Archive for November, 2012

I’ve spent much of the last week worried sick about a place and people I love. I was born in Brooklyn, where I still have family. I grew up in Wood-Ridge, New Jersey where its new claim to fame is that is the town next to Moonachie where the levy broke and people had to be rescued from roof tops, I lived on Long Island for 13 years and have friends and family all over the tri state area. Just about everyone I care about and love was in harm’s way and I am so grateful that they have all been spared and accounted for. They’ve been battered and knocked around but they are alive and well and every single one of them has the strength and resolves to rebuild bigger and stronger both physically and in their communities. Northeasterners are a very hardy bunch!

Which leads me to this blog post? What kind of future are we going to give them after Tuesday? What kind of future are we going to give every single American who happens to be in the path of a monster storm or a terrorist attack? Are we going to want our government to work together for the sake of all those people who have had their entire lives washed away or are we going to bemoan paying our taxes and look at the inability for our government to work at all the last 4 years and blame Barack Obama for that alone? One of the best moments of the week for the future of our democracy was the picture of Chris Christie (a man I have to say I’ve come to admire this week for his dedication and public service to his fellow New Jerseyans) and Barack Obama TOGETHER talking to Americans in pain. It was glorious to see that it is possible for governments and states to work together and sometimes it is just a necessity which I believe anybody looking at the pictures this week can agree with.

We have to look at the last 4 years and say perhaps I don’t agree with everything that was done and we can call it some kind of phony socialism. But it isn’t socialism, its peopleism. More people have health insurance than 4 years ago. We are making American cars again, I watched numerous commercials this week for the Chevy Volt which seems like a really cool car and I would love to forget how to pump gas. Osama Bin Laden is dead, yes he was just a figurehead but it is kind of reassuring that he is a dead figurehead I have to say. The unemployment numbers are down and frankly I wish there was more emphasis on bringing manufacturing back to the United States to bring them down even further. Our taxes are lower, and yes once again it is nice to see government working even if it is only for a week or two until the horror of the last week wears off but I would like to think the cooperation between my states and our federal government continues. I think every American would feel reassured if their governor and president worked together to move things forward no matter where they live and which disaster hits it.
Now Mitt Romney may be a nice man and he may even make a good president but his ideology does not believe in a government which helps its people. He doesn’t believe in the safety nets needed to help NY and NJ rebuild. He doesn’t believe every American should not have to worry when they get sick. He doesn’t believe in Social Security. Let’s just say it’s the survival of the fittest ideology where it is every man for himself and it doesn’t really matter if you somehow are not fit enough to hold your own.

In a private sector economy, the taxi drivers that are gouging desperate people will be multiplied by millions and there will be the big conglomerate like Halliburton brought in to be the middle man between the people who need help and the help that is there. It’s time to get those kinds of companies out of the way and let our government deal directly with the people be it through health care or disaster relief. We’ve tried the no government solution and the Bush years will be written in history books for the rest of eternity and it won’t be written about very kindly. That is the future we are looking at if we go backwards and elect Mitt and his current advisors. So I guess what I’m saying is in a disaster priorities become the most important thing and the priority is to put ourselves in the place of every single New Yorker and New Jerseyan and ask the question if a super storm blows through my town what will I want? Will I want help or will I blindly call that help socialism? In the end it’s not really socialism, its peoplism. I kind of like the idea of people and government working together especially when it appears there is no other option that will help so many people who need help.

God Bless each and every person who is living through their own personal hell today. Help them to get the help they need so they can rebuild. Help them remain hopeful during this time that will try the soul of a person hundreds of miles away. Help them to remember that as long as they are breathing there is always a chance of a rainbow tomorrow. Ultimately all we have in this world is our life, breathing makes us people. Think about the people.


A Letter to My 14 Year Old Self.

Dear Debra,
You are a beautiful sensitive person; do not let that hold you back in life. I know that you feel you are very different for being sensitive, and that you wish you could be like others and not let every word spoken seep into your soul. You have to find the beauty in yourself at this young age because if you do not find your inner beauty before you start dating you will never meet a man who appreciates the beauty that you are. We all want to be loved and sometimes we give other people our power and allow them to set up the rules by which we should live, this is a mistake. Of course they love us in their own way and we should be grateful for their presence in our lives but if we don’t find the light in ourselves we risk finding someone who brings the worst out in us who we bring the worst out in. It doesn’t make them a bad person or you a bad person but it do set up a lifetime of regrets and missed opportunities.

When you’ve made a mistake you have to be honest with yourself and with others. You have to give yourself an opportunity to fix it and then move on. Regretting mistakes you made when you didn’t know better don’t serve a purpose other than leaving you living out your past mistakes over and over again.

Make peace with the losses in your life and realize that loss hits everyone, nobody is immune from it. Appreciate people for whom they are and love them while they are alive because nobody knows when it is our time to move on to the next realm. People are important, not money, not material things. When you die you leave just as you came in naked as a jay bird with no pockets for anything other than the love that you had while you were living. It’s important to grieve and cry and forgive the person for leaving you as if you don’t you will carry their ghost around with you the rest of your life.

I know a lot of things happened to you before you were old enough to process them; it’s time to process them, deal with them, fix them and find the things that you love and carry them forward. I know you had to pretend to be happy and make people laugh because of the sadness of your situation, you never realized that you could be loved for the person you are and not just because you are a clown. It’s time to figure out who the person beneath the clown is now so that you can live the rest of your life moving forward and not end up living backwards 40 years from now.

You are a beautiful light to the world, share that light. Appreciate it. Don’t wish you were like other people, they will not wish they are like you. Each of us is unique. Love the uniqueness and move on. Forgive your parents for not being perfect although I know you have already done that. Forgive yourself for not being perfect, I know you haven’t done that and probably won’t for a long time to come. Embrace your shadows and don’t hide them, even if you can hide them from everyone else there is a day when you won’t be able to hide them from yourself anymore. Accept them and forgive them. Forgiveness is necessary and perfection is an ideal which only Jesus could obtain.

Life is short, find something you love and you are passionate about and do it every single day. Strive to be a little better every day than you think you are as that will come in very handy when you are older and complacent with low expectations. By the way the needlecrafts that you love so much will be very important in your future as will your patriotism, please nurture them and give them wings now so you will not look back in regret at the missed opportunities.

If someone or something does not make you happy, find a find way to deal with it and if there are no children involved move onward. Realize that once you are a parent you will always have a second person to think about in every decision you make. Not only can you screw up your own life but you can screw up someone else’s life too. Try to do everything in the kindest possible way even if it is not appreciated by the recipient. So much hatred and sadness is due to not being kind and fighting and resisting life.
I guess you can tell by my letter that I am living a bit of regret and wish that I had written this letter to myself when I was 14. But as I’ve said earlier, it’s time to give it up and move forward. Forgive myself, appreciate myself and do something I love. I love you.

I hate to admit it but I’m going through a divorce and I feel lonely just about every single day. I feel lonely when I close myself off in my one room in the house to avoid conflict. I feel lonely when I don’t feel understood by my soon to be ex husband. I feel lonely when I think of leaving my son and moving on. I moved out for a while and oddly didn’t feel as alone when I was alone as I do when I am living back in the home I lived in the last 10 years. I had a mental breakdown several months ago and let me tell you they didn’t write the song nobody wants you when you are down and out about nothing.

When you are going through a loss and unable to determine a plan to move yourself out of that one room nobody really wants to hear it. They have advice which is great and really thoughtful but if you cannot get yourself out of the place in your head where you are alone and living in hell, you are alone and living in hell.

I guess the moral of the story is to have a plan before you decide you are moving away from your marriage but I’m sure I’m not the only one or the lonely one who jumped without thinking. Not everything can be planned out. So I am looking for a job, contemplating how I am going to continue to be an artist and have some semblence of the life that I had before I decided to move on from a relationship that doesn’t work for me. I’m thinking that the loneliness and pain of staying in the place where all this happened is just too much and if I am going to feel so alone I should just pick myself up and put myself in a new location and be alone. But then again I am feeling so alone and so stuck that I just can’t seem to move myself forward into a plan. When you are a hand embroidery artist and a stay at home mother for 25 years answers just don’t come easy. I’m going to try and think up a plan to make some money(if you want anything hand embroidered just email me) and try to find a job that won’t suck the rest of the life blood out of me and hopefully I will rebuild my life soon and not feel so lonely anymore.