Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Days between

I asked a friend to write in the “about me” section of my blog a few weeks ago. I am sure most of us can agree it is hard to write about oneself. Yes, there are the constant Facebook status updates and twitter feeds, but that isn't really about anything, any solid thing. I do give credit to Facebook, however, for reminding me in the last few weeks of my voice, the voice that I have stifled with each passing year for various reasons and life circumstances. Recently, when the Susan Komen for the Cure foundation pulled its funding to Planned Parenthood, it set me off. I raised my voice, even if was only getting my point across to a small circle of friends. Usually, I keep my radical thoughts to myself, and leave my activist side restrained. I have also shaved off my self-righteous edge. My ultimate goal is to live by example, rather than telling people how I think they should live. I have fine-tuned this approach through my son. He is a devout vegetarian. He is an animal lover, a musician, and a child that is so unbelievably strong in his ten year-old convictions. He shows more empathy for someone of his young age than I thought possible. Yet I remind him to avoid being self-righteous. One loses credibility.   
These recent thoughts and concerns have intensified my feelings to do more, for others and for myself. 
  What is my blog about? Several friends have posed this question to me, and frankly, I do not have a simple answer. It is about my life, as it unravels, in no particular order, of stories of desperation, redemption, horror, as well as of grace. My young life ravaged by the real world, the hard world of drugs. A life of being trapped and indentured by coke lords, junkies and prostitutes. My present life as a waitress and single mother for 30-plus years, at diners and truck stops. The insanity and community of my current employment. It is about my struggles with food, with anorexia, body dysmorphia and self-destruction. These struggles are part of my life; then, as well as today. It is about my story of my health problems, how I overcome them, live with them, embrace them and most importantly, how I am my own advocate-in all that I do. Stories of family, of making choices, hard choices for my child, positive choices in the face of a constant volatility of a mentally-ill parent, an onslaught of denial, including my own. Stories of poverty, homelessness and other adversities so challenging, then and every day. Stories of pushing myself in a healthier way.  Running, swimming, cycling, endurance, challenges. Endurance I take from my last 39 years and put it in the right place. Finding peace through my voice, community, my son, and hard work, both physical and mental. 
  We all have struggles in life that we have overcome or succumbed to. How is my struggle different?  My story, blog, life is about not being broken, and not allowing myself to give up. I share my strength, my weaknesses, my insecurities, my addictions. I share them as inspiration, as motivation, as entertainment...
As life as I know it.

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