Stigma blog: Off-The-Wall–a Street Survival Journal (8-11-18) forwarded to State Representative

Assigned the task of advocating for special needs trust recipients, I begin this journal of my off-the-wall crazy financial situation. I hope it will be used to make changes in the laws for special needs trusts. Here’s a scenario why:

A person with Down’s Syndrome has a Special Needs Trust and she needs her insulin ASAP but the trustee has refused to pay the health insurance and she can’t get the insulin. Her diabetic coma is ignored and she cannot call 911 because the trustee doesn’t want her to have a phone. If she dies, all her trust money goes to his kids.

He has a history of theft, but no criminal record because the family did not want the shame of calling him to task legally. They thought he grew out of his youthful larceny. They were wrong. The millions he was tasked to manage were too much of a temptation. She dies with no advocate and her life is forgotten. She was disabled but with assets and so was the biggest mark of all. No group advocates for her because she is a person of means and so has it all, in theory–she never has to work and her parents provided for her and she was left millions.

She was, however, a sitting duck for the modern-day Cain who lusted after the Dis-Abeled (sic) sibling. And she was slain for her assets because no one cared enough.

This is fiction, but it could well happen and probably has with some variation on this theme, because there are no checks and balances, nothing to stop unethical trustees who are not professionals in financial management firms from getting away with abuse and neglect and worse. Who would investigate her death? Who would care?

Indeed, who?

I propose street-smart laws to keep in check the white collar criminals who can get away with murder, potentially. I am going to have a contest to see what institutions care for those with special needs and write about what I find because I myself am in a fiscal crisis that is engineered by an untrustworthy trustee. The places that help will get future business from people of wealth who want to be sure the above situation never happens to their loved one. So, game on!

The first prize goes to Montana Governor Bullock who answered my plea for help with an email the very next day. He has a mission to get the State and the country back to work and I am in Vocational Rehabilitation and am determined to work again. So, kudos to Gov. Bullock and I hope and pray to be able to find a way to use my training in writing to effect change. It takes someone who has some street experience in navigating these landmines, and I do qualify for that task. I’ve lived through homelessness and yet am determined not just to survive but to thrive, Go-d willing…

And so begins this oddity of a Homeric, epic quest to get my own financial house in order and drive out the money-changers all at the same time…it’s time for a sea-change, indeed…All aboard this ship of foolishness–necessity is the mother of legal intervention in the dire straits of perilous trusts sans protection for the innocent marks…Ahoy!

stigmatized anonymous–brain injured

The Crown of Thorns pierced His Head. “Let that mind be in (me) which was also in Christ Jesus,” it is written. How did He manage with that particular pain?

He was tortured and beaten a killed without good reason. He was hated and despised, but He did not go mad or become violent. How did He do it?

Being homeless did not faze Him either. He was able to provide for all His needs and for others, too, feeding 5,000 people from a few loaves and fishes and changing water into wine at the behest of His Mother for a wedding.

He did not want His Mother to be homeless, though, and while He was on the Cross, He gave John the Beloved the task of taking care of her.

What would Jesus do about my neighbor Amanda who lost one-third of her brain to cancer surgery and the rest of it is slowly dying because of radiation and now she is being evicted because—why? I do not know the whole story at all. What I do know has me sleepless right now because we are going to be inspected soon and I too could be evicted.

I have made some progress in tidying my place. I have put the books in bookshelves of sorts, as the manager said I needed to work on getting my books in bookshelves and my tubs full of papers sorted. I saved some grocery store boxes and stood them on their sides and stuck the books in them. The papers are much harder to deal with because I have to go through each one and it takes me forever.

I used to be really good at filing papers and I still have in storage my files from college, which contain my writings. Unfortunately I threw out my file on Afghanistan when my mother came to move me and called herself “the great motivator” in getting me to clean house. My file on Afghanistan was mostly from when I was at Stanford and typed on my portable typewriter a number of letters to the editors of various newspapers, including the Wall Street Journal imploring them to help the freedom fighters. I received a reply from the editor of the Journal and I wish I still had it. It meant a lot to me. I tossed the whole file because I was under pressure from my mother and not really thinking clearly and did not ever think I would write again.

Why, when I clean house, do memories of abuse surface? This is what makes me avoid it as much as I can. I told Amanda the other day that when I was cleaning it brought back memories of rapes. I am sure she did not need to hear that but it came out of my mouth.

Every time I have been homeless, I eventually get raped. These inspections always have the threat of eviction with them for me and eviction means homelessness in my mind, which is not exactly a sound mind right now.

Lord, help Amanda get help as well as myself and all who need help. Please give us peace of mind that You will not abandon us in our hour of need. Thank You! Amen.



stigma blog–in memory of a feline friend

Diesel was a feline professor of love. I miss him so much.

When I would arrive at the Ranch, he would come and greet me with his incessant meows, wanting to be fed, yes, but he loved attention. I am not a particularly lovable person to other people. I know that and I accept that as a reality. I can live with it.

I have a deep mistrust exacerbated by extensive trauma and no doubt people pick up on that fact. Somehow, Diesel saw past that and made sure he said hello to me every day. I tried not to become too close to him at first because I still carried the grief of losing my feline friends in a horrible barn fire from the past. I used to give them fresh water every day and switch out the frozen water for that which was room temperature from the heated office. They would greet me and meow for the water. I really loved them.

I could not handle losing them and so many others. I really could not.

My doctor at Warm Springs State Psychiatric Hospital said I would only really mourn the devastating loss fully with another horse. That was true. I only came close to dealing with the grief with another person who was half horse himself–a veterinarian/chiropractor who knew my beloved equine partner well. I broke down in front of him but never around any other human being.

It took Mel coming into my life to have a partner in grieving because he was so saddened by the separation of no longer living and racing with his friend. He’d lost his last race, too. I just hung out with him at his off-season home for a while. And I was able to cry. He understood.

Where we were going had no cats because the Akitas at the barn killed cats. It was only much later at a Ranch where I encountered Diesel. He really was the best-natured cat I have ever known. When he was with the vet, he would just purr and be sweet no matter what she would do to him. We could spray medicine in his eye to treat it and he would not claw or bite.

He was a fantastic mouser and even caught mice just to give them to the pregnant cat Premium who was always hungry. He was totally gregarious and loved attention, except he would leave if small children came around. I was sure he’d been harassed by one at some point.

He had gotten quite portly because he’d convinced people that he was famished when they would come in the tack room and they’d feed him. Sometimes five people would feed him in a day. He was quite the operator.

One day he almost was caught by an eagle, I was told. I decided to take him to the vet and have him evaluated and prescribed a regime that would get him to an ideal weight where he would survive and thrive and be able to get out of eagles’ crosshairs quickly.

He did and he moved beautifully and was able to jump up on fence posts easily once again. Dr. Tierney thought he was 13 years old. He’d been diagnosed with a heart murmur before but then she said after his new regime she could barely hear the murmur and that most vet school students would not be able to detect it now.

I fed him some Wachter’s Sea Meal, too, when his coat started to looked washed out and it grew back fully black and shiny again. Others remarked to me how well he looked.

He used to follow me around as I was doing chores at the barn. He loved to hang out in Mel’s paddock, too. When I would go into Mel’s shed and pray the rosary, Diesel liked to sit on my lap and be petted with his Diesel engine purring.

When I left, I had premonitions of something bad happening to him, but then I was not in my right mind and had been wrong about Dr. Mark in my living, waking nightmare, too. I wished I was wrong about Diesel, also.

They said he disappeared when I left. The rosary I said each day with Mel must have helped him, too. I would never have thought that I mattered that much to him. I wish there was something I could do now. He’s gone perhaps forever, but the Lord knows where he is and I know He cares. Diesel taught me with his incessant meowing to persevere in praying. I know that his feline heart is loved by the Sacred Heart and I hope he is on His lap purring because the Lord could use a faithful friend now. They don’t come any better than Diesel. He bore witness of his Creator,  and professed that God of Love, truly.

Stigma of solitude: Christmas blessing–alone and yet not

When all seems to be a blizzard of chaos, it is time to rejoice. The first Christmas was not nice and settled with cheery decorations and festivities. The stable birthplace was not a sought-after destination. It was an hardly ideal setting to give birth.

They were an holy family, though, and they did not bemoan the circumstances. Their priority was fulfilling duty and preserving life, not looking for presents and worldly acclaim.

What should it matter to me then if Christmas is a time of utter solitude? I had animals around for a bit, and I was able to ride. It was a lovely ride, really, and I was able to repeat the mantra, “In the Name of Jesus Christ, peace be still, peace be still, peace be still, peace be still” as a way to bring peace to Earth while on a Splendid High.

In meditation, I had really felt the Holy Child in the manger of my heart. He was truly there and I felt His peace.

I did not have any face-to-face contact with another human being that day and I did not have to, either, to be alright. I heard no other person’s voice at all. It was not planned that way, but that was how it worked out. And I did not despair. Although Church was off-limits for me because I just become nearly non-functional after attending, I survived. I had the best Christmas ever, really. He was safe in my heart and no one could harm Him there.

He could remain an innocent Manchild without being abused or made to be a source of income. My place was not prepared. It was and remains a disaster of epic proportions. It is and was filled with hours and hours of prayers, though, because that is what it takes to keep me safe in recovery each day and to have a stable enough heart to receive Him.

He was present and He is and was the only Present needed. And He is more than enough. He is the best Gift ever. Why would I even need another present at Christmas? I didn’t and I don’t. And that was the best blessing of all.

A counselor once said that the aged residents she visited at the nursing home were often in despair, that no one visited them. She told our group that we ought to learn how to be alright by ourselves, to prepare to be able to cope with that possibility.

I have learned that lesson. And I am at peace with that reality in my life. Nothing is open on Christmas in the small rural town I live except bars. I have not the slightest interest in them, in general.

People are with friends and family and they have their special get-togethers. In truth, I really did want to fast on bread and water that day and spend most of the day praying. I had a real chance to become closer to Him and for much of the day, I had to pray my way through the heavy weight upon me. But the blessing came in meditation and later while at the stable, with a Splendid High, also known as Mel. He enjoyed his bran mash with applesauce and molasses and he greeted me with a nicker.

All was well in my world, as well as his. We prayed the rosary together, as we do each day. And we celebrated the birth of our Saviour in a barn, as I dredged out his manger from the dusty remains he does not like to inhale. And we could both breathe freely in the sacred space of the stable. As is said, “the world needs a stable influence” and I agree. The most important part, though, is a stable heart, where there is room enough for Him. Then there is peace there and with it comes joy to dispel all gloom of not being part of whatever others are doing in eating, drinking and making merry…What a blessed lesson to learn!

ISOFaithfulandTrue–the blog: in memory of Carol Brett

So missing the wisdom, heart and genius of Carol Brett today…


“We put bits in the horse’s mouths that they may obey us

And we turn about their whole bodies

So is the tongue a little member and boasteth great things”

From the Fulmer bit in Splendid High’s mouth

To the Zenith on his back

And the cavesson for lungeing him

Carol Brett in inextricably bound in

With my life with my Splendid High partner, known as Mel

She dubbed him “Mellifluous” because his gaits flow as smoothly as honey

He is Doctor Mellifluous to me, as a Saint Bernard rescue dog it to a stranded traveler

And I would never have met him if it weren’t for Carol Brett.

She taught at a clinic and advocated for my being able to attend

And stood up for me when all the town believed the calumny.

Carol Brett is my heroine and will always be so.

Because of what she taught me…

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