Tuesday, August 15, 2017

23

Today would have been my 23rd wedding anniversary.

On our 8th anniversary, we were in the middle of getting divorced. He had been seeing D for months. He still thought I would be interested in fucking him. Anniversary, old time's sake, who knows. I said no, of course. It didn't happen, but the idea that even thought it might...it still repulses me.

He said, "You didn't really think when we got married it would last forever, did you?"

I wore an ivory sheath dress, knee-length, with a same-length jacket that went with it. I had gotten it on the clearance rack at JCPenney for $15. It was the only white or ivory dress I could find on a few days' notice. I put my hair up in a French twist, with a barrette that had three oval ivory stones. I wore a circle-pin of blue stones that my mother had gotten for her high school graduation.
That morning I had been at jury duty. The case was for a baby who had allegedly been shaken to death. I didn't feel that there was enough evidence provided. I was the lone holdout. I got yelled at a lot in the jury room. They eventually called a hung jury. 

They let us out early that day, so I went to work for a few hours. The apartment we lived in was in walking distance of the courthouse and my job at the bank. After work, I went home and showered and did my hair and makeup and went out in our backyard that we had decorated with a few streamers and got married.

My father had refused to walk me down the aisle. At my reception, none of my family were speaking to me. They didn't approve of our getting married as quickly as we did, and they weren't shy about showing us. The best man gave a toast and said, "To my best friend...and my new worst enemy." 

My aunt baked my cake, and X decorated it. His mom did semi-professional cake decorating on the side, and had taught him a few things. Our whole wedding was less than $100. I don't remember the name of the justice of the peace who was there. We got his name at City Hall when we applied for our license. 

My parents were there, all three grandparents, my sister, my oldest friend Kim, X's best friend, my aunt, and my cousin's daughter (who was 3, I think, and acted as my flower girl). My aunt and my cousin's daughter happened to be up from Florida visiting my grandparents, so they were only there by chance. His mom & her boyfriend were on a trip out of state, and his dad & stepmom lived in Pennsylvania, so he didn't have any family there.

We had moved the furniture around and had some extra chairs that we had sat out on the lawn for the ceremony and brought them inside into the living room for everyone to sit. We were in an awkward circle and people were talking around us but nobody was talking -to- us.  Eventually everyone left. We walked them outside, and then when we came back in, X picked me up and carried me over the threshold, because I had asked him to.

I hadn't told anyone at work that I was getting married until after I did. I hadn't told the girl who was one of my closest friends at the time. Partly because I had dated her brother several months before and partly because she had introduced me to X because they worked together, and she had tried to get him but he wanted me instead, and she had been pissed.

23 years ago today was my wedding day. I married a man I didn't really love but thought maybe I did, because I wanted a family and love and all of the things that a girl my age wanted. I thought it was the best I could do. 

23 years ago today I changed my name. I was 23.

23 has always been one of my lucky numbers. It's a prime. 

Today doesn't feel very lucky. 

Friday, August 11, 2017

Comments to a Libertarian

I'm Facebook friends with someone I went to college with. I was oblivious to politics then (oh, the good old days!), otherwise we would likely not have been friends then. Still, he was and is a good person, even if terribly misguided (lol?). 

We battle a bit about politics. Sometimes I am able to just heave a sigh and move on. Other times I get WAYYYY too "into" it and spend days fuming at the general hard-heartedness of some people, go too deep in my own head and it's not a good thing.

Today he posted a Breitbart (!) article basically slamming Canada's Prime Minister (whom I enjoy very much, not least because he is not difficult on the eyes, but mostly because he's generally awesome) regarding the recent influx of immigrants. I had what I considered to be an interesting exchange, which started with a sassy comment on my part (I know, shocking), but ended with something I'm likely to think about a good deal and want to remember.  

So I actually remembered I had a blog, and figured here is a good place to put it, and maybe someone else will read it and comment, or maybe I'll just find it some time from now and remember what I was thinking about today.  It's by no means the most profound exchange I've ever had, but since I've forgotten most of those, all I can do is go from here. Here we go:

***************

mk: Compassion is such a horrible thing. Screw humanity, every man for himself!

A: Ok, I dont want to work anymore, I am tired my back and neck are killing me and I am often frustrated with high stress. I deserve a roof over my head and 3 meals a day. Don't forget the cell phone for emergencies and access to the internet. In compassion someone should help me. Are you going to pay for it? Do you have a moral obligation to take care of me as a fellow person?

mk: Big difference between "want" and "able". Talk to me when you've got a legit disability and everywhere you turn you hear that you should have worked harder to be able-bodied.

A: Again you take the point to personal. But for those who can work or people here illegally that are on the government subsidizes, with compassion aren't you obligated to pay for them as I used my self as an obscure example, but as usual nice pivot from who should pay for compassion.

mk: No, -my- point is that you are conflating people who choose not to do something versus people who are unable to do something. And yes, I believe that there is a societal obligation to help people who -cannot- do for themselves. I'm full-on okay with my taxes being used for programs to that effect.

I also believe that you -vastly- overestimate the amount of federal funds that directly benefit illegal immigrants. Unauthorized/undocumented immigrants don't qualify for the majority of government assistance programs. Their children, many of whom are legal citizens, might. Most funds and programs that undocumented immigrants are able to utilize are provided at the state and local levels.

A: By many medical standards I could qualify for disability. So there are many, not all, that are able but choose not too. Everyone underestimates personal responsibility, and family responsibility, and local community, local government state government. Rather than assume personal responsibility the world looks for the largest form of government as the first option. While I believe in compassion and I believe in helping out. I also believe Neither are the place for federal government involvement. Government is the rule of law applied equally and blindly. The war on poverty other than spending 10s of trillions of $, only success was making it more comfortable to accept poverty and dependence on Government. It is providing minimal fish at high cost, rather than teaching one to fish and be responsible. Yes there are people who need help but as a society we have taken an upside down view. Heck there used to be a stigma if you took any medicine, and we over compensated that it is abnormal not to have any prescription medication. I am not on board with the left side of politics and their social experimentation. Yes I am combining things and on a rant, but it all ties together by going to the opposite extremes of societal norms and if you don't go along with the social agenda you're the problem. Example now big government is good, personal responsibility is bad for the collective. The exact opposite of how the country was found, I was brought up, and many beliefs of mine and others.

mk: Change is inevitable. Nothing stays as it starts out. Continuing to rail that things aren't the same as they were when they started, is futile. Society, and government, will not move backwards. no matter how much you want it to.

I disagree with your assessment that personal responsibility is considered bad. I think you expect the umbrella of "personal responsibility" to cover everything that you don't want to be "burdened" with. That's not the way the world works. Quick example: farming communities, who work together to bring in the harvest, regardless of who owns the land. They recognize that pooling resources and effort benefits the entirety of the community. When the harvest is over, they go back to their own pursuits. Scream "socialism" if you want, but there are no absolutes on this. There are -parts- of socialism that work, just as there are -parts- of liberalism that work.

The United States of America is, and has been since its creation, a social experiment. It was a new form of government: of, by, and for the people. It is a "living" thing, changing and adapting for its survival. You don't have to like it (and obviously you don't), but you can't stop it.

***************

That's it. Like I said, not the most profound exchange ever, but it's a snapshot of my mind today.

~mk

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

*45 Wants Stories About How "Obamacare" Has Affected American's Lives...

https://www.whitehouse.gov/obamacare-share-your-story
Here's my response:


I am so glad that you are opening this for people to share stories about how Obamacare has affected Americans!!

I have been disabled for the last fifteen years, and as a (divorced) single mother of two with no other income than Social Security, qualifying for Medicare and Medicaid (as MaineCare) has made it so that I don't have to choose between getting the health care and prescriptions I need, or putting food on the table.

Before Obamacare, I was able to see my mental health care professional only a certain number of times, and only after pre-approval and a referral from my primary care physician. For years, I went without proper treatment as my PCP tried to manage my psychiatric medications. As a family physician without any specialized training in the rare mental illness I have, it was barely sufficient and I (and my family) suffered through a lot of problems with my health.

Now, with the mental health parity, I can get the professional care I need to manage my disability, covered in the same way that a physical illness would be.

The way Obamacare has been structured, I have been able to have several surgeries to remove large cysts that had engulfed my ovaries, as well as a surgery to relocate my stomach from having herniated up to being more than halfway into my chest cavity and put back into my abdomen. Without Obamacare, I would not have even been able to afford to go to the doctor for checkups, much less afford the tests needed to diagnose these issues, and the surgeries necessary to save my life.

I would literally not be alive right now if it wasn't for the care I have been able to get under Obamacare. I am terrified that the changes the current administration has in mind are going to make it impossible for me to continue with the current course of treatment I am receiving, which is finally starting to see some positive effect. I am terrified that my prescription drugs will no longer be covered at the level that they are now, and that my twice-weekly sessions will go back to being so strictly regulated that it was barely a way for me to be surviving, much less being able to move forward to better health. I am terrified that repealing and replacing Obamacare means I will have to choose again between taking care of my health or paying my other bills.

The current administration's proposal for healthcare reform will very likely lead to a huge decline in my health, as well as an inability to afford health insurance, which will lead to a further decline in my health. In all honesty, it is not unrealistic to believe that I will die, and that is something I and my doctors are trying to fight.

So, it is my hope that the "American Health Care Act" not be passed, and that the Affordable Care Act be left in place. I STRONGLY believe that the AHCA, or "Trumpcare", will have a negative financial and health impact on a huge percentage of Americans, and that millions will be left without affordable health insurance, and will therefore end up with life-threatening conditions and no way to pay for treatment.

I can't understand how the people who designed and support Trumpcare can be okay with the financial breaks that the upper-middle-class and wealthy will get, at the expense of the lower-middle-class, poor, disabled, and elderly. I can't understand how the supporters of Trumpcare can be okay with making these people more financially destitute, as well as putting their lives at risk. People -will- die if Trumpcare is enacted, and I cannot understand people who are so hard-hearted that they are okay with that, as long as they get more money in their own pockets.


Please save the ACA. My life matters.

~mk

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

What To Do, What To Do...

In the time it's been since I was blogging regularly, so much of my life has changed. Mark's out on his own, Kira's a high school junior, I have a cat, I'm back to my first, best therapist (twice a week), and I've become obsessed with politics.

We'll focus on that last one, because that's the source of the dilemma that led to this post.

The majority of this blog was pretty much just me rambling about various me-centric issues. It was a space for me to put down the things that have happened with me and my kids, some nonesensical ramblings, and just day-to-day things that were pretty much only important to me.

Then the country went insane and we ended up with...well...the current person in the Oval Office.

Now a HUGE part of my life is caught up in trying to deal with my fledgling experiences as someone who cares about politics. For most of my life, I was deliberately politically ignorant. I had a hard enough time dealing with the things that immediately surrounded me, I didn't have the emotional energy (or interest) in moving beyond that scope to things that I really didn't feel I had any possibility of changing. I don't handle the feeling of helplessness well, so why would I deliberately subject myself to that?

Not sure how that exactly changed, but it did, and now I'm all into the political stuff. And I'm liberal (I know, that's so surprising to anyone who has read even a little bit of my stuff). I feel an obligation to speak up and work to try to improve what's going on.

I need to be able to work a lot of this out in my head by writing it down. Gee, like maybe...blogging!

BUT.

This was pretty much a mommy-blog. Do I leave this blog and start another one, or stay here?

There are pros and cons to both. The biggest 'con' is that if I end up getting read (I know, bold thinking, considering the bazillions of other, better, more involved writers out there), I'm afraid that the rest of my blog, my previous years, will get negatively impacted, and I don't want that.

However. Having all this history here is also helpful.

Dunno. Maybe I'll link it. Maybe I'll just start the other blog and if I don't like it, I'll transfer the posts here.

I'll keep you...um...posted. ~mk

Saturday, January 21, 2017

No, It's Not Deja-Vu, It's Plagiarism

Trump and his team are...well, fucked up. One of the more fucked-up things they keep doing is copying Obama. For someone who spent so many YEARS bitching that Obama wasn't a real citizen and therefore wasn't a legitimate President, Trump sure seems to want to be just like him.

* Melania's speech, copying Michelle Obama's speech.
* Trump's first POTUS Twitter header, which was a photo from OBAMA'S inauguration



* Trump's inauguration cake was deliberately commissioned to be an exact duplicate of Obama's...but not by the original cake maker. Also, while the original cake had each layer a different flavor, Trump's was made of styrofoam, except for a 3-inch slice on the bottom (the part he cut with the sword). WTF. And it wasn't mentioned until the original cake designer spoke up.



* A line from Trump's speech echoes that from Bane (Batman villian).



* Trump's joke at the Alfred Smith Dinner was plagiarized from a cartoon on RollCall in July, by RJ Matson. Trump plagiarized a joke about Melania's plagiarism.



So much of Trump seems to fall under the category of "you just cannot make this shit up". It's ridiculous, really. And the biggest question seems to be WHY? This is not coincidental. This is deliberate. And it makes no sense.

Plagiarism in general seems to be a Trump-team thing. His pick for a National Security Council position, Monica Crowley, stepped down because it was revealed that large parts of her published book were plagiarized, as was her PhD DISSERTATION.

Ivanka was sued for copying shoe styles for her brand.

Trump apparently lifted about 20 pages in his Trump University "textbooks" from a 1995 series "Real Estate Mastery System".

His campaign copied voter registration instructions (out of date, at that) from various websites, without giving credit.

He copied a lot of an op-ed he published in Guam News in March 2016 from one written by Ben Carson.

He filed to trademark his slogan "Make America Great Again"...except that was REAGAN'S campaign slogan. Trump still insisted he made it up.

I'd question how the man got elected, but the answer to that is one part Hillary haters and about five parts Russia/GOP collusion.

It will be interesting to see what Trump decides to steal of Obama's next. Again, for people who spent so much time bashing the Obamas, Trump's team seems very eager to -literally- copy them. ~mk

Sunday, January 15, 2017

More Than One Way To Skin a Cat

Since I was a kid, I've been using the phrase: "There are multiple methods to de-fur a feline."

Interestingly, most people just stare blankly at me when I say this.

Yet, "there's more than one way to skin a cat" is immediately understood.

Oh, people.

~mk