this heart of mine

One ought to hold on to one’s heart; for if one lets it go, one soon loses control of the head too.
— friedrich nietzsche
From my Facebook post earlier today:

Warning. Rant ahead.

My son has to take medication for stomach ulcers. I went to pick it up today and she told me that with our insurance the price was $400. I couldn’t help myself. I exclaimed, “with insurance?! What the fuck!” They looked again. Nope. Mistake. They hadn’t entered the information correctly. $45.

When I got in the car, I burst into tears because we live in great privilege. We have good insurance because my husband is a federal employee. I am grateful that, because of the affordable care act, my son is still covered by our insurance. But what of others?

Why, why, why is medication this expensive? How are families dealing with this without insurance? How many people are going without medication simply because they cannot afford it?

I recently told a friend that I have watched the light go out in my kids eyes, they hold little hope of what the future will be. He looked perplexed and said, “why is that?” This is one of the reasons
They worry for what kind of life they will lead, for what kind of financial burden they will carry.
Without our insurance, Another son would have been paying off a $26,000 helicopter ride to the hospital and another almost that much in hospital, doctor, radiology bills from a car accident.

What type of future is that? We wonder why this generation has such a reckless worldview? They have little to build for, to hope for, to reach for.
Student loans, can’t find a job to pay off student loans, can’t afford anywhere to live, can’t afford to think about marriage and children, one semi-serious accident or illness and they are financially stunted for years.

And ...

Fucking stupid arguments about gun control because we would rather wring our hands and say that there is nothing we can do or buy into and spew more fear to justify owning guns. I don’t want to hear about your right to defend your family or to bear arms against a corrupt government. If what you say is true that anyone can create a deadly weapon if they want to destroy, attack, or assault someone then you are no safer than I am anyway.

And it is about guns but it’s not just about guns. I want to know what is messed up in our society that overwhelmingly young white males commit these mass murders. Where is that despair and hate coming from? And is anyone going to talk about the factor of medications, medication withdrawal, over medication, and long term medication from a young age?

Its complicated. Its all complicated. There are no easy answers and a lot of tough questions but i wont stop asking the questions. I won’t surrender to the idea that there is nothing we can do. As much despair as I feel today, ultimately, I won’t give up hope.

Rant over.

I am tired tonight. I didn't write this morning because it was a day of up and out. My son had a minor medical procedure and I had acupuncture and massage therapy. My pain has been creeping back in and this week it is showing up strong. My neck. My shoulders. My heart has been fluttering. 

My acupuncturist asked if I am stressed. I said no. Well, no more than the next person. My massage therapist said that it appears my body has gone back into protective mode, hunching over, staying safe. 

I am protecting this heart of mine for it guides me, it leads me in how to be in the world. My heart shows me how to love, how to feel beyond myself. I have to protect this heart of mine. What would I do without her?

Tonight, I am weary and I am worried. I have friends who are struggling with huge issues, life altering issues. What do I have to worry about? We have shelter, food, water. We have a steady income with benefits. My husband is my friend, my patron and cheerleader, a wonderful father. My children are breathtakingly good people. 

I am feeling the weight of burdens beyond me. I am feeling the weight of a society in desperate need of change. I feel the anxiety of someone who is sick and can't pay the bills. I feel the fear of a woman whose life and choices are being controlled by a patriarchal culture. 

These burdens are heavy and I am trying to determine what is mine to carry and what is not. The truth is that I cannot carry everything. It is frustrating and frightening to me to lay these burdens down because everything seems so important.

What if I neglect the one thing I can do to make a difference? What if I don't work hard enough to change what I can? 

Where has my trust gone? What am I believing in? is there a goodness somewhere out there that I can cling to? I am growing weary of trying to conjure of goodness withing to cling to. 

I know this. I can't go on like this. That admission makes me angry and sad. I feel like i can't give up. I have to hold hope and I have to believe in more and I have to DO something about all of this. Even though I know in my head that I cannot, I still feel that I must. 

My heart is tender and I must care for her. I must protect her but I cannot continue to be so guarded that pain is the result. I don't know how to balance this. I don't know that balance even exists. I do know that something must change. 

These are probably the most honest words I have written here to date. I refuse to judge myself and these feelings. I must allow them to be and to teach me.