Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Another 'click' of the odometer on life's rocky road

I am starting this blog on Tuesday evening but I really ought to be heading to bed shortly. It is my desire to get as many of my thoughts out there for public consumption while they’re freshly rolling around in my head. But a rapidly approaching bedtime inevitably means finishing this tomorrow when I’m home from work and working out. So, any disjointedness is a direct result of going from stream-of-consciousness to careful reflection at some point below.

Tonight, I held my first self-hosted “meet the candidate” gathering. I had a terrific turnout in terms of local media: WLIO, WIMA, and The Lima News all were present and the reporters from each outlet picked my brain pretty thoroughly.

The turnout from members of the general public who were interested in hearing from me and asking questions… well that is another story. However, the two folks (yes, I am cringing as I type at this point) who took the time to stop by were very passionate about the issues most important to them. Both were everyday, conservative, small-town people who share a common concern with me: where is this gang in Washington taking our nation?

This is what has kept me awake at night on more than one occasion. Where is our country being led? My next question – loosely following that line of thought – is, “Why must we be represented by people from a select pool of applicants?”

Perhaps I am trying to answer a question with another question (a trait I developed as a teenager that absolutely drove my father crazy). But, instead of rambling incessantly in a quasi-intellectual drone, I believe we can do so much more for America by encouraging people to reflect on their own thoughts and feelings about the various political issues as we can by bombarding them with our own commentary. Whether I win or lose come November, society will begin the slow but worthwhile process of climbing out of this ever-deepening rut we are in by just engaging more in the process.

Getting back to the original topic, why the preceding tangent is important to this story is while their numbers may have been small their passion for seeing America return to the core principles which made her great in the first place was immeasurable. These two people showed up right at a time when it was getting easy to be discouraged by the dismal public turnout. The opportunity to look them in the eye and hear what was on their minds did as much to lift my spirits on such a stressful day as I had been experiencing as seeing a crowd that exceeded any expectations could have done for me.

Even though the long and wordy last sentence to the previous paragraph begs to be edited and reworked, I shall resist the urge to do so. It’s a bit cumbersome to read but it reflects the up and down nature of what 2010 has been for us in our household.

I almost did not make it onto the ballot. I came down with pneumonia right around New Year’s. My wife, Marcy, caught it shortly after I did. Marcy has made multiple trips to the ER at St. Rita’s Medical Center this year, four of which she was admitted for extended stays. Her father has been hospitalized twice. Her aunt even made a three-day stop of her own for severe bronchitis.

I am so ready for a reversal of fortune.

Despite it all, her support for my endeavor to earn your votes in November has never wavered. In fact, I almost canceled my event tonight at The Meeting Place on Market because she was admitted Saturday night/early Sunday morning for multiple pulmonary embolisms (blood clots in her lungs). She was discharged this afternoon with a battery of anticoagulants and pain medication for her other pressing (more accurately, debilitating) health crises: osteo-mylacia (adult rickets); fibromyalgia; and hypothyroidism.

When I told her I was going to call-off the event she was quite insistent against it. I won’t lie: I still feel enormously guilty for continuing with it. But, Marcy made it quite clear as I made my way to downtown Lima that she believes in me and urged me to focus on the gathering and not her. Her love for me has been an almost indescribable source of inspiration the whole way.

But again, in my sleep-starved state, I digress. That last tangent, though, finally put a smile on my face.

Well, perhaps a Day 2 of typing won’t be necessary after all. But boy am I going to be tired when I have to drag myself to work by 5 a.m.

Still, the low number of attendees served to remind me that the road between here and the November 2nd election will be a long one and in order to be successful there is much work to be done. However, those people who have extended their support for this campaign thus far have let me know it will be worth it.

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