Being 69: A Year in the Life of a Fun Old Lesbian – March 22, 2016

Cancer is haunting my family in 2016. My sister Sherry died of breast/brain cancer on January 3rd. My baby sister Barbra is having a double mastectomy soon, with a diagnosis of DCIS. Luckily, it’s staged as 0 so it’s caught extremely early. Her doctor suggested that with our family history, her best course of action is mastectomy. That’s good, and I’m glad it’s caught so early. It just sucks that it’s even an issue.

I’m still processing, but one thing’s for sure: I’m so incredibly grateful for my body and my health….

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On this day in LGBT history (from QUIST, Lavender Effect, Back2Stonewall, and/or Wikipedia. (If you are unsure about accuracy, please do your research and let me know. Thanks!)

1972 – The Equal Rights Amendment, banning discrimination on the basis of sex, passes the U.S. Senate. Opponents of the amendment claim it will destroy the nuclear family, give broad civil rights to homosexuals, and even mandate unisex rest rooms in public.  Though by the end of 1972 twenty-two of the required thirty-eight states had ratified it, the ERA failed to receive the requisite number of ratifications before the final deadline mandated by Congress of June 30, 1982 expired, and so it was never adopted

1976 – New Jersey Superior Curt rules that transsexual people may marry based on the reassigned sex

2004 – In Oregon, the commissioners of Benton County decided not to start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. This reversal of an earlier vote was due to receiving a letter from state attorney general Hardy Myers on the matter. In place of same-sex marriage licenses, the commissioners decided to stop issuing any marriage licenses to anyone at all until the Oregon Supreme Court rules on the constitutionality of the discriminatory provisions of Oregon’s marriage laws.

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I encourage you to write your stories. If you’d like to see your memoir and stories in print, let’s work together. I can help you self-publish your work. If this interests you, please see my website at http://purpledistinctions.com/self_publishing.html

Write your story! Now is good!

Warmly,

Ronni

Being 69: A Year in the Life of a Fun Old Lesbian – February 6, 2016

I had surgery on Thursday to remove a basal cell cancer from my face. I have a history of melanoma and have had many basal cells, but never on my face. The cancer was near my right eye. Today I have three stitches and a shiner that a boxer would proudly sport. Being the cockeyed optimist, I usually look for the silver lining (like if there’s a pile of poop, there must be a pony somewhere). My silver lining is that the cancer wasn’t melanoma, just basal, so my ten-year remission still holds. Yes!

I had coffee with my brother Barry yesterday morning. We sat in the harbor and chatted about the feeling of grief. He said people keep telling him that he’ll get over Sherry’s death, that it will just take time. That just seems rather cruel to me, though it’s often what we hear when someone is trying to be sympathetic after a death. How does one “get over” a death of a beloved? Sher was my sister and I just don’t believe I will “get over” her leaving us. I hope I’ll find a way to incorporate her love and her memory into who I am as a person, that the loss will get softer as time goes on. For now, for me, Sher is my new guardian angel and I feel very blessed. I shared that with Barry. I hope it helped…

And then I got home to find the most loving email from my Kelly, and knew that, in spite of the cancer, and with my guardian angel on board, I’m a very lucky woman.

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On this day in LGBT history (from QUIST, Lavender Effect, and/or Wikipedia. (If you are unsure about accuracy, please do your research and let me know. Thanks!)

 1979, Italy – first openly gay person elected to office in Italy when Angelo Pezzana is elected to Parliament.

1989 – After having debated and rejected similar measures for years, the American Bar Association votes 251 to 121 in favor of supporting federal legislation to prohibit discrimination against gay men and lesbians.

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I encourage you to write your stories. If you’d like to see your memoir and stories in print, let’s work together. I can help you self-publish your work. If this interests you, please see my website at http://purpledistinctions.com/self_publishing.html

Write your story! Now is good!

Warmly,

Ronni

Being 69: A Year in the Life of a Fun Old Lesbian – January 27, 2016

My dear friend Rev. Mike Piazza, author of Liberating Word, and his spouse Bill Eure are going through a tremendous time in their lives right now. Billy has cancer. Mike wrote about it recently. I lost my precious sister Sherry to cancer on January 3rd. Mike’s words touched me deeply. Today I share them with you…

I spent yesterday with Bill while he received his first round of chemotherapy. I am determined not to turn Liberating Word into a cancer journal, but, in talking about all of this, Bill remarked, “We are not that special.” I, of course, told him that he is very special, but he is right. We are not alone in this journey with cancer. Hundreds of people have made it or are on it even now.

 Many of you have written or posted about your own experiences, and I even have been with some of you when, like Bill, you were told that your time was short. So, even that is not unique; but our specific experience is unique to us. No matter how many people I have sat with, prayed with, counseled, or even loved through cancer, none of them were Bill, so this is different for me. That is true for you, too.

 We all try to relate to one another by seeing the other person’s experience through the lens of what we have been through or are going through. That is natural and appropriate; it is how we access the empathy in our hearts and souls. The danger is–and perhaps I should speak only for myself here–the danger is when we draw our empathy from our own experience it suddenly becomes about us.

 That can’t be avoided entirely, but we all need to be keenly aware of it. If we are not, what happens is, when someone we love and respect, especially someone whose faith and spirituality we esteem, gets sick or, God forbid, dies, it strikes at the very core of our own faith. If it can happen to them then they must not have been so spiritual after all. If they were, then our entire spiritual house of cards is threatened. We get anxious because our world is endangered, and our response to the other person is a projection of our own fears, mortality, or vulnerability.

As Mike wrote, of course, we are all going to die. If we deal with that, perhaps we’ll better be able to help others because, really, we aren’t special. But my sister was that special, as is Billy, so I still struggle…

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On this day in LGBT history (from QUIST, Lavender Effect, and/or Wikipedia. (If you are unsure about accuracy, please do your research and let me know. Thanks!)

1972 – The NYC Council vetoes a proposed gay rights ordinance that would have prohibited discrimination against gay men and lesbians in employment, housing and public accommodations

2006 – International Holocaust Remembrance Day created by resolution of the United Nations General Assembly.

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I encourage you to write your stories. If you’d like to see your memoir and stories in print, let’s work together. I can help you self-publish your work. If this interests you, please see my website at http://purpledistinctions.com/self_publishing.html

Write your story! Now is good!

Warmly,

Ronni