Friday, January 23, 2009

It's Thrilling To Say "President Obama"

Listening to the rah-rah attitude on inauguration day I was filled with an optimism I hadn't felt since before John Lennon died. Wait. Maybe not even then. Maybe that feeling goes all the way back to the optimism of the Kennedy presidency. I was 8 years old in 1963, that magic time before America's optimism was dashed by an assassin. I remember the intense sorrow felt by my parents and teachers, all the tears.

Amazingly, CBS Morning News first reported about Beatlemania on the morning of the day Kennedy was shot. A month after the assasination the Beatles scored their first #1 hit, 'I Want To Hold Your Hand,' and I was one of 74 million people on February 9 who watched the Beatles perform live on The Ed Sullivan Show. Were you?

As I got older I looked forward to each of John Lennon's solo releases. When he was murdered a part of me was murdered. "They" say that the day Buddy Holly died was the day the music died, but I have listened carefully to all of Buddy Holly's songs and John Lennon blows Buddy Holly out of the water (whatever that means). I've always felt that December 8, 1980, was the day I lost my faith in humanity, the day the music truly died. However, after watching Obama's inauguration, I'm grokking that I may have lost my faith way back in 1963.

Congratulations, President "No Drama" Obama, for making it all the way to the White House. I'm not sure how I feel about you risking the lives of your family to get there (and stay there) but I am glad that America finally has a truly intelligent president, ala Lincoln. Perhaps sanity will return to America. Perhaps the wars will end. Perhaps America will truly become again the home of the brave.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Who Am I To Make More Humans?

I am ashamed of myself for being so selfish to believe I had the right to create life. I didn't take the time to consider what life really is. Now I have three children that I love more than life and if anyone harmed them I'd, I'd..., but there is nothing I can do to prevent them from eventually dying. What was I thinking? How could I do this to someone I love?

As I type these words I hear my darling ten month old daughter coughing in her crib. We just laid her down. This afternoon she developed a fever of 100, she's breathing fast, and she has a runny nose. Google says it's probably something called RSV. I don't care what it's called. All I know is that every two weeks (especially since our five year old started kindergarten) one or more of our children are sick, and often the adults are too. There seems to be a virus waiting around every corner. Life isn't that fun right now. We stay healthy for a week or two and then all of us are sick again.

What bothers me most of all is that I know that each of my children will die, probably of old age (knock on wood), but they will die. Alone. Without me there to hold them. This tears me apart. Last night I slept with my middle child, three year old Pete. As he slept I held him and I could feel his new heart beating strongly, and I circled my thumb and pointer finger around his tiny wrist, and I thought about how innocent he is and I cried to think that my son will eventually die.

Since they did not ask to be born (I did not ask to be born either) I say they should not have to follow society's rules and become "responsible" adults and "contribute" to society. Pah! I now devote the rest of my life to enabling them to never have to work a day in their lives. They did not ask for this misery. I must die before them but I intend to do everything I can to make sure they do not have to work unless they wish to. It is my lapse of foresight that brought them into this world of wars and murder (same thing), heartbreak and tragedy, pollution and greed (same thing). I read a quote somewhere that said life is tragedy with momentary bursts of joy. My children are my "bursts of joy."