3 Little Life Lessons from My Mom that Can Inspire Us All to Take Action for Safer Chemicals

My mom is an inspirational, strong and adventurous woman who taught me many important life lessons and now shares them, and many adventures, with my daughters

Take a Page Out of My Mom's Book and You Just Might Get Inspired to Take Action for Safer Chemicals

When I was growing up, my mom taught me many of her "little life lessons" that I have used as guiding principals throughout my life.  Three of her little life lessons, in particular, have gotten me through more than one heart-ache, many a finals week, the first three colicky months of my oldest daughter's life, a health scare from an artificial sweetener and in the last few years, they have even helped to push me into action to support the fight for safer chemicals. In fact, I think my mom's 3 little life lessons can inspire us all to take action for safer chemicals. 

You see although many Americans believe that they are being protected from harmful chemicals in consumer products, they are mistaken.  The reality is, the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) of 1976 is not working to protect us from harmful chemicals.  We are living in an era of illness that is not only touching the oldest among us, it is also making the youngest among us sick.  Study after study points to the chemicals in our lives as culprits in the rise of diseases among us.
"The rise in childhood and young adult cancer is simply unacceptable.  Learning and developmental disabilities are on the rise in alarming rates. Some are calling puberty at the age of ten “normal.”" - Lindsay Dahl, Deputy Director Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families
Now is the Time to Stand Up with Concerned Citizens Throughout Our Country and Demand that Congress Pass the Safe Chemicals Act

I am going to Washington D.C. next week with Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families and the "Stroller Brigade" of moms, business owners, nurses and concerned United States citizens to lobby for safer chemicals. And guess what? We want you to come with us!

Event Details:
Who: You!
When: May 22nd, 2012 – 9:30 AM
Where: U.S. Capitol Lawn, Washington D.C.  
Between Constitution Avenue NE and 1st Street NE   Senate side of the East Front Lawn of the Capitol.
Rain location: Capitol Visitors Center, Room 210/212, First Street NE Washington, D.C. 20510. Entrance across the street from the U.S. Supreme Court
What:  Press conference at 10:00 AM, “Stroller Brigade” and meetings with Members of Congress to follow. 
If you can't join us in D.C., don't worry, you can still come with us virtually because I will be Tweeting (#StrollerBrigade), blogging and posting to Facebook while I am there.  Plus, Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families will have opportunities to participate online or at your U.S. Senator’s office in your district.  But listen up because you can get started today on our journey for safer chemicals by taking a page out of my mom's book of life lessons for a little inspiration. 

3 Little Life Lessons from My Mom that Can Inspire Us All to Take Action for Safer Chemicals
Life Lesson #1: When Life Gives You Lemons, Don't Waste Them -  My mother has a hundred and one uses for a lemon.  Seriously.  And I am not just talking about a lemon you buy at the store.  My mother never wasted any lemons - like the lemon that comes in your iced tea, as garnish for your fish at dinner and anywhere else she could find them.  She would wrap them up and bring them home to accomplish great things like freshening up the garbage disposal or softening up her elbows.  I used to think she was crazy but now I see her appreciation of not wasting the power of those little lemons. 
Inspired Take-Away for Safer Chemicals : Consumers just like you and me have the opportunity to use our power to create great change.  We shouldn't waste the chance that Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families is giving us to protect Americans by updating the ineffective Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976.  Join with us and  sign the petition asking Congress to act now and pass the Safe Chemicals Act.   
Life Lesson #2: You Might as Well Ask,  All They Can Do is Say No. - One of my favorite sayings from my mom is "You might as well ask, all they can do is say no." and it has given me the courage to push away my fear of rejection or failure many times and ask for what I want.  When you boil down the worst that can happen into a simple "No", the fear kind of seems silly.  I won't lie, I was nervous the first time I called my Senator's office to ask them to ban aspartame, but I just remembered my mom's simple saying and it easily took away my fear of failure.  I mean seriously, what were they going to say, "No"?  Of course not, I was just logging my opinion to be heard and considered. 
Inspired Take-Away for Safer Chemicals:  Email your Senators today and ask them co-sponsor the Safe Chemicals Act (S.847).  Tell them that when this bill is passed it will increase the safety of chemicals used in consumer products and protect vulnerable populations like pregnant women and children.   We might as well ask, all they can do is say no - and if they do, we will just ask again - until we get Congress to act and pass the Safe Chemicals Act. 
3. How do You Eat an Elephant?  One Bite at a Time. - Growing up, whenever I felt overwhelmed with a project I was working on, my mom would always ask me the same silly question.  "How do you eat an elephant?" she would ask and I would answer, "One bite at a time."  Her silly question always helped me to realize that the easiest way to accomplish seemingly overwhelming, albeit great, things was to break it down into easy to manage steps. Then just take it one step at a time.  Before you know it, you will be celebrating because you have "eaten" the entire project.
Inspired Take-Away for Safer Chemicals:  There is an easy to follow plan that Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families has in place for us to accomplish the seemingly overwhelming goal of eliminating harmful chemicals.  We don't have to do this alone.  Sign up for updates from Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families and you will get plenty of ways to work with us to take action and you can become a part of the celebration when we have taken the steps necessary, together, to pass the Safe Chemicals Act.  

P.S.- Have you heard about The Green PolkaDot Box! Recently launched with over 12,000 members and backed by the Organic Consumer's Association, you can easily buy NonGMO organic groceries, including Harvest Fresh Organic produce, at wholesale pricing online.  It's like a Sam's club but focused on products for green, healthy living!!  You can even shop by dietary restrictions like gluten free, vegan or diabetic and it all comes right to your front door. I love it.

Photo Source: Me, Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families

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"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead