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Reflections: How it all Began….For Those Who Were Part of It, A H/T to those Past & Present, It Ain’t Over

April 8, 2009

It’s funny how sometimes people get so side tracked they forget what it’s all about, or the things they are fighting for or on behalf of.  Or better yet the belief that some things can be sacrificed for the *fight*.  However, it is one of the so called “myths” that are  very untrue, but easy to make.  This is the post I made on 6 June 2008, it wasn’t the original post but it was one that I recalled fondly and wrote about when asked why I even cared or would I still keep pushing forward now that Clinton *lost*.  Well apparently as we can see I am still here, and as we all see, she may have lost the battle, but she won the war. As can be seen as Secretary of State thank you very much.

I remember it like it was yesterday too this day. I was so excited about having the opportunity to go and hear her speak. And when I think of that time, I have to give a hat tip to Taylor over on Taylor for giving me the opportunity to have the first chance to have a platform for  my voice to be heard. I can honestly say that many times I have had regret over the remarks and word I have made because so many do not realize they are writing certain things off bad information.  When it is all said and done, when what lies in the dark comes to light.  The worst part will be the friendships and working relationships lost, the divide, hostility and anger, all fostered and bought forward and used as a tool for ill gotten gains.  The deceit will be what brings us to our knee’s but it will be our overall love of our country and the people despite color, gender, nationality, or demagraphics and party affiliation, will be what makes us stand up.  We are not just a nation of laws.  We are a nation that knows how to get back up when it seems as if all the chips are down and we are down for the count.

We didn’t make it here where we are by chance. We got here by the will and determination of others.  That is why even on my worst of days, I keep pushing forward. Despite how I may feel. I don’t blog about the pain, or being tired or any of the medical issues I may have.  Not the muscle pain or weakness in my arms or legs, because I know there is someone out there that has been to the same wars I have that lost there arm, who have no leg or legs and can’t walk.  I don’t go into being tired from the medicine and the days I don’t feel like getting up. Because I know there are those who out there that will never get back up because they have lost there life.  For every issue I may have, there is someone out there who has it worse.  So I take it one day at a  time, and do what I can, when I can, and hope it is enough.  Which brings me to my old blog post that still strikes a chord until this day.

I only wish that I still had the video or that people could hear what I heard that day as I listened to the stump speech here in Fayetteville, the “Solutions for the Military” speech given by Secretary of State Clinton.  I think after that day, it truly sealed my support of her in all her future endeavors.  But at the time, I naively believed something and got a lesson in politics that ended the day I watched her answer her parties call for “party unity” and conceded the race. I will never forget that and will not.  Because what they failed to understand was that it was not what any “political party wanted” it should of been what this country needed, to include ALL of us no matter who we are, what party we belonged to or what color or gender we may be. And hell yes, we will remember.  Oh you better believe it.  Just like a crook we were ALL robbed and cheated. Keep your change now, who needs nickles and dimes? The payoff comes in 2010 & 2012. Old Debts and alliances will be repaid, the enemy of my enemy is my friend will no longer apply and we can part company or some will go a separate path but you better believe retribution will be given. That is the only way to go back to what we once were.

Because look at us.  We used to be divided by simple things. A little healthy arguing on the issues, political posturing a debate here and now on military or defense issues but never did we forget what was important, a united front.   Now we can read and hear people talk any and everwhere on how we are divided daily by race, social programs, how much we make, what party you belong to, where you live, where you work…it’s as if the things that made us what we were and who we are and what we once were, no longer exist. The American Dream used to be something to achieve, now it’s something people abhor. Personal wealth is seen as something to discourage and not something to achieve.  We rather give a hand out instead of a help up to continue to have those come back for more instead of the tools and resources to get it on your own.  We now create and incite anger to justify to take from one to give to another when if you look at the situation, it appears to be the ultimate goal.

We went from being a nation of people with courage to stand up to a nation with cowards ran by a nation of fools.

So for me, I will reflect today, on how it began for me with my very first glimpse of the person who I thought would be the next Commander in Chief, who just happened to be a woman by the way………….Who showed me that some things ARE worth fighting for to the very end.

When I arrived at Methodist College to hear Senator Clinton speak in Fayetteville, NC. I was so excited because her “Solutions for the Military”, was one of the most detailed plan down to the last detail. She had all her military generals on stage and it sent one big powerful message. I was just a Clinton supporter. When I walked out those doors, I became a Clinton supporter for not only myself, but others as well. She delivered a speech on solutions for the military that was a in depth speech far more advanced than anything we have now.

As I listened to her speak, it astounded me the amount of knowledge and information on her issues she intends to implement once in office. Truthfully, it was unlike anything I ever heard, and I knew at that moment she was capable, more than capable, to be ready on day one. Because in my eyes, she was already there. From stop loss, a tool used to stabilize soldier’s from movement, ie changing duty stations or actually leaving the military service, to health care, to raising the GI Bill, Senator Clinton oulined the plan for her future fighting force in explicit detail.

I attended the event on my own, but was seated next two woman that traveled from Ohio to hear the speech. One of the ladies husband was stationed here, which she told me after the event, however when her husband deployed she went back home to be closer to her family.

There was nothing overly significant that made me pay attention to her other than the fact we were both video taping the speech. I recorded video as well as audio because I intended to blog about it once I went home. But what I did notice was tears running down her face when Senator Clinton spoke on redeploying the troops and ending stop loss. The basic function of stop loss is to ensure the units or battalion maintain a certain ratio of soldiers, whether by MOS or as a whole.

Luckily now, it only lasts as long as your tour in Iraq, because before they would extend you out to dates like 2020. The date would be so far away and broad, you still end up with a sickning feeling because the date was so unrealistic. But it served its purpose in ensuring you would be unable to get out, until they were finished with you.

But what opened my eyes, during that speech, and stopped me in my tracks, what made me realize that I need to be thankful for everything I have. Is when Senator Clinton began to take questions from the audience. I was able to move up all the way to the front, close enough to the stage to see Senator Clinton up close and personal. I was estatic, and so happy I couldnt contain myself literally. Until a girl around thirteen stood up and asked Senator Clinton about Cancer research because her mother was dying from papillary thyroid cancer.

I dont know who had the most stunned expression. Me or Senator Clinton. She asked her if they had insurance and she said no. The reason it shocked me is because I had the same problem. It required a thyroidectomy to follow with synthroid for the rest of my life to replace the thyroids function. So to die from having papillary thyroid cancer because you cant afford to get treated seems so unfair in my opinion.

I thought about how depressed I was when I was going through everything. But I have health insurance. My thyroid levels are still unstable and they sometimes have changed my medication twice in a month to up my dosage of synthroid. But I always had the medication needed. This bothered me on so many levels until I had to excuse myself, to just walk away to the back because it hit me hard to listen to something such as this and be unable to do anything about it.

How in the world Senator Clinton listens to these stories are beyond me. My heart was unable to bare that one girls story, but she has been listening to the stories of people without health care for years. How do you manage to hold up listening to people do without something that with surgery and medication would cure?

It made me realize I take for granted what I have because there are so many that DONT have. I know how it feels to lose a parent at a young age. My mother died the day after my seventh birthday and it took me years before I could ever begin to grieve. And twenty two years later, I still havent finished. But to listen to a child come to listen to a candidates speech, no older than 13, when she should be worrying about what the average 13 year old thinks and doing what the average 13 year old should do. However, she was there at Methodist College, asking a question, about health care, for her mother.

When 13 year olds begin to inquire about health coverage, for a loved one, we need to know at that exact moment, that we are in dire straights indeed. For one crazy moment, I felt like leaving, getting into my car, going back on post, getting my medicine, turning around and going back and giving it to that girl for her mother. Listening, just listening to it bought all types of emotions and memories forward from another time, and another place.

What I realized is that, it doesnt matter what you do. But do something, anything, to prevent things such as this. Look outside of the box and think of the people who you may not know about, but are there all the same. Despite what you may think, even the little things count. I used to let it bother me that I couldnt contribute money to Senator Clintons campaign. Until I realized that there were things I could do with the right amount of creativity, and a heavy dose of strong will. No matter if I can make one phone call or two, I try to do something. Not for Senator Clinton, but for the people who her message of change affects.

Dont let money hold you back or whether or not someone will talk down to you or about you. Because I am not voting on Senator Clinton. I am voting on change for our country. It is so much more deeper than just voting. It goes past skin color. It has nothing to do with demographics. Or where you work, or if you work at all. Its about lives. Reality. Its about not allowing things to be put into your path to slow you down, but walking around it to keep on going. Do what you can. Do what you will. But by god do something because the American people need change.

To have to watch a loved ones slow death, based on lack of medicine and medical insurance would push anyone to doing anything.When I think of the millions people give away or the ones that think dollar signs are the bottom line, I think about the people we have in our country struggling to survive, to have there voices heard, who are unable to afford the basics.

That girl will walk in my shoes when her mother dies. And it is something that makes me feel as if a part of me is missing every single day 22 years later. A common illness that has high mortality rates just became deadly because a person cannot afford to recieve treatment.

We get so wrapped up sometimes in ourselves, we never tend to think there is someone else out there who situation is much worse. I left Methodist College with a entire different outlook on life. This election is not about what Senator Clinton needs or Senator Obama or Senator Mccain need. Its about the needs of the American people. It’s about the needs of little boys and girls not losing a parent to something such as this when there is help out there. There have been plenty of days and nights I have railed against God in my mind to give me my mother back when she died. To tell him that I needed her more than he did. No, of course he didnt give her back, but he did send someone in her place.

Why should any child, brother, sister, daughter, mother or father in this day and age be taken away from this world based on something everyone should have? These arent one time circumstances. It’s life and reality. When my mother passed away and me and my two brothers moved to the south from New York. I always wondered why they were so bitter, so unaccepting of our circumstances, and unable to get along with our family in south. I adjusted and they didnt. For almost two years.

But then I found out why when I was twenty three years old. When we lived in Hunington New York, my mother went to the hospital two weeks before the birthday party I had when I was seven. She went in complaining of chest pains and she was released from the hospital. No tests, no nothing, just released. My brothers explained to me that she went back again to the ER four days prior to my party and they did the same. Four days later I had my birthday party, I had just turned seven. It was a ritual for me to get up every morning to get up and go into her bedroom and get into the bed with my mom.

The next day, just like any other, I did the same thing. But this time it was locked. Her door had a vent at the bottom and I remember sitting down and trying to peak through the vent, calling her name. I left, went back and got into my own bed and went back to sleep. The next time I woke up, there were strangers in my house. My mother was dead. She was fourty two and died from a stroke in her sleep.

The reason why my brothers had a hard time adjusting. The reason why they were constantly rebelling and making it hard to adjust to our new home in the South. Was based on the fact that all three of us was covered, me and my two brothers, but she was not. She made the choice to provide health insurance for us three, but did without when it came to herself. They didnt tell me, the rest of my family knew. Because they wanted to prevent me from feeling what they did. Although I was upset about it, later I understood because they were right. And its hard still to think about to this day.

During there adjustment phase after we moved. They used to constantly pick on me, telling me how spoiled I was because as the only girl I always wanted my own way, and of course my mother obliged. I took the whole “little princess” title above and beyond. I threw a fit to have that party at seven, “title courtesy of my brothers constant reminding”.

When I arrived on Fort Bragg ten years ago, that year was the first time I actually celebrated my birthday. Because after years of listening to them when I was younger, I actually began to think that maybe it was my fault because I was so spoiled. I knew better as I got older but during that time, those were my thoughts.

There are days when I think of the moments where I wish my mother could be with me. And then I get angry because no one, no one should have to make the decison like the one my mother made. I know that women will do anything for there children. But having health insurance should not be one of the options. It took me two days to write about this after Senator Clintons speech. Because everytime I attempted to start, I would stop because I keep seeing that girl standing there asking that question.

And then I start thinking that I could of had my mother with me if she didnt have to make the choice between me and my two brothers having health insurance versus herself. We as a whole, should not have to loose our mothers or anyone based on something everyone deserves and everyone should have.

But this isnt one of those isolated instances. There are probably MILLIONS who make this same choice for there children. The woman at the grocery store, the woman behind the counter, the one you pass by on the street. There isnt a certain look or feel that tells you they dont have health insurance. The only way to find out, is the hard way, when they are denied doctors care or turned away from the ER. But how can we look at ourselves as being the lucky ones, when we have the ability to lose what we care about the most based on something everyone in this country should have.

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