Category Archives: Commentary

Living With Sickle Cell: ‘I Don’t Know What It Means to Be Without Pain’

It’s World Sickle Cell Day, and we’re taking a look at the chronic pain and regular hospitalizations that are the reality for many suffering from sickle cell disease.

Nikki Peterson, like approximately 100,000 other Americans, was born with sickle cell anemia. The 43-year-old lives in Upper Marlboro, Md., and ends up in the hospital about four times during what she calls a good year.

Once a month, she undergoes a grueling process called hemapheresis. All of the blood is removed from her body, the platelets and plasma are separated out and returned to her, and then Peterson is given 8 to 12 units of packed red blood cells. This helps to mitigate the pain she lives with every day.

“I don’t know what it means to be without pain. I have nothing to compare it to,” Peterson tells The Root from her bed at Doctors Community Hospital in Greenbelt, Md. “I have what I call my normal pain, and my pain where I need to be in the hospital. They always ask what your pain scale is from 1 to 10. I function on a normal person’s 7 to 8. It’s like my 2.”

Living With Sickle Cell: ‘I Don’t Know What It Means to Be Without Pain’

Are You Listening?

Posted by in Being There, Zen

How do we listen, really?  Do we listen in order to judge, to dismiss, to find a point of contention?  Do we listen only well enough to gauge when a response – a grunt – is called for?  Do we listen to gather evidence that we are right and that they are wrong? Do we listen so that we can reply, or one-up the speaker?  When the sunrise speaks to us, do we compare it to another, or simply let it fill us?

Each of us yearns to be heard, to be understood.  How well, how deeply, do we listen?

Are You Listening?.

Thoughts: Creating A Better Life

In addition to blogging I am also a small business owner. While I love my art, full-time job and blogging; I also realize there is a limit to how many things one person can do (and do well)  I have floundered a bit in trying to give Bohemian Home Journal a voice and direction . . .I ‘m the kind of person who jumps in head first then figures out things along the way (not recommended for the faint of heart)  so it recently occurred to me to incorporate more of what I need in this blog  (it’s always the obvious we don’t see) and others (like me) who need this info will appreciate the posts.

My plan is to create a section on small business ownership and life management tips for personal and professional growth. I have reached out to a few ‘experts’ in these areas that I admire, who I hope will allow me to post their information and direct people to their site.

While I consider myself to be a smart woman, I know certain management areas in my life are all over the place; ‘flying by the seat of my pants’ is what my mother would call it. Anyway stay tuned and wish me luck.

Social Tsunami: Dr. Julian Bond on the Civil Rights Movement

MLK5_3The Inauguration ceremony of Barack Obama’s second term in the White House is of special significance this year; not only did it parallel with the birthday of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., this year commemorates 50 years since  ‘the March on Washington,’ the church bombing in Birmingham, Alabama that killed four black children, the murder of Medgar Wiley Evers,  the 100th birthday anniversary of Rosa Parks and 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation.

All of these events were social tsunamis that changed our nation.  In 2013 they will serve as a powerful reminders of our strength, individually and collectively.

I had the honor of discussing these notable moments in history with Dr. Julian Bond, civil rights leader turned professor of civil rights history. I caught up with him before his keynote speech at a MLK Day celebration at the Reston Community Center in Fairfax, Va.  To say I was honored is an understatement.

For more than 50 years Julian Bond has been a human rights and civil rights leader. In 1960 he co-founded the SNCC, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. Bond spent 20 years in the Georgia Legislature after first being denied a seat because of his outspoken views against the Vietnam War. For 11 years, until 2010, he was chairman of the NAACP.

Watch County Magazine in February on Cable Channel 16 and hear more of my conversation with Dr. Julian Bond.  County Magazine can also be seen via Video On Demand on the Fairfax County website.

Here’s to a Brilliant New Year

Happy New Year

Wishing everyone blessings and abundance in 2013
Thank you for being the supportive online community I enjoy so much!
May we all continue to share our thoughts, enthusiasm, likes and dislikes for all things that touch, influence and impact our lives.
I did not make New Year resolutions for 2013. My plan is to continue what I have always done; trying to be the best mother, friend, sister, aunt, cousin, partner, dog owner, employee, photographer, writer, media producer, and self advocate I can be.
Keep your eyes, heart and mind open to change and look forward to 2013 with anticipation of all the new and wonderful things you will experience.