That Time I Met The President Of The United States

There are moments in life that you know you will never forget.

As they are happening, you find yourself really aware that you are living something that will (most likely) never happen again.

The once in a lifetime opportunities.

On Wednesday, April 15th, 2015, I found myself experiencing one of those “please don’t wake up and have this all have been a dream” moments thanks to Blog Her and She Knows Media.

This is the story of that time I met The President of the United States.

The day itself started off like any other, in that I rose before the sun and got ready for work. I will admit to spending a bit more time than usual on my hair, as I hoped that with enough mousse and curling iron action I would be able to distract The President from my multiplying by the second gray roots. There was, however, no hope of hiding my Bert from Sesame Street eyebrows, so I took that as a reminder from the universe that I should stop ignoring eyebrow care from here on out.

After spending the morning at my office, where I took a brief break from working to be interviewed for the news…yep, it was every bit as crazy as you would imagine, I headed off to the Obama Town Hall.

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My ticket

We all gathered in the library where the event was being held for about an hour and a half before President Obama arrived. It was the perfect amount of time to enjoy all of the music playing that instantly took me back to the campaign days of 2008. Think Signed, Sealed, Delivered and City of Blinding Lights, and you get the idea. I visited with other bloggers around me (Hi Jen, Towanda and Nichole!) and tried really hard not to cry.

See, I knew as I sat there in that space that there was no one, NO ONE, who would have loved this experience for me more than my mom. It is because of my mother that I am passionate about politics, as I accompanied her to vote for the first time when I was just 2 months old and never missed an election day with her until I went to college (and even then we would stay up late talking on the phone as we watched the election results come in). My mother absolutely loved political discussions, and she loved Barack Obama. I could pratically hear her as I sat there waiting telling me that when it was all over I better remember every minute because she would want to know every single detail, and she would absolutely mean EVERY.SINGLE.DETAIL.

And then I kind of had a peaceful calm come over me as the straining notes of another round of City of Blinding Lights began where I could almost just feel her there, reminding me that I had this. That imaginary tap on the shoulder to say “enjoy every second and use this opportunity to make your daughters proud of you”.

Soon after, there was an announcement that we needed to silence our cell phones and prepare for the program to begin.

And just like that, The President of the United States walked in, inches away from me.

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 Well, hello, there Mr. President!

The President spoke to all of us, completely candidly, without notes or a teleprompter for a little over an hour. It was quite obvious sitting there listening to him that he, like those of us in the room, feels passionately about women being paid the same as men for equal work. He has a personal stake in this cause, as he himself has daughters. I was extremely impressed both with his knowledge base and his ability to connect with our audience.

And the issues being discussed, especially those related to equal pay for equal work? Those issues aren’t political. They have nothing to do with being a Republican or a Democrat. They are about being just and being fair.

At the end of the event, there was time for one more question, and y’all, that question went to me.

I got a chance to ask The President of the United States the question I had prepared:

As the mother of two daughters, how do you suggest I best empower them if they will be paid less than a male counterpart with the same skill set and the same background?

This is what The President said to me:

“You’ve got to remind your daughters that things are not perfectly fair, but people who work hard can make it fair…The way things get better is by that next generation taking ownership and being inspired…We want them to feel like the world is wide open to you, you can remake this thing, ultimately at some point you guys are going to be in charge. And so we want to not send a message to them that somehow they’re limited. We want to tell them what I tell Melia and Sasha, there’s nothing you can’t do.”

And with that, the event was over. The President headed over to me first (probably because he had just finished answering my question) and shook my hand. I thanked him for coming and for the honor of getting a chance to speak with him. He told me to keep working hard as a nurse and that The White House loves nurses.

I stayed after it was over for a little while doing a few interviews, chatting with bloggers and thanking Lisa Stone for being an amazing moderator.

My only regret of the day (besides the lack of eyebrow waxing) was not somehow managing to tell The President that for the first 5 years of her life Abby called him “Barack Omama”, as I think he would have enjoyed that little anecdote.

It is honestly hard still as I sit here writing this to put into words what this experience meant to me, as a mom, as a woman and as an American.

I will say simply that I am forever grateful and beyond humbled to have been given this truly once in a lifetime opportunity.

Clt Blogger Ashley Taylor discusses Equal Pay for Women w/ ObamaAshley, you are amazing! What a great story. Proud to be represented by a woman like you!

Posted by Vicki Vogt-Smith on Wednesday, April 15, 2015

The Dose Girls Interrupt This Broadcast…

DOSE PEEPS!

It is us, for real, on your screens!

Gosh, we miss y’all! Seriously, guys, we really, really do.

It is definitely not you. It is us. Since we last posted to say we weren’t really posting, we have been trying each and every day to get back here to say hi, but stupid life keeps getting in our way!

This week brought that opportunity in a MAJOR way, and we had to share it with our favorite people…we tried our kids, but they were all, blah, blah, blah, dinner, where are my shoes, help me with my homework. We knew that the only people who would really appreciate it would be you guys!

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So, okay, here is the deal. As women and mothers of daughters, we take very seriously the fact that there is pay inequality in this country. Knowing that Ashley recently returned to the health care workforce and quickly found out that even in that female dominated industry, male nurses are still paid more brings the issue extra close to home. Something has to change, right?

Today we have been invited to use our voices to help effect change for working women everywhere. Unfortunately, due to a bum ankle and the lack of availability of a Rascal electric scooter, Lisa has to miss out on the fun (and a total double whammy is that it is also her birthday!!), but Ashley will try her best to bring full Dose Girl enthusiasm!

Thanks to BlogHer, Ashley is attending the Town Hall Meeting with President Barack Obama in Charlotte, NC this afternoon!

It is okay if you need to take a minute to process this.

After all, the closest we have ever gotten to an important person with celebrity status is that time that Arie let us email him some interview questions.

But, here we are.

This is a link that will give you all the scoop on what is happening and also let you watch online if you choose. Ashley promises not to embarrass herself too much, although she does not rule out asking President Obama to lead the crowd in a rousing rendition of “Happy Birthday” to Lisa in her absence.

http://www.blogher.com/what-question-would-you-ask-president-obama-about-your-paycheck-your-job-andor-your-future

Here is the question we have for President Obama today: As mothers of daughters, how would he suggest we empower them to study and work hard if they know from the outset that they will be earning less than their male counterparts with the same education and skill set?

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Christmas Is Making Us Crazy!

Christmas is making us crazy over here y’all! Raise your hand if the holiday season is weighing you down…and we don’t just mean because of all the yummy Christmas cookies you have been making thanks to Pinterest!

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It seems like there is just so much stuff to do at this time of year. Between the gift buying and the house decorating, we start out broke and tired. When you throw in school holiday parties and dance recitals, we feel ourselves going over the edge into crazytown. Forget throwing an unexpected illness into the mix, because that is just a recipe for why mommy rocks in the corner crying all day!

So, we had grand plans of blog work all week and part of next week, where we would then treat ourselves to blog holiday break…check out of social media and really just focus on time with our families. We all know how relaxing long school breaks are for moms, right?

But then, well, life happened. And we discovered that if we actually planned to sleep on Christmas Eve and not find ourselves combing the aisles of the local Walgreen’s for Christmas gifts for the whole family (really, though, who can’t use a new comb and some Jujubes), we needed to actually use our very limited remaining free time wisely.

So if you need us, we are knee deep in the dollar bin at Target grabbing all remaining batteries and rolls of tape. Once we finish there, we will be heading over to Justice to relive our 80’s youth and attempt to find our preteen girls a few sweaters in any shade other than day-glo green. Good luck on that front, are we right?!

In the meantime, since we know everyone currently reading this has a to-do list a mile long, we are just going to share a few of our favorite holiday posts from the past couple years in one spot. Read them at your leisure (HA!) or when you need a break from all the holiday visitors (more likely!). We are all in this together. And boy does it take a village, especially during the holidays!

That Time I Accidentally Told My Kids Santa Is A Jackass

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A real lesson in making sure you have your story BEFORE your kids question you!

Dear Santa, Please Make My Kids Smile On Command Just Once

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Kids really just know how to put the cheer in holiday cheer, don’t they?!

The Worst Christmas Display You Will Ever See

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Try explaining that choice of Christmas decorating every day on the way to school!

So, there you have it, folks. Our version of a Christmas season wrap-up. Now, everyone, back to your regularly, scheduled programming, i.e. teacher gifts, grocery shopping trips, and figuring out where you hid that gift you bought last April when it was dirt cheap and your couldn’t pass up the savings!

Happy Holidays Dose Peeps!

We will see you all back here on January, 5th, 2015 right after we send our children back to school and pour ourselves the first cup of actually hot coffee we will have had in 2.5 weeks!