Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Going Forward

There's so much to say right now, but there are no words. I wasn't prepared to write this.

I live in the liberal bubble of California, surrounded by people of all races, religions, cultures, and walks of life. Education is highly valued here, and even those who do not have college degrees are open-minded and accepting. In my little corner of this beautiful melting pot, there are no Trump yard signs, t-shirts, or bumper stickers.

In fact, I drove by a house on Halloween morning that had dozens of Trump-Pence signs stuck all over their yard, and I laughed because it was obvious that someone had pulled a practical joke on them like they had been "flamingo-ed."

Yesterday, I proudly wore a blue blazer over my Hillary t-shirt and jeans to work without any fear of retribution. I would have worn a pantsuit just to show solidarity, but I don't have one. No, here in California, most of us don't have to wear that type of attire to appear professional, even in corporate offices.

Yep, we're definitely spoiled in the Golden State.

I had glimpses of what the country was like outside of my bubble. I am originally from Michigan, and I saw a lot of Trump support in my Facebook feed. I am active on social media and was confronted with a lot of hate and evil for my strong liberal views.

So I knew the election would be close, too close for America in 2016, in my opinion, but... I wasn't prepared to write this.

I don't know what's going to happen now. I don't know how to tell my 5-year-old that the bully came out on top. I don't know what our country will feel like now that the next president has enabled hate to be acceptable, ignorance to prevail, and darkness to shine.

Today, I feel very much like I did on the morning of September 11, 2001. Shock. Disbelief. Sadness. Terror. What the fuck just happened?

Today, I am reminded that our fight is not over. This fight against hate, evil, and ignorance that has raged in our country for hundreds of years rages on.

Today, I wipe my tears and vow to be a louder voice in that fight.

Today, I am putting on my makeup like it's fucking war paint.

Today, I am going to love my children fiercely and remember that my most important job in this lifetime is to make sure they grow up to be good, decent, compassionate, loving people who will also fight for what is right.

To all my LGBT, Black, Mexican, and Muslim friends, you do not have to fight alone.

To the woman in this country who are scared and angry right now, I feel you, but we have come too far to back down. Think of all the women who came before us and fought for the rights we have today - what would they want us to do right now? Please remember that we are #StrongerTogether no matter who the president is.

Also remember that our children hear everything we say. Please do not let our anger and fear become theirs. This is a teachable moment - that the good guys don't always win, but we never stop fighting.