In two days I will be 64 years old. I never thought I would be 64 years old. At times in the last year I wondered if I really ever wanted to be 64. Things have very hard. At times I have done better than I ever thought. At times I have done worse than I knew it was possible for me to do. At times I didn’t know if I would ever do better again.
Insure Tennessee has been a vital importance for a long time. It is the only real hope right now of us living together ever again. I am very close to giving up hope. The deck seems so stacked right now and I fear it will be the victim of a presidential campaign of ignorance and hate and a Republican legislature that sees the uninsured as a Democratic plot to take control of Tennessee.
Linda’s medical needs continue to get harder and more dangerous and despair is real and weighty and hard.
This post is in part birthday gift to myself. Many people have been gifts to me this past year in a time badly needing gifts. The celebration of gifts received helps to awaken the hope of gifts yet to come.
People are listed in no particular order. The order is in no way a ranking of value. I start with an apology. My memory is no longer what I would like it to be and if your name is not mentioned please know the problem is with me and not you. In a bad year, in a hard year, in a year so bruising and heartfelt I am so grateful this year has had so many best people.
Pam Weston, Anna Grawbowski, and Katie Crowley. I walked through the mountains of Tennessee with them to bring attention to those without insurance, without hope. They are hope and caring and commitment disguised as people. It was my best walk of the year.
Linda Albert. A good person disguised as a reporter. You thought we had an important story even when it wasn’t really news. Thank you.
Dawn Schneider. Not just a friend but a courageous friend.
Sen Doug Overby. Everyone should know a hero.
Mike and Marilyn. Best friends for a long time.
Rep Robert Ramsey. A politician can have honor.
Yvonne Smith. Kept telling me I had something to say and kept listening.
Sharon Cretsinger. A much bigger heart than she lets anyone know.
Margaret Ecker. There in some real hard times for us. If there is a Insure Tennessee she will be a big reason.
Walter Davis. He thought my letters to the Governor were important.
Redeemer Church. Finally a church home.
Terry. My brother.
Peggy. My sister.
Everyone who read Hopeworks Community. You don’t know how many times I would have been alone without you.
Todd Shelton. Every time I asked for help you did.
Knoxville Thcc. Letting us know we mattered. Showing you cared.
The so many people who have said what I write is worth reading. You gave life more than you know.
And above anyone else….Linda….You have seen the worst of me and hung in there. I am so perpetually sorry for the circumstances. You deserve so much better. Towards a better year. Thank you.