These last 5 weeks have been… devastating, challenging, shocking, momentous, active, exhilarating, and emotional.
Five weeks ago today, at around 9:30 AM, my family’s life changed for what we thought would be forever. My youngest cousin’s badly broken leg turned into the fight of (and for) his life. We waited, prayed, and cried as Sam stayed in a coma for 8 days (a coma we were told to expect to last 2 weeks to 2 months). I never believed that Sam would not get back to his normal easy-going self eventually, but I did think it would take a very long time – the doctors said “months” until any kind of improvement would be seen. He defied the odds and woke up within 8 days, started responding and speaking almost immediately upon emerging from his coma, and then soared through inpatient therapy after therapy until he was released to go home this past Wednesday. At one point before he woke up, we were told that there was no hope and that he would be a very slight version of himself for the rest of his life. I have never fallen apart so badly in my life, not even when my niece was comatose for 6 weeks when she was one year old (I always believed she would be fine, and because my sister needed us daily, hourly – I could not allow myself to fall apart. That niece, who I was called at work to come say goodbyes to 10 years ago, turned 11 this past January). My lowest low, my saddest moment, my most fearful experience almost 4 weeks ago turned around the next day when Sam woke up, and we’ve all be on cloud 9 ever since!
A week and a half ago, the confederate flag was removed from South Carolina’s state capital grounds. Immediately following that decision, major retailers announced they would stop selling merchandise with the image of the confederate flag, and Ebay quickly followed suit. No matter how you feel about the confederate flag or how you interpret its meaning, it cannot be denied that this event is very significant for our country. This event is historical and will likely start a domino effect. I welcome that idea!
On June 25th, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) upheld Obam.acare. Now, I’m not a fan of Obam.acare and I don’t believe that it was implemented in the correct (or best) way, but I still find this ruling to be very exciting for this reason: Republican-leaning justices looked past their politics and interpreted the law the best way they saw fit, and ended up crossing party lines. That’s a big deal to me, especially over something as polarizing as Obam.acare.
A week ago today, on June 26th, SCOTUS ruled that all marriages (between 2 people) must be allowed and recognized by all 50 states, and not just the marriages between a man and a woman. This decision is momentous to me – I never thought this would happen on a national level in my lifetime. Even a week later, I get emotional just thinking about how this decision has changed, and will continue to change, our country for the better. I believe in the same civil rights for all human beings, and last Friday got us one major step closer to all being viewed equally by the federal government. AND, the best part of this, in my opinion, is that the populous seems to be accepting this change rather well. For all of the hullabaloo over gay marriage leading up to this decision, I truly wonder if we were really all that divided or if the PAID lobbyists were just that good at telling us all that the nation was polarized on “the issue of gay marriage.” When Iowa was making this decision 6 years ago, it was paid lobbyists from outside of our state that came in and swayed voters to retaliate against the judges who opened up marriage equality to every Iowa citizen. Having been through this before but on a smaller scale, I truly believe that the majority of Americans are much more open-minded than the religious right (who foots the bill of the lobbyists) wants us to believe. Yay, America, for not falling for the paid rhetoric!
On July 31st, the Supreme Court of Oklahoma ruled that “the state must remove a 6-foot tall granite monument of the Ten Commandments from its capitol because it violates the state’s constitutional ban against the use of public funds or property to benefit a religion.” I like this so very much. Not because I have something against organized religion (I don’t – it’s just not for me even though I am a spiritual person who believes in a god of some kind, and that’s all I really need), but because I am a staunch believer in the separation of church and state as it is part of our nation’s foundation. This fight had both Stan.ists and a Bapt.ist minister on the same side. How often do you see that happen?
A lot can happen in 5 weeks – a lot of good, and not so good things (depending on how you feel about these issues). Changes that will have a ripple effect for years to come. Changes that will get more conversations going on how we treat one another. Changes that will encourage some of us to modify how we behave (Sam, pay attention when you drive!). Changes that will never be forgotten. Changes that will hold a special place in our hearts forever.
Happy Independence Day Weekend, everyone! This one is going to be my favorite one ever!
July 3, 2015 at 5:23 pm
Happy 4th to you 😀 I’ve had an emotionally tapped out week. Our news over here has been sad and depressing. I’m happy though there have been some big fundamental changes. And I 100% after about separating religion and state.
July 3, 2015 at 8:18 pm
So glad he’s recovering!!!
And this has been a crazy crazy few weeks – but so so good, too.
July 3, 2015 at 8:26 pm
Soooo glad to hear that your cousin is recovering and beating the odds. I can’t even begin to imagine how scary that must have been.
Lots of other crazy (and a lot of good) stuff going on in the USA as well it seems! 🙂
July 28, 2015 at 4:00 pm
so glad to hear about your cousin!
July 28, 2015 at 9:37 pm
Thanks! Me too!