Surgery went exceptionally well!  I am thrilled to say the surgeons told me it pretty much could not have gone any better (which is unexpected as my body does not often heal easily).  They pulled out what both surgeons called a "monster" herniation that was crushing my spinal nerve column.  Relief from the pain I have been experiencing was immediate and total...I have even regained all sensation I had lost in my legs and feet!  Surgery kicked my butt, though.  I don't know WHAT I was expecting, but the first week was very, very hard.  I fought fevers and surgery site pain while trying to maintain the necessary workouts...they MAKE you walk a lot.

However, I am almost two weeks post-op and flying!  I cooked myself a meal for the first time in months yesterday.  So far this week I have visited work (who is holding my beloved teaching job for me until I return), gone grocery shopping, and eaten dinner in a restaurant...all for the first time in months.  I am hoping to return to services either next Sunday or the one after!  Yaaaaaaaaaaay!  I cannot tell you how excited I am!  This has been the hardest four months of my entire life, and it has been an ordeal.  I have learned not to take ANYTHING for granted, though.  I mean, look how excited I am to go to work and grocery shop!!

While I was wrapped up in my surgery melodrama, much has changed on the Women's Rights march I mentioned in my first post.  First, and most important, it should be noted that the national march has moved to September so that more organization can take place for efficacy.  The April 28 date has become the day of marching on individual state capitals.  Some in our area are choosing to march on DC for convenience, but I believe I will be traveling to Richmond.  I have finally gotten back into the swing of things and am awaiting placement for my volunteer position.

In the past few weeks, much has taken place to fan the flames of my desire to fight this so-called "War on Women" (note:  I think this particular wording is a bit overzealous for my personal taste, but this is what they have coined the movement, so I am rolling with it).  Wisconsin state legislator Grothman has put forth a movement targeting single parents as high-risk for child abuse and neglect.  Now, as a trained mandated reporter, statistics do indeed point out that single parent households are at a much higher risk for abuse and neglect; but as a single parent (well, former...but I've been married 6 weeks and I was a single parent for seven and a half years, so I continue to identify), I am absolutely enraged by this legislation.  It is profiling and it is dangerous!  I have written two letters to his office explaining my point of view.  The first was short and to the point, telling him I was offended as a single parent.  His office responded with a list of statistics about why my child was in danger and a dozen or so articles containing anecdotes of children hurt and killed my single parent abuse and neglect.  INFURIATED, I fired back a letter pointing out that abuse and neglect is also statistically higher in minority households, and it would be equally wrong to target that population because that particular kind of profiling is racism.  This kind is no better.  What single parents need are more resources like parenting classes and access to help when needed.  What single parents need are tighter enforcements on deadbeat parents.  No single parent will reach out to Social Services for needed help if they know they are prone to being red-flagged for investigation, and THAT puts children in danger.  I was scared enough as it was of investigation, and I would never have been comfortable contacting my social worker for parenting classes and support groups had this legislation been on the table.  It is a disaster.

These attacks even foray into the surreal.  There are actually pieces of legislation in Kansas and Arizona allowing doctors to supersede the Hippocratic Oath and LIE to mothers carrying children who have severe broth defects that put mother and/or child in danger to prevent her from having an abortion.  On what planet is this acceptable?!  In Georgia, Representative England has proposed that women be forced to carry stillborn babies to term and deliver them.  Never in my life could I ever fathom such a trauma being alright for a woman to endure.  His reasoning?  He's seen cows and pigs do it.  I prayed and prayed that it was an exaggerated story by left wing media...but it's not.  Watch the video here.

Guys, I have always considered myself a moderate liberal.  I believe in the past few years, the right wing has become so extreme that it has forced even moderate conservatives over the line into liberal territory!  This has got to stop.  If we stand by and do nothing, even the most intrinsic of freedoms will be stripped from us by this new breed of right wing extremists that have somehow infiltrated legitimate (for lack of a better word?) politics and gained enough momentum to get their fingers into our lives.

Ann Coulter actually said women should not vote.  Again, I'll bet you are hoping this is some sort of liberal media bias gone horribly wrong....but it's not.  In a 2007 interview with The New York Observer, Coulter said:

If we took away women’s right to vote, we’d never have to worry about another Democrat president. It’s kind of a pipe dream, it’s a personal fantasy of mine, but I don’t think it’s going to happen. And it is a good way of making the point that women are voting so stupidly, at least single women."

Are.  You.  Freaking.  Kidding.  Me.

I have had ENOUGH.  It is time to stand up (which I can do now yaaaaaaay!) and say something.  There is much to do for the marches, and you can check out information either on the Facebook Page or the website for the September National march, as well as info for the April state march on Facebook or the web. I hope you will join me in sending this message to the world that we absolutely will not stand for this subversion of the humanity of women.  We are not pigs or cows.  We are not baby receptacles.  We are not incapable of making decisions because of our hysterical mindset.  This is not 1815, people.  We deserve freedom just as much as anyone else. 

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Comment by Rev. Linda Olson Peebles on March 22, 2012 at 3:39pm

Corrinne - You are a brave and powerful woman.  Glad your body is healing, so that your spirit can fly and you can walk back to us!  I know the leaders at our church who are working for women's health and civil rights will be glad to meet you!

Comment by jill herndon on March 21, 2012 at 8:16pm

So glad you have some think and planning time -- that has always been the hidden blessing of my surgical recuperations.

I found that the younger I was the faster I rushed back and the longer I eventually took to heal.  As I got older I allowed more slow re-entry and did better quicker by the calendar of months to feel all well.

I have always surprised myself by the quality of wrok I accomplished during my out-and-recuperating time -- and treasured it in my flash backs.

I have learned that no moment is lost to a soul looking for herself and others to be well. I was surprised by the treasure in unexpected moments of "not feeling as well as I thought I should" and when I had to put the brakes on to my "real" life.  My life has become the "real" that I had missed in those faster, more programmed times of "good health" where so much went by in a blur.

Comment by Corrinne Henke on March 21, 2012 at 3:48pm

Thanks so much, June!  I am so thankful!  :)

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