Let's Get Better Together

photo by Mikaela Gauer

photo by Mikaela Gauer

I don’t care about who you voted for.  Or even that you didn’t vote. 

 

All I care about is what you do next. 

 

This time last week I was walking to meet a friend with tears streaming down my face, fighting the urge to collapse on the wet sidewalk in the rain and put my head in my hands.  I was shocked and sad and disappointed.  Incredulous but also not.  I’ve been comfortable in my little bubble of people who think like me. 

 

The bubble has officially burst.

 

So THIS is what we’re working with?  Ok.  I accepted this truth with tight lips and a fire sparking in my chest.  Game ON. 

 

We can’t heal something we can’t see.  We can’t fix something if not everybody thinks it’s broken.  What is happening right now is not new.  The man who won the electoral vote did not create racism, misogyny, or degradation of rights for all people.  This was already on the menu. 

 

We, the people, created this.  We, the people, are the only ones who can heal it. 

 

I do not believe in evil.  I believe that hurt people hurt people.  We’ve all got issues and when those wounds get deeply infected and fester like the ones America has, the only way out is through.  It’s time to excise the wound. 

 

Our number one enemy right now is Apathy. 

 

As are complacency, silence, and neutrality. 

 

We have been comfy.  We have let the government “take care of it.”  We can no longer ignore.  We can no longer look the other way or not take a stand. 

 

True healing is not comfortable.  True healing shakes the foundation of who you are and makes you question everything.  It straightens your spine, opens your eyes and makes your heart pound. 

 

It’s up to us now.  We have to keep our eyes open.  Protect each other.  Speak the truth.  Have the awkward, difficult conversations.  Listen to people who think differently from you with an intent to understand and connect.  Take responsibility for your own shadow, your own judgements and your own prejudices. 

 

Feel your grief, feel your despair, feel your confusion, feel your defeat, feel your fear, feel your anger.  And then roll up your sleeves.

 

Anger and anxiety are hot emotions.  Anger is fiery.  Anxiety is more like a slow simmer.  They both need channels and they can be used as fuel to take action.  The highest, purest expression of anger is non-violent activism and protest.  Anger in its distilled form says, “I don’t like this.  Something needs to be different about this situation.” 

 

So what don’t you like?  Make a phone call.  Make a donation.  Make a sign.  Stand with others.  Stand up for someone.  Sign a petition.  Write a manifesto.  Paint a painting.  Use your creativity.  We can only clean up our side of the street and there are a million ways to do this.

 

Everything is going be okay but only if We, The People, make it that way by putting our hearts and souls and voices on the line. 

 

I trust us.  I trust this world.  Let’s get better together.