I curled up this morning with my six-year old son, who had woken up scared in the middle of the night, and was now in my bed with me, along with his three stuffed animal friends he had dragged along through the long dark hallway to the comfort of my bed. He must have already sensed the horror of what I had not yet realized.
Shortly after 6am I heard more footsteps. This time they were lighter, more delicate. My 12-year old daughter was now standing in front of me at my bedside. My eyes start to wake up to the faint light of the morning sky.
“Mommy," my daughter whispered in a frightened voice, "I think Trump is President.”
I, still mostly unconscious, answered, “No, it’s not over yet, honey.”
But it was. It was over. And I wasn’t dreaming. The radio hosts' voices grew increasingly grim with each haunting prediction, probability, and finally, a certain announcement. Trump was going to be the next President of the United States of America.
Distraught, desperate, and disappointed people everywhere. Except, of course, the other half of the country. They were suspiciously quiet on social media this morning. Many of them were protest voters. Many didn’t really love Trump, but they definitely loved to hate Hillary.
The thoughts in my head were running laps around each other. I am filled with shock. Fear. Sadness. With the last sip of my third cup of coffee, these feelings festered into anger and hatred. How could you, America? What will happen to us now? Sure, you want a big change. Sure, you want to get rid of the establishment. But, with this guy?
I’m so full of hate right now I could choke on it.
So where does that leave us, dear Mindfuls?
It does not appease me to hear, “Well, we only have 4 years of it.” A lot can happen in four years. A-WHOLE-lot. My sweet 12-year old will be 16 then when that guy is out of office. SIXTEEN! She will have periods, and boyfriends, and be able to legally drink beer in German pubs. A lot CAN happen in four years. So what do we do now?
I know I have to find a way to deal with this without hatred and anger. Do you feel like that too?
I know that many of you feel the same. I'm afraid the only thing I can only offer to you right now is a different perspective.
The country – the world – is yearning for a change. We are in a time of dynamic change and evolution. Yes, evolution of the monkey kind. I see you shaking your heads, thinking "Um, we've already evolved from monkeys, where have you been the last thousands of years?" You didn’t think evolution STOPPED after monkeys evolved into humans, did you? Of course you didn't. You are smart, after all. I mean, you of all species should know that.
Evolution continues. And right now is a thrusting time of evolutionary change. People are yearning for the break up of old, stale institutions and rules. Unfortunately I do not think the solution chosen for us on this day is the right way to go about that change, but I have no choice but to focus on the fact that, change it is. It is a momentous change; not just a shift from Democrat to Republican. That’s the least of it. It is a change to more chaos, more upheaval, more—well—change.
If you are awake (read: awakened), use this time to shape the direction of change.
Have you ever seen those belts (here's one I actually used) you can wear after giving birth that will supposedly squeeze your hips back together? You’re supposed to wear it during the time directly after birth, during the time that the hormone Prolactin is coursing through your body. Why? Because that is the time of upheaval for a woman’s body. It is a time of major change, when your body—your hips in this case—are malleable enough to actually squeeze back (as to avoid your baby-making hips to become even wider). And this kind of malleability can ONLY happen during the short period of time after giving birth. I liken this time to that.
This time is a time of upheaval, total societal and political change. Be ever so mindful now, dear Mindfuls. Become aware of this great energy of change and use it to do good, to bring this earth forward (even if the leader of the free world probably will not do the same).
Here are some ideas for starters:
Focus your energy: get enough sleep, meditate, don’t distract yourself with too much iPhone, FB, TV, gossip, alcohol, etc. Remaining or becoming very centered is key.
If you haven’t already, start a gratitude journal!
Write down any values you want to see spread throughout your own family, country, world. After you’ve written them down, brainstorm ways in which you can develop, live out and teach those values.
Be aware of all the ways we humans are influenced, misinformed and manipulated, and write down ways in which you can work against that and helps others do the same.
I haven’t posted in a long time. For that I’m sorry. I have been working on other projects and had quite some personal changes in my life where I felt the need to slow down. This day has yanked me back. I hope you’ll engage in conversation, commentary, and fruitful discussions on my blog. I'd love to connect with, and hear from you.