How deeply I looked forward to celebrating our first woman present; how sincerely I dreaded the other outcome, the one we now have.
I will only say a few things, because my filtered version of the internet is daily bursting at the seams with astonished essays, angry stances, assignments of blame, and other iterations of deserved and palpable grief. I am right there with it all. But I have had to turn away from it, if only to preserve my sanity. That is what we did on Sunday; we left our screens and went to the woods with the dogs.
Some thoughts on surviving the next four years.
- Celebrate the tiny things. I went to the library book sale this weekend, and this thought actually ran through my head: “At least I can still read. At least we can find solace in books still.” It sounds silly to say out loud, much less to write, but it was sincerely comforting to me at that moment.
- Champion the women and people of color in your life. We need each other now more than ever.
- Spend time with mute creatures. Like babies and dogs. They have no idea what is going on and in this way can be infinitely calming.
- Make art. In whatever form most calls to you, create something with your mind or your hands. Artists tend to make their best work under the shadow of frightening regimes.
- Support nonprofits who are doing the hard work every day. I’m giving to New City Arts Initiative, the ACLU, Oceana, Planned Parenthood, and the NAACP. There are hundreds and hundreds of amazing organizations all over this troubled country who need us. Find one that speaks to you.
- Kiss your loved ones.
- Turn it off when it gets too much. Go outside. Read a novel or a random Emily Dickinson poem. Write your grandfather a letter.
(Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am languishing)
My beloved sister and brother-in-law are coming this weekend for our annual feast. I love my new job, my new teammates, the things I get to think about at work. Our dogs are stupid but were so happy and carefree on our hike. This beautiful golden basin of a city that we live in. Sumi ink. Liturgy. Guion.
(My soul also is greatly troubled)