Category Archives: Medical

Retiring From Web Career

Today I celebrate the formal decision to retire from my career in Web development, education, outreach, advocacy and any other role related to the Web in a public capacity.

Next up: Living with and for humans rather than with and for human ideals.

I will continue to use the World Wide Web as a tool for outreach, but as of today, I am not just tired, but finally, finally accepting that it’s time to retire from a career that was truly mind-blowing. As in, it blew MY mind!

Upcoming projects include:

  • “FOR THE GRACE” – A documentary series of conversations with diverse sections of human society to break down barriers of misunderstanding and demystify truths about how people end up on a given path.
  • “THROUGH THE CRACKS” – A first-focus in the proposed FOR THE GRACE documentary focusing on the homeless in the USA.

My current role is to take care of my medical health, to support my family here in Nevada. I will be helping to caregive along with my stepfather my beloved Mother as well as two personal friends who are going through very difficult times and we are healing each other in real-time rather than the amorphous Web.

As I work through the inevitable horrific stacks of paperwork and documents that come along with disability, economic failure, loss of a spouse along with mortal illness in myself and close family and friends, there is an opportunity for me to take advantage of the V.A. programs if they continue to exist by the time the paperwork is in to return to school, where I intend to finish my Ph.D. in Media and its impact on Society, which is where I left off in my studies. This time, however, the focus puts society rather than media first, which was not the way I approached it in earlier academic work.

What I will or won’t accomplish is not the relevant point, what is relevant is that it is clear that my time as the Web’s “Fairy Godmother” is over, and I am very happy to step out of that environment and into one where human beings interact in a much fuller way with one another.

May you all find your way to live long and prosper. I am grateful to the hearts and minds who have allowed me to live, despite its difficulty, an absolutely and utterly extraordinary career experience.

With all my love and forever gratitude, Molly

molly and ray in a strong embrace

To My Ray

My beloved husband passed away peacefully at the Veteran’s Home in Tucson, Arizona.
He served as a United States Navy Corpsman in the Vietnam war. For those unaware, they are often referred to as “Doc” because they are specifically trained in combat and field medicine, safety and battle injury on front lines with the U.S. Marines.

He also served on the Navy ship the USS Benner which on 26 February 1967 endured 116 enemy rounds of fire and was disabled twice before reaching safety.

He was awarded the Vietnam Campaign Medal, A First-Award National Defense Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, A Silver Star, Two Bronze Stars and Meritorious Unit Commendations.

Over time he became 100% Combat-disabled due to PTSD and Agent Orange exposure. He continued to work as a Physician’s Assistant and rural outreach “Doc” for rural poor and First Nation individuals, earning chickens and eggs and friends along the way.

He became involved with the incredible, controversial and next-in-line for sainthood Dorothy Day and worked with her and others in social justice through the Catholic Worker Movement. He walked the homeless camps in Niagara Falls, New York in the freezing winters with food, blankets, coffee and love.

While he himself was not religious per se, he practiced a combination of his Hopi and Comanche spirituality and what he learned later about Eastern ideologies such as Taoism and Buddhism in his journeys to the many countries in that region.

He never asked for a thing for himself. He was the most generous human I have ever known and truly cared for all people, even when greatly harmed by brothers in arms. He prevented rapes, assaults and treated non-combatant local citizens in Vietnam and Cambodia. He took an oath to protect our nation, and he also took one to protect lives. He lived up to and beyond both.

He was also very interested in Martial Arts, sword and knife fighting, strength building, shiatsu and bodywork. He was an artist, guitar player, singer, songwriter, poet, storyteller and only ever unleashed his deadly warrior spirit in combat or when someone he loved or was defending against harm was threatened. Never for himself. Only on behalf of others.

For several nights before he died, he told me of a dream: We are dancing on a beach, my hair is long and flowing, our kitty honey is with us floating along in an upside down pith helmet enjoying the slow ebb and flow of the passing tides.

This recurred in slight variations. Then on my birthday during Physical Therapy, he stood up for the first time in 20 years as a birthday present for my 54th, January 25th of this year in a specialized rehabilitation device. He sent me a picture. He stood for me.

He would not let go of life until I, the hospice worker and non-denominational chaplain softly spoke with him at around 10 pm. We repeated together how his Omaw (his grandmother who raised him), how I, how our kitty and all the people whom he ever touched in kindness and healing honor and love him and he will never be alone.

I told him he is with us always and that it was time for him to rest. At first he showed signs of agitation but after hearing me repeat my words, he became calm again, re-entered a semi-comatose state and died peacefully without further incident 4 hours later.

I promised I would never marry again, and I won’t ever get married again. I never thought I’d do it at all, and it was the best decision I ever made in my life.

I married a truly great man, a hero to this world, to countless world nations and human populations both allied and non combatant civilians, the United States of America, all the communities across the country where he served the poorest of the poor in times of need, his town, his home, his wife and silly little kitty who walks around at 2:00 a.m. yowling for him. It’s when he would sneak her treats without me “knowing” – but of course I knew.

It’s also the time he died.

I love you Ray, you were one of the only two people with whom I truly knew unconditional love, the other being my Mother.

May you rest always and may your loving spirit move through this world as a reminder that war and strife do not have to change the loving nature of a human’s heart.

I have been blessed to know you 30 years, and especially blessed to have married you, as our time together as husband and wife was short, it was truly a compatible, happy and honest, loving marriage.

Peaceful now we go. T43 xoxox love to you and love to me always and forever.

picture of molly in black and white

Who Is My Family?

If the Web is really what I worked very hard in hopes of it becoming – a platform for social as well as a technological peer-to-peer have/need approach to the world – then this post should stand as one of the most important things I have ever done whether you understand that or not.

In the past year we’ve all had devastation of some sort, none of us gets out of this life without extreme pain. That the entire world is chaotic and in what I perceive to be the darkest of times in my 50+ years here appears to be the general sentiment of the vast majority of humanity speaking up.

My work ethic isn’t a healthy one. I’m insanely over-productive because of a damaged, hard-wired belief that my entire being is worth nothing, and that I have no right to life. This was what my father told me both in action and in literal word for word communication. That I amounted to anything at all is down to my strong mother and ME.

And in the near past, the one man that ever loved me for who I am as I am, my husband Ray, who is in hospice and will die within the week. A noble and great soul, a US American Hero, a social justice warrior, a rural physician who took care of this nation’s poor and disenfranchised, street people – for nothing more than a thank you or some eggs and chickens or just because. That’s the man I married – a person far greater than I. And that is who I am losing, a piece of myself that is also far greater than I.

I could have sat out this entire life and career on disability as I received that 100% at the age of 24 (so 30 years, longer than the Web). But I couldn’t. So what I did accomplish in this world and for our industry while dealing with the unfolding of what was a 30 year brutal and rare disease because doctors thought I was “just depressed” or “malingering” is impressive to me. It mitigates, at least slightly, the overwhelming sense of self-hatred and failure that’s been my main demon since I was a very small, and once very joyous, little girl.

I remember the first day I went to work at Opera Software, I climbed up a hill through feet of snow and was exhilarated. I was also hemorrhaging, and did it anyway, my blood on the white fjords of Norway an image imprinted on my brain not as sorrow, but as pure resolve and courage to live life no matter what.

A person doesn’t do what I did for money. I did it for idealism. For reasons to improve the world using the digital medium – the Internet, and yes, I was here before the Web doing this – and then the WWW for the entirety of its lifespan, albeit not my own.

I have social and financial needs as my family and friends are all far away or engaged in terrible losses or issues of their own, or really just faux friends, moronic ex-lovers and others who I foolishly thought love would heal. I have a cowardly and unethical blood sibling who considers himself a social advocate but shows me absolutely no empathy and who has not seen me in more than two years despite living mere miles (I’m told) from me.

Weakness is the man who thinks himself more important than the rest of the world.

Where are my friends with “Net Worth” – so many of them have it and they aren’t around. Where are the wealthy employers who don’t recognize it’s against Federal Law (as we still know it as of this second) to terminate a disabled woman in good standing and on medical leave much less at such a time? My advocates, attorneys and ombudspersons are the only ones now standing up with me, at my side. I have to burn others to be okay? How is that possibly conducive to peace, kindness and everyone’s dignity? It isn’t. And yet, it was so easy to burn down mine, so at what point do we continue to turn the other proverbial “cheek” as it were?

Want to break a digital and social divide and help me as I watch my husband leave this world and our beautiful time together, as I struggle to regain my own health, as I move to another state where I can get the resources and protections afforded to me that Arizona simply does not have the resources nor social stability or market to provide? Want to fill in the gaps of humiliation, abandonment and the disposal of what I recognize as my often chaotic, manic and hyper-intense but ultimately loving and decent human BE-ing?

If you’re reading this far, then you care or feel guilty and you can put that to use by doing one or more of the following:

  1. Donate money. Yes, I’m done feeling like a beggar. I was paid 1 dollar to every man’s 10,000 for my keynote talks. I received 4% of gross earnings on a book that made the author a lot of money and me around 565.00 USD. I did not know I was giving so much away for free, and back then I was young with life ahead and could have used that money to not end up homeless and penniless and buried in medical debt now for both me AND my husband’s care that was not covered by insurance – more than a quarter of a million dollars. So yes, sure, go ahead if so inspired and donate via my GoFundMe medical fundraiser please: ThanksMols!
  2. Offer accessibility rights advocacy and orgs money and time. My preferred organization is of course Knowbility and they need you. Go and do something good so others have opportunity. They are a loving and caring group and will move the universe if it is within their means. Give them some means – sweat, commitment, kindness, work, money.
  3. Stop perpetuating a Web and Web apps that are inaccessible and harmful. For me, this has especially harmed me with the lack of user controls in motion graphics, flickering animations, too many moving animations on a page – um, these are well-known legally binding issues. Learn WCAG, use the rules, adhere to them, advocate for them and if you don’t know how – get in touch with someone who does. Better yet, HIRE someone or a full team to advise you of your legal obligations to your site and app users, engineers, employees and the world. THE WEB MUST REMAIN AN ON-RAMP FOR HUMANITY.
  4. If you have other resources that can help at this time – I have a household filled with furniture, clothes and items that have value but am too exhausted and overwhelmed to sit here and try to organize a sale. Do you know of a fair liquidator for household furnishings, art, appliances and so on?
  5. Do something kind for another person. Not spontaneous acts of kind. Intentional acts of kind. Every single day.

Thank you.