Monday, September 29, 2014

Permission Granted

Why do girls sometimes have trouble understanding their worth?  Why do girls sometimes attach their worth to their physical appearance?  Why do girls worry about being fat?  Why do girls sometimes hide their smartness?

How many girls struggle with eating disorders?  How many girls think they are not good enough?  How many girls would like to be invisible?  How many girls have been hurt by those who should have protected them? How many girls feel unsafe, unprotected, unloved, or uncherished?

How deep are the scars of abuse?  How long does healing take? Can there be healing without safety?

How can we empower girls to be who they were meant to be?  How can we empower girls to take control of their own bodies?  How can we teach healthy self image?  How can we model it?

How can we learn to accept ourselves and others.  How can we help each other to feel comfortable in our own skin?

On October 18, Brandilyn and I will join Haley Hatch Freeman and Lori Nawyn in a celebration of self-worth as they launch their new book From Head to Tummy at the American Fork Library.  We will be signing Some Secrets Hurt and they will be signing From Head to Tummy. Join us from
3:30 to 5:30.  You will be able to buy books there.  There will be treats, door prizes, and other fun stuff.

Isn't it about time that we gave our girls permission to be themselves.

Linda Garner

Saturday, September 20, 2014

If We All Work Together

This is my neighbor Reza.  He died last night.  He has been in a coma for just over a week after choking on some food.  Reza is my friend.  He came to America hoping for freedom and found that life can be harsh.

He wanted to buy a home and because he had no credit a friend offered his credit.  Reza put $10,000 down and faithfully made payments for 15 years. His friend fell on hard times and borrowed money against the house and also took out bankruptcy.

Reza has been making payments but the payments have not always been passed along to the bank.  Not lately.  Not for a while.  Reza and his sweet Mehri were not notified in a timely manner, because the house is not in their name.

Mehri has trouble of her own.  She has lost her husband.  She will probably lose her home.  She may lose her voice.  Her vocal chord and her windpipe were damaged in surgery more than a year ago.  She is on oxygen and has trouble breathing.  She needs corrective surgery.  She is afraid.

These dear people need our help. Reza is gone and Mehri is a widow.  Now she must pay for a funeral.

You can help. You can make a donation at Mountain America Credit Union.  The account number is 9919851. You can make a donation over the phone at 801-572-5401.  They will waive the processing fee if you ask. You can also donate in person at any Mountain America.

Give what you can.  Every donation makes a difference.  If we all work together...

Linda Garner

Friday, September 12, 2014

But This is America

I learned earlier this week that our immigrant neighbors are about to lose their home, because the person they trusted with their payments has not been honest with them.

Reza came to America 25 years ago after escaping from prison in Iran.  He was a well-known sportscaster and he said some things that the government did not appreciate.  He was imprisoned and possibly going to be executed.  Somehow he escaped with three bullet holes and made it to safety.

Eventually he came to Utah and began working on getting his wife, Mehri here.  He bought a home in our neighborhood about 15 years ago.  He had no credit.  So a friend agreed to help him out. The house would be in the friend's name and Reza would make the payments to him.

Reza paid $10,000 down and made monthly payments.  About five years ago Reza and Mehri decided to sell the house so they could move to a condo as they could no longer manage the yard. They asked to have the home put in their names so that they could sell.

The friend informed them that he had borrowed against the house, and also taken out bankruptcy. They couldn't have the home put in their name so they stayed and continued making payments.

Now they have discovered that no payments have been made for two years and the house is being foreclosed on.  The bank will not negotiate with them because the house is not in their name.

They are no longer able to work, because of their age and health problems. A grandson lives with them and helps support them.  If he can he will buy the home, but he will need a significant down payment, and only if the bank will negotiate.

Mehri is frightened of the future and Reza is despondant.  "But this is America" he keeps repeating.

Yesterday a donation account  was set up at Mountain America.  The account number is 9919851. Anyone can donate over the phone and if they ask, the bank will waive the processing fee.  The phone number is 801-572-5401.  You can also donate in person at any Mountain America.

There is more.  Last night I saw an ambulance on my street and followed it to Reza's door.  Reza had choked on some food and was not breathing.  His heart had stopped.  He was taken to the hospital and is in a coma.  It doesn't look good.

I am afraid the donation fund may be needed to help pay for a funeral.

There is more.  A year ago Mehri had thyroid surgery.  Her recovery was problematic.  Eventually she discovered that the surgeon had nicked her vocal chord.  Her speech has been altered.  Her breathing has been affected.  She needs corrective surgery, but is frightened of losing her voice entirely.

The surgeon did not take responsibility for his error and in fact hid it from her.

There is more:  Two different lawyers have been hired to help them try to keep their home.  Both have given up without much effort.  A third lawyer is now involved.  They don't know if he will be more effective or not.  I don't know how much money has changed hands.

Could you find it in your heart to make a donation to help Reza and Mehri save their home.  If only Mehri is left she will need help even more to carry on alone.  Her Grandson is going to school and working full time.  He can only do so much.

But this is America.

Linda Garner
Sandy, Ut