Tag Archives: unemployment

2020: the year of my disgust

Disgust

From the government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and the virus itself to George Floyd’s death and the ongoing Black Lives Matter movement to the country’s rising unemployment/wealth disparity to the lack of concern for global climate change – and everything in between and beyond – 2020 has revealed the role that Disgust plays in my life.

My family was recently discussing Pixar’s “Inside Out” and who exemplified each character emotion the best.

When the discussion got around to me, my husband and 19-year-old daughter, in unison, said Disgust.

What?! Disgust?! My response was apparently even in character.

The first time I watched the movie, I loved Joy. Who doesn’t want to be her? It’s joy, after all! Happiness, delight, well-being, success, good fortune.

I worked for a community newspaper for over 13 years and wrote an occasional column which I titled “That they might have joy.”

I so wanted to be Joy. I always have. That’s the goal in this life, right? Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?

But Disgust? No way! I think I’ve been ashamed of my disgust, or parts of it, for much of my life. Or what I thought it meant. But in the weeks since our family discussion, I have begun to embrace my inner Disgust.

Disgust

In the beginning of the movie, Joy introduces us to the Disgust character: “She basically keeps Riley from being poisoned, physically and socially.”

That sounds like a pretty good thing.

When her parents try to get her to eat broccoli, Disgust heroically sweeps in and knocks the green veggies away.

“I just saved our lives,” she says. “You’re welcome.”

In describing the character, Jill Koss (MS, CCLS at Cook Children’s Health Care System in Fort Worth, TX) writes: “Disgust is impatient, sassy and sarcastic; but she is also honest, well-meaning, caring and protective.” (‘That’s disgusting!’ What ‘Inside Out’ teaches us about disgust, 7/16/15, checkupnewsroom.com/thats-disgusting-what-inside-out-teaches-us–aboutdisgust/).

I love that. I am impatient, sassy and sarcastic. But I’m also honest, well-meaning, caring and protective.

I care. A lot. And because I care so much, in a world that seems to be increasingly troubled, I’m disgusted a lot.

Koss continues: “Disgust in the role of acceptable social behaviors has the potential to be very important. If we teach our children there are certain values that are important, and morals to follow, they have the potential to be offended (disgusted) when behaviors opposite to their values are displayed.”

Research by University of Kent psychologists in 2016 has shown that expressing disgust can be motivated by moral concerns.

“Participants themselves were more likely to choose to express disgust when their goal was to show that their condemnation of an act was morally motivated… The findings suggest that disgust is not just an expression of an inner feeling, like nausea or contamination, but a signal that advertises a moral position.” (Disgust is way of communicating moral rather than self-interested motivation – sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/12/161219133831.htm)

What are some of these issues that I have been “disgusted” about in 2020? There are plenty. Racism, the criminal justice system, the death penalty, LGBTQ+ rights, global climate change, poverty and disproportion of wealth, homelessness, refugees and immigrants, growing unemployment, government leaders, healthcare disparities, mental illness, gender inequality.

It’s not enough to just be disgusted, though. We need to figure out ways to use it to create change. The COVID-19 pandemic has people questioning how we get back to normal. Some have suggested, however, that instead of going back to normal we should move forward to something better. I agree. With so many issues to be disgusted about, let’s work for a better way.

In Inside Out, Disgust incites Anger to help accomplish her purpose – she fuels his anger with her words until he bursts into flames and breaks open the window to save Joy and Sadness.

Disgust

Instead of avoiding or denying or being ashamed of our disgust, let’s embrace and channel it through “honest, well-meaning, caring and protective ways” in an effort to help our communities move forward to something better and ultimately to help save lives.

Then we can all sit back, sassy and sarcastically, and say, “You’re welcome.”

 

 


Life after Energizer…

Life after Energizer keeps on going and going and going: Bow Wow Barber offers mobile pet grooming

By Jacki Wood

 

Editor’s note: this is the first in a series about former Energizer employees who have become entrepreneurs since the plant’s closing.

Jennifer Lynch pulls her forest green mini bus right up to the front door and hops out ready to groom Bella, a cute Maltese.

Normally timid around others, Bella gave her new groomer a few kisses after her trim.

It’s a familiar scene happening all over Northwest Missouri and Southwest Iowa, from Maryville to Skidmore and Bedford to Bethany. Dogs and cats getting trimmed, bathed, pampered and pedicured. All at the convenience of the pet owner. And all right outside their front door.

And soon, that forest green mini bus will be replaced with a custom-built trailer for Lynch’s new business, Bow Wow Barber mobile pet grooming.

***

When Energizer made the announcement in November 2012 that it would be closing the Maryville plant, nearly 300 employees faced uncertainty.

“At first, the announcement was very unsettling and left a lot of what ifs, what now, what am I going to do questions in all of our minds,” Lynch said, who resides in Maryville and has been a resident of the area her entire life. “But I couldn’t let all that bother me.”

Lynch, 35, and the mother of two children, had worked at Energizer since March 2000.

She tossed around several ideas about what to do. The self-described animal lover had been grooming her own dogs for several years, so going in that direction just made sense.

In December of last year, she decided to attend Petropolis, an International Society of Canine Cosmetologists accredited school in St. Louis. She was trained by master groomers and has the option of becoming a master groomer herself.

“I just looked at the situation as a way to finally get a chance to do something I wanted to do and not what I had to do,” she said, “to do something that I truly enjoy.”

Through her schooling at Petropolis, she became a certified pet groomer and opened Bow Wow Barber in April of this year.

***

The mobile business offers a full grooming service including baths, nails and haircuts on all sizes of dogs and cats.

“I did a lot of research when making the decision to go mobile with my grooming,” she said. “(I wanted) to be different than others and to cater to people and their busy lifestyles.”

Some of the advantages of being mobile, Lynch said, include pets not having to wait in cages before and after grooming, less stress for pets visiting a loud shop with other animals and more convenient for owners without having to drop off and pick up their pets.

“I provide a service unlike other groomers in this area and the results have been fantastic,” she said. “I enjoy everything about my decision to start up my own business.

“Since the plant closed, my whole life has changed – for the better.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 660.541.0621 or visit Facebook.com/BowWowBarber2014.


How are you feeling?” – Ugh!

I get tired of people asking me if I “feel better.” Or even how I’m “feeling.”

People don’t really want an honest answer to that. And most people don’t give an honest answer.

Fine. Ok. Good.

Those generally aren’t very honest.

I love it when people say, “It’s good to see you.”

There are a couple of ladies at church who know about my health struggles and that’s what they say when they see me. Then I don’t have to address it. And, you know, it always feels good to be seen.

Whether you’re having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day like Alexander … or you’re actually feeling really great and invincible, it’s always nice to know that people are happy to see you.

Fibromyalgia can be a fickle thing. I can feel fine for a few days, get a lot done, feel invincible. And then, bam, I’m down for the count.

I guess I don’t mind so much when people ask “How’s it going?” That doesn’t have to have an answer that relates to how I’m feeling. I can talk about work or the kids or whatever and not have to bring up my health.

It’s difficult for most of us to know what to say to people when they’re going through something, an illness, a trial, a time of difficulty.

How are you comforted, especially when there’s nothing you can do for someone?

I like a simple “hang in there.” It lets me know they’re thinking of me.

So whatever it is you’re going through … fibromyalgia like me or MS or dealing with a parent with dementia or a daughter with autism or a recent job loss … hang in there.

And remember this from Psalm 30:5 – “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” I don’t know when that morning will come, but I do BELIEVE that it will come.