Friday, October 23, 2015

A few things.....

I have been busy getting my house and yard cleaned up. The dad went away to see the big brother for 10 days and I got right to work! I have loved my time. Little one has been so helpful, without being asked. What a blessing. I hired a young man to come and do the big yard work for me....the dad won't ever hire anyone to do what he can do himself. But there are only so many hours and so much man strength that one man has... I am hoping that seeing the difference will inspire him to allow this young thing to come back every month to keep us up to speed.

Molly posted this beautiful series of photos and story on my FB page....Little One is my rainbow baby. I hadn't thought of that loss in so long and this made me cry. So beautiful. That baby would be 15, almost 16, now. I love that Little One came along after and that she has brought so much joy into our lives. What a blessing that last little baby girl has been. 

My girl's 27th birthday is this weekend. The "plan" is that my three girls and I are going up higher on our mountain to the hot springs for a day of hiking and soaking. We will come home and have a home made tortilla casserole and some kind of caramel-ly dessert.....she doesn't like chocolate, if you can imagine such a thing! We will see....I go into these days with no expectations. However it goes is how it goes.

I am flying to Chicago the first weekend in November for a training to become a parent coach for The Partnership For Drug Free Kids. I feel ridiculous and out of my league as I find out little bits about the other participants. I am sure once I am there someone is going to whisper to the person next to them...."who invited her?" I told the therapist I spoke with about the training, "I am just me."

I am sure it will be fine once I am there. Isn't it funny that at 51 years old, things can still bring up that little girl that just wants to be a part of. She is still alive and well in my spirit. But she will only get stronger by off I go.

A funny story....I have to take a taxi from the O'Hare airport to the little town the training is in. I have never taken a taxi before. So I wondered and wondered and thought about this and even lost sleep over biggest anxiety by far was the darn taxi ride. You have to think, I am going from my little town of 3,000 residents to gigantic Chicago with 2.3 million residents! Totally a foreign world for me. Will I have to "hail" a cab? Will he drive forever and charge me a fortune and I wont know the difference? Finally, I called the hotel and asked them how much they thought a taxi ride from the airport would be.....a city taxi would be 150.00. I asked for a more affordable option...."Ohhh yes, we have a taxi service that we use. Here is their number." I called, was told it would be 62.00 and I needed to reserve it 24 hours in advance. Ok, I can do that! Such a relief to talk to a live person and develop a plan. I felt so much better and my biggest fear was conquered by making a couple phone calls.

And now for a hot topic......
I read yesterday that in California, my home state, it was decided that state prisons will be allowed to use our tax dollars to fund a transgender's sexual reassignment surgery and hormone therapy while incarcerated.

My issue with this is NOT that transgender people shouldn't be cared for and treated with all of the same love and care that anyone else should. My issue is that the provisions made, for our not incarcerated state residents, with my tax dollars, for addiction treatment or mental health treatment are SO inadequate, so sub-par, that they might as well not exist. My issue is that to be able to receive quality health care, specifically in the areas of mental health and addiction treatment, humane treatment, scientifically based treatment... you must have thousands and thousands of dollars at your disposal. I can't think of any mentally ill drug addicts that are in that position. Nor are their families after years of trying to save them. I feel like it is an injustice, so unfair (stomping my foot down,) that addicts and mentally ill are once again being penalized and considered not worth saving due to the stigma associated with their stuff. Although the trans population lives with their fair share of stigma also.... Who thinks this stuff through and makes these decisions?! Who decides who gets help and who doesn't? A heroin addict dies every 13 minutes....that is an epidemic of death going on. Why aren't our law makers and tax dollar spenders up in arms over that?

I am faithfully going to my 30 minutes of adoration time. I obviously need it. I pray for so many of your/our children by name during that time. I have so many of your children, my girl, still in my God box that I pray over and release into God's hands.

God bless us all as we find our way each day......
Much love,


Dad and Mom said...

Congratulations! You will be great as a Parent Partner.

I had the same feelings. I was in the very first group they trained. I was there with people I had read about and seen their fantastic works. Working in with legislatures and other government agencies they had made an impact already. And then there was ME, just a dad that writes a little blog about parenting an addict.

Then there were instructors, all with PhD's and a lifetime in this work. How insignificant can I be? How do I keep up with people like this, authors, doctors, professionals in the field?

You know what I found out? I found out us eleven sitting there with our experiences were the most important people in the room. We made a difference. My biggest REGRET, after the training and making a few calls my work took over my life and I had to stop making calls. I let my team down but I hope to rejoin them soon.

You will be a wonderful Parent Partner.

Lolly said...

Annette, I live an hour away from Chicago. What town is your training going to be in? Wow...What if???

Annette said...

Ron I can't tell you how much your words mean to me...and freak me out! Lol your vote of confidence means a lot! I'm glad you were nervous too.

Annette said...

LOLLY!!! St. Charles/Geneva? Is that close to you? Email

Anonymous said...

Hey there - gender reassignment surgery for trans-people is HUGELY related to mental health. Trans-people have some of the highest suicide and substance-abuse rates of any group of people in this country. It's a terrible feeling to have a body that doesn't match who you are in your soul.

Do we need more money for mental health and addiction treatment in general, especially for incarcerated people? Yes. But trans-people deserve it just as much as anyone else.


Syd said...

Glad that you are doing the Parent Partnership program. I know that you will be a great asset. Please tell us more about your experience with the training.