Infantile Paralysis made its debut in Southern California in Los Angeles County in the summer of 1949.
It was shocking to me that something called polio scared everyone so much. I was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance and placed into the Los Angeles General Hospitals polio ward. The room was about 80 feet long with 20 beds against one wall and 10 against the opposite wall. There were two booths with iron lungs in them.
I spent 10 days there before being transferred out of that ward.
I was taken to a room with bright lights and later woke up in a room wit some pain between my legs.
Apparently I was born what is known today as intersexed, but back then it was called ‘Hermaphroditism’ and considered an embarrassment.
Two weeks later I was released with a diagnosis of Juvenile Rhuematoid Arthritis and sent home.
My family dr was fr pierce and the nurse who worked fir him was Mrs Morehead. Five years later in 1964 and she was the school nurse at TELFAIR Avenue Elementary School.
So one day during afternoon break, Melanie Larsen comes up to me and says,”Mrs Morehead the school nurse is telling everyone that you are a morphodite”. I ask her what a morphodite is and she had no idea. So I go home and repeat to my mom what Melanie told me. She is outraged and takes me back to school to confront the nurse in the principals office.
So the nurse gets fired for knowledge she learned five years before at the drs office and brought it into the elementary school and told everyone else, which is illegal, being known as Breach of Confidentiality.
The following day in school at least half the people I thought were friends were really acquaintances. They told me when they asked their parents what a ‘morphodite’ is they were told not to have anything to do with me and to ignore me.
When the spelling bee contest was done, the principal of the school chose another word not on the list with 26 letters. So I phonetically spelled it out in my mind and then spelled it out verbally anti-disestablish-mentarian-ism.
Im estatic thinking I’m going to win, until he asks for a word with 35 letters in it. The girl contestant spells out the 35 letter word which is the Swedish form of his last name. So he declares his grand daughter the winner of the contest and the people there get to listen to words spewing from my mouth a sailor would blush if he heard.
Basically I cussed out the principal for being crooked in the contest and got his grand daughter already knowing his 35 letter Swedish last name.
My dad escorted me off stage telling me I should not have used those cuss words. So I th Ed n used Spanish curse words.