I've never written a diary before, but I wanted to share my pride in my husband and what I hope his vote may represent. My husband of nearly 25 years voted for the first time today. He's on his way right now to drop off our ballots. My husband who has expressed nothing but disdain for politics in all the years we have been together. For my husband, family, work, friends and baseball...those were his priorities.
My husband started working at 15 in the seafood business here in Washington state. His first job was on the production line. Even when he had a management position, he still worked on his feet. Sometimes in Alaska he would work for 18-20 hours, catch 2-3 hours of sleep and be back into the plant to make sure things were set up for the next day. It's hard enough to work on your feet in any job. But add cold, wet rooms and concrete floors...it takes a toll.
So at 63 he took early retirement. He struggled with this decision and we discussed the financial ramifications and the personal ramifications for over a year. I'm quite a bit younger than my husband and we're not financially in a position for me to retire. But I knew and he knew he could not physically endure the pain anymore. He needed hip and knee replacement surgery. Had to have them. He worked for a company that would not allow him to take the time off to recover and know that his job would still be there when he was capable to go back to work. They had to offer him a job...just not his old job. So he retired and had his surgeries and is not in pain anymore. I am so grateful he no longer has to endure such pain. And I'm so grateful for the extra time we've been able to share because he is retired.
So now it's 6 years later and my husband asked how hard is it to register to vote? I hid my surprise (I was flabbergasted) and told him it was easy we could do it online. So he asked me to help him register. It was amazingly quick...took less than 5 minutes...and badda bing, my 69 year old spouse was registered to vote for the first time in his life.
Please follow me below the orange pig in a blanket.....
About a week ago I finally asked him why he decided to vote as he has never really been interested in politics. Ever. And he said it was because of me. Because I cared so much about who was elected and because I talked with such passion about the issues, he finally 'got it'. Finally he said, finally it sunk into him that these guys like Romney and Ryan could cause me harm. They could cause me harm when he (my husband) was no longer around (alive) to protect me. And R & R could also cause his children and his grandchildren harm because R & R, along with the other Republicans, want to change Social Security and Medicare in a way that weakens or eliminates both programs.
He went on to explain, it wasn't just the social safety net, it was also the harm the current crop of Republicans could inflict on the environment. They don't even believe that global warming is real. They want to drill baby drill. My husband has heard me rant about equal pay and equal opportunity. He's seen my own struggles working in an industry dominated by men. He's heard me rant about war. And why didn't we pay for the damn wars?
Finally he finished by saying, he had overheard a conversation I had with a friend. I was going on about how I had learned a hard lesson back in 2001. I learned that it did matter who was President. That one person, the wrong person, could in fact screw things up so badly, that life as you know it comes tumbling down. But also I found that one person could also impact things in a good way and I was going to try my hardest to help impact things in a good way.
And so my dear husband decided it was time to vote. It was time to help me and help his children. And that is my hope. That these tea party freaks and Republican pukes miscalculated the American public when they tried to pit the senior generation against the younger generation. My hope is that the American public does in fact remember what a mess George Bush created and that we give Obama more time to 'fix' the mess he inherited. My hope is we all leave the planet in better shape than we found it. And my hope is that my husband is around to vote in more elections because every election is important and because it's just too hard to think about life w/o my dear husband.