Friday, January 02, 2009

New Year, NEw Life

I'm BACKKKKK! I'm back in San Diego and back to being healthy... kinda. Working in the LA street canvassing office was an amazing experience. I met some awesome people and worked at some really amazing locations. Now I'm back in San Diego street canvassing. I returned to San Diego 5 weeks ago. Its a lot different than door canvassing. Its very hard for me and I don't raise a lot of money, which makes door canvassing very nostalgic for me, but I enjoy the hours better and it is easier to eat and stay on top of my health.

We (the Public Interest Research Group... specifically I am employed by the Fund for the Public Interest) run political campaigns all year round for major non-profits on environmental, human rights, and public interest issues. I am now running a campaign/canvassing office here in San Diego and I do grassroots community organizing to build public support for these issues. Currently we are running a campaign for Environment America and are hoping to get part of the new federal economic stimulus package to include investments in the renewable energy industry as well as to extend clean energy tax credits. EAmerica was in talks with Obama just a few weeks ago and are currently pressuring members of congress to turn down gifts and political pressure, etc from the oil and coal lobby.

A basic recap of our work over the past few months is that we just won 2 major victories here in California and lost one. First is a major 4+ year battle here in California to cap global warming pollution and reduce it 80% by 2050 and tax major polluters for every ton of pollution they emit in the air. It will be an overhaul to the entire energy grid here as well as a serious look at efficiency, conservation, and renewable energy. Also, we managed to get a resolution to build a high speed train between LA and San Fransisco. In the human rights sector, however, we unfortunately lost our battle to uphold same sex marriage but we are working right now to overturn "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" in the military as well as having a chance at passing some anti-discrimination, employment discrimination, and hate-crimes legislation through congress for the first time in several decades. Its a difficult but rewarding job. I hire, manage, and recruit staff to get out and do grassroots community organizing, as well as getting out in the field myself several times a week.

I am also settling into my apartment nicely. It took a while but I'm getting there. Most of the last 5 weeks I have been trying to de-stress and undo the damage I did to my body during the elections. I got the opportunity to go to Aspen, CO for a few days on a work vacation. I mostly got to ski and meet lots of people from the organization I work for that work all over the country. Adam and I also celebrated being together for 9 months while in Aspen. I stayed here for Christmas and then left for an extended weekend to Palm Springs with Adam. We did nothing! It was GREAT!

I've been thinking a lot about the past year and the upcoming year lately. I've changed so much that I don't even recognize myself. I'm learning how to be a balanced and happy individual, something I never dreamed of one year ago today. There is also so much more that I know I could do, and for the first time ever I have a new year's resolution. I'm not going to try to do anything I haven't done before, but simply do what I know that I can to be the best person I can be.

Its forgiving the past and the pain and listening to yourself that has and will be my motto. I look forward to working at the office here and meeting Adam's family and Adam meeting mine. I also look forward to starting school again. I have something positive in my life and I am learning how to cultivate that. Nothing and no one can take that from me again.