RMNAAFA Member Spotlight: Margaret Mary Short

How Margaret Mary came to find Rocky Mountain NAAFA, or how we came to find her is a story of destiny. RMNAAFA schedules regular social outings enjoyed by many of our members. We go out to eat, bowling, to movies, go swimming and just enjoy getting out and having fun. A few months back we had a planned movie outing at the Pavilion's United Artist theater downtown. A few days before this movie outing I had spoken with a woman on the phone that had just learned about NAAFA and wanted more information. I invited her to come and join us that Saturday for our movie outing. She said she would try but had babysitter troubles and wasn't sure she would be there. Saturday comes and those at the outing were looking out for an unfamiliar face that might be this woman I had spoken to on the phone. Sherry G. saw Margaret Mary and asked if she was that woman. She wasn't but Sherry asked her to join the NAAFAns if she liked. She did and the rest is history!

 Margaret fit right in and became fast friends with many of the group. She joined us for our BBWonderland dance and came as a guest to our February meeting. At the March meeting she officially joined RMNAAFA and now it is hard to imagine a time when she wasn't a part of us.

NAAFA was new to Margaret Mary. The whole concept of fat acceptance was new to her. Before finding our group she thought she was the only one that faced the problems of finding chairs that fit and problems with clothes. She felt like a freak. She feels being a part of RMNAAFA has done wonders for her self-esteem. She says, "it's nice to be in a group where I don't feel like I'm just being labeled as the fat chick and dismissed from consideration because of it". Margaret Mary further states "I think NAAFA is great not only because of it's social activities (although I must say I really love those) but also because of it's educational aspects. It is very empowering to have resources available when I get frustrated with life. NAAFA members always seem to come through, whether it be someone in the group suggesting a book from the library when I am feeling helpless from ridicules or just being able to get a reality check and a friendly ear from the onelist members. I am amazed at the diverse wealth of talent in our group. I am grateful to be a member". Wonderfully put. We are grateful she joined us!

 Margaret Mary grew up in the Denver area. She sings in the choir and is an executive officer on the Woman's Guild at the Redeemer Lutheran Church, which is where she went to elementary school. She attended high school at Lutheran High and received her Bachelors of Science in Biology from Regis. Both her parents and all of her grandparents have passed away.

Margaret Mary is an enthusiastic Rick Springfield fan and has often traveled to see him in concert. She has many friends that are also die hard fans of Springfield and follows "Rick" news via online lists. She loves movies (good news for us since we met her at the movies!) and she loves reading. Her favorite writers are Stephen King, Anne Rice, and Edgar Allen Poe.

 Margaret Mary works at the Denver Department of Veteran's Affairs Medical center as a laboratory technician in research. She does genetic experiments utilizing a variety of molecular biology techniques. She isolates DNA from human blood and brain tissue, as well as from genetically engineered bacteria, DNA cloning, DNA mutation screening and gene expression analysis. The work she is involved with focuses on the genetics of Schizophrenia and sensory deficiencies. It has been shown that Schizophrenics have brain receptors for nicotine. This is why so many of them smoke. When nicotine fills these receptors they feel calmed. The research team she is working with hopes of finding a substance less harmful then nicotine that will calm those suffering from this life damaging disorder.

 Margaret Mary is again another example of how valuable we all are. Fat people will always be important members of society. Removing prejudice from our life will only further open up avenues for other fat people to live to their fullest potential. The presence of RMNAAFA in our community is a valuable thing. It gives people like Margaret Mary a place to feel at home and it gives our community a better understanding of how valuable every person is.

The Member Spotlight column is the work of Patti Kelly.

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