I don’t intend GuestWomb to turn into a poltical battlefield. But last week I fired this off to the Philadelphia Inquirer Letters section.

H1N1 is Obama’s “Katrina”

A deadly storm takes aim at our nation. Monitoring systems provided adequate warning, yet our government is woefully unprepared. Best case plans give way to worst case scenarios.  Mass confusion ensues as the first waves sweep in with conflicting information that changes by the day. When help finally does arrive, some in the privileged class get special treatment while the less fortunate get left behind. We shake our heads in amazement and ask: Why did our leaders fail us?

This isn’t a recap of the horrors of Katrina. I’m describing what is shaping to be a much bigger disaster — the H1N1 Flu Vaccine crisis. The Swine Flu storm track threatens every single family in this country, including my own. As we watched this pandemic gather force and roar into the Flu season, our national health care system – a consortium of profit motivated pharmaceutical companies and insurance companies together with inept public health departments — has put our nation at risk.  

While my pregnant wife frantically calls every doctor, pharmacy and clinic she can to find this vital medicine, we read about H1N1 dosage sent to the Wall Street elite firms. Even Gitmo detainees are scheduled to be immunized ahead of the people who urgently need help. I don’t think even “Brownie” would approve.

George Bush had his Katrina. Will the H1N1 Flu Debacle be President Obama’s legacy? 

Reading between the lines — the angry ones — you can no doubt sense I’m a little nervous. Michelle should be one of the first in line for the H1N1 vaccine, along with our asthmatic teenage daughter. After burning up the phone lines this week, Michelle finally got the attention of her primary doctor and will be called when they receive vaccine next week. Or so we hope. Our kids are getting the shots the following week.

But for now I’m still out in the cold. 

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After inviting a tiny piece of the planet to learn about our little secret, I took a much-needed break from the blog.

The last couple of weeks has reminded me of buying our first house. Before we could even take a deep breath and relax…we were eager to show it off to friends and family.  Sure, lets add some more stress on top of stress. A lot of cleaning, some touch up paint, making sure that everything looks just right. And then you throw open the doors and invite everybody in.

And you wonder what people think. Did they really like the place? Were they just being polite? Even more stress on top of stress.

I’m not sure what kind of reaction I was looking for. A round of applause? A huge influx of traffic to the site? Angry emails from pissed off family members? A call from Barack Obama?

Well I got most of the above. Alas, the President was unavailable; must have been playing a lot of pick up hoop games lately.

But the comments were nice. Surprisingly so and I’m thankful to those of you who have gone out of their way to discuss the blog with me. And a huge thank you to the dozens that have already subscribed to it! I hope I’ll be able to continue to earn your attention, and to entertain and educate.

Speaking of educate: that’s what we’ve been doing with our own families in the past week. I burned through a cell phone battery trying to explain to my Mom why it was important to share the news. Electronic publishing…blogs…RSS feeds…it’s not part of her world. And neither is an open discussion of the subject of surrogacy. I think that’s what bothers my parents the most. It’s not that they object to what Michelle is doing. It’s our willingness to let other people in and experience this with us via GuestWomb. It’s a completely foreign concept to them, and it’s probably an area where we’ll agree to disagree.

As for Michelle’s family, well I’ve certainly given them something for them all to talk about! I drew some pretty sharp protests from a couple of them who insisted they did not share what I perceived to be a family-held view — she’s doing it for the $$. Lesson learned, I made some bad assumptions and edits have been made.

And it triggered a lot of phone calls and emails, back and forth between Michelle and the rest of her family. And frankly, I’m glad. Not that I may have caused some hurt feelings — that’s not my intent. But that it allowed Michelle yet another opportunity to explain the ‘why’ in her decision.

This flurry of communication even extended to our IPs. Michelle shared some of her family’s lack of understanding about her motives. And B and M responded with a moving, emotion-laden note for Michelle to send back to her family.

Will her family ever really get it? Will my own family feel comfortable with sharing this amazing journey with the rest of the world?

Will Obama ever bookmark this blog?

Stay tuned, please.

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