Just Another Day

 

My mind reels with thoughts about life today.  Wondering if this is what everything has come to such as random, fleeting thoughts that almost feel dreamlike in their reality.

It’s raining outside and there is a sadness about me.  Thinking about all the things I dreamt of so long ago will ever come to pass.  Thinking that I want more out of life than I have been able to achieve so far.  My body stops me while my mind soars with all sorts of adventures.  If you haven’t been in my shoes you could never understand.  People either look at you with pity, accuse you of having self-pity or avoid you at all costs.  It is not a happy life but not an unpleasant one either.  I have nothing concrete to complain about do I? I am breathing, I can see, hear, smell, talk and think.  I can bear the pain of my body with prescription medication.  Yet, the sadness overwhelms even though I know this truth.  I am a practical shut-in.  Unable to muster the energy most days to even venture out onto the porch.  The winter weather is no help.  The rain falling is like the tears that fall within myself.  Hearing people say it could be worse, knowing they are right, still doesn’t abate the deep rooted sadness of believing my life is almost finished and I have yet to truly live the way I had thought I would be living at this stage of my life.

I often think, “What could I have done differently?”” How could I have prevented this dilibating illness?” I never arrive at the answer or the solutions. I blame my husband because he still goes to work everyday and I am so wrong to do that.  He has to work so that we can have the essentials needed to survive at the moment.  Yet, I have never learned to drive so because he is the one who drives me places, I always think, “if only”.  Selfish, I say to myself.  Those are selfish thoughts.  It is all my own fault not his.

My body struggles more and more each day to do the simple things like getting dressed. Most times I can barely wash my hands and face and brush my teeth. My upper body is now experiencing as much difficulty as my lower body has for the past five years.  Some days it hurts to raise my arms to brush my hair. I read this and say to myself, “Are you making excuses?”. I don’t know, maybe, but my emotional brain doesn’t think so.  I see it as a fact of MY life. Something I neither understand nor want to be, but nevertheless it is.  I have a deep desire to be different yet, when I try to do some of the things that were once done (often without a second thought) is now almost impossible. It isn’t that I don’t try, I try all the time.  I look around and see all the projects that I left undone for such a long time and tell myself, “Today I will accomplish at least one of them”, but I find that too often that doesn’t ever happen.  Once and a blue moon, like right now, I am at my computer typing away, yesterday I couldn’t even move my arm.  So, yes, I am so grateful for these days that even though I feel sadness, I can at the very least move to some extent.  The issue is that I have less and less of these days and even now I feel my body starting to reject the position I am in sitting here.  I expect that in an hour or so, I will be laid up again because I decided to try something that should be so easy for most people. If I have sinned in the past, than I believe I am now paying for whatever sins I committed.  So I can’t possibly feel sorry for myself, because I must deserve whatever deal I have been dealt.

When my granddaughter is around the pain doesn’t stop, but I seem to be able to push through it better.  I want to experience joy with her and I want her to feel like she can trust me to do things that she likes to do.  Somehow my mind overcomes my body’s woes and although I often collapse when she leaves, I at least have those hours with her where I can feel “almost normal”.   I suppose my selfishness wants more of those types of hours.  I hope one day that my wish to live better and grasp whatever I can from this life and keep it inside of me for the remainder of my days will arrive sooner than later.  For now, I will let this day pass as I have so many others.  I will stop thinking of what could have been and concentrate on what my life is now.  I will search for that ray of sunshine in the little things and realize that they are what really matters.  I will seek to use my idle times to do something good for others.  Perhaps having a “sad” day is good for my soul.  Perhaps having “happy” days all the time isn’t always a necessary part of life. I think just writing about how I feel today was good for me.  It helped me to see that even though the rain falls the sun is always just behind those clouds.

And that is The Way I See It here in Brooklyn.

K

 

A humbling experience: Civics 101

Being a practical shut in affords me the luxury of being able to take advantage of Television, which in the past three months has become my virtual classroom.  This week in particular while watching the House Intelligence Committee and the House Judiciary Committee Hearings I had a chance to see a portion of my government at work.  I am at awe, in particular, watching the inquisition of the nominee of Judge Neil Gorsuch to Supreme Court of the United States.  I have heard a multitude of dissenting opinions from people I respect about their pre-conceived notions of how this man will be a bad pick because President Trump nominated him.  They could not be more wrong.  This Judge is a Judge of the people.  This Judge is a respected scholar who knows the law and the Constitution like his own wife’s name. With the questions before him by the Democratic Party when asked if he feels committed to side with his nominator or the nominating party on three separate questions of this nature this was his consistent responses in his  own words, ” No.” “I am my own man.” And “No one is going to capture me.”  How can one not consider a man of such outstanding quality?  His record speaks for itself.  He has no hidden agenda. His love and respect for this Nation is apparent in his composure , his reactions and his responses.  This man is an excellent choice for a Supreme Court Justice.

Now for the other part of my Civic 101 lesson.  I had always believed that the term “special interest” was referring to corporate over individual or money and might over humanity.  Well thanks to these Hearings I have been able to witness first hand how wrong and misguided I have been.  Thank you Judge Gorsuch again for going through this grueling process so that I might learn a thing or two.  I now realize that it is the democratic/liberal/progressive side of our government that are truly the parties of “special interest”.  As I listened and paid close attention to every question, innuendo and clarification presented by the Democratic Senators “special interest” was the premise behind each and every one of them.  They “pretended” to be outraged by individuals who were affected by decisions made in Federal courts, but it was clear that it was to denounce the nominee not that they had any in depth knowledge of the people involved, not that they took any responsibility for creating the law in the first place, not any ambition toward changing the laws they claim to be disparaging.  Nope none of that.  They appear childish, vindictive and without substance in all their presentations during this process. The other side naturally were more “friendly” but that was a given expectation.  What I heard from the republican side in discussing the “special interest” view was common sense, a respect for the laws of the land, a willingness to change things that might need changing and a willingness to disagree with the Executive branch of government if needed.

So what did I learn? That 3/4 of Democrats and the like are the party of “special interests”. That about 1/3 of Republicans are for “special interests”. And that both parties have a greater power than the Executive Branch, with few exceptions. That if our Judiciary is made up of Judges like Judge Gorsuch our country has nothing to worry about concerning the proper application of its’ laws.  He is a man of integrity who will live by the words of the Constitution all its Articles and Amendments in the pursuit of justice for all mankind.  He is someone I am proud to call an American because he personifies the best inside all of us.

And that’s The Way I See It here in Brooklyn.

K

Pushed into the “doughnut hole” until death overtakes me!

  • So Obamacare is imploding.  The American Care Act is proposed. Insurance companies have obviously secretly paid off the politicians and the Unions. We the patients aged 64 and above are pushed into a hole until we either go bankrupt or die, whichever comes first.

So I worked for more than thirty years.  Twenty-one years of my life I worked in a Union owned environment of Higher Education….a University staff member.  At the age of 60 I became disabled as a result of years of my body experiencing health issues, body structure breakdown and I suppose lousy genes.  Through no fault of my own my body could no longer withstand the simplest of tasks and since I always put my all into my work, I had to retire early at a reduced pension and take my “reduced by age” social security as a disabled American.  My spouse still works so my total income was such that any other assistance is not allowed.  It didn’t matter that with this scenario our bills stayed the same and we continue to struggle to pay them every month, barely getting by from paycheck to paycheck.  We never made enough money to have savings and when I became ill we exhausted our 401 contributions we had made in our jobs for more than twenty years.

We weren’t complaining though because we knew we were doing better than many others.  We could keep the roof over our heads and the food on our table.  We were able for a time to afford the doctor co-pays and the co-pays of our required medications.  That is until the regulations enacted by my health insurance coverage pushed me head first into a giant hole dug by the insurance companies that covered me.

Paying those Union dues every paycheck, contributing to social security for those 30 years and working my butt off all my life only counted for a short period of time.  The song by the Beatles that includes the line, “Will you still feed me, will you still need me when I’m 64?” became my mantra since the answers from my insurance coverage to maintain my existence was a loud resounding, no!  My prescriptions that keep my body moving to a minimum are no longer affordable since I was pushed into this hole. What once cost me $15 per prescription of three has now risen to $77 per prescription and I am prescribed to take 8 medications daily, some twice a day, others three times a day and others once a day.  I never even took the total on the days I could tolerate the pain that is constantly with me.  Other medications that assist my movement are not covered anymore since I was pushed into the Medicarerx (part D of Medicare) by the insurance company that made a deal with my Union to give them the cheapest premiums to cover their retirees.  As complicated as this sounds the bottom line is the seniors who are not wealthy can now go straight to hell inside the government’s and insurance company’s and Union’s paid for “doughnut hole”  or “Drug tier gap” so the Insurance company CEO’s and their government cronies can get richer.  The funny part is that I never asked for a hand out ever.  Anything I now have is not an entitlement it all was earned by the contribution of my backbone and portions of my salary.  Everything I write about this will probably fall on deaf ears anyway cause until you walk in my shoes you will not care, but I am gonna tell it anyway.

I don’t believe in Universal Healthcare.  That similar system is run in other countries around the world and from personal accounts from people I know and love, I am told they cannot see a doctor most times for months, their medications are provided sparsely and not conveniently, needed lab tests have waiting periods up to a year. So why would anyone willingly choose that for their lives?  Our Medicaid, Medicare, Food Stamp and Prescription Drug programs all seem to be suffering because they are covering far too many people that the economists predicted.  The only solution I see for that problem is to remove all undocumented people from receiving the assistance needed by Americans who were either born disabled or worked their whole lives before becoming disabled and give it back to the system that is suffering.  Provide that needed revenue and put it into programs that cover health insurance for every Veteran in the USA. If that was done, I would do without to give back to them what they sacrificed for us, but that isn’t what is going on in our country. Instead all of us are suffering and paying for the greed, corruption and mismanagement in the Insurance agencies and in the Obamacare act in our government today.

In a  REAL American Health Care Act the following is what it should include:

  • Total coverage for pre-existing conditions by all health insurance companies
  • comprehensive, high value long term care coverage for severely ill Americans and American seniors
  • prescription drug coverage without drug tiers for “common” illnesses as diagnosed and prescribed by physicians
  • Fair and equitable insurance premiums available to all Americans across every state in the country
  • Medicaid availability for all poverty level Americans
  • Medicare for all Social Security American recipients including doctor visits with or without specialties, labs tests, fair priced prescription drugs and long term care for the chronically ill with complete coverage including Nursing care facilities
  • Preventive medicine and holistic care access for all Americans who choose it (not mandated by insurance companies)
  • Health Savings Plans accessible to all Americans who want it and can afford it from salary deductions (not mandated by businesses and government)
  • Available health insurance coverage for the homeless
  • Health Insurance coverage for all Veterans of the US Military provided outside of the VA hospitals currently run through the government , but not exclusive of

These are the highlights of a Real American Health Care Act.  These highlighted proposals are the ones that fulfill the needs of Americans over the needs of the CEOs of the Insurance Companies.  These simple, explicit points are what we the people should be sending to our government representatives. This REAL American Health Care Act will take care of the American people far better than the current proposal of the AHCA and far, far better than Obamacare has and would. Let’s talk to the President, the VP, the House and the Congress by copying these points onto a piece of paper and mailing it to each and everyone of them.  Let the voices of the American people shout loud and proud that these are these are the  things we need and want when we are 64!

And that is The Way I See It here in Brooklyn.

K

45th & Perception

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I cannot turn on Social Media or the Television without finding a negative expose about our 45th President of the United States of America.  My first thought about those statements about him from the Democrats, Liberals, Some Women and Some Young Men is wow they are saying “Pay back is a Bitch”. Only in the very next moment, I think, these poor people have no idea how much harm they are creating in the country that has given them everything they could ever truly want.

All of their protests, name calling, bashing, disrespect, hating won’t really change the world or even so much as make a dent in the corruption of politics nowadays.  All it is doing is causing a rift between the people in America who believe in America surviving or America dying.  Okay a bit dramatic there, but let me put it another way, America dying the way their parents and grandparents view their country.

I truly feel sorry for all of us.  America was not built to be a socialist country no matter how many arguments are out there about Social Security or some other earned credit program.    Many times people use that argument, but Social Security is not an entitlement it is saved earnings in every legal citizen’s paycheck.  Welfare, food stamps, SSI, medicare, medicaid they are entitlements or benefits if you prefer that word. But, I digress.  As I was saying, America was built through the ugliest word in the country today, Capitalism.  It is MONEY.  Money has driven us from the get go.  Whether we didn’t have any, or we had too much.  Money in today’s world is a dirty word because not very many people have enough money to live with the rising costs of everything.  People have forgotten that values are more important on your death bed.  If those you love will miss you is important.  America cannot survive without some kind of respect for money.  It will not flourish, it will decay and it will become a third world because there is not any idea out there that will take care of all the people that need money and care.

Our 45th President represents “money” and so the hate begins there. Some think he is somewhat “crude” in his speeches.  Some think he is getting down to join them.  Some think he is brilliant in his idea of being straight forward and not holding back any of the punches to the people he thinks may need them.  Some believe he is a racist.  (If anyone had the guts to admit it, there isn’t one person in all of the USA who isn’t racist, they are just too afraid to say it to themselves.  Most would never act upon that feeling, but everyone feels it and it has been inside of all of us for generations). Some believe he is an ego-maniac out only to benefit himself and his family and friends.  Some say he thrives on the power.  Some say, no, its the craving for popularity.  Some think he hates women.  Some think he hates anyone who isn’t a white male.  In the whole scheme of things, it really doesn’t matter what anyone thinks because he is sitting in the White House as the 45th President of the United States of America.  (It doesn’t but, that sentence alone should make all citizens stand up and take notice).  He is a leader in World Powers.  What he does affects the country and the world.  So far, I would say he hasn’t done anything at all to hurt this country or the World for that matter.  He is in office less than 100 days and yet, he has been given no chance whatsoever to show that he is worthy of the responsibility that three million or so Americans gave to him.

Now, I would say what about my fellow Americans? If you don’t want to accept the President and give him the chance he needs and has earned, then what about your neighbor who does, don’t you give a crap about them?  What about the Americans who still hold onto the vision of a majestic, beautiful America, don’t they have a right to appreciate their vision of America?  What about the Americans who would never harm another soul, but are angry at being harmed by people who come here, hate it, hurt it, or our friends and families, would you rather we condone and give right to terrorists from any country even those indoctrinated Americans?   If you are great socialists of the world who hate our President, why are you not caring enough as a “socialist” that you are making enemies of those who don’t hate our President? Do you ever think to give the President a chance to prove what you are claiming is actually true?  Maybe he will do all the awful things you claim in your social media posts and television spots.  Maybe he will be the worst President ever, (though I doubt that).  If he isn’t given a chance to show us exactly the vision and direction he has for America by getting legislation passed and America thriving again, you will have no one but yourselves to blame.  It won’t be his fault that you made his legacy by disrupting everything that he attempts to get done.  It won’t  be his fault if the country dies, it will be yours.

Most Americans believe in America or at least take advantage of all the good that is offered by America.  That is a good thing.  It is a patriotic attitude. Do you also believe that we live by the laws of America?  Because we do, the law and the Constitution show us what is right and just.  The laws rule us more than any one man or collection of men and women who represent us, the people.  No laws have been broken by the 45th President of the United States nor proven to have been.  No laws have been proposed to change anything that each American has rightfully gained through our struggles.  We always have a say, if we want one.  We write and/or call our representatives and we tell them, “no don’t pass that law, or no, that proposal is not good, please vote it down”.  We all have a voice that way.  We can do it without bashing each other because we have different feelings about a man.  We can all do it without disrupting our streets with meaningless protests.  We can all look deep, deep down into our hearts and give the 45th President a chance without using our own perception of what life is supposed to be, but rather how possibly it could be under the leadership of a person, who up to now has never waivered from his love of America.  Irregardless of anything he has personally done, he has never, ever said a hateful thing about the United States and since we all share this country and live as neighbors to one another, shouldn’t we at least give him a chance?  I know I will and until he proves me wrong, or my perception of him wrong, I will keep that promise to myself because I, too, love my country and would never choose its’ well-being and the well-being of its’ citizens over any other country on earth.

And that is The Way I See It, here in Brooklyn.

K

©Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Merry Christmas Happy New Year!

 

Here it is 2016 and another holiday is upon us.  The years seem to fly by so quickly now.  I can remember when it seemed eons before Christmas came around again.  The anticipation of the aroma in the air, the gifts under the tree, the pilgrimage to Church and the family gatherings around delicious food and desserts.  The feeling of belonging to a community whether you had family or not was so pronounced at Christmas.  It was as if the world stood still while we celebrated.  The culmination of it all would happen on New Year’s Eve when everyone celebrated just being alive for at least one more year.

Many people, myself included at times, can become very blue during this season, and I wish that wasn’t so because it is a happy time.  A time to celebrate peace, love and joy that is all around us if we just look for it.  Just being a part of this great world of ours is a reason to pause and say thank you.  Christians, like myself, are happy because of the birth of Jesus Christ.  He is our Saviour and our Lord.  Many people of other religions celebrate something similar on their Holy Days and that tells me that we are in one way and another all connected.  Not only do we share our human similarities, but we also share our faiths, we just acknowledge and practice them in different ways.  Even atheists celebrate something probably nature itself if not a God.

So my fervent wish during this holiday season is that every person follow a dream, stop and realize what they do have and not what they don’t.  Be glad that they are alive.  Be happy that hope is always around the corner and we just have to look there to find it.  My wish includes a hope that everyone celebrates and partys with joy in their hearts. Living for the moments we have and sharing that joy with others in anyway possible for them.  My wish is that everyone have a MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR.

And that is the way I see it here in Brooklyn.

I won’t apologize

It is the weekend of September 11, 2016.  Fifteen years since America’s last major attack on one of its’ major cities.  So many innocent people died that day.  So many innocent people were injured that day.  So many innocent people remain ill and many are dying because of that day.  Our President elect during that time has been accused of mishandling the action taken to combat the evil that exists in the part of the world that attacked us. I am not among those who would know the truth about the reason he chose the action he did and I try not to judge others, instead choosing to believe in the good of all mankind.  Don’t get me wrong, I also see evil in the world and the people who are the epitamy of that evil.

Many people have chosen to see the attack and its aftermath as a devious plot on the American side.  They have chosen to blame America for its own attack. Some of these people are my friends, some are strangers to me. Well I don’t believe that conspiracy.  In my heart I know it was evil that attacked America that day.  I know that they chose the World Trade Center because it was the financial hub of the entire country.  We are a capitalist country and those who are evil, the ones who hate our way of life, chose that target with one idea to ruin our country economically.  They hoped to destroy us from within by destroying our financial pulse.  They knocked us down for a little bit as the following years showed, but they didn’t destroy us nor did they win in any sense of the word.  They didn’t think we had the committment to keep our country strong, but they were wrong.

Now I am surround by people who are hurting America from within.  They have been blinded either by fear and/or frustration. Once more, they blame America for their personal problems.  People are people and given the freedoms they have here to keep their own languages, to keep their own cultures, to keep their own religions they are managing to cause more problems instead of solving the ones we face everyday.  The fear and stubborness of so many Americans and the immigrants that live here are at the core of our current issues.  We are forgetting that we are ONE COUNTRY, ONE NATION.  If one part of us gets hurt we all get hurt, but if we don’t fix those hurts we will destroy the entire body.  There is so much more good than bad in America.  We are losing sight of that fact.  Everyone seems to have gotten the idea that one race is better than the other.  That one class of people is better than the other class of people.  That isn’t why America was founded.  That is so far from what America truly is.  Are we fallible? Yes! But only from our own citizens.  It is time to put away the hate.  It is time to get out of our own selfishness and realize that only UNITED we will face future attacks from evil beings.  That all the people who sacrificed in the past for us to have our freedoms believed it was to keep us UNITED.  “Biting the hand that feeds you” is detrimental to your own survival.   Americans should know this.
Too many since the beginning of our birth have sacrificed to get us through some of the worst times in history.  The point is we did get through.  The point is we should want to be better by now.  I believe with all my being that people who hate America and live in America should leave America.  Many of those whom shout the loudest about how awful we are as a country are the ones who have benefitted most from what this wonderful country has offered them.  They should really find somewhere else better suited to their ideals because if they all left we would probably have lots more room for the refugees who need a new country, who want a new country, who will become citizens who appreciate their new country as our ancestors did before us.

We are currently in the middle of a Presidential election year.  Before us are two people with very different ideas about the direction our country should take.  We have to elect one of them to be the face of us, to show their leadership of the greatest country in the world.  For me neither one has the qualifications to do this.  One is corrupt, the other acts like an idiot.  However, no matter what I personally think, one of them is definetely going to be elected.  All I can do is pray that the right one gets into office and proves their worth.  All I can do is hope they realize what a great country America truly is and how her people, her ideals, her future is worth every effort on their part to protect her.  These issues that are within our own borders  in today’s world are solvable issues.  The issues that face us outside our borders are far less likely to be solved.  Whatever the future holds, whatever fate has in store for us, we need to face it together united in the respect of our country, united in the responsibility we each have to make us worthy of being the beacon of light to all those who are persecuted throughout the world.  This can only be accomplished if we are united as Americans.  The families of the innocent people who died and were injured on September 11, 2001 deserve to know that they didn’t sacrifice for nothing.  We owe it to all those from the Revolutionary War to the Iraq War who fought for America that we can keep their legacy alive and keep America beautiful. With this comes the responsibility to keep the evil and the haters out of American borders whether they come from the North, South, East or West.  Makes no difference if they hate America they shouldn’t live here.  We can only survive as a nation if we have pride in our country.  We can only survive as a people if we learn to live together as one people..American people.

So no I won’t apologize for loving this country.  I won’t apologize for loving all people of every race and every class.  I won’t apologize for loving the animals that roam the earth and the lands that provide us with beauty and survival.  I won’t apologize for believing as I do and for stating it for the world to see.  I won’t apologize because I have nothing to apologize for being an American.  If I have one thing to leave to my chldren and grandchildren I hope I leave them the pride I have in America and the belief that we are privileged to live here.

And that is the way I see it, here in Brooklyn.

K

A father for Father’s Day

Maybe I am just one of those unexplained mysteries in life. Maybe because I always wondered about my biological father. Maybe that is why I have been so lucky in my life having two “fathers”.

My sons’ father is the best father and grandfather I have ever seen.  His unconditional love, his self-sacrificing dedication and his ability to keep giving and giving can not be denied.  I believe that the word, “no” is just not a word to him.  He has always said “yes” to the needs of his children, and for that matter to me as well.  Fathers like Rocco are rare, but I know there are a few out there. For instance, my son, Rocky is a dad like his father.  He has the same inner ability to love his daughter so completely and unconditionally. As she grows, I hope she realizes more and more how very wonderful he is and how dedicated he is to her.

My “dad”and my “brother” raised me to be a person who is true to herself, kind to others, and to care about the world around me. My “dad” passed when I was sixteen years old.  My brother is still the one I look to for answers.  Whether or not he reaizes it, he is still the one I depend on.

Today I want to tell you about my brother, Tommy.

If one could picture the life of a person when they were a child and to realize that what they have been through is no life for any child, then they would know that the man I know as Tommy, who came out of that life better and stronger, is in itself miraculous.  They would know that this wonderful man is the most selfless, loving, hard-working man that was ever born.

It was a tough life when my brother was a small child.   His father was an alcholic and the venom from this sickness took its ugly poison out on my brother and his siblings.  Without going into too much detail, let me suffice to say Tommy took the brunt of that venom.  It became so bad that for a time his mom sent him to live for awhile to her sister so he could escape the onslaught. When I was born Tommy was ten years old.

I turned seven when I first started to notice who it was that was nurturing me and making sure I had everything I needed, like food, clothing and shelter. Tommy was now seventeen and graduated High School.  He was also the protector for my “mom” and me.  Ever since he was able to work he made sure our mom and me were taken care of.

Life wasn’t all bad. He was also a prankster and a loyal friend.  Some of the funniest episodes I ever heard were about the pranks my brother would pull on his family, friends and co-workers.  When our sister, Joanie passed away at the age of twenty-nine from complications after brain surgery to remove a tumor, she left two small babies behind.  One was two years old and the other was six months.  While their dad had to keep working, my mom took them in to live with us in our six room tenement apartment in Park Slope.  They spent Monday through Friday with us and their dad took them on the weekends.  Tommy immediately took on the role of dad to them during those days and had always taken that role on for me.  Yes, our siblings helped as well.  There was after all, eight of us altogether. I was the youngest.  I recall Tommy taking us to the World’s Fair in Flushing, Delancy Street in Manhattan for clothes, and to the local theatre for movies, etc. If we had any treats or toys it was Tommy who bought them. When the boys turned seven and five, their dad remarried a wonderful woman named Eileen. Together they brought the boys to live with them, of course, leaving us left us with  heavy hearts because they were more like brothers and sons to us.  Years later we now know that it was best for them to leave and have a life with their own dad and stepmom.  However, I was still there and Tommy became more like a dad to me than ever and when “daddy” died, it was Tommy who pulled me through just as he did when we lost “mommy” and then did the same when we lost two more of our sisters and our niece. He pulled me out of so many childhood and young adulthood mistakes. He helped me when sickness befell my baby boy, he helped me when I thought I would sink from financial disaster. I cannot recall one time in life good or bad when Tommy wasn’t right there, or just a phone call away.  He is the one constant in my life.  The person to whom I owe everything.

By now you must have surmised why I chose to write this Father’s Day tribute to my wonderful brother Tommy.  There just isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think of him or even talk to him.  He has always been my confidant, my advisor, my father in every sense of the word.  Even though I am a grown woman, wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, cousin, friend..none of those titles would have been possible without Tommy in my life.  He is officially “my brother” but everything he has ever done for me is something a great dad would do.  So I want to tell him Happy Father’s Day and that even though he chose not to have children of his own, he has helped raise and has given to all his sisters, nieces and nephews so very much that the title Father belongs to him.

He never truly gets the recognition and appreciation for everything he has always done from his heart, so this small tribute is my way of saying thank you with all my heart for being the best real Dad I never really had.

Happy Father’s Day, Tommy.

And that’s the Way I See It, here in Brooklyn.

K