The Hesitant Hand


I live in America, I feel safe. Or rather, I used to. Perhaps it is because I read the postings of too many electronic news now, concerned only with those of the latest hour. Anything over seven hours is considered stale to me, unless I am doing something investigative. As I sat to have a bite to eat and drink a lovely chi, I said a small prayer and prepared to cross myself as I came to the end of it. Nothing showy, just my usual quiet prayer. I hesitated. Images of someone coming and departing my head from my body suddenly filled my mind, screams of how dare I bluntly show my religion in secular surroundings. I made a very soft cross, a cross between what might be seen as shooing away a fly or sloppy cross. My head bowed a bit more in shame. What ever had come over me. The day was beautiful, I live in an area if different faiths. There was no real fear here. Yet I had wonder, how much longer will this freedom last? When will we become invaded? If Israel falls, will we be next? Is the fall of Christianity in the Middle East meaning the fall of Christianity and Judaism everywhere?

IMG_0031
Do you think my fears extreme? I ask you, would you have thought the bombing in the twin towers garage would lead to the Jets of 9-11? We must not hide, we must not be shy. It is time for us to be bold and kind, and proclaim in action who we are. We will not stand for terrorism. We must help our neighbors, and know them. They also need to know US. Don’t hide, get to know people, their faith, their beliefs. War makes beastly animals of everyone. Peace is made by making humans of one another. Let us fight our own beastly natures and bring out our humane best.

In Christ our Lord, Amen.
Nancy Louise

Digits of Errors


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“The Digital Evolution” has always struck me as a rather quaint and silly phrasing. Of course people who coined it were mostly focused on the term digital in technology, not digits as in fingers. Or as the Webster Dictionary would say.

digit a count of numbers 0 – 9, fingers or toes. The link is lot more intensive of course.

digital showing time with numbers instead of minute and hour hands. Also more intensive meanings at the site.

Now take those words and add it with the word, Library. Granted, Digital can and does mean the collection of information by means of 01 and 00 (for now). And a library is indeed a collection of information at its most basic service. So if one was to break it down to the bear digits, the digital library would make logical digital sense in providing information in the most proficient way to the masses. Or is it?

I have been a lover of books since before I can remember. Vivid stories of how I tried to bury my baby brother at age 4 in a well intended idea of letting him see all the books we had (he was in the baby buggy and Mom had stepped out of the room for just a moment while I lovingly place Golden Books all over him like a blanket. Such cute stories like that can’t happen with digital books… Collections of books on your reading pad can be fun, great to read where ever you go. I loved having digital books for college, oh the weight they saved me of carrying around. I also however loved to walk between the walls of bounded paper, muffling the consent vibrations of people, to touch the manuscripts of research from authors now long gone, but live on to pass on their wisome. Let’s face it, not all knowledge is fresh and twenty seconds ago. Someone has to research archives. Yet digital libraries around the world can widen access to libraries like nothing else as long as the technology accessibility also follows. Technology like the printing press revolutionized civilization and greatly equalized access to knowledge. Digital access can do the same. I suspect however, just as there are still old printing presses and cherished books and manual type and hand bound books, so will there be some libraries with treasured tomes kept in storage for the elite. Once again books will become the rare treasure of the few, but the information within them, will become more of the masses than Gutenberg could have ever dreamed. It is a digit al evolution, indeed.

One Warm Day


50% of all deaf women are reported to be sexually assaulted as children…

There is no sticking date for this day, I was four, a baby brother brother recently born, the sun was in the afternoon mode in the west. My vocabulary was delayed by being deaf and taught speech only, but not “discovered” as no one in authority wanted to label me as such, yet. (not for another two and half years would this happened). The days were getting longer already, but as an observant child, I already knew it was past noon time. I stayed near the screen of the door so Mama could see me. She get so mad when I went off chasing butterflies or what ever caught my attention in those days. What happened next comes jumbled and traumatic and hard to piece together.

This is what my Parents remember. I was gone. I was right there in my muddied dress, playing happy with my mud pies in my “kitchen” my made for me from wooden milk crates. Satisfied I was put for the moment, she looked down at her slippery infant son in his bath and then looked backed up. Her heart stopped, I was gone. She screamed my name, wrapped her baby suds and all and dashed out the front door. She looked all over the yards front and back of that half acre we had. She finally called my Dad at the State Park Museum and frantically said I gone missing again. Dad came home and he also looked all over the house (all 1000 square feet of it), under the house in the crawlies, down by the river the garage and every other place they could possibly think of. Nothing. Time to call in the troops. This time the State Park closed the museum and radio out to the Park Rangers all over Coloma, missing McCormick child and gave the address. Every spot on the half acer and beyond was checked including the hwy I liked to walked on sometimes. After several hours, they decided they have to dredge the river. Just as they were about to do that however, I suddenly show up on the front porch where I had gone missing from several hours ago. My Mother was convinced I was taken for one main reason. I was perfectly clean and smelled of laundry and bath soap. The last time she saw me I was splashed in mud and she had thought how she would have a second child to bathe that night.

My own memories are more jumbled. In part because they are mixed in with memories of things that happened to me before we moved “across the river” as the saying was when one moved from one side of the American River to the other. My overwhelming memory is one of terror, loud sounds like gun shots, and scrambling to get under the bed or any tiny space to get away from the men, and failing. Of screaming till my throat hurt and being slapped for it. I learn quickly to be quiet, because no one came when I screamed anyway. My vagina would hurt afterwards and I would always be so tired. Also, I hated sleeping at night, day time was OK, no one could sneak up on me in the day, because I could see their shadows. I always slept with my back to the wall if I could help it. If I wanted to change sides, instead of turning over, I flip from one end of the bed to the other. Something that drove my parents nuts as they could not see why I kept changing the head of the bed. I told them, “its headaches, the bed crooked”. As it turned out the bed was off a bit… I was not raped repeatedly so much, but when I was, it was very traumatic and 50 years later, small events can bring it all up again. A drunk man on the streets recently, I did not have my alert dog with me that day as I had a lot to do and I was concern he would be too stressed out. So I was not alerted when a drunk man came up behind me, and got really close. Started talking and all my protected actions failed. Come at me from the front and the side and I am ready for you. But I was at my car and he came to my back side. I froze. My body and my voice. I have never been able to trust my voice will bring help and I have a LOUD voice. He kept talking I kept signing and finally he gave me a kiss on the cheek. What really froze me was he reeked of old and current alcohol. Just like the men who used to have me. All he did was kiss me on the cheek, but for weeks after I would be in tears, shakes and want to vomit every time I had to go by that spot where I had business to attend to. He was finally taken in by Police and Medical Attendants for a completely different reason, but a milestone around my soul was cut off that day. At least ONE guy was caught. The men who did what they did to me 50 years ago, I can find no record of them ever being caught or where they are located now. I am looking though, when I do find where they are, I will make my report. Why? Because I heard that one of them is still playing “Grandpa”. It is too late for me, but not too late for other little ones.

Nancy Louise

The Loud and The Soft Of It.


What do I know about Guns?

I know the difference between a BB gun and a glock

I watch CSI, NCSI, Bones (you get the drift)

I read/watch/social media the News in all forms

and I just spent the last hour reading up on the topic on the internet. In other words, squat. I am however, going ahead to write my thoughts. Here is where I stand, my peace loving Sister has turned into a Rabid Pro-gun Amendment 2 supporter (ok, from where I stand in California, she looks Rabid to me, OK?). This is my younger Pip Squeak of a sister who I forget is WAY past the pigtail stage, a breast cancer survivor, Ranch Owner (in other words, they ain’t got 911 where they live, so they NEED guns), and a tough old broad with a leathery smile from her times working in the sun. Yep, WAY past the pigtail squeak I knew eons ago. So this side of her coming at me after Newtown Conn gave me a big pause. I had to start looking into stuff. This is where I got to so far.

Legal Gunsmith Shops? Leave them well enough alone. We need them to take care of the guns that are out there, teach those that need to learn the use of them, and keep things on an even keel. No laws we need to change there, so leave them alone.

Gun Runners are those who sell guns ILLEGALLY. Arms Dealers are those who sell to military groups (or what ever you might call a gang of ruffians wanting to take over something). Those, we need to do something about. What to get guns off the street, that is one area we need to focus on. I can easily guess that all those drive by shootings, and guns being pulled our of pants and under jackets are rarely if ever brought from your local gunsmith shop. So, what about the Conn. Situation? ahandgunThose guns were brought legally and the Mom even did the training to make sure her kids knew how to properly handle the hardware. Its possible she never saw the capacity for violence in her son, or denied it? We will never really know. Here what we can know however. Lets say by some law of humanity, all guns could be removed from all mentally ill people. So what happened would have never happened, right?

Wrong.

Combustable material lays all around us. You can not make those things disappear. We depend on all kinds of combustion to make things go and work in our lives, so they will always be around us.

Think it be hard for him to hurt a lot of people? A simple pipe bomb under a parked car where the families gather to drop off or get their kids would have hurt the same or more. Don’t believe me, read up on all the terror hitting the middle East these days and how its done. Plus getting the stuff for that is cheaper than getting a gun which are hundreds even thousands of dollars (legally) in cost. There are knives, poisons, any number of things that could be done to cause deadly mayhem. The only reason I am mentioning any of those is because I read about them, and as a professional book reviewer and fiction writer, I write about them in my stories. No I have NO intention of doling any of those things. Someone else however, can, and sadly will.

So do we lock up all the people who are on Rx head stuff? Again, no. Because you would be locking up your local grandparents, the nice baker down the street, the lovely fantastic teacher in math, and many other productive people who are productive because they take medications. We can’t wrap the world in safety clouds. Believe me as a Mother I often desperately wish it were so. My children leave home everyday, and I say a prayer every time and breathe a sigh of relief when they get home. What we need, is a change in laws towards how the mentally ill are treated. Not to take away our rights, but to find a legal and safe method by where a person can be stabilized enough to become rationalized. Should that person chose not to stay on that medication, we the society are left to deal with the repercussions of their actions. So, who should bear the burden of those infractions? How far are we to make sure that person has their rights, while they infringe on other’s rights to safe passage on a sidewalk? Who gets to make the judgement? This is where we have become stuck and Mental Illness has become to a standstill and many children who need, and should be, I dare say it, required treatment, will not get it.

Who has the greater right? The child who must face the chemical consequences of taking medication which may help but also harm in the long run? Or the family / social network that must try and deal with the illness often to the point of becoming injured or in extreme cases, disabled or killed?

Nancy Louise

To get a job, do I have to take off my clothes?


This should seem like a dumb question to most of us, but lets face it, when asked to do things like, show our facebook page to prospective employers, it kind of feels like that. Now I am savvy enough to know not to have anything provocative on my FB, and I have friends who are vocal enough to call me out if my content is out of line, to whom I give thanks for their support. That does not mean I want them to know.

If I am married and have kids
The state of my social economic life
What I look like in a bathing suit

Sleeping Beauty
"A little privacy here, I am a lady!"

My private eating habits (I like smelly fish and ethnic foods, all “loud, strong, and smelly”, but I don’t eat them on the job because they ‘offend’ folks).
My political views which I share with friends and family but don’t share with my professional contacts IN PERSON. Should they find out about it by sniffing about, thats THEIR problem, and their blame and they can not accuse me of “bring it on the job”.

Basically its looking for what I can be guilty of, before I do anything.

In case we have forgotten folks, in this country, we are INNOCENT until proven guilty. What we need to do is re-establish communications, learn who your neighbors are and hire people you know and get recommended. If the person is a total unknown to you and makes you nervous, ask them for their references. Then follow your gut. THAT is still legit.

Forget the sneaks and use the speaking. You would not ask someone to show their underwear for a job interview would you? So let people keep their dignity, and show their best. Expect they will keep that best behavior to their professional expectations and go from there. If they do show up in their underwear, ok, then you have a reason to ask for their FB page, other wise, lay off…

BTW I see this as a very local form of Social Justice, the kind where you stand up for yourself, and your neighbor.

Nancy Louise

Once The Egg is Cracked…


Brood-Hen
Mom and her eggs
“Once the egg is cracked, you can never go back, because the yoke goes black, and the chick lays flat.” I have no idea where I picked that up from. But it basically says, dead is as dead does. It also pretty much says what a lot of professional feel that once our own eggs (mental) is cracked, you are dealing with damaged goods and well its pretty much trying to contain the damaged till most people die an early death. Ugh, a few, a very few few, will succeed beyond wildest dreams to go beyond those expectations and beat all the odds. I am determined to be one of them or die trying. I mean if I have to die, I may as well die trying to live, right?

I know a number of mental health specialist. It is rather common for someone like me who both works with those who have mental health issues in my line of work (ministry) and who deals with such things herself personally. For those of you who might be slightly less educated about this, mental illness does NOT mean someone is wacko thank you very much. It can mean anything from a temporary mild case of disrupting depression or anger issues to horror problems of schizophrenia where they are never going to be able to care for themselves alone. As for who is wacko, that usually a media or personal judgmental sticky which is inappropriate and never accurate. There is also another misperception, that someone who is mentally ill must of done something to get that way. Oh really? I supposed if eggs had a thought they would chose to rot? The fact that so many with mental illness desire to die, not because they want to be dead, but because they want to leave the pain, should be a clue. The human being prerogative is to above all things, survive. When that is disrupted, something is seriously wrong. So what can cause such a disruption? Frankly I think there are primarily three major causes. I do not speak from a Ph. D. just from personal experience and observation.

Environmental Factors (Abuse being the primary one)

Physical exposures to certain viral infections (which then infect the brain)

Family Genes / History (Hard to separate the two sometimes).

Did you know that showing your Son photos of naked ladies (the Pornographic kind) before he is 18 is considered sexual abuse? Yep it is. [A parent who exposes a child to intercourse or deviant sexual behaviors or pornographic materials is abusing that child. New York State law now clarifies that such abuse is a crime.] Exceptions would be, unless he brought it to YOU to ask questions. Bringing him in to look at your stash however, is big no no. If this was a tradition that your Father did with you to discuss the birds and the bees, you are then combining a family history with environmental factors. A tradition that is actually abusive. On the surface it might seem harmless and male bonding. One can do the same thing at a museum too with out going pornographic and exposing him to degrading images. Things that could trigger problems down the road. Such actions might also signal a sign of deeper issues in the family one might not even be aware of, just the simple fact there is pornographic material in the house signals that.

I want to go a bit deeper here than simple pornography. What about sexual abuse that happens before the child is the age of 5? It does not matter if there was no physical contact, if it only happened once, or if the person who had it happened to them understood it was not their fault and figures they have moved on. The impact, dang nab it, is still life long and disruptive for life.  I was raped repeatedly starting at age 4. Now at that age, due to my undiscovered deafness and delayed speech, I was unable to tell anyone, anything. I literally had no vocabulary to say anything. I do however remember having a torn pee pee, and Mom rushingly bathing me one time and being angry about it. (I was 5 at that particular memory). Growing up I kept wondering if I was a virgin or not. Oh I did so want to be and yes as I learned more English a lot of the memories I had of my early years did get packed away. Interestedly though, I keep the ability to think without words fresh. I found it stimulating as an artist and writer to do so. It was another language for me and gave me insights for my creative self. Much talk or dismissal has been mention about such repressive and recovered memories. Just how validated are they?

For me, the validation is ironically in my own mental illnesses, my disruptive habits, and unhealthy body. All footprints left that festered from decades ago on a very young mind-body.  If there is an interest, I will write more about this.

Nancy Louise

Grow where you are planted
Grow where you are planted

Brood-Hen
Mom and her eggs

I know a number of mental health specialist. It is rather common for someone like me who both works with those who have mental health issues in my line of work (ministry) and who deals with such things herself personally. For those of you who might be slightly less educated about this, mental illness does NOT mean someone is wacko thank you very much. It can mean anything from a temporary mild case of disrupting depression or anger issues to sever problems of schizophrenia where they are never going to be able to care for themselves alone. As for who is wacko, that usually a media or personal judgmental lable which is inappropriate and never accurate. There is also another misperception, that someone who is mentally ill must of done something to get that way. Oh really? I supposed if eggs had a thought they would chose to rot? The fact that so many with mental illness desire to die, not because they want to be dead, but because they want to leave the pain, should be a clue. The human being prerogative is to above all things, survive. When that is disrupted, something is seriously wrong. So what can cause such a disruption? Frankly I think there are primarily three major causes. I do not speak from a Ph. D. just from personal experience and observation.

Environmental Factors (Abuse being the primary one)

Physical exposures to certain viral infections (which then infect the brain)

Family Genes / History (Hard to separate the two sometimes).

Did you know that showing your Son photos of naked ladies (the Pornographic kind) before he is 18 is considered sexual abuse? Yep it is. [A parent who exposes a child to intercourse or deviant sexual behaviors or pornographic materials is abusing that child. New York State law now clarifies that such abuse is a crime.] Exceptions would be, unless he brought it to YOU to ask questions. Bringing him in to look at your stash however, is big no no. If this was a tradition that your Father did with you to discuss the birds and the bees, you are then combining a family history with environmental factors. A tradition that is actually abusive. On the surface it might seem harmless and male bonding. One can do the same thing at a museum too with out going pornographic and exposing him to degrading images. Things that could trigger problems down the road. Such actions might also signal a sign of deeper issues in the family one might not even be aware of, just the simple fact there is pornographic material in the house signals that.

I want to go a bit deeper here than simple pornography. What about sexual abuse that happens before the child is the age of 5? It does not matter if there was no physical contact, if it only happened once, or if the person who had it happened to them understood it was not their fault and figures they have moved on. The impact, dang nab it, is still life long and disruptive for life.  I was raped repeatedly starting at age 4. Now at that age, due to my undiscovered deafness and delayed speech, I was unable to tell anyone anything. I literally had no vocabulary to say anything. I do however remember having a torn pee pee, and Mom rushingly bathing me one time and being angry about it. (I was 5 at that particular memory). Growing up I kept wondering if I was a virgin or not. Oh I did so want to be and yes as I learned more English a lot of the memories I had of my early years did get packed away. Interestedly though, I keep the ability to think without words fresh. I found it stimulating as an artist and writer to do so. It was another language for me and gave me insights for my creative self. Much talk or dismissal has been mention about such repressive and recovered memories. Just how validated are they?

For me, the validation is ironically in my own mental illnesses, my disruptive habits, and unhealthy body. All footprints left that festered from decades ago on a very young mind-body.  If there is an interest, I will write more about this.

Nancy Louise

Grow where you are planted
Grow where you are planted