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Look Who Recieved the Liebster Award**Celebrate Dance to the Music**

I received the Liebster Award by Silver Lining at HopeFulDepression.  It took a minute to pull myself up off the floor. I’m grateful for the nomination. The Liebster Award has a long history in the blogging community. The award is given to blogs with less than 1,000 followers as a way to acknowledge and motivate new blogs. I discovered the word Liebster is of German origin which is perfect since I’m of German origin. Nothing like a mix of German, Neanderthal and American Indian. I’m honored to receive the Liebster Award from a long time follower. Her work is powerful, I urge you to stop by to see for yourself.   http://hopefuldepression.wordpress.com  How did you come up with name of blog? I have Treatment Resistant Bipolar Disorder and have spent years in darkness. Looking for the Light could sum up your hopes for relief.  Has the experience been what you expected? I’m having so much fun meeting people from across the globe. Shortly after starting my blog, I joined The Cut Throat Club a collaborative group of survivors. We support each other in recovery and offer support to the community. I’m privileged to share my experience of abuse and depression with others. If sharing helps one person, my heart will smile.  One thing that scares you? Spiders, snakes and sharks. One song that makes you the happy? Beautiful Tonight by EC. Do you have special talent or play an instrument? Don’t play […]

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That's What We Do We're Americans* Join Warrior, Red Skelton, Oliver North and Ray Charles For the Festivities*

Words can not express the gratitude in my heart for the men and women who keep America strong and free. I would like to tell every soldier they are not forgotten. Since I’m not about to travel to the middle east, remember you have a loyal supporter in Texas. Lets not forget the wars are not over. Soldiers are fighting at home with burns, amputation, PTSD and many other life altering challenges. Now that you know I carry you in my heart, let’s party.    Warrior  

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Rock Out Treat For Willy Nilly From Sister Warrior

Why have I done a video post for Willy Nilly my brother? We talk smack a lot, have similar taste in music and he’s a great guy. If he can’t take the shit he needs to get out kitchen!!!! 🙂 Trust me he can take it and spoon feed it back to you. Willy will not tell me his age, he knows mine, I’m going to kill him kindness to find out. He’s knows exactly what I’m doing. I say he is much younger. I’m a rock star in my head and wanted to see if I hit his music button. I had to prove my music tastes is different for my age group. 51 years old in couple of weeks, 50 doesn’t feel that old, it’s my body that didn’t get the memo. I included a couple from my guitar hero EC. I appreciate anyone who can make a guitar sweetly scream. Enjoy the video’s. After you leave feedback for me be sure and visit Willy Nilly and comment on his musical taste. Have a great Fourth of July celebration. Get ready to jam, turn the speakers up high!!!!!      Warrior  

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Throw Back Thursday For the Rock Star in All Of Us **Join Warrior For A Rocking Good Time**

As many of you know I’m a Rock Star in my head. I didn’t think I would meet anyone as competent as Eric Clapton. I did, he’s a young buck named John Mayer. EC invited John to stay for a couple of months at his house in Antigua. He mentored John, trying to break him out of his shell. What a success. I have every John Mayer tune downloaded and sleep with him most nights. Including a slower version of Gravity. I can not vouch for John’s taste in clothing. I hope you enjoy because it’s almost 2:00 a.m. and having a blast picking videos. Get your air guitar ready! Leave you’re feedback.   Warrior      

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Operation Infinite Justice "Where the Stars and Strips and the Eagle Fly"

I saw the video this morning, memories flashed, I found my notes. This is for all the heroes including victims and families. Sending out big hugs.   9/11/01 Notes I made as horror unfolds. The face of America and the free world has changed. America is under attack by terrorist. Four planes hijacked, two planes crashed in to both World Trade Center buildings. Not long after a plane crashed in to Pentagon and one crashed in field in Pennsylvania. Both towers fell to ruble, a shocking sight. As the buildings crash the air looked like a volcano. Fatalities are high. The fire’s rage on at Pentagon. We learned plane crashed in PA targeting White House. Airforce One possible target, no information on how. The second day airspace locked down. The reaction from around the world is amazing. Even China has provided their support in the event of war. We have committed to use what ever means we have to fight terrorist. Bomb threat for Empire State, bomb dogs picked up a positive reading. Manhattan is a war zone. Several buildings evacuated, no other incidents. I’m embarrassed by the people who deface Mosque. So many not displaying flag. Doesn’t seem right to turn television off. It’s so hard to process what happened this week. What’s financial impact, how devastating ? I heard my first helicopter since Tuesday. My mind flashed, how would Dallas respond? Do we have the protection needed? It’s been a […]

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Critical Follow Up Information To Lyme and Other Tick Borne Illnesses Post

Update on Lyme post. As you read about Lyme you will hear about co-infections. When a tick bites you every infection its carrying transfers to you. Another type of co-infection is from the virus moving thru your body. If the virus makes its way to your organs including the heart and brain. The menacing virus causes damage inside the body other than Lyme. The co-infections can get extremely painful. I hope you will seek out the more information to get the true horrifying story. Education may save your life or someone you love.      Warrior Here are several great resources to learn in-depth information on Lyme and Tick Borne Illnesses.  On YouTube: Interview with Daryl Hall of Hall and Oats Dr. Horowitz: Lyme Disease & Chronic Illnesses  ( Dr. Horowitz is the foremost expert on Lyme, invented an exact test performed at IGenex ) Lyme Disease: History & Controversies included proper way to remove tick. Additional resources ***http://justinandchrista.ca    This is your total education on Lyme, Husband films wifes struggle with Lyme over 5 years.  THIS IS A MUST  She screams in agony, it’s heartbreaking and may disturb small children. ILADS International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society  The association provides training for doctors for Lyme certification, tons of stats and how to find a Lyme Literate Doctor. Dr. Horowitz’s latest book, Why Can’t I Get Better: Solving Lyme and Chronic Disease ( downloaded but haven’t started yet ) If you want every detail, this presentation is for […]

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If You Think You Know Lyme It's Time For a Serious Refresher Course

Over the past 6+ months my Neurologist has performed every test in her arsenal except a spinal. Every test she ran came back abnormal yet not able to pin down a diagnosis (see post Are Those My Brainwaves). She refered me to a Rheumatologist to start on the tread mill again. I started researching illnesses which included brain wave abnormalities to weed out my more common symptoms. There were the ones I expected, Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis or other autoimmune disorder. I didn’t think my answer would come from RA Doctor. More reasearch and what I found was alarming, not the illness alone, the politics and witch hunt taking place. The illness is Lyme or other tick borne illnesses. The CDC rates Texas as med-high concentration. The east coast is at epidemic levels with some articles stating we are facing epidemic levels across the country. I had a different idea for this post yet feel it’s critical to get this information out ASAP. When I learned of the divide in the medical community over Lyme, I shook my head. What is the controversy. The CDC establishes treatment standards for doctors. The standard Lyme test is based on 20-year-old information. What happens is you go to doctor for a Lyme test, it comes back negative. You then find out the test is 30% +/- correct. The CDC acknowledges the test has false positives yet the standard for testing hasn’t changed. With a lack of confidence in […]

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Cigna Denies Cochlear Implant to Disabled Three Year Old Nikki **Speak Up for Justice**

Change.org Cigna: Approve coverage for my daughters cochlear implant My daughter Nicole was born with several health issues. In her first four months of life she had three bowel surgeries, one heart surgery, bacterial meningitis, and we learned that she would need a liver transplant. We also learned that Nikki suffered from undetermined hearing loss, however during that time the doctors and her family was focused on life saving procedures. Nikki is now three years old (almost 4) and she has neuropathy in her left ear and has been pronounced profound deaf in her right ear. We have been fortunate to be able to send Nikki to the Atlanta Speech School, which has worked wonders with her speech ability. However, her speech pathologist, therapist, teachers, and doctor have determined that Nikki has reached a plateau and will not likely improve in her speech or hearing abilities. Based on her doctor recommendation along with the advisors at the speech school, we requested Cigna (my employer provided insurance) to cover the cost of the cochlear implant. Cigna denied to cover the implant based on information provided and we appealed. The initial reason Cigna denied coverage was stated that Nikki’s hearing loss was not significant enough and she had not utilized hearing aids for at least a three-month period. During the appeal Cigna was informed that Nikki had in fact utilized hearing aids in both ears for more than two years, and her […]

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News Update with Looking for the Light

Update from Change.org  Let’s keep up the pressure until we know Meriam Yehya Ibrahim is safe and free 26 Jun 2014 — The last 48 hours have been a whirlwind of news surrounding the case of Meriam Ibrahim. On Monday, a Sudanese appeals court ruled that she should be set free, and that they charges she was facing — arrested and sentenced to die for not being willing to give up her Christian faith or renounce her marriage to her husband, Daniel — should be voided. Then on Tuesday, as she went to the airport to leave with her husband and kids, she was held by Sudanese intelligence officials, and we are still waiting to know if she has been able to leave the country. While this story plays out, we cannot let up on our demand that Meriam be set free and allowed to travel with her husband and her two kids. We are almost at one million signatures. Please, while Meriam’s future still remains uncertain, share this petition with on Facebook, Twitter, or with your friends and family, and keep up the global momentum for Meriam to be free. With your help we can build more than one million voices calling for Meriam’s freedom. She is so close. Please stand with me once more and show the rest of the world that Meriam should be free and reunited with her family. Thank you for taking action. ***************** Update from […]

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Children Restrained or Secluded 267,000 Times School Year*Most Have Disabilities or Mental Illness*

My Two Cents This a brief update from NAMI, National Alliance Mental Illness. I can’t wrap my head around 267,000 students restrained or secluded, the majority with Disabilities or Mental Illness. It’s not a punishment I can get on board with. The parents are accountable for their children and how they act in school. Do parents have alternative schools? My mind is over flowing with questions. Do schools have a process, is the process monitored, by who, documented, are there defined actions, limitations? Are teachers and principals discussing the process of punishment with parents face to face? Are parents notified before school starts? Is the child involved in meetings to give input and ask questions? What grades are included or all?  How many offences allowed before the child needs to transfer to school capable of meeting their needs. Is a detailed report required for each incident and discussed with parent? Do the disabled students understand why their being punished? Are the disabled students from a different learning environment? Which organization determined this punishment was Best Practices? Are investigations performed by governing organization? I strongly believe parents are accountable for their children which includes providing an appropriate learning environment. The other students deserve a healthy learning environment. I feel like all students lose with this policy and abusive.   Warrior  ********** NPR just wrote an article that highlights the need for immediate action to regulate restraint and seclusion in our nation’s schools. Data from […]

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Thank You For Signing Petition! Meriam Yehya Freed After Sudanese Appeals Court Ruling

Petition Update on Sudan prisoner Meriam Yehya Government of Sudan: Don’t execute Meriam Yehya Ibrahim for being Christian #SaveMeriam received 985,603 supporters.  23 Jun 2014 — Today a Sudanese appeals court ordered Meriam’s release from the prison where for months she’s been awaiting execution for her refusal to renounce her Christian faith. The decision comes after almost a million people from around the world — including you! — signed my petition on Change.org that added to the chorus of international voices demanding justice for Meriam. Over the past few months world leaders like David Cameron, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, and John Kerry, the United States Secretary of State, have spoken out against Meriam’s imprisonment, and media coverage of her story has raised an important conversation about religious freedom and women’s rights around the world. I started my petition after I saw how the #BringBackOurGirls campaign, focused on freeing 276 girls kidnapped in Nigeria, got over a million signatures and launched a global movement that spurred governments to take action. Now, thanks to our voices, a young mother and her children have been freed from prison and the right to religious freedom is a little bit safer. Over the next few days we will be monitoring reports from Sudan; we cannot let our guard down until we are sure Meriam is home with her family and safe from other threats. But let today’s events be a message to the […]

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WOW! Most Influential Blogger Award Feat. John Mayer

 Don’t care for John Mayer? He may change your mind before the video is over. Admit he is a guitar hero? He is so badass, how can anyone other than EC play like that. Watch the entire video, the last couple of minutes will blow your mind. If you like jamming guitar work. They are in Rio (sweaty) and the fans are great. Don’t get confused by his Japanese pants. If you want to cut the WOW, it’s starts about 5:50 minutes. He looks high, I’ve never seen him do the head swagger. I play Gravity at least once a day. No matter what my mood Gravity always get me jamming, singing and playing air guitar. My husband makes me shut the door, says my singing voice needs some practice. I look forward seeing the videos chosen, a wild mix I’m sure.    Warrior Most Influential Blogger Award On June 4th, my CTC sister Persia from Blog of a Mad Black Woman nominated me for the Most Influential Blogger Award. I’m truly grateful for the recognition from fellow Cut Throat Club member. I will pass to worthy nominees who will keep the passion alive. Big hugs Persia. I respect your strength and highly recommend nominees to stop by, Blog of a Mad Black Women http://persiakarema.wordpress.com. Congrats to all! I’ve nominated Blogs who write from the heart and will carry the torch proudly  Still working on graphic code for badge. If you find one on your […]

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Lost in Caregiver Twilight Zone

We learned he had months to live during this hospital stay. One very important piece of information the doctor did not share is people his age die much quicker. My gramps died February 2010. We knew the end was near yet your never ready. For me times were challenging and emotions raw. You look at your loved one knowing they are dying yet you don’t want them to know you see death when you look at them. My gramps had Prostrate Cancer, Bladder Cancer and Chronic Kidney Failure. His breathing labored from not getting enough oxygen in the blood. Partially brought on by not using his oxygen. Kidney Failure caused severe anemia and he took shots once a month to help with energy.  I would sleep in the floor at the hospital or a chair if lucky.   XO  Warrior ******************* December 2009 I’ve been caring for my 92-year-old grandfather for five weeks following three surgeries within seven days. I’m so tired it’s numbing. My grandfather is a man of habits driven by the time of day, maybe from his military background. One morning he was upset when the hospital had not brought his coffee and could not see he was the problem. We’re in a hospital not the Hilton. At home it was far worse. It does not matter that I have changed the sheets again this morning, changed his soiled underpants more than once and got him dressed for the day. If […]

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Texas Teenager Facing Life in Prison for Baking Marijauana Brownies

There’s a new petition taking off on Change.org, and we think you might be interested in signing it: Jana Duty: You promised to “restore integrity to the Williamson County District Attorney’s office” & use alternative sentencing. Reduce Jacob’s charges to misdemeanor possession. By Robert Butler Round Rock, Texas Jacob Lavoro is a teenager facing life in prison for baking marijuana brownies in Round Rock, Texas. He’s a young man who has never been in trouble with the law before, and has always been a great kid who we love very much. I live in the same city as Jacob Lavoro and I felt a responsibility to help stand up for him. Our county has a history of excessively punishing minor crimes or even innocent people to “send a message” that has little do with justice or the best interests of the community. In this case, the sentencing rules are being abused and stretched to increase a punishment that does not fit the allegations. The police apparently included the full weight of the brownies: flour, sugar, water, etc and the plastic containers that held them to determine the weight of the illegal hash oil used to bake the brownies. If our petition can convince Jana Duty, the District Attorney in Williamson County, to follow through on her campaign promises to clean up Williamson County’s justice system and offer alternative sentencing options then we hope that there will be justice for Jacob Lavoro and that […]

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Non-Violent 1st Time Drug Offender Spends *Life in Jail Without Parole*

 Change.org  There’s a new petition taking off on Change.org, and we think you might be interested in signing it: My name is Heather Minor and on February 6, 2001, when I was 7 years old, my life took a horrible turn when my father was sentenced to life in prison for a nonviolent drug offense. Without clemency from President Obama, he will die in prison. When my father, Ricky Minor, was given his sentence I didn’t realize I was about to begin a journey that would become a new “normal” way of life for me – growing up without a father. Even though my dad was a first time nonviolent drug offender, under mandatory minimum sentencing laws he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. On that same day, my mother was also arrested. My whole world as I knew it was completely destroyed. At the age of seven, both of my parents were taken away from me, and from that point forward I was raised by my elderly grandparents. I am now 21 years old, the first in my family to graduate from high school, and taking additional classes to improve my life. However, while I am trying to make the best of my life, the realization that my father will die alone in prison is too much for me to fathom. My father was suffering from a drug addiction and trying to cope with […]

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No More Excuses SVU Marathon 6/22/14 "Stop the Violence"

In honor of Father’s Day, and all the men who have joined the movement to say NO MORE to Domestic Violence and sexual assault, join us for the NO MORE Excuses Marathon, next Sunday, June 22nd on USA Network. Tune in for special messages from the Law & Order: SVU cast, including special new videos Watch for the star-studded NO MORE PSAs There’s an extensive list of resources available. Mariska Hargitay who plays a cop on SVU, gives a special address. Mariska started the Joyful Heart Foundation in 2004 with the mission to help heal, educate and empower survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence and child abuse. NO MORE and End the Backlog are featured programs of the Joyful Heart Foundation. KNOW THE FACTS WHAT IS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE? Domestic Violence is a pattern of behavior used to establish power and control over another person through fear and intimidation, often including the threat or use of violence. Some signs of an abusive relationship include: Exerting strict control (financial, social and/or appearance). Needing constant contact including excessive texts and calls. Insulting a partner in front of other people. Extreme jealousy. Showing fear around a partner. Isolation from family and friends. Frequent canceling of plans at the last-minute. Unexplained injuries or explanations that don’t quite add up.   Warrior

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Speak Your Mind! Call Congressional Members 6/12/14 Urging to Co-Sponsor "KEEP ALL STUDENTS SAFE ACT"

Please remember there are no Federal Laws in place to limit the use of restraints and seclusion in Schools nationwide. Many times children with disabilities and mental illness have to deal with the trauma, trauma they don’t understand. We have to set standards to protect our children.  Warrior Tomorrow is our national call-in day so advocates all over the country can call their Senators and Representatives and ask them to co-sponsor the Keeping All Students Safe Act (S. 2036 and H.R. 1893). These bills greatly restrict the use of restraint and seclusion in our nation’s schools to protect children from harm. There are no federal laws regulating the use of restraint and seclusion in schools. Numerous media stories and various reports have documented the harm, trauma and even death that have occurred from the use of restraint and seclusion in schools. Restraint is being used in alarmingly high numbers on students with disabilities, including those living with mental illness. Effective alternatives exist to reduce and eliminate the unnecessary use of restraints and seclusion and protect students and staff. These bills support alternatives that provide students with a safe and positive learning environment. Call Today! Please call your Congressional members and urge them to co-sponsor the Keeping All Students Safe Act. Thank you for your dedication to mental health advocacy!  

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'Keeping All Students Safe Act' National Call-In Day June 12th

There are stories almost weekly of schools using restraint or isolation on children deemed unruly. No federal law regulates these actions. I see both sides of the issue however another approach is urgent. As a person with mental illness, I can not imagine the long-term scars on children who receive this type of treatment. Please mark your calendars, it’s just around the corner.  Warrior Keeping All Students Safe Act (S. 2036 and H.R. 1893) National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is working with a coalition to end restraint and seclusion in schools. The coalition has organized a national call-in day on June 12th so advocates all over the country can call their Senators and Representatives and ask them to co-sponsor the Keeping All Students Safe Act (S. 2036 and H.R. 1893). These bills greatly restrict the use of restraint and seclusion in our nation’s schools to protect children from harm. There are no federal laws regulating the use of restraint and seclusion in schools. Numerous media stories and various reports have documented the harm, trauma and even death that have occurred from the use of restraint and seclusion in schools. Restraint is being used in alarmingly high numbers on students with disabilities, including those living with mental illness. Effective alternatives exist to reduce and eliminate the unnecessary use of restraints and seclusions and protect students and staff. These bills support alternatives that provide students with a safe and positive learning environment. Call June 12th! Please […]

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Senate Appropriations Approves Funding to Address Nation's Rape Kit Backlog

Senate Appropriations Committee Affirms Longstanding Commitment to Addressing Rape Kit Backlogs On Thursday, June 5, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved a spending bill that addresses the nation’s rape kit backlog. Central to this effort is the renewal of current funding levels of $117 million to support the Debbie Smith DNA Backlog Grant Program, which supports the testing of backlogged sexual assault forensic exams (rape kits). The bill also establishes and funds a new program to support community-based sexual assault response reform. In April, the House of Representatives also approved level funding for the proven Debbie Smith Act and provided an additional $35 million in support of efforts to address backlogs of sexual assault kits at law enforcement agencies. RAINN, together with allied organizations and individuals including the National Center for Victims of Crime, Debbie Smith of H-E-A-R-T, Inc, the National Alliance Against Sexual Violence, Parents of Murdered Children, Ed Smart of the Surviving Parents Coalition, DNA Saves, and the International Association of Forensic Nurses, has expressed support for continued funding of the Debbie Smith Act and complementary efforts that will help to remove serial criminals from our streets and enhance public safety. The full Senate is expected to consider the spending measure, which also supports a number of other programs and initiatives designed to support victims of sexual violence and hold perpetrators accountable, in the coming weeks. The differences between the House and Senate-approved spending plans must then be reconciled. Join […]

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Funding Update for Rape Kit "End The Backlog" FY2015

A Step Closer to Landmark Reform  Today, we have moved one step closer to achieving landmark rape kit reform. This morning, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved $41 million in its FY2015 Commerce, Justice and Science spending bill to address the rape kit backlog. The Senate’s actions follow on the heels of last week’s vote by the House of Representatives for this historic level of funding in its new spending bill. The new program will provide communities with the vital resources they need to help end the backlog at law enforcement agencies throughout the country, with a focus on investigating cases and re-engaging survivors in the process. As we begin the final push to ensure this funding is passed by the full Senate, we urge you to join the thousands who have already taken action and made their voices heard.Write to your Senators and urge them to support this funding as the bill moves through the Senate. Send your letter here. Thank the members of the Senate and House Appropriations Committee leadership who prioritized this funding. Share your tweets here. Help spread the word about the rape kit backlog and our efforts to end it with your community. Get started here. Funding for comprehensive rape kit reform sends a message to survivors that they—and their cases—matter. It sends a message to perpetrators that they will be held accountable for their crimes. It demonstrates a commitment to survivors to do everything possible to bring healing […]

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Translators for US Military in Afghan and Iraqi Face Taliban Kill List

Petitioning US Congress Pass the Afghan Allies Protection Extension Act Petition by Matt Zeller Fairfax, VA Join me in supporting a critical visa program to save the lives of interpreters in Afghanistan who have helped US troops like me. In 2008, I was serving as an Embedded Combat Adviser in Afghanistan when my interpreter, Janis Shinwari, and I were caught in the middle of a firefight. He took swift action when a combatant shot at me and saved my life. But beyond that specific incident, Janis served a critical role for me and all the other troops serving in Afghanistan. Thousands of Afghan nationals like Janis have served as interpreters to assist US troops in communicating in real-time and providing a cultural link between the troops and Afghan nationals. But like Janis, many of these interpreters find their lives at risk for their work with US troops. Janis was placed on a Taliban kill list and had to go into hiding with his family. Thankfully, legislation passed in 2009 (the Afghan Allies Protection Act) created a Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program to help these interpreters escape to safety in the US. Janis and I learned the hard way that the program had a number of flaws. It took years — and Change.org petition — to help Janis finally secure his visa. Thankfully, Janis and his family have resettled in the US. Since then, we’ve started an organization to help resettle Afghan and […]

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Where Do You Turn When Teacher is Bullying

Monday, May 26, 2014 Mom Upset That 9-Year-Old Girl Brought “Overweight” Notice Home From School Great video, please see the kids reaction to letter. The mother of a third-grade girl says she’s upset that the city Department of Education sent home a health assessment in her daughter’s book bag that categorizes the 9-year-old as “overweight.” Roseanne Colletti reports. Each year, 870,000 New York City public school students in kindergarten through grade 12 are handed their Fitnessgram assessments and told to bring them home without peeking inside. Laura Bruij Williams says her daughter, Gwendolyn Williams, looked at hers, and asked her about it one night while getting ready for bed at their Staten Island home. Gwendolyn is 4 feet 1 inch tall and weighs 66 pounds. The analysis said her Body Mass Index is “overweight.” “She said ‘Mom, school told me that I’m overweight,'” Williams told NBC 4 New York. “I was very angry and upset because I don’t want this to be the kind of thing that sticks with her.” The Department of Education says the assessments are “based on whether an individual student is in the Healthy Fitness Zone for their age and sex.” They are supposed to be sealed and given to parents only, so that the adults can start conversations with their kids about good eating habits and exercise. Williams, who says her daughter is active and healthy, said she would have preferred the assessment be given directly to parents so […]

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Bullying: Not Old Fashion Fighting Anymore

Bullying: Resources for How to Get Help This documentary explores Americas teen-bullying epidemic. Millions of kids are relentlessly demeaned and physically attacked at school every day. Parents of victims and educators say that a change must take place and everyone can help. Below is a list of resources to help stop bullying and cyberbullying. For Everyone: The Bully Project, and ‘Billy’ Movie: The documentary film that sparked a nationwide movement to stop bullying offers stories of those who were bullies and resources for parents, teachers, kids and communities for how to deal with and stop bullies on their website. “Bully,” which follows the lives of five U.S. students who faced bullying on a daily basis at school, including two who commited suicide as a result, will be in theaters on March 30, 2012. Stop Bullying Now!: A resource website sponsored by the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services that addresses the warning signs of bullying, how to talk about bullies, how to report bullies and cyberbullying and offers a 24-hour help hotline for victims at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). For Children and Teens: Teens Against Bullying: Specifically created to help teens learn about bullying, how to appropriately respond to it and how to prevent it. Kids Against Bullying: Specifically created to help elementary school children learn about bullying, how to appropriately respond to it and how to prevent it. STOMP Out Bullying!: A national anti-bullying and cyberbullying program for kids and teens. National […]

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3 year old kills 18 month old Brother with Semi Automatic Weapon

PAYSON, Ariz. – Police said an 18-month-old boy is dead after being shot in the head by his 3-year-old brother, reports CBS affiliate KPHO. The boys were at a neighbor’s apartment in Payson, Ariz., on Tuesday when they found a semi-automatic gun that belonged to the man they were visiting, according to the station. Police said the toddler’s 3-year-old brother picked up the weapon and pulled the trigger. Payson Police Chief Don Engler said officers found the boy’s mother carrying the wounded child in the parking lot outside the apartment after they received several 911 calls about a child with a head injury. The boy was pronounced dead after being rushed to Payson Regional Medical Center, KPHO reports. “The apartment that this occurred in was a family friend of the mother and two children,” said Engler. “The children had slipped into another room unobserved by the mother and the 78-year-old occupant of the apartment,” Engler said, noting that the family had been visiting for about 10 to 15 minutes before the shooting. “Even though many of our young officers have children of their own, certainly it’s difficult for our officers in those circumstances.” According to KPHO, police have not released the names of anyone involved in the incident. Suzy Tubbs, the director of Payson Community Kids, a nonprofit located across the street from the apartment, said the young mother often visited with her two sons. “I was always so impressed with a mom […]

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Dating Violence, Stabbed 32 Times and Survives

By MELISSA DOHME CBS NEWS May 30, 2014, 2:15 PM 48 Hours: Dating violence survivor tells story My name is Melissa Dohme. I am twenty-two years old and I live in Clearwater, Florida. On January 24, 2012, I found myself surrounded with family, covered in bandages, connected to machines, with tubes down my throat, praying and thanking God for saving my life. Hours before this moment I was lying alone in the road outside my home, covered in blood, taking what I thought would be my last breath. I had just been viciously attacked, beaten, and stabbed 32 times. How could this happen? Looking back three years prior, I remember the exact moment I met this extremely charming, sweet, and funny guy named Robert Burton. When we started dating, everything was perfect, but as I prepared for my high school graduation, things began to change. Robert became extremely jealous, controlling, and short-tempered. I was going through verbal and emotional abuse throughout our two-year relationship without knowing it was abuse. The violence turned physical in the last few months, and by then I felt completely trapped. He would tell me if I was to leave or tell anyone about the abuse, he would kill me, my family, and himself. He began attempting suicide to scare me, but would stop and threaten me with weapons to prove he was serious. One night, I had the opportunity, courage, and strength to run away and call the police–and […]

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Sudanese Mother Mariam Yehya Ibrahim Gave Birth in Prison to Baby Girl

May 27, 2014 Thank you so much for signing the petition to #saveMariam. This morning Mariam gave birth in prison to a baby girl. Her husband has not yet been allowed to visit Mariam and her newborn baby. Her young son also remains with her in prison. Media reports (http://yhoo.it/1nsb5Z6) state that she will be able to nurse her baby for two years before her death sentence. Please continue to share the petition information with everyone you know. They can sign at: http://www.change.org/saveMariam.  Thank you. The Sudanese government postponed killing Mariam for not denouncing her Christian faith.  In an effort to show how generous Sudan is, Mariam can nurse for two years and take care of 20 month old in prison before her death sentence. As an America, a Christian and human, this story breaks my heart. It’s not one situation, it is the culture of women are not worthy. I’m so happy she is alive but can only imagine the stress on her and the children. If she makes it two years without being raped or beaten it’s a miracle. I pray our collective power of shining a bright light on the issue will let her go home. What about the children, I haven’t read any statements about where the children will go upon her death. This is a terrible crime against humanity. This type of abuse is rampant in the area for Women. Terrorist run the county. I will keep focused […]

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Get the Media out of the Trenches!

Post written 2/7/06 It’s relevant today as the day written. Time to dust it off. Let’s hear what you think. This week several journalist, American and Iraqi soldiers died in an attack while outside their vehicle doing an interview. Journalist Bob Woodruf isn’t even back to work from his brush with death and now a competing station loses several employees. Media giants will do anything to boost ratings and bottom line. If employees and soldiers have to die, it’s the cost of doing business. One of the top female journalist was gang raped in Egypt, being pulled by each limb. She later said thoughts of being pulled apart crossed her mind. Then put on a happy face and went right back to Egypt. How can we set back and accept this? How can the CEO of these corporations live with blood on their hands? How can shareholders not hold them accountable? It is a shame profits drive them to allow journalist to make a decision to put their life in danger. The military shares responsibility, now is time to review policy on the sheer number of journalist on the ground, embedded with troops and reporting from hot zones. Journalist have chronicled wars from behind the lens for years. It is important to have the current news today and for history.You’re not casting the next Reality Show. It’s war or hot zone, journalist are endangering the lives of soldiers, locals and […]

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Russian Gothic Architecture

  I visited St. Petersburg, Russia in 2001 shortly after 9-11 happened. I was boarding my plane when the first tower has hit. When air restrictions lifted, I left with a heavy heart yet thankful for a distraction. Nothing says adventure like traveling alone half way around the globe not knowing the language. I didn’t know what to expect except cathedrals, ballet and art museums. St. Petersburg is so much more. People knew I was American since most women don’t travel alone. Russians and people from several countries came up to say how sorry they were about the tragedy in America. I cried knowing someone a world away cared. We can live in a bubble sometimes. The Russian people tried so hard to help me when asking for directions even thou we didn’t speak each other’s language. I walked everywhere even at night with little worry of crime. Restaurant owners would watch for me knowing I was a women walking alone. The food was outstanding, caviar superb and service was excellent. I felt like a princess, the gypsy music never sounded better. I stayed at The Astoria Hotel, one of the two five-star hotels in St. Petersburg. They had me at hello! From the Mercedes at the airport, to the tour of the hotel, fresh flowers, chilled champagne with hand written welcome note. The doorman knew my name when I arrived. I had a personal taste test of the different […]

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Pianists' Live Improv

Originally posted on Live & Learn:
http://youtu.be/itErRn4T2no I’ve featured Ólafur Arnalds & Nils Frahm previously on separate posts titled: Near Light and Said & Done.  Now the two solo artists come together to create a new song live in front of an intimate audience at Roter Salon, Volksbühne Berlin.  The musicians test/practise with the new equipment up to the ~ 2:20 mark on the video and the improvision starts from there. Genius. And Magic.

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Sudan Sentenced (Flogging/Death) Women 8 months Pregnant For Not Recanting Christian Faith

Please read the horrific story of a Sudanese mother, doctor and Christian sentenced to flogging and death unless she recants her Christian faith. Mariam is 8 months pregnant and has a two-year old son.   Government of Sudan: Don’t execute 8 months pregnant Mariam Yehya Ibrahim for being Christian By Emily Clarke Malmesbury   Sign Emily’s Petition at Change.org   Mariam Yehya Ibrahim, a Sudanese mother, doctor and Christian, has been sentenced to flogging and death unless she recants her Christian faith. She is 8 months pregnant and has a two-year-old son. Please, join the international community in asking Sudan not to execute her for being a Christian. Ibrahim is charged with adultery on the grounds that her marriage to a Christian man from South Sudan is considered void under Shari’a law, for which the penalty is flogging. She’s also charged with apostasy, or abandonment of religion, for which the penalty is death. Mariam is the daughter of a Christian woman and Muslim man. She was raised Christian after her father left. However, Sudanese law mandates that children born to Muslim fathers are considered Muslim. The fact that a woman could be sentenced to death for her religious choice, and to flogging for being married to a man of an allegedly different religion is abhorrent. Call upon the government of Sudan to respect the right to freedom of religion! Sign Emily’s Petition on Change.org   The person (or organization) who started […]

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Yemen votes on Child Rights Act which includes end of Female Genital Mutilation

Yemen is looking to end child marriages and FGM through the Child Rights Act. The new law would establish minimum age of 18 for marriage and end FGM. A positive vote will meet minimum International Human Rights standards. Yemen is leading the way to end the horrific use of Female Genital Mutilation. My hope is other countries take notice and intact similar laws.   Yemen law on child brides and FGM offers hope of wider progress. The smooth passage of legislation outlawing child marriage and female genital mutilation is key to Yemen’s long-term prosperity. Schoolgirls in Sana’a, Yemen. A new law promises to protect under-18s from marriage. Yemen is poised to vote on a comprehensive Child Rights Act over the coming months, which would ban child marriage and female genital mutilation (FGM). The new law would establish the minimum age for marriage as 18, in line with the international human rights standard. Fines would be imposed on guardians, signatories, marriage officials and any other witnesses aware of any contravention. The push for official legislation on such issues has been endorsed by Hooria Mashhour, the Yemeni human rights minister, and supported by others in government. If approved by the prime minister and cabinet, the legislation would go to a parliamentary vote. However, successful passage of the law is far from certain. In 2009, an attempt to make 17 the minimum age of marriage for girls was blocked by traditional and religious leaders and the parliament’s sharia committee. The […]

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Washington Doesn't Want to Talk About Vaginas

Jaha Dukureh is a survivor, driven with incredible inner strength. This article is a great follow-up to the post I wrote on Female Genital Mutilation.  This is the worst form of abuse on children and women. I can appreciate bringing traditions when moving to America. Female Genital Mutilation is a tradition not excepted in America. The violence and violation of children and women is illegal, not a tradition America has ever followed and is inhumane. Most people are not familiar with Female Genital Mutilation, now is a good time to educate yourself and others. Jaha’s clitoris and labia removed and her vagina stitched leaving only a small hole to urinate and menstruate. Sex is very painful.This procedure is Type 3 FGM. It is a long post but please read her brave and motivating story. Please sign the petition on Change.org. She is a survivor and want’s to teach Americans what to do to stop FGM in America. The Futures Without Violence website http://exchange.futureswithoutviolence.org is a great resource to offer support and educate.  From the Futures Without Violence Website. Jaha Dukureh: ‘In Washington, they don’t want to talk about Vaginas’ An Atlanta woman who is a survivor of female genital mutilation is leading a campaign for the US to take action on a brutal practice happening in its own backyard. Jaha Dukureh does not give up easily. When, aged just 15, she was sent to New York from Gambia for an arranged marriage, it looked like […]

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Brave Heart Award

The Brave Heart Mission Statement To encourage all those (men & women) who have been abused (all abuse) to share their hope with others so that they will no longer be a victim but a survivor that knows they are loved.   A Victims Journal nominated me for the Brave Heart Award. There are not enough words to express how helpful, positive and inspiring she is to me. I admire her raw and honest post. The feedback she gives is no less raw. Her sixth sense of knowing when you need a boost or a little prodding helps keep me on track. I feel like she reads all of my post and always has a hug and positive affirmation.  Rules of Acceptance: Thank the person who nominated you. Answer 12 questions put before you. Nominate/award 12 bloggers. Notify nominees/awardees with a link to their blogs on yours. 12 Questions Asked 1.Tell us a bit about your blog. Who designed it The blog is an avenue to tell my story of physical, emotional and sexual abuse. I believe it also serves as a resource for men & women alike. I used a Word Press template and designed myself. 2. What is the title and description of your blog? Looking for the Light is my blog which focuses on my story of abuse  and Mental Illness. 3. Who is your intended audience? Anyone who has suffered trauma. I believe we can all help […]

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Rape, Abuse, Incest, National Network (RAINN) Monthly Update

Rape, Abuse, Incest, National Network         RAINN MONTHLY UPDATE http://RAINN.ORG Online Help – 1.800.656.HOPE (4673) RAINN: The nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization. One of “America’s 100 Best Charities” -Worth magazine House Votes to Renew DNA Bill A bill to renew the Debbie Smith Act, which would help eliminate the backlog of untested DNA evidence from unsolved rape cases, was passed by the House of Representatives. Learn More on Website RAINN Teams Up with Degrassi to Help Teens. TV show Degrassi included a storyline that followed the aftermath of an alcohol-facilitated sexual assault and its impact on the school. In conjunction with the episode, TeenNick aired a PSA that encouraged viewers to get help from the National Sexual Assault Hotline. Learn More on Website Survivor Spotlight: Stories of Support This month, survivors share how loved ones helped them on their paths toward hope and healing How You Can Support a Friend This Month If you or someone you love has been assaulted, it’s crucial to have a support system in place. A new series of infographics shares ways you can be supportive. Learn more on Website Anniversary of ‘Speak’ Connects with New Generation. RAINN and publishing house Macmillan bring Laurie Halse Anderson’s “Speak” to a new generation of young readers. Learn more about the #Speak4RAINN15 campaign and how a $15 donation can help a survivor today. Warrior

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Terrorist Convert Hundreds of Schoolgirls To Muslims? NOT!

Does BoKo Haram think we are ignorant? What child would not comply with a machine gun pointed at her? We are not ignorant and you will be held ACCOUNTABLE. If you were one of the almost 300 schoolgirls kidnapped almost a month ago by terrorist, wouldn’t you say anything with machine guns pointing at you? I don’t believe for one minute over 100 girls asked for a terrorist group to convert them from Christian to Muslims. They are not given a choice, they received instructions to get in front of cameras and say what we rehearsed or you’re dead. These brave girls are being held hostage in the jungle by terrorist group BoKo Haram. They did not go voluntarily and have not had any choices since their school burned down. What cowards, dressed as Police Officers to convince the girls to go with them. The group is also responsible for killing 1,500 in the last month. The level of violence has escalating. I know terrorist are not trustworthy, THEY ARE TERRORIST. They are not terrorist bringing of goodwill to Nigeria. They are suggesting a trade, the girls for clan members in prison. This morning I heard the President is considering negotiating. From where I sit, it’s a death sentence. It shows the government does not want to get its hands dirty. Almost 300 schoolgirls and the blood of 1,500 people are on your hands. Why is the government of Nigeria sitting on its hands. […]

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Take Action for Children's Mental Health

National Alliance of Mental Illness Advocacy Update on National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week 2014 TAKE ACTION for Children’s Mental Health National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week, May 4-10, helps raise awareness around children’s mental health. This week NAMI joins communities around the country in raising awareness about the mental health needs of America’s youngest citizens. It is a week to focus on children and youth living with mental illness and to come together to advocate for a full array of effective services and supports for children affected by mental illness. View activities you can do to support Children’s Mental Health Awareness. TAKE ACTION for Children’s Mental Health Below are bills that you can take action on to tell your members of congress to prioritize children’s mental health. The Mental Health In Schools Act (S. 195 and H.R. 628) The Mental Health in Schools Act is critically important legislation that provides federal funding to increase the availability of comprehensive school-based mental health services and supports and builds effective links between schools and the community mental health system. This legislation will improve the early identification of mental illness by funding school and community-based mental health services and linking students with effective services and supports so they have the chance to thrive and reach their full potential. TAKE ACTION The Keeping All Students Safe Act (S. 2036 and H.R. 1893) This bill greatly restricts the use of restraint and seclusion in our nation’s […]

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Terrorist BoKo Haram and Nigerian Government #BringBackOurGirls

I met two women bloggers living in Nigeria last week while looking for information on the kidnapped schoolgirls. They welcomed me with open arms and were patient answering all my questions. I wanted an understanding of the country in hopes of making sense of almost 300 schoolgirls being kidnapped. Not to mention 1,500 people killed this year by terrorist group Boko Haram. Without knowing the history of the country it is difficult to understand the dynamics, corruption and terrorist groups operating in the country. Nigeria is one of the largest African nations and is Christian and Muslims. I think getting the facts from people on the ground versus me or the media is more important. I’ve included links to the wonderful women who helped me immensely. http://maureenoblaq.wordpress.com http://musingsofahappymortal.wordpress.com ******************************************* Change.org There’s a powerful petition taking off on Change.org and we think you might be interested in signing it: Live link at end of post. All World Leaders: Bring Back Nigeria’s 200 Missing School Girls #BringBackOurGirls. In Nigeria, over 200 girls were recently abducted from their boarding school and plans are reported of them being selling them as brides for $12 each. I am calling on the world to unite and save them. The abducted young girls are being affected by a conflict they did not create, and their voices need to be heard. I can only imagine what these 200 girls have been through, and their government is not doing nearly enough […]

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Oh, Nigeria

Originally posted on Poesy plus Polemics:
Nigerian SchoolgirlsPhoto from article.wn.com what terror murders innocence for yearning education rips ripe flowers from their stems to subjugate their fragrance paternalistic arrogance flaunts deep sectarian misogyny it has ugly eyes for the world bloody hands for its own stunted ethics compel its illusions who will stand for the flowers and tame this abomination…

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Beyond Nigeria

Originally posted on TIME:
When members of the Islamist terrorist group Boko Haram showed up at a girls’ high school in the town of Chibok in northeastern Nigeria one night last month, the girls were confused. The militants had dressed themselves in military uniforms and told over 300 schoolgirls they were taking them to a secure location. But it became…

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Sunshine Award for Looking for the Light

Sunshine Award and why I’m Crab Grass Avalanche of the Soul nominated me for the Sunshine Award. Being a new, I didn’t understand being nominated means you have the award. Please forgive me for taking so long to share my excitement. I was the kid picked last playing Red Rover. I’m not used to getting awards but I’m a quick learner. In addition to her Blog, she contributes to The Cut Throat Club Online where our connection started. She is raw, no sugar-coating, highly knowledgable, open and honest. I’ve received the most touching comments from her. Receiving the award from her is special because she encourages me daily. Her wall of awards is impressive. After reading her Blog you will understand why she is so decorated. Thank you my fellow SURVIVOR. Check out her Blog at http://avalancheofthesoul.wordpress.com Ten Things about me 🙂 1.  I started drinking coffee from my baby bottle. 2. I jumped out of an airplane from 12,500 feet. 3.  I have a soft spot for Seniors Citizens and animals. 4.  Love Technology, bring on the gadgets! 5.  If I were a plant I would be crab grass, it’s impossible to kill. 6.  I love travel, my bucket list is long. 7.  No one is to touch anything in my office. 8.  I’m a perfectionist, 50/50 good trait. 9. Wish for one more day with my grandparents, my Angels. 10. I’m deathly afraid of spiders, snakes and sharks. Sharks […]

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"I am part of the Word Press Family Award"

Inconsistently Yours surprised me with a nomination for the “I am part of the Word Press Family Award”.  I feel like I’ve won the Power Ball. She was the first person I met after starting my blog. She was particularly helpful answering question after question. I appreciate her honesty and killer sense of humor. She doesn’t give herself enough credit, don’t buy it, she is very smart. Check out her You Tube Channel where she peels back the layers of Personality Disorders. She introduced me to The Cut-Throat Club House Online which I am now a proud member. If you’re looking for a Blog to make you laugh, cry and most importantly offer support check out  http://inconsistlyyours.wordpress.com. Think of Blogs you’re moved by and pass along the “I am part of the WordPress Family Award”.   Congrats! to nominees of the “I am part of the Word Press Family Award”.  Shaun Gibson created the award. I will use his words to share what the award means to him and the rest of the Word Press community: “ is an award for everyone who is part of the “Word Press Family” I started this award on the basis that the Word Press Family has taken me in and showed me love and a caring side only Word Press can. The way people take a second to be nice, answer questions and keep it non competitive amazes me. I know I have been […]

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Nigerian Militants Kidnap 250+ Schoolgirls for Slaves or Marriage

Under the cover of darkness Nigerian Militants raid girls school kidnaping close to 300 girls. Some were able to escape yet stranded far from school. Their future is grime, girls as young as 9 years old are sold as slaves or prostitutes. For older girls the future is just as bleak. Girls as young as 12 years old will endure the horrific pain of Female Mutilation before being sold into marriage or prostitutes. International Trafficking is growing and the atrocities against young girls continue. Now is a good time to educate yourself on the complex issues. President Obama spoke out against the crime and Militants responded by kidnapping more girls. As mentioned earlier the issue is complex. This post is a high level overview of the issue. I want to do research, including responses from other countries and more specifically what President Obama has committed to. I received an e-mail yesterday from Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott on International Trafficking that I have yet to dig into. This situation has reached a tipping point for me. I will post a follow up very soon. I’m going to leave you with a quote from Amnesty International. “MY BODY MY RIGHTS” In many parts of the world, poverty and discrimination affect women’s ability to access education and exercise control over their own bodies. As a result, women and girls all over the world are at risk of violence, forced marriage, genital mutilation, […]

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Hundreds of Thousands RAPE KITS UNTESTED

END THE BACKLOG Give closure to Rape victims  Give jail time to Abuser What are we saying to victims? Victims are not important?. Raped at 11 & 12 years old, I didn’t tell a soul. My mother would have beat me silly. Some of you will know this first hand. It takes close to six hours to go through the photos, poking, scraping and prodding of a Rape Kit collection. I hear it’s humiliating and you feel violated again. I don’t have many issues that get under my skin, this is the ONE. How did this happen? Over years the kits collected dust stored at local level without a system to retrieve them. The Rape Kits started crowding out the local precinct storage and shipped to storage facilities and forgotten about. In recent years the money for the DNA testing was expensive and budgets were smaller. END THE BACKLOG has moved mountains in a very short time. Please pass the e-mail around and sign up on website. This is my opinion and not endorsed by End The Backlog. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Dear Friend, We have heard some exciting news and we wanted you to hear it from us first. We also want to ask for your help advocating for change. As you know, Joyful Heart is dedicated to ending the rape kit backlog nationwide. Every year, more than 200,000 individuals report their rape to the police. Almost all are asked to have a rape kit […]

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Mariel Hemingway presents "Running From Crazy"

Mariel Hemingway is the granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway. Mariel’s documentary explores her famous family’s history with Mental Illness and heartbreaking suicides. Premiering on the OWN network this Sunday at 9:00pm EST. I would double-check the start time. Information about the documentary including start times is probably on OWN’s website. Their family has faced generations of Mental Illness. Mariel is straight […]

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NO MORE George R.R. Martin

NO MORE EXCUSES MEANS NO MORE EXCUSES.  It doesn’t mean Television & Cable Networks get a pass. George R.R. Martin of Game of Thorns doesn’t agree. The cliffhanger last week named Breaker of Chains was an INCESTUOUS RAPE SCENE. One viewer said “it was the most disturbing scene ever”. At first George gave lip service saying it wasn’t RAPE which quickly turned to an apology when the Network was inundated with negative feedback. Every news/magazine outlet hit the story hard. One viewer did a rewrite of how the sence should have played out and printed by a major media outlet. This is an opportunity to educate the media on what we do and don’t want to see. If we believe RAPE and other VIOLENCE is wrong, we have to stand up. Until we make our voices heard the cycle continues. Warrior

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NO MORE EXCUSES

No More Silence. No More Violence. Tune in for the NO MORE Excuses SVU Marathon This Sunday on USA  The link will take you to information about event and how you can help. There’s an extensive list of resources. Mariska Hargitay who plays a cop on SVU, gives a special address. Mariska started the Joyful Heart Foundation in 2004 with the mission to help heal, educate and empower survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence and child abuse. NO MORE and End the Backlog are featured programs of the Joyful Heart Foundation. KNOW THE FACTS The next time you’re in a room with 6 people, think about this: 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men experience violence from their partners in their lifetimes. 1 in 3 teens experience sexual or physical abuse or threats from a boyfriend or girlfriend in one year. 1 in 5 women are survivors of rape. 1 in 2 women and 1 in 5 men have experienced some form of sexual violence in their lives. 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men were sexually abused before the age of 18. Warrior

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Where I Surf and Blog

This is where I start my day, you can see I’m on the organized side. My office would be perfect if I didn’t have three animals in there. They are like children either fighting or having a melt down. Life could be so much worse. Truly I know how blessed I am. I like to buy all kinds of cool things for the office, that way I don’t get bored. This is very close to the office of my dreams. I like it that way because I have to dream. Maybe someday I’ll get that expansive office with built-in wall to wall bookcases. You know a little more about me and a person’s desk says it all. Have an awesome day. Warrior  

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Stations of the Cross

This post does not preach or try to convert anyone of any religion. It’s the story of my intersection with the Catholic Church at 13 years old. In my recent post “I Almost Killed My Father” I told of spending a year at a Convent for bad girls. It is here I became familiar to the Catholic Religion. Growing up we did […]

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About Looking For The Light Blog

My mother, stepfather and father abused me until I was a teenager. All the scars hurt particularly of my father who sexually abused me. It’s hard to wrap your head around sexual abuse. My father committed suicide in 1992. It was an extremely difficult time, my grandmother never recovered he was her only child. In my father’s suicide note he wanted me to take care of all the details. Estranged for years but the heart still breaks. Because of the manner in which he killed himself we had to have a closed casket funeral. It’s very hard to reconcile death when you can’t see them. I gave the eulogy however I don’t remember. I struggle with Treatment Resistant Bipolar Disorder and the anxiety it brings. I was diagnosed  at 19 years old struggling for years without medication or over medicated. In 2005 I had the Vagus Nerve Stimulator implanted. The device sends electrical signals to the brain to increase Serotonin. I have taken over 40 prescriptions or cocktails. Some worked for a while then you have to try another mix. I thought the VNS device would keep me on the rails. Naïve thinking on my part. I was not as lucky as many in the FDA clinical trial. I realized the device was like any other prescription and it was another that didn’t work. I’m 50 years old now and the Black Dog drags me down deeper as I age. I’m alive with […]

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Meds & Musing

Rosie Perez Oscar Nominated Actress has released a memoir about her road to survival with a Mentally Ill mother. I saw her on a talk show not long ago.  Rosie is open, no glossing over her past. She is a survivor. The book, Handbook for an Unpredictable Life. I found it on Amazon. Many are focusing on Child Abuse Month and possibly making […]

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Female Circumcision on rise in US

I believe FGM is the most horrific form of child abuse. The article is difficult to read. If you are not familiar with the practice, I pray you’re outraged. I had no idea the practice of Female Genital Mutilation was a growing trend in the US. I found the article on NBC.com under World News with a 3/31/14 original publication date. Horrific Taboo: Female Circumcision on the Rise in U.S. BY ANNABEL ROBERTS AND MARIAN SMITH When Marie was two years old, a woman in her village in Africa cut off her clitoris and labia. Now 34 and living thousands of miles away in New York, she is still suffering. “I have so many problems, with my husband, with sex, with childbirth,” she told NBC News, withholding her real name to protect her identity. “The consequences on my life are all negative, both physically and psychologically.” The practice of Female Genital Mutilation is common across much of Africa, where it is believed to ensure sexual purity before marriage. But Marie says FGM is also “very common” in some communities in America. “The pressure to get daughters cut is great,” she said. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at least 150,000 to 200,000 girls in the U.S. are at risk of being forced to undergo cutting. The CDC says “at risk” because there are no actual records of the practice, only estimates – and old estimates at that. Its latest data […]

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Praying for Fort Hood

I am heartbroken to hear about the shootings at Fort Hood yesterday. My thoughts and prayers go out to the victim’s family. Please know there are people around the world who are holding your hand. My heart breaks for the shooters family. His family is suffering for the loss of their son and the victims and family members. I have to share a story about Fort Hood. Being one of the largest Military post, you can count on deployment at Fort Hood. A large percentage of soldiers fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan or other missions are proud to call Fort Hood home. The other side of the coin is a high percentage of deaths, brain injuries and limbs lost. When my grandfather died in 2010, I wanted to honor his Military service by having the Honor Guard attend. At the time Fort Hood had lost so many soldiers the Honor Guard could only service a 50 mile area. The funeral director told me not to expect anyone because we were out of the zone. Soldiers will always respect another soldier, they are bothers. My grandfather was 92 years old and served on the front line in WWII. Soldiers respect those who fought before them. They made an exception for my grandfather without being asked. My heart dropped when I saw two people to fold the flag and another to play Taps. I could see a tear in the soldier in front of […]

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New Mental Health Provisions

This is a copy of the National Alliance of Mental Health newsletter. They are an advocacy group for Mental Health. I’m skeptical anytime our government is focusing on Mental Health. I feel like we get swept under the carpet. Last night the Senate passed HR 4302. Last week the US House signed the bill. The bill is now waiting for Obama’s signature.  Improving services for the mentally ill will slow the number of people falling thru the cracks. Many bills we hear the whistle blow and they disappear in to huge stacks of other bills. I write this as a person with Mental Illness nothing more. NAMI offers useful information on website and do a good job of keeping people up on the progress of bills. *********************************************************************** Medicare Physician Payment Bill Includes Two Mental Health Provisions Last night, the U.S. Senate passed HR 4302, the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) extension. The bill passed the U.S. House of Representatives last week and now goes to President Obama for his signature. HR 4302 includes two provisions that are relevant to people living with mental illness and their families. First, the bill includes the Excellence in Mental Health Act demonstration project. This eight (8) state pilot is critical to modernizing publicly funded mental health services to align with evidence-based practices and to streamline Medicaid funding. The eight states selected will receive planning grants and Medicaid funding to provide comprehensive community-based mental health services and […]

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Hyper mania allowed me to travel

  I love to travel, my goal is to see the world. When your Bipolar, hyper mania  can make it possible. I was an Executive Sales person, number one in the company and making big bucks. I felt so lucky hyper mania stayed for 10 years. I went to Russia by myself, traveled with my friends to France and the Caribbean.  My doctor kept telling me the higher you go the harder you fall. I didn’t want to give up the person I was. The fall began slowly, I got fired from my job, blew though my savings and filled for bankruptcy. Did I mention a divorce and building a new house. I lost everything. What I lost was not worth the high. All the negative thoughts came back. My life is not as exciting, anxiety kept me in the house. Many days I didn’t get of bed. I’ve been suicidal several times, having 20 ECT treatments in the past 10 years. My husband understands my illness  and often goes on doctor’s appointments. The brain is a fascinating  question mark? I love this photo of Jesus because he carries me often. The photo was the motivation to get out of bed. Warrior

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Free to Fly

My emotions are raw today. It’s 4:45 pm and still in my pajamas. I’m sad and confused. When buried memories bubble up I work hard to lock them back up. I saw the ladybug on the roses, it brought the biggest smile. The excitement was enough to grab the camera. A smile is a great distraction, half a smile is better than none. All I can give is a half-smile today. Guilt took over, guilt tells me I’m lazy and my husband is going to leave me. I know it’s the illness talking but it hit me hard today because I was weak. Melinda

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Daddy was 52 on 2/22/1992

My father suffered from Mental Illness his entire life. When he was a teen, Doctor’s told my grandmother he was hyperactive and gave her tranquilizers. I doubt he took one pill. Estranged since I was thirteen years old, I could not look my abuser in the eye. Daddy started calling when I was 28 years old. He was delusional, talking in sentences that made no sense. I picked up he needed money, I started paying his bills. He said he was going to kill himself and kept rambling. I could not get through to him. I did not tell anyone in my family either.  He was so far gone, he could not process what I was saying. February 22, 1992 my father took his life. I felt overwhelming guilt. Unsure how my grandmother would react for me not telling her. It’s a guilt I’ll carry to my grave. At 28 years old it was hard to feel pain and remember the past. In the note he asked me to handle arrangements. I did what I’d done for years, stuff my emotions down, act strong and get it done. There are many who inherit Mental Illness, have a relative who suffers or experienced suicide in the family who suffer in silence. Healing from child abuse is difficult, it can feel impossible when the abuser is a parent. I never told my grandparents about my father sexually abusing me. Everyday is one step […]

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Caregiver to Grieving in Four Days

Each day was a roller coaster by how he felt and how exhausted I was. I learned so much being a caregiver to my grandmother and grandfather. As the population ages many of you will take on the responsibility. One of the most difficult changes was going from granddaughter to caregiver. Even at 92 my grandfather had a strong mind and felt he didn’t need help. I prayer for strength everyday. My grandfather died in 2010 at the young age of 92 years old. I spent more time with him 2010 year than I spent at home. I cherish the time we had together, no matter how painful. They are my memories and my life changed forever with his death. His health declined so fast that for two days I did not realize that he was dying now, not in a couple of weeks. He was at home under hospice care and would not get in the hospital bed until two days before he passed. He fell out of bed that morning, he was so weak it was difficult for me to get him back in bed. I don’t think we would have been able to talk him into moving to the hospital bed if he had not fallen. For him the bed meant death and he was still fighting. My grandfather had End Stage Kidney Disease. An emergency trip to the hospital for his AFIB is how we learned he had about two months to live. We knew his kidneys were losing function but I was not ready for […]

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Caregiver 101 Tips I Missed

Reblogged from 2009 I care for my 92-year-old gramps and have been here five weeks. He had three surgeries in seven days. Without Caregiving 101 training, I learned the hard way. *Ask the doctor what happens if the  procedure does not work. *If a second procedure does not work, is there a third option. *What is the recovery time and type of […]

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Lost in Caregiver Twilight Zone

Written on 12/21/2009 I’m caring for my 92-year-old grandfather following three surgeries in seven days. I’m so tired it’s numbing, it’s impossible to think about doing it again tomorrow.  My grandfather is a man of habits driven by the time of day, maybe from his military background. One morning he was upset when the hospital had not brought his coffee and could not see he was the problem. We’re in a hospital not the Hilton. At home it was far worse. It does not matter that I have changed the sheets again this morning, changed his soiled underpants more than once and got him dressed for the day. If the coffee is not ready when he expects or I don’t have the newspaper yet, I hear about it. My grandparents raised me and I love my grandfather dearly but it’s hard to bite my tongue. I want to ask doesn’t he realize or care that I’ve been moving since 5:00 a.m. to take care of him. At 92 he lives at home alone, still drives (very limited), buys groceries and goes to the local Senior Center several times a week to play dominos. He amazes me with each year. He is the healthiest dying person I know and in his mind he is much younger and more capable. This makes it impossible for him to understand recovery will take several more weeks at least. I catch him doing things he […]

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I’m Mourning and She’s Still Alive

My grandmother passed away from Dementia from two strokes in 2005. I’m reposting for the caregivers dealing with a loved one with Alzheimer’s or Dementia. For those who have not been a caregiver, these post may help you down the road. For the caregivers who give every ounce of energy, just one piece of advice if I may. Take time to clear your head, 10 or 30 minutes whatever you can for yourself each week. I did not have any one to offer suggestions and had brain drain after both of their deaths. My body was physically broken down. Due to the nature of the illness it’s hard to take an eye off them, 24/7. I was fortunate we had hospice care for both of my grandparents. My grandfather was healthy enough to help with my grandmother. I don’t know how to turn my brain off. I’m Morning and She’s Still Alive As the caregiver for my grandparents my hands are full yet my mind runs at a high level by switching to what I call “caregiver mode”. I can manage tons of information about what drugs they take, schedule appointments, discuss test results or anything else needed to take care of two people who are dying and “switch back” when at home. Before the fall and broken hip my grandmother knew me. Our conversations limited yet sharing memories with her made my day. She really enjoyed a photo book I put […]

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Dementia Induced Thought’s of Suicide

Being a caregiver to a dying loved one can leave you drained of emotion, exhausted and frustrated. All perfectly normal feelings. I felt quilt mixed in my bowl of emotions. I grew up knowing my grandparents wanted to die at home. I would grant the wish if possible. They inspired me, saved me from parental abuse and blessed me with unconditional love. Helping my gramps when making difficult life decisions, while working hard to remember she’s my grandmother. There were uncomfortable conversations, articulate to doctors how she is progressing and butt heads with family members. I ran a tight ship, no problems telling people it’s time to leave, not allowing people over everyday. God blessed me with the ability to turn my depression down and step up to next level. Love for my grandmother drove my decisions down to the last morphine stick. As our population ages the number of caregivers increase. It can seem overwhelming at times. If you don’t have a blog I would suggest checking out, it gave me an outlet. Caregivers choose to open their hearts to the emotional and physical challenges.  Dementia Induced Thoughts Of Suicide Today I used one of four “in case of emergency” pills to keep my Grandmother from hurting herself during a dementia related meltdown brought on by my Grandfather going to the grocery store. She’s had many of these episodes since her stroke almost two years ago. Today I saw […]

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