We Remember 75


Four of my relatives survived Auschwitz. Two of them were freedom fighters who saved thousands of lives. Many relatives went from concentration camp to concentration camp, until they were completely lost to us. If my numbers are wrong, I will come back and correct this, but these are the facts as I know them.

Here’s the truth; the world at large ISN’T “pausing to remember”. That’s a political statement, it is NOT the truth.

There are people in my own age bracket who don’t even KNOW what the Holocaust IS. They were never taught about it. And when you are told, “Six million Jews were exterminated”, that’s not an accurate depiction.
In Belarus, Poland, Russia, Lithuania, and Ukraine (I have family ties to all of these countries.), there are still mass graves being unearthed. The body count is staggering. My cousin is an archaeologist and has been to some of these locations. She had to leave the first one because, after losing her Grandmother two and a half years ago, it was too much and she couldn’t stay and do her job. She was hysterical. It hit her hard as she was listening to her colleagues counting, and trying to figure out how many people were in this particular location. She called and couldn’t stop crying.
The Holocaust was not, “Just Jews.” It was ANYONE who was branded as, “other”.  LGB, because back then there were no transgender people. Yes, as many as they could find. As many as neighbors would report in order to save themselves. Gypsies? Yes. The sick and elderly? Yes. They targeted pregnant women and shot them in the streets. They experimented on people like they were rats in cages. And that’s not even close to the deeper horrors. Many countries murdered their remaining Jewish population after the concentration camps were liberated. If Jews returned, they were killed. And to this day, they deny it, but many of us know the truth. Poland was one of the worst offenders, but not the only one.
Please understand that this was not, “Just Jews.” Just some random killing spree. No. It was sickness borne out of hatred. This hatred is now in every major city, and many small towns. It has somehow survived far beyond the years of our history as a people. Attacks on Jews are in the news almost daily. People now seem to accept this as just another day. The only people who talk about it are other Jews. If I walked up to someone of another faith and shot them for no reason, I’d be in jail for the rest of my life. It would NOT be labeled as a hate crime. I have friends who have survived attacks that the police refused to label properly. For me, a hate crime is a hate crime. It isn’t about the color of your skin; it’s about right and wrong. Apparently some people don’t know the difference, and it is 2020. They should be ashamed, but they aren’t.

The Holocaust was the ultimate hate crime (just like other forms of mass genocide). When we say, #NeverAgain, it’s because we mean it. Nothing silences the hatred targeting us quite like an armed Jew. Armed with knowledge, armed with intelligence, armed with self-defense tactics, armed with any number of things; weapons included. #JewsFightBack, and they also provide advanced technology (Look at the phone you are using. It’s Israeli technology.), advanced medicine, advanced medical treatment methods, actual cures, and their contributions to science, music, entertainment, health, and society at large is so much more. It is a legacy and a gift.


So the next time you, regardless of faith, ask yourself about what you hear on the news or read in your paper, know that THIS Jewish woman has got your back. I do what I was raised to do; be a better person than I was yesterday. I’m color-blind until you give me reason not to be. I use my voice, because if ever there was a weapon, it’s the truth that comes out of my mouth. That will not stop.

If you read this until the end, my sincere thanks. 🙏 #NeverAgainStartsWithMe

copyright © 2020 by Lisa Marino and Blackbird Serenity, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Holding Pattern



Almost two weeks ago, I fell. It was as if my right leg had been taken away for a minute or so. The aftermath left me wondering how bad my knee is, as well as my ankle and foot. I quietly reduced the ankle swelling, but I’ve also walked on broken bones in my foot and toes for months until the issue became something larger. If you were to look at x-rays of my feet, you would see healed fractures and probably some damage to repeatedly broken toes. They never heal perfectly, and I’ve smashed into two more times than I care to count. I no longer walk around barefoot. I’m lucky; they still look okay on the outside.

Last week, my doctor took me out of play. I was only allowed to be on my leg for important things, and not for long periods of time because I’m still limping. For me, the concern was that limping was putting undue pressure on my hip bones as I awkwardly toddled around. Painfully. He emailed me care instructions. Elevate. Ice. Heat, if need be, but mostly “Stay off of your leg as much as you can. Rest. Your body needs to heal. Your muscles need the break.” I was SO anxious and upset before calling, but his staff put me at ease and so did he.

Unfortunately, my body is taking a beating this month. There was a windstorm last Friday and as a result, the storm door blew out and when it blew back in, with me leaning down to grab a box at the door, it smashed into the top of my head. It was an insulting kind of whack. I’ve certainly experienced worse, but man, it was unkind.

This almost finished week had me stressed and unsettled. Monday I desperately needed more sleep than any individual should need. Tuesday I got a text at 6:30 in the morning and it was a person asking about my appointment. If I had slept another thirty minutes or so, I would not have made it to the scheduled appointment on time. I did, and because I had limped around over the weekend and helped bring groceries in up and down a flight of stairs, I found that my knee was sore, but I didn’t feel like it was broken, so I ran an errand because I had already found that I couldn’t get what I needed delivered. Trust me, if a company had been willing to send me same-day cat supplies (precisely in the order I need it in, which is slightly scrambled because I’ve got picky felines) and human food (I had a list on my phone and only returned with a few things. I just didn’t feel THAT great.), I would have stayed in my pajamas and waited for said deliveries. Alas, I paid for that move on Wednesday and Thursday when I wished I hadn’t fallen at all. I am not a good wounded person. I suppose no one is.

My ankle and foot, that spot where they meet? That’s where I did damage. I already knew it, because I can feel it, and my results after x-rays and a scan on Friday was tears to the Anterior and Posterior TaloFibular ligaments, as well as a third ligament tear. 🤦  I have a fracture in one toe. My knee has a tendon healing. I’m mostly grounded for the next 6-8 weeks (I was told I can walk around “gingerly” if no one can help me with things.) to make sure it’s all completely healed. They ordered a brace for my ankle, which is naturally on back order. 🙄 I’m disgusted. Especially since I have to follow up with an orthopedic surgeon. Even better, the radiology department called to let me know that they didn’t see it initially, but that I also have a hairline fracture to a bone in my foot. These people let me go home without a boot or a wrapped ankle. I asked and they stared at me like I was crazy. They did not ask if I was in pain or ask for my “pain number”, which is pretty standard procedure everywhere. I can walk in for a cold and will be asked about my pain level. I see my doctor in three weeks, but I’m afraid to even mention my pain because finding a good doctor is hard enough. No one should feel this way.

Worse, I am in this awkward holding pattern. I can *maybe* pick up groceries, but lifting them up a flight of stairs with my injuries was heavily discouraged. Mind you, they did not send over twelve guys to help with things I do during the course of a week. Laundry, cleaning the bathroom and bathtub, wiping the windows down with Windex (so my cats can drool on the picture window and make it look like I don’t clean it, EVER. Why are they drooling over birds and squirrels, anyway?!), vacuuming (which my cats screw up in fifteen minutes, so I end up frustrated when it looks like I didn’t do anything.), and other things no one even notices. I also changed my hair color this week, not a single person noticed. I mean, you can’t miss it. It’s a completely different shade of red. Whatever. <rolls eyes> I sometimes cook 4-6 nights a week, too. Again, they did not send assistance home with me, but I did leave with a worse cough, so there’s the gift that keeps on giving. #Cesspool

Yes, I have plenty of writing to do. Three manuscripts in progress. Twenty-six actual scripts to write for a new project I committed to. Plus, regular writing. However, that’s what I call shutting down into the abyss. It’s not completely healthy. A friend kindly pointed out that two months is a LONG time to heal. I said, “I’ll be productive with all the writing I have to do.” But the truth is; what if I’m not? Ugh. Doubt is a vicious creature. I’ll banish it on Tuesday. 😉

Hope you’ll all stick around with me.



copyright © 2020 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.


Take Care Of Yourself


I nearly had a meltdown daily for several days this week. One day, I became so single-minded, I forgot to go to the bank. I started to panic in the store I had gone to after my appointment; completely freaking out about my error because I knew I didn’t have time, energy, or physical ability to turn around and start all over again. Then I had an idea and everything worked out okay, but I still wished I wasn’t completely alone in my terror moments. C’est la vie; I dealt with it, but I know it is getting worse and I am doing my absolutely best to prioritize that. If anyone dares question how well I am handling it, ALL BETS ARE OFF.