Wednesday, September 05, 2007

my hero

Ailing senator returns to Hill
By MARY CLARE JALONICK, Associated Press Writer
40 minutes ago

WASHINGTON - South Dakota Sen. Tim Johnson returned to the Senate on Wednesday physically weaker but saying he anticipates running for re-election next year.
Johnson, a Democrat, has been out since suffering a life-threatening brain hemorrhage nine months ago. The effects of the hemorrhage are clear — he uses a scooter to get around and his words are slow and slurred. But his mind appears sharp, and he gave every indication of wanting to stay.

"It feels good and I'm ready to go," he said after returning to his office.

Johnson had no problem finding answers to questions, but it occasionally took him while to form words. He said he will measure his speech and mobility progress and make a final decision on re-election this fall.

"I anticipate it will be good but you never know," he said. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., wasted no time readying for the senator's political future.

"In honor of his first day back in the Senate, help me welcome Tim with a contribution to his campaign," he said in an e-mail to Democratic supporters Wednesday.

living with ms, i often run up against people saying "but you look so good" when i actually take a risk and talk about what it is like living in this body...i send out pictures of my mri's, say, this is what my ms looks like, but lets be honest, very few people can connect a blurry photo of white streaks on the brain
with my ruddy cheeks, bouncy hair and active ms, you cant see it on the outside but i sure can feel it. i find this very frustrating, as i dont like being doubted by the people in my life

but even worse, i dont want things to be visible and i admire the courage, persistance and commitment senator johnson brings to the table, and i hope his health is strong enough to run for reelection in the fall....maybe even president one day

adversity has so far brought out the fighter in sen. johnson and i hope the voters can put aside this new imperfection and see the man he is (honestly, i know nothing of his polotics, but i intend to look up on it)

ive been told roosevelt could never be president in this world of 24 hour tv news, and maybe thats true, maybe us americans are too shallow to understand that physical appearance is truly a very minor aspect of a leader...but then again, maybe who he is will ring louder then a disability after all

Song of the day: when im gone- phil ochs


Anonymous said...

Hi Molly,

I keep checking for andy news and ending up commenting on other stuff.

I don’t know if you know, but I am profoundly deaf. This means that if I’m on a motorcycle without a muffler, I might hear a quiet clicking noise. My first grade teacher discovered the problem. Because I learned to talk really young and my loss is a fairly straight line at the bottom of the chart, technology helps hide how bad my hearing is. As with most disabilities, I can use it to my advantage. I can concentrate, work, and sleep in environments that others can’t. Though, music isn’t what I’d like. And, occasionally some ignorant idiots think I’m dissing them like once when some off duty cops took me off the street into a department store and into a back room and beat me up. Now, I try to make my hearing aids as visible as possible. Sorry, I digress, that’s not what I wanted to talk about.

When I was 7-10 years old I got to spend a couple of weeks each summer camping at Camp Easter Seals. They like to have a few kids who have no handicaps or fairly minor problems (like me) help the kids who have major disabilities. It was a really good experience for me and changed my view of people with disabilities and raised my expectations of the possibilities. Have you ever thought about working as a counselor at a camp?

People inspire and motivate those around them. When I was on vacation one summer before I left Cleveland, I met a woman in Glacier National Park, who had polio when she was very young and got around on crutches. She had just quit her job and was traveling around with her dog while she figured out where she wanted to be. This was highly motivating for me.

Technology is really opening up possibilities for those who can take advantage of it. One of my long time clients, where I’ve developed software for pathology labs, has an employee, Todd, who is paralyzed from his neck down. I guess he and his cousin were playing with a gun when Todd was about 7 and his cousin shot him in the neck. You’ll see Todd on the news occasionally talking about gun safety. I’d see him flying around in his wheelchair downtown. Most of my client’s customers he helps are totally unaware of Todd’s disability because they talk to him on the phone. Todd answers the phone, works his computer by blowing into straws, and I’m told he even drives his specially equipped van around.

Now, where’s the andy news?


molly said...

hi larry,
andy is slowly but surely getting better...i talked with him on wednesday, he sounded real good, and i know he is pushing to go home, so well see

and yes he told me oyu were, and my friend hess keeps telling me to get a camp job, and ive been thinking about it....for me, i love to be outside, but i am very temperature dependant due to my ms, and am struggling with letting go of that fear of being out of control of my body temperature to move forward with it

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