I am sitting in my room at the Marriott Marquis NYC trying to calm nerves about speaking tomorrow night. It’s not the number of people who come to the GLAAD Awards (sort of the Gay Academy Awards in my mind), I have spoken to audiences this size before (1300). Actually I don’t know what is making me nervous for tomorrow night and then for the Lambda Legal Liberty Awards happening in May. Maybe, it’s that both events are very different from prior talks and I fell a great deal of personal pressure to get my story out and let any receptive person understand the painful need for equality.
Since I’m doing the GLAAD Award in LA and San Fran also – I won’t be putting up my speech until May when San Francisco Awards happens. There is no secret or surprise, nothing has changed in my story or the outcome. Sadly the hospital, Jackson Memorial in Miami STILL has not released all of Lisa’s medical record and they STILL have not issued an apology to my family. Maybe they can’t say they are sorry, 4 years later, because they are not sorry for keeping Lisa alone, to die alone. It never occurred to me that might be the answer until a few weeks ago. Maybe JMH just doesn’t give a shit about our one little family from Lacey, WA. Completely possible, right? I mean what would they get from it, really beside a person (me) who would blog about they had grown a pair and done the right thing. Or that I might actually come FOR FREE and help train their staff by using my story and showing where the JMH system so horribly failed our entire family on that February night in 2007. Who am I kidding, they don’t care, obviously. A call from President Obama, a NY Times article, 1.3 million Google hits, and an online petition urging JMH mgmt to apologize must not mean much to these humans.
One thing I will share which I don’t say much about is that the only statement JMH has made to try to put the heat back on me is that a staff would NEVER say “anti-gay city and state” and they stand by their Social Worker who could not have said that to me. Funny thing is – that exchanged is so seared into my brain that the FIRST words I said to my family, on the night Lisa collapsed is, “Marilyn (Gary, Skip, Kathy – insert any name) they won’t let me see Lisa – they say I’m in an “anti-gay city and state”. If you think my family would just say that then how about another doctor corroborating my account? Two hours into waiting and not having a clue why she collapsed, I finally called our family doctor at her home in Olympia and said to her “they won’t let me see Lisa or tell me what is going on because they said that I am in an anti-gay city and state”. I didn’t even remember saying that to our doctor until People Mag was doing an article and they interviewed our doctor and she brought it up. So I guess if JMH feels the extreme need to protect Garnett Frederick and their desk clerk that night who told my children they were “too young to visit” and say good-bye to their dying mom, then JMH must feel proud of these staff.
Enough ranting, I need to re-focus and get ready for my five minutes on the stage and work hard to tell attendees why I’m passionate about Equality.