Friday, June 26, 2015

The fight for marriage-equality is not one that I will have to pass down to my son. Today is a happy day.


I was living in Utah in November of 2004 when, as a 22 year old, I experienced for the first time how hurtful bigotry and fear can be when enshrined into law.

On November 2, 2004, a majority of Utahns voted in favor of Amendment 3, an amendment that defined marriage as a union exclusively between one man and one woman. It was a hard day.

In a state where a large number of its residents have ancestors who were persecuted, terrorized, and even killed for their non-traditional beliefs about marriage, I was shocked at how quickly they’d forgotten... at how empty their empathy banks had grown because of fear and disgust for their LGBTQ brothers and sisters.

Many of them didn’t even realize that what they’d done was hurtful. “It’s just a difference of opinion.” “We live in a democracy, so majority rules.” “It’s just not something I believe in, no offense.”

But it was offensive.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Why People Feel No Sympathy When a Thin Person is Mocked

I'm in a moms group where one of the members, a naturally thin mom, posted this meme and expressed hurt feelings over it.

I agree. It's not nice to compare skinny people to a bone with no meat. (Actually, it's pretty offensive to compare any woman to any cut of meat.)

Skinny shaming is bad and shouldn't happen.

However -

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

I've told my son's healthcare story, now here's mine.

I have a kidney disease that I was diagnosed with when I was 17. It has always been easily manageable as all I've had to do is take blood pressure medicine.

But last summer, I got incredibly painful gouty arthritis in my feet and ankles caused by uric acid build up related to my kidney disease. At age 31, you can imagine how badly my ego was bruised when I had to use a cane to walk and was even on crutches for 2 weeks.

I went to see my primary care physician for help ($40 copay). She prescribed the only medication on the market that would lower my uric acid levels and give me back my mobility. I took the prescription to my pharmacy to have it filled and found out that my insurance would not cover it. They suggested another medication (that they also didn't cover) that would cost less but wouldn't even help in my situation (talk about getting between me and my doctor!). To get the drug that would actually help me walk again, the pharmacy told me that I would have to pay out of pocket for it which was $400 per month!

Saturday, March 1, 2014

As a mom, it's hard to always give good advice to your kids - but I think this was pretty good.


Some of my most cherished moments with my seven-year-old, Ethan, happen during that ten minute drive to school. With all the distractions of home out of his mind, he always brings up the most interesting topics that range from the inquisitive, to the scientific,... to the existential.

One winter morning on the way to school, he seemed quite agitated. When I inquired as to what was wrong, he explained that he was worried that some kids would make fun of him for wearing his Spongebob winter hat and wanted advice on what to do.
This baffled me—because Ethan had been Spongebob's biggest fan since age three. I couldn't believe that the mere thought of possibly being made fun of had him so full of anxiety that he would turn his back on his old friend Spongebob.
And then I remembered a girl named Karrie from when I was in the first grade.

It's amazing how shepherding our children through their experiences can bring back memories of our own.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

MomsRising: A Raleigh mom goes to Washington

Cross-posted from Go Ask Mom.

The week before Christmas, I had the incredible opportunity of being invited to the White House to speak with President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama about the Affordable Care Act and share how it's impacted my life and my son's life.

I found out the morning of the meeting that it was very uncommon to have them both in a meeting, and it was even more rare to have that meeting be in the Oval Office!

While I waited for the meeting with the president to begin, I got to know the seven other moms who had been invited to the meeting. Right away, it became clear why we were all there: Each of us had been touched in some way by the Affordable Care Act and, as a result, were making efforts to advocate on behalf of the law.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

My trip to the Oval Office and (short) media blitz

Note: This is long and verbose on purpose. I don't keep a journal, so my blog often serves as one.

Yesterday, I had the incredible honor of being invited to the Oval Office to speak with President Obama and the First Lady about my efforts to spread the word about healthcare reform. I'd found out just the night before around 5 p.m. that I would be going and was on a plane 12 hours later.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

‘Fat’ is the new ‘Nazi’

That’s it. I’m calling you out liberals, feminists, and progressives. As one of your own, I see a big problem, and I won’t sit back quietly while you go out there and ruin our reputation much like the Tea Party has done to the GOP.

I’m talking about hypocrisy... big fat... flaming... hypocrisy. Like when Teapublicans who call for small government legislate uteruses... or when thrice married GOP leaders tout family values.

When people in the progressive movement target someone because of their weight, it is hypocrisy, plain and simple.
JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images

On a recent episode of Bill Maher, he and his panel sat around talking about whether Chris Christie’s weight should affect whether or not someone should vote for him. Anyone who knows me, knows that I am not likely to be a strong defender of any Republican, but this question made me physically cringe. Here’s why:

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