To those of you who are still here after my 12-day absence: Welcome and Thank You!
I am still here! I did not give up. I am still fighting to elect the only candidate who can save our country’s sorry butt from its current slide into ruin, an extraordinary candidate who is the most electable: Our Madam President, Hillary Clinton!
Where have I been, anyway? What a long, strange trip it’s been. . . .
I was happily minding my own blogness — actually, I’m not so sure about happily. How many of us were going to do our part to help out with the campaign for just a bit? Raise money, make calls. I’d been a volunteer for over twenty years during Presidential campaigns and have worked at the polls, for the Democratic Party, and even for moveon.org since they started in Berkeley, CA. However, I can’t say that I’ve ever been as obsessed as in this season. Right?
I created Lady Boomer NYC blog after I wrote a letter to friends describing why I was supporting Hillary Clinton for President. In response, I received forwarded emails from longtime New Age, feminist, baby boomer friends demeaning Hillary in the extreme. In early March, a dear friend who was connected to Obama’s campaign told me that Hillary could not mathematically win the democratic nomination. After making about twenty voter calls to Ohio and Texas, and being hung up on and cussed out, I decided that I wasn’t cut out for it. I had no idea how Hillary could withstand it. I certainly had a much different experience calling Ohio for Kerry in 2004 through moveon.
As a published author, writing something motivational, inspirational, or informational was how I thought I could best contribute to the cause. Then look what happened: Hillary Clinton was attacked from all fronts, while her junior opponent was nary examined. We, the incensed lifetime members of the Democratic Party, began to hoot ‘n holler about how her opponents were gaming and defrauding the system with sexism, race-baiting, fear and intimidation. With each primary, we thought we’d be done, yet the attacks, her opponent’s outrageous claims and his abnormal friends kept emerging. We were constantly putting out fires.
The best thing, though, was that we could promote and work for a competent, qualified woman who had plans and programs for every segment of our society, plans that she could recite backwards and forwards, numbers included. The other best thing is that nobody said we had to do it. You could say we were called. How else can normal people have the energy to work tirelessly ’round the clock? The other best thing was that we began to create community for the sake of a cause. Yes, the second sixties-era for me. Nobody had to tell me to do it — I couldn’t do otherwise.
After the primaries, many blogs, websites, forums, organizations, artists, and individuals coalesced into PUMAs and the Just Say No Deal coalition. V, an online creative friend, said he felt the coalition’s voice needed to get bigger in the world and asked very nicely for my help in starting a radio station at No Quarter. I’d mentioned my radio station background, and the thought of new technology was exciting compared to the old radio days of two turntables and a microphone plus remote on-site broadcasts.
V, and his amazing technical, training expertise, artistic design dream coat, and I became producing partners and collaborators. In three weeks we had created NQR and aired shows, including: Larry Johnson’s “Security Corner” with guests Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame Wilson, “Morning Q” with Betty Jean and Pagan, “Reading Rezko” with Susan UnPC and Truthteller, “Meet Me in Denver” with Murphy and Friends, Bud White with guest Bob Shrum, DC Media Girl, Nocturnal Warrior, and more. After getting things going on the creative, logistical and training fronts, V and I left NQR to pursue other projects. I’m honored to have been part of that effort with him and NQR, and that the coalition’s voice is being broadcast on a larger scale going forward.
During our radio project, I was crazy busy and my blog suffered — I had no capacity to maintain my former writing output. However, during that time, I was still typing up a storm as I had for months in station emails, correspondences and documents, writing blog posts, reading blogs and news for research, plus personal and professional writing and correspondence. Basically, I’d been on my laptop for an entire year, from 10-18 hours per day, beginning when I began revising my 118-page book proposal in June 2007. Whole days passed into night, Summer into Fall, Fall into Winter. In Winter, as a recently transplanted Cali girl in NY, I could justify staying inside like David Mamet and never open the shades. But then, in our fervor to elect Hillary, Winter ’08 turned into Spring, then Summer, and we’re almost at Fall. Like many of us, I work for myself and abandoned it to work on behalf of Hillary’s campaign. How important it was to get her elected and make sure justice was done!
During my last week at NQR, several tumor-like nodules mysteriously appeared in my right palm — overnight! And believe me, I pay attention to my body. Well, of course, I walk my talk, or try to. However, the writing habits I just mentioned would belie that statement! In fact, I was so far into it, that when one of my daughters visited, she said, “What happened to you?” My body was all curled up and I didn’t even know it! As a body-mind practitioner, healer, and author, to say that I was freaked out about my hand condition would be an understatement. I’ve also played piano, guitar, and done painting and drawing my entire life, plus am a gardener. As one of the 37 million uninsured, or is that 47 million, I began to explore my options. Ahhh, what’s 10 million here or there among the uninsured?
Working in complementary health, I have lots of colleagues with whom I consult. I checked with my friend who’s a Physician Assistant and likes to look up weird stuff; when she hit on Dupuytren’s Contracture, the bells of my symptoms went off. Overnight, my palm had grown lumps with adhesions over them, and the texture of my skin changed, growing calloused and swollen, with a red spot that looked like a photo of same. Turns out, it’s hereditary, my mom has it, along with other complications she tells me. In advanced stages, your hand can curl up. My suspicions of its seemingly rapid onset centered on having used a trackpad consistently for several years, especially during this intensive writing. Who knows, it could be tendons or cartilage, but like cysts I’ve had, they and my palm get bigger and smaller throughout the cycles of the day and with usage, sometimes it’s painful or uncomfy, but nothing intolerable. I’m just protecting it from further damage.
In case you’re about to offer a suggestion, I’ve tried various things, including: icing, heat, anti-inflammatories, acupuncture and Chinese herbs, Chinese chi-gung balls, typing only with my left hand (extremely frustrating for a 65 wpm typist), not typing, myofascial release on hand, arm, shoulders, back, favoring left hand in daily activities. I’ve consulted with a doc friend and an Occupational Therapist who gave me pointers on gentle management and acceptance. I could see a $500 specialist, plus xrays, who might give me a cortisone shot, suggest surgery, or say there’s nothing I can do. There’s an experimental needle procedure developed in France. So far, the self-deep tissue work, icing, and not using it have worked best. As you can tell, I go low-tech first. More than you’ve ever wanted to know, right?
All in all, I’d say that the Universe dropped a love bomb on me, as riverdaughter calls it. Love my body, my hands, make wise use of them, rest, develop/bring forth other parts of my life and work in areas of proficiency that I haven’t emphasized. In my intention, I’m morphing the emphasis of what has been a major part of my identity. One thing I find interesting is the change in my logical left brain, right hand hookup: it seems to be on mute. Yes, I can still compute day to day activities, and my list-making is alive and well. I’m just more likely to let things go by, or not care about using initial caps. I don’t care about every single outrageous breaking news story, although I still track many of them. You could say my perfectionism volume is turned down a bit.
Thank you for reading this far. You know I’ve always been honest, so have laid it all out for you. My new commitment is to begin writing here again, but in less quantity. I have about 100 unpublished drafts from before and would like to bring forth a few of those ideas. I have to be more picky about my hand usage and be more selective about what I write, instead of trying to cover it all! Although I hate to not post every single thing about our movement and the news, I’ll have to leave that to the other fabulous bloggers. I’ll leave you to read most calls to action and announcements on the other fantastic Just Say No Deal and Puma coalition blogs.
Lastly, I’ll leave you with this: I went to the Puma Conference in DC, helped a bit in the planning, and did a presentation about “Communication and Reaction: Embodying Community.” I met and jammed with so many dedicated and energized PUMAs whom I’ve met online or talked with on the phone. We were privileged to work, plan, and share ideas together about the short-term and long-term goals of our movement and the Democratic Party. I am in this for the long term. I am in this for exposing the injustices in this campaign, and more importantly for reforming the election system.
I uphold the vision of our coalition to nominate and elect our champion, the only Democratic candidate who can win the general election and navigate our country on its rightful course: Hillary Clinton, our Madam President!
Through our journey, and working together, we’ve formed alliances, and learned our strengths. Our friends, families, colleagues, and neighbors can’t understand why we keep on. Sometimes we can have those conversations, other times we just have to shut up. Many dear ones and partners in the struggle have fallen away or say they will if we don’t quit. Yet we keep going, giving our very best to the principles and underpinnings that form the heart and soul of the laws of this country.
[Bob Marley – No Woman, No Cry]
I remember when we used to sit in the government yard in Trenchtown,
Observing the hypocrites as they would mingle with the good people we’d meet.
Good friends we have, oh good friends we’ve lost along the way,
In this great future, you can’t forget your past, so dry your tears, I say.
No woman, no cry.
Everything’s going to be alright.
So, no woman, no cry.