Three years ago tomorrow, I went to my midwives’ office for my 35 week maternity wellness appointment only to find that my blood pressure was 260 over 210, and that I had a serious case of preeclampsia.
I was put on this horrid drug – the Mag drip (really just IV Epsom Salts that turned me into a lump of bloated pregnant person – I couldn’t even lift my arms) so that I wouldn’t seize and, well, die. They told me I was not going to leave the hospital without my baby because childbirth is the only cure.
And, even still, as they were wheeling me into my hospital room from the ambulance. I said, “Wait! What’s the date?” Someone said, “Novemeber 4th.”
“I can’t have my baby on November 4th!” I exclaimed. “George Bush was elected on Novemeber 4th!” Seriously, that was my thought in the middle of my life or death situation. The wounds from the 2004 election were still painful and oozing. And, luckily, she wasn’t born that day. I had Sophie two days later on November 6th.
But, now I’ve been thinking. There’s an outstanding chance that if I had delivered my baby girl on the 4th, I could have said from tomorrow onto forever, that, “Barack Obama was elected on November 4th!” And that would have been an incredible day for a birthday. Just incredible.
Some other random thoughts:
1. Once the election ends, will I still feel the need to ask (directly or indirectly) who people I connect with online and in person voted for? Up to this point, I have been because I want them to know up front what they’ll get in my communications and where I stand…and I don’t want any surprises from them. Or I want to be ready for the conversation.
Also, I saw that Starbucks’ ad – and we can’t only care now. Change will only happen if we stay this engaged – so won’t it be important for me to know who I’m talking to and engage them in further discussion or find ways to work together to make good things happen?
2. What are we going to talk about after the election? And the answer really brings me back to the point above. We need to keep talking about change, we need to stay engaged on the ground and in our communities. We need to ‘act like grownups’ and do our part to make this country and world better. This election will be won in huge part because of the phone calls, the blogs, the conversations, the door to door – the grassroots, community-based work that we have all done.
When this election is over, we will keep working, we’ll pay attention. We won’t just let government do whatever they want. We’ve tried that, going about our daily lives and figuring it was okay because we live in a democracy, and it didn’t work. Now, we’ll have a voice, we’ll use it and we’ll be heard.
Please VOTE!!! Every single vote counts. And, if you have neighbors that might need help going to the polls, please take them with you…we can only make this happen if we work together.