Friday, October 18, 2013

Shutdown End

Most people were relieved that congress finally agreed to open the government last night, tired and fearful that it will all occur again next year when the budget talks begin or when the debt ceiling needs to be raised again. One concession was to verify eligibility of those seeking medical insurance under the new health care act. I did not know what it meant or what the details would be but the message filled me with dread even though I did know the details yet. What is the law’s implication to my relative, without insurance and legitimacy, what hate or cruelty exists that would prevent care and compassion be given to the sick. There is too much hate around, afraid that the nation’s wealth is squandered to the undeserving; unlawfully present despite their contribution to the local economy, working hard, paying taxes, raising families. Their only crime is to want to live in a better world from whence they came, similar to the people who came long ago from the old world, carving the land like cake to apportion to their needs. But the modern day descendants have not the same opportunities.

Yesterday I called the lawyer but he was unwilling to accept the case, aware of the past impropriety, thinking we are all criminals, afraid and, rightly so, that the state would come down and penalize them. But it was done long ago, when one were innocent children, unaware of the implication in the future, when the box would ensnare us like a cage, driven by a father who knew no better except to escape the old life and prosper in the new.  Now the reckoning has come, when fate entwined together from different streams to culminate here in this place, and what a beautiful place, where the sunlight never seemed more magical, the brisk air, blue skies like paradise, the bare hills and the near desert landscape and high snow-capped mountains surrounding the valley. I would not like to be anywhere else, loving the old run down towns surrounding Lake Elsinore, surrounded by mountains that concealing the Pacific Ocean, where Spanish friars and conquistadors built churches and haciendas. But such incredible beauty did not come without a brutal price, where the state wields its hand like some unforgiving god.

He had protected me when we were children, I would sleep beside him when I lay awake, unable to sleep with nightmares in mind, after watching horror movies while he slept unafraid beside me.  He gave me comfort and we all looked up to him as one would a conquering hero, now struck down by his battle against his demons, his fear slowly germinating in his body, like a snake getting ready to strike. Now I am helpless to save him, exhausted by the myriad rules and paperwork, angry that life is unfair. Poignantly his car was returned by the mechanic yesterday, ready for use, its wonderful engine purring like a tiger; for he loved cars, racing them like a madman, spending his money on their thrills instead of his own legitimacy. But that is how he lived his life and I pray to god that he be given a second chance that this experience will bring out the grace and wonder of those emerging from serious illness. A second chance to see that his children and family will live up to his dreams, and grow to be wonderful people and that we would once again meet with our families and reminiscence on the days that gone by.

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