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Tuesday Tidbits :: On Speaking Up and Speaking Out

If you've been following my Tuesday Tidbits column for some time, you may have read that many years ago, I was a Music Director for several radio stations. I did a little traveling between my stations and was even able to attend conferences and concerts out of town and out of state. One of these conferences was the Gavin Seminar in San Francisco which I attended in 1989.

I showed up early for a concert that was to be given by up-and-coming musician, Melissa Etheridge. I was one of the first people in the auditorium and I noticed that in one of the front rows was none other than musician Jackson Browne talking with someone I later identified as one of the Ices (T or Cube, I'm not sure which since I wasn't into Rap Music and this was long before they became actors). I knew that this would probably be my only shot at talking with Jackson Browne and that I should plop myself down in the row behind the men and just say, "Hi!"

But, I was shy or star-struck or both and so I sat further back and never said a word. And, regretted it ever since.

So, when I recently attended a public forum on Special Education and had the opportunity to express myself, I did just that. Even though my daughter hasn't been in the public school system for years and years and I felt far removed from the current situation, I felt that it was time our story was heard. And heard, it was.

When I sat back down, the educator who had invited me to this event grasped both my hands and said, "After all this time, you finally told your story." And that's when it hit me. I had done this to honor my daughter and her triumphs over her struggles.

Do I regret not saying "Hi!" to Jackson Browne? You bet. But, I will never have regrets for not saying something in the Special Education Public Forum. And, I can live with that!

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