid from my parent's mission? That vid has started me thinking of many things I might have taken for granted before:
Medical care. Not just being able to afford a doctor (and also have insurance), but the fact that my doctor's office has all the modern supplies they need to take care of me and my family. That goes for dentists, too. Firstborn had his braces taken off this past week. His teeth are even. Something so routine as dental work now has become precious to me. Then there is The Love Magnet's heart surgery. She had the best care and technology in the nation.
Good health. I can run.
Clean water. I can turn on the tap any time I want. Before my parent's mission I never thought about how precious water is. I don't have to walk miles to get it. I am not limited by how much I can carry. I don't have to worry about it making my family sick. We don't have to shower with our eyes and mouths shut or worry about treating our water before we drink it.
Good schools. Not only do my kids have a good education, but my daughter is accepted in the same schools. We have the resources we need for them all: school supplies in abundance, clothing to wear, textbooks, and even computers in every classroom. I just wish our kids could see how precious that is. My kids have had their attitudes changed when they read their grandparent's blog about the schools that don't have textbooks. First and Secondborn were most shocked when they read about the children who couldn't afford to go to school. I hope they don't take their education for granted now.
Safe streets. Some people might argue with me on this. At least we don't have to carry AK-47s to church. We haven't had civil unrest strike in our own country. My kids know that police and fire departments are here to protect them.
Places to play. We have gorgeous parks. My kids have soccer balls, a football, hockey sticks, tennis rackets, and basketballs. We can afford to put them on soccer teams. My kids can still play in our neighborhood.
A husband who supports our family. I read an article today that really disturbed me. It's titled Africa's Women Last And Least In Food Crisis. To read it click here. In the article it stated how the mothers are suffering the worst in famine. The retired husband of the story receives a pension but the family sees none of it. The wives are sent out to work. What does the husband do all day besides sleep? While the rest of the family shares a few bowls of food (three wives and over 20 children), the husband gets a bowl to himself. I know that I am only seeing this story through the eyes of the reporter, so it is hard to know exactly what is the whole story. This article made me think about Mr. Wonderful and how hard he works to support our family. It was important to him and me that I stay home and take care of the kids. Now it is important to him that I go back to school. I am so grateful for his dedication and unfailing generosity. In 17 years of marriage I have been treated always as an equal partner; never subservient to him. He has constantly recognized my work in this family and has put his family before himself.
A church family who looks out for my family. I know I have expressed this before, but my ward ROCKS! These people are so caring. My family stress-time is now over. My ward family has already gathered around others who need them now. Today it was announced in Relief Society of another family who would need our help for the next 6 weeks. By the time the meal signup sheet passed me it was already full. I will have to contact the Compassionate Service Leader and find out how I can help. (Now I have to say here that the ward my parents attend in the DRC rocks, too. Check out their blogs about their bishop.)
Plentiful and safe food. Yes there have been E-coli scare but that is an exception to the norm. My parents have to treat their produce in chlorine baths before they can prepare it. They have to buy their goods at reputable grocers (usually where the canned goods are imported from Belgium). And,even though food prices are rising here, they are much better than prices in the Congo.
Electricity that stays on. Utilities that are reliable. Roads that are paved (who thought I'd be grateful for summertime road construction?) Libraries.
Generous people who donate time, talents, and/or money to help those less fortunate.
We live in a great country. We've been blessed.