sister, i salute you

There's a little back and forth going on at SVMB about Elizabeth Edwards, or better stated, one writer's thoughts on Ms. Edward's choices. The ever-astute Pundit Mom picked up on it and added her .02 as well. I don't need to rehash what happened but I do know that it got me thinking.

See, Mrs. Edwards saw the piece and responded in the comments. A very thoughtful and eloquent response. And as I read it all I can think is what a waste of time this must be for her in the midst of everything else. Having to defend her mothering when we need to be learning about the platform she stands for.

Here she is on the campaign trail, juggling a serious illness, small children, a marriage, and an incredibly lofty and difficult goal. And she's somehow managing to do all of that and during the course of the day or days one or another thing must go wrong. Kids throw tantrums, perhaps she spills coffee on her skirt. She is having to meet and greet more people than most of us will ever be in the same room with in our lifetime. Every word she says is dissected and critiqued. And yet every single morning she gets back out there and stands next to her husband because she believes he has a fighting chance to make this world a better place.

And I'll tell you, it's a hell of a lot more than I do in a given day, running multiple homeless shelters included. And none of you were here a little while ago when I snapped at my daughter and almost ran my grocery cart into an old woman and thank god none of that will make the New York Times or TIME magazine. I get a semblance of privacy, my missteps are my own and my bad days belong to me. Elizabeth doesn't get as many of those moments these days and that alone is something to honor. You can easily respond by saying she chose this life and perhaps she did, but then ask yourself why. Because it must be pretty damn important to her to give up just about everything else to see it through. And hey, it's our future she's fighting for too.

Win or lose, she is out there trying. Like her or not, or better said, like the media's portrayal of her or not, that's your decision. But I think we all have it in us to be a little kinder about what must be an incredibly challenging time. She's not in this for the money, kids. She's in this because she believes she's part of something that can be better than what we've got going on now. And you know what, I do too.

Mrs. Edwards, I salute you.