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My last entry (which was on a filter-- so not everyone may have seen it) got me to thinking about the past, and I realized there's another entry I would have made in early March when I found out about this, had I been here. I correct the error now to celebrate the life and mourn the passing of Tom Willenborg.

He was my lawyer for most of the proceedings involving my children, and he got way more than he bargained for when he took on my very complicated case. He did a goodly number of things he didn't have to as the years dragged on, much of it pro bono. He was a genuinely good man, and he will be greatly missed.

Cut for length. )
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"He who lives this day and comes safe home will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbors and say 'tomorrow is St Crispins.' Then shall he strip his sleeve and show his scars and say 'these wounds I had on Crispin's day.' Old men forget, yet all shall be forgot, but he'll remember, with advantages, what feats he did that day.... This story shall the good man teach his son...."

~Henry V, William Shakespeare

A year ago I posted on the significance of this day for me-- a suitable arbitrary date to mark the end of my court battles, for better and worse. I will have to feast my neighbors virtually again this year, but I didn't want the date to go unremember'ed.

Things are better, and worse since then. I haven't seen my other kids, the three in the same household since April, and the adoptive mom isn't replying to my letters trying to set anything up. I feel guilty sometimes, that I don't miss them more. What kind of mom am I? But I am busy continuing to build something good out of the shambles I've managed to make of my life, and to build something good for my wee hob.

It's good to take a time out and reflect on the achievement that is. Human beings have such a fascinating ability to survive, and even to thrive in the most horrible and unlikely of circumstances. When I am in a receptive, not-pissed-off-at-God mood, I have to admit that's as good an argument for Divine Providence as anything I can think of. That people can, sometimes, get through it, show each other kindness and compassion, keep getting up no matter how many times they get knocked down. Not that everybody does, of course. But that anybody does is kind of amazing, when you think about it. That I did is downright humbling.

So, neighbors, draw a virtual mug of ale, bitters, wine, or your other beverage of choice, and drink a toast to-- what? Survival? Friends, certainly. Perseverance. You suggest something. And share, if you like, something you're proud you survived with scars and memories, and something worth passing on.
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I guess everybody by now has weighed in on the "Warriors for Innocence" campaign to rid the world of predators by getting social networking sites to delete journals of people whose interests and content are, in their eyes, objectionable. [livejournal.com profile] liz_marcs has probably the best analysis of the situation, and for the few who haven't seen it yet, it can be found here.

Reading through my response to her, I decided I wanted to share it here on my own journal as well. So here it is:


It's like a car crash-- don't want to look, can't look away....

You and your many responders have pretty much covered the free speech and witch hunt aspects of all this quite well. One thing that struck me as I was musing over all this, though, was how this self appointed guardian of all that's holy was so very like some social workers I've had the misfortune to know. Not the holier-than-than-thou bastards who enjoyed inflicting suffering on their clients because it gave them a power rush. No, the ones who Really Believed they were doing the Right Thing. The ones who for some reason could not see that good intentions do not necessarily equal good outcomes. The ones who dealt with the essential powerlessness of the human condition by pretending that they were in a position of knowledge, understanding, and therefore, power. As if understanding the demons gave them some kind of protection. Even when the "understanding" was perhaps the biggest illusion of all.

They're the ones who did the most damage to me and my kids. And yet, they're the ones I can't quite bring myself to hate. Because we all do that at times. Every time I gossip with my coworkers about someone's unenviably fucked up life, everytime I see the mote in my brother's eye but fail to see the beam in my own-- yeah. It staves off the panic for a few moments in this unpredictable, insane world.

It's a shame, but there it is. And that's why people standing up and reminding people that ends do not justify means is so important. That constant tug back and forth is the only thing that saves us, in the end. Glad you were there to speak up this time.

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Been in a funk for the past couple of days, and just now realized why. PTSD is such fun. And yesterday was an anniversary date of sorts, and that always hits me, even if I'm not consciously aware of it.

On anniversary dates, and battle aftermath )
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