copyright © 2008 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
For me, it all began near a week ago. There was no word of it on the Nightly News. Nightline offered no interviews. Articles did not appear in popular, or prized periodicals. Even the National Enquirer had no exclusive accounts. Bloggers did mot blast me with rumors of what might have been. The story, while sensational, did warrant banner headlines. After all, neither person was as widely known as former Presidential aspirant John Edwards is. The woman may or may not have had a history that would titillate many a reader. I know not whether this thirty or forty-ish female was the mother of what the media would wish to label a "love child." I feel certain that her name is not Rielle Hunter or Lisa Druck. She is not the fictional character, Alison Poole. She was but a real person looking for love, as was he, in a parking lot.
copyright © 2008 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
We met in December. The year was 2007. He was a friend of my cousin's. The two were best of buds; they still are. Cousin Paul has known James for decades. Jim moved to my hometown only months earlier. He felt alone. James longed for a friend, locally. Paul introduced us on the Internet. After my relative played the mediator, the man in the middle, the means for a message, he asked if he might share our electronic mail addresses. James and I each consented, and from then on, we exchanged epistles directly.
In letters, we liked each other. Admittedly, for us, the electronic medium was limited. We decided to share a drink together; although I let him know, I only imbibe water. James said that was not a problem. We arranged to get together at Starbucks. The coffee shop was near to his home and mine. Neither of us wished to share where we lived exactly. We were hesitant, cautious, or just not willing to chance the unknown.
copyright © 2007 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
'Twas October 18 and Congress was a twitter. Senators and Representatives fought and they flittered. Some thought society must provide for the children. Others maintained only parents need be responsible for their wards. Congressional Democrats discussed and debated. For them Health Care for the little ones, that was the issue. When suddenly they realized this pursuit was not viable. A few thought if they built a coalition, designed a compromise all would be well. Thus, a proposal was submitted. Funds for the children in the form of Abstinence Education, surely, that would fly; health insurance went bye-bye.
As Congress deliberated and did few deeds, parents congregated and presumed a great need. In the corners of Portland, Maine parents chattered and prattled. Could we, should we, would we give our Middle School students a prescription. Might contraceptives and condoms cure societal ills? For these fine citizens sex was the subject. Who might the teacher be?
© copyright 2007 Betsy L. Angert
More than a month ago, I began writing this treatise. The significance of stepparents and adopted parents was on my mind. Gerald R. Ford had passed and there was ample discussion of his heritage. Gerald Rudolff Ford Senior did not father his son in a biological sense. Still, the elder Ford was Daddy. Jerry Ford spoke of his father often and how significant he was in the his life. The elder Ford raised his son as any parent would, even though he was actually a stepparent. Ford, the President was not adopted until he in his twenties. At that age, an adoption was perhaps a gesture; after all Jerry Ford was legally an adult. Gerald R. Ford Junior wanted to honor his father or the man that, young Jerry truly felt was Daddy.
I too was fathered by a man not my biological match. For years, this gentle human choose to relate to me as if I was his own offspring. Legally, we had no connection. Let us call him "Adam," was my stepparent. Yet, this soft-spoken man was my Dad. Long before I could, with permission from the government, call him Daddy he nurtured my heart, mind, and spirit. I too am adopted; my adoption was long in coming. For years my biological father, perchance, we can title him Michael, refused to give his permission. In some states, possibly all, this is necessary. As I listened to President Ford's history, I thought of how it mirrored my own.
© Copyright 2007 Betsy L. Angert
After marrying, my Mom tried diligently for four full years to give birth to a child. She went from specialist to specialist. Batteries of tests were run, and then, re-run. Although she and my father were both fertile and they were a couple that thoroughly enjoyed intercourse, they could not seem to produce a baby. My Mom, a scientist at heart, concluded that perhaps, she was not fecund when most women were. Perchance her cycle was different. Once considering that possibility was enough. From then on, she was able to plan her pregnancies. My Mom gave birth to three children, none born in the first three years.
Apparently, if a Washington State initiative passes, couples such as my parents would be required to have their marriage annulled. "Naturally," gay partnerships, would not, could not be considered. Obviously, such a union would not be classified as marriage material. The Religious Right, may have felt embolden after the state Supreme Court upheld a ban on same-sex marriage, however they did not propose a plan to go further. They did not restrict what constitutes marriage in a manner that might seem feasible to them. Numerous pious persons say the bible deems the purpose of matrimony is procreation. Thus, the Washington Defense of Marriage Alliance took action.
Yesterday, I spoke with an acquaintance. She seems to be happy in her current relationship; she says she is. I remember when her beau was a source of great stress. Jess was involved in his work and Lisa wanted him to be concerned with her. She tried and tried to change what was. Lisa turned to other men; Jess was upset. Still, transformation was slow in coming. The relationship came and went, repeatedly. Now the two are one, or are they?
Once you label me, you negate me.
~ Soren Kierkegaard [Danish Philosopher]
An article in the New York Times grabbed my attention instantly. It appeared in the health section. The title, One Spoonful at a Time. This writing was heartfelt. Author, Harriet Brown tells a gripping tale. It took me to memories of my own struggle with anorexia and bulimia and how these affected my family. In this exposé, the dilemma of how to treat the condition was thoroughly discussed. I wish to share my response to this situation and story. My personal experience of this is vast. I hope my thoughts, realizations, and rejoinders on this topic will be helpful to those grappling with similar issues. I trust that the effects of anorexia and bulimia are trials and tribulations for all those afflicted by these.
The subject of weight alone is a sensitive probing. An individual need not starve, binge, or purge in wrestling with weight. On the same day another New York Times essay loomed large entitled "Big People on Campus." This commentary contemplated the plight of being "fat." I was once that too. Many may muse in this moment, all anorexics believe they are chubby, and while that may or may not be true, I actually was at times in my life. My weight rarely was stable; nor was I when reflecting upon it. However, my weight was never the issue; it was a distraction, a symptom of what was within.