copyright © 2008 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
Dearest Gary . . .
Once again, it is time to speak of the past, to reflect on the present, and to acknowledge a future that would have never been without you.
Today is tax day. This date is looked upon with doom and gloom. On April 15 many in America are reminded of what for them is a burdensome task. In 1947, as the calendar page turned for the fifteenth time in the fourth month of the year, Jackie Robinson put on his first Brooklyn Dodgers uniform. Color lines were broken in professional sports. Centuries earlier, in 1743, the Revolutionary War ended on this date. The Continental Congress ratified articles of peace. The sixteenth President, Abraham Lincoln was assasinated in 1865. John Wilkes Booth did the deed in the Ford Theatre. In the twentieth century, the Titanic sank and my cousin Alexander was born. I too came alive on this date. For me, April 15 is the first day of the Renaissance.
copyright © 2007 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
As many do on Veterans Day, I pondered the profound effect war has on the world. Indeed, today, the battles aboard met me at my door. I never imagined that brutal combat might enter my home. I am an active peace person.
© copyright 2007 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
As we stood face-to-face and quietly discussed my years of anorexia and bulimia, I was reminded of what I always knew and yet, was too distracted to acknowledge aloud. It was not that I never spoke of it before, I had on many occasions. However, this conversation helped me to realize the heartache my illness [and I unintentionally] caused more deeply.
© copyright 2007 Betsy L. Angert
Oh, dear Gary, it is dusk on April 15. I nearly forgot to write and wish you happy anniversary. On this date, many years ago, we met. My life was changed forever. I thank you. I know that I often mention how I was transformed because of you. I told you in person, on the telephone, in electronic mails, and in so many missives. I wonder; did you ever read any of these exposés. I hope one day you will tell me.
Minutes ago, I realized I did not wish you well today. I did not acknowledge the date. This surprises me. Physical distance is not a distraction. I still think of you often, especially on April 15. This morning I awoke to the radio. The broadcaster reminded me of all that occurred on this date in history.
I recall when I was younger, and still, the same today, women would say 'I am looking for a man with a sense of humor.' Perhaps, I do not have one for the possibility bores me. In truth, it concerns me. I think it offensive to laugh at others, or at the expense of others. Sadly, more often than not, these are the dynamics involved in what people think hilarious.
I want to share with serious spirits, persons of substance. I long for a reciprocal reverence. Rarely, what passes for humor is an homage to humankind. The sacrifice of any entity, I believe scars the soul. Thus, on this the day of April 1 I offer no jest. I share what for me is profound. It is not that I object to laughter. I subscribe to the words of Horace Walpole.
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.
I thought; how fascinating, so many singles celebrating their marital status; yet, from my observations many are actively searching for a spouse, a soul mate, a sense of security, a sex partner, or something else.
Many authors have broached the question, “Why do I write?” World renowned, science fiction writer, George Orwell penned a memorable and oft-mentioned exposé on the topic. This novelist knew at the early age of five that he “should” be a writer. I struggle with the idea of what we "should" do and apparently, Mr. Orwell did as well. He did not do as he thought he “should” until his mid-twenties. If only I had my awakening that early in my life.