The tee shirt didn't bother me as much as, or for the same reason, it seemed to annoy others. I have nothing against nice things or people who own them. I even own a few nice things myself.
In a twisted way, I guess I should thank you for reminding me to send a thank you note to the dentist, for realizing how fortunate I am, and for delivering to me a piece of heaven. If the dentist hadn't had his hands in my mouth at the time, I would have told him I love him when the assistant said she was looking at a pair of $800 shoes and his response was, “Why would a person buy those shoes instead of buying a perfectly good pair for $100 and helping others with the remaining $700?” My love for the dentist reminded me that I also love myself for being the person who is content with $100 shoes, who is even happier when I use the $700 to help others, and who knows that I look just as nice and more respectable in the $100 shoes.
And then there's that piece of heaven. Some people long for death so they can be reunited with loved ones who they consider dead. My heaven is here. Although my father's body left this earth a couple of decades ago, I feel his love when, at a time like this, I hear him say, “Everyone serves a purpose in your life if only to show you what you don't want to be.” The tee shirt is a very small part of the many ways that you, Ann Romney, show me how successful I am for not being you.
What annoyed me about the tee shirt was not the cost of your clothing, it was how soon you were out wearing that shirt after your woe-is-me speech. Although I did appreciate your great explanation of fatigue and the inability to think straight or find words on depleted energy, your quick turnaround reminded me of a most important difference between us. I seldom bounce back so quickly. A big rally claims my energy and mental acuity for weeks. Of course, I don't have anyone to clean my house or prepare my meals. And if I must leave the house during down times, it will be in my less than dependable car which I hate to drive any father than I can walk back – and that's not far when just getting in the car takes most of my energy in the first place. (Since I am still mobile, I gave my elevator to a man whose family had to leave him upstairs when they retreated to the basement during a tornado. I found him through the rehab hospital if you should ever decide to be more like me. Think how many elevators you could give.)
The truth, Ann Romney, is that I have no respect for you. In fact, I dislike you very much and that's uncomfortable since I've never met you. Anyone—including me—can make money or marry a man with money if we set principles aside. Another good piece of advice my father gave me is that anyone who marries for money will earn every cent. I learned on my own that remaining married to a man who chooses to hurt others or break laws (laws of the land, laws of decency, tenants of his professed faith) puts me in the difficult position of having to either live on his level or report him. How you can you play Tammy Wynette for your snake is something I will never understand or condone.
Pathetic as my physical status is, there are still disgusting things I could do to earn money. I dislike you for being married to a man who thinks that I should support myself or die. I dislike you even more for campaigning for him to be in the position of forcing people like me to either compromise our principles or die. Some of us have a conscience so we are not capable of being Stepford wives or lying, cheating, heartless, selfish, people who believe we are entitled to hoard fortunes while others suffer. I dislike you the most for using your multiple sclerosis as an excuse for whatever it is you thought you needed to excuse, with no recognizable guilt or realization that you are one of the most fortunate disabled people alive yet you are campaigning to hurt the least fortunate.
I wish for you a few hours of lying on the couch knowing that if you call that ambulance to save your life the cost will destroy you. I wish for you many days of pain with no relief. I wish for you some real hunger. I wish for you the pain of having to stay upstairs while the family retreats to the basement for a tornado. I wish for you the inability to open a door, to unzip your jeans, or to pull your expensive tee shirt over your head when no one is around to assist you. Then, you might honestly understand what the cost of that tee shirt truly means to others.
If this sounds cruel, I hope you will remember that I'm only wishing for you what you are hoping to force onto others. Shame on you.