Ask any West Virginian what he or she thinks of the Mountain State and you’re likely to hear how wild and wonderful it is. The phrase “wild and wonderful” — or sometimes just “wonderful” — has defined the state for decades.
But when city slickers dig a little deeper with probing questions about life, work, physical and emotional health, behaviors, and basic access, West Virginians appear to be a pretty miserable lot.
The evidence is in Gallup-Healthway’s annual “State of American Well-Being” index. The latest report for 2013 was just released, and my home state is dead last — for the fifth year in a row. The only time West Virginia didn’t rank No. 50 was in 2008, the first year of the index, and we were 49th that year.
Cue the negative media coverage of those rednecks in the hills:
Filed under: Business and Culture and Health and News & Politics and Rednecks and West Virginia
Somewhere within my heart is a song about adoption looking for a voice. I have a title for it that comes from the last paragraph of our adoption story and even drafted some lyrics several years ago.
But I’ve never been able to finish the song. I guess I’m a writer but not a songwriter.
John Waller, on the other hand, is a songwriter. And he tells an inspiring adoption story in “Orphan,” a song about a little girl’s quest for her “forever home.”
The song is even more powerful when you realize that little girl at the beginning and end of the video is Waller’s adopted daughter, and the people who play the parents are his sister and brother-in-law.
I hope someday I can find the words to pen our adoption story in lyrics, but for now, I’ll just listen to John Waller’s and appreciate all of the parents and children who found each other through adoption. “Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world” (James 1:27).
Filed under: Adoption and Family and Music and Video