As regular readers here know, “Yo” was a beacon for integrity and honesty among local electeds, sometimes wearing her (wonderful) heart on her sleeve. Now she and her husband have good jobs and a bouncing baby boy.
We saw them the other night at the GVDA annual BBQ. And, I should disclose, I told her I hoped she would not run and just enjoy her family and her career. Local politics are still a grind, and you can wind up being dragged down the proverbial rabbit hole.
On one level, we need working families such as “Yo’s” among our electeds. On the other, we’re not quite done with the small-town politics, so expecting them to serve (as volunteers) is a little too much. One day, I hope local politics will be more inviting to families like “Yo’s,” but we’re not there yet. So it’s best to “do your own thing” and “enjoy life.”
Yo has no doubt cringed on some blog posts here, but she always is friendly and respectful. We never discuss politics or gossip. Ours is a relationship based on being “working stiffs” and raising children in our community – also as transplants from the Bay Area.
Yo is a big fan of our son, and we like to joke how our son and her little boy are going to become County “buddies” as they grow older. We sent Yo flowers when she publicly disclosed she was pregnant, because we were so happy for her and Carl. It was a real blessing. (We like children in our county, with its aging, declining population).
Here’s Yolanda’s last post on her blog, which has been dormant but always was insightful:
A Product of Me
Last night,I was sharing with a friend a quote from the movie The Departed. In the beginning of the movie,Jack Nicholson’s character says,“I don’t want to be a product of my environment,I want my environment to be a product of me.”
Tuesday night was the most difficult night of my short political career. I was visibly shaken by the experience. It was my first time voting against someone and not something. A person. A man. Someone I genuinely care about. He’s funny,really funny. A great storyteller and he truly loves Grass Valley in his own,very personal way. I voted against a friend.
We have two very distinct styles. He thinks I don’t know what I want and I think he’s not willing to do what it takes to get what he wants. We’re just different…and that’s good…it’s actually great. It’s great for someone like me to see it at this time in my career.
I am going to remember the sting and it’s creating something within me that is going to make me better,stronger. Someday,I will be “more experienced” and there will be someone “less experienced” maneuvering for the same piece of turf and I will have this to fall back on…and I will have the opportunity to be unlike those who have served with and before me.
I want to be someone of impeccable character,filled with integrity,my motivations to be selfless,and moved for the overall betterment of my community. I want to be fearless,regardless of the change of landscape ahead.
I will not be engulfed by the fear of those who are not willing to take a chance,are not willing to let go of the reins,are not willing to make a mistake and in turn destroy the opportunity for something new,fresh,and different.
There is a lot of work to be done. I am not stopping,not even going to slow down enough for this to make a difference. The decision was not meant to be hurtful and by saying “no” I afforded myself an opportunity to be who I am and vote for a set of ideals I value…a set of ideals I was elected to represent. In my small way,I made the environment become a product of me.