A Time For Feeling
I have been feeling pretty pissed off lately.
I’m upset at the behavior of many.
I’m disappointed to see the lack of respect and kindness that we desperately need right now.
And I’ll be honest-I’m finding it hard not to be judgmental at this point.
The-you do you-I’ll do me-works, until it doesn’t.
The disregard for common sense and human decency. The hiding behind rhetoric, that does not match reality. I just can't.
So if you see this face...it's me wondering WTF now and dreaming of getting out of the state of Florida.
I never knew that I could feel so out of place, in a city I have called home for the past 14 years. That the idea of belonging is feeling harder for me each day.
I’m choosing to share this because, when we look at life through the lens of social media, or our quick interactions in our COVID world, it can come across as one may be disregarding or walking through this pandemic like we know what the hell we are doing.
My honest answer is- I DON'T!
We have 4 weeks before our kids are going back to school and I just got a glimpse of the plan. The choice between mental health, physical health and a good education is not one we should have to make. But here we are....sending our kids and teachers into school, to be what feels like a giant experiment, for the rest of the country to follow.
I’m having such a difficult time buying into that.
For the past 6 months, I have heard myself say to my daughters, ”I just don’t know," to so many of their questions, and I’m sick of it. But does that mean, I’m ready to throw in the towel and give in? No.
Because through the hardest of times, I’m teaching my girls about resilience, and patience and learning to look at the world beyond themselves.
Does that make me weak? Hell no.
I am strong and not afraid to say that this time in life has me freaked out. But being freaked out does not mean I am walking around in fear. I’m walking around in strength with a mask-with caution- and with a tremendous amount of love and respect for the people around me.
You do you-I’ll do me....it’s just not enough.
People are dying from something we had no idea existed 7 months ago. People. HUMAN LIVES. And numbers and statistics are being tossed around like these lives are dispensable. So no, I will not compare this virus to anything else.
I will not make light of any loss of life.
What about long term effects? We have no idea.
The Democrats and doctors taking down Trump? WHAT?
It’s interesting to me. This sense that people care so much about things they didn't pay attention to before, just so they can stand behind some political BS.
This is not about politics for me.
Shouldn’t it simply be about human compassion and decency and taking care of each other?
And when it comes to choosing to stand behind All Lives Matter, instead of acknowledging the true injustices of BlPOC? If that’s what one really means- all lives matter-wouldn’t the choice be to wear the mask? While this is my perspective of today and the experience around me, I was reminded of its white centering and so I acknowledge that. I am making choices for myself and my family because of my privilege. This pandemic goes so far beyond my own experiences and if I’m being true to who I say I am, I won’t look away. I will take the time to understand and acknowledge that BlPOC are experiencing racial disparities within the pandemic that will also pour into the educational outcomes of so many children in this country.
So while I’m upset and worried about what my daughters 7th and 10th grade year will look like-I will also find it within myself to feel grateful that I/we have the ability to choose. Not everyone has that kind of luxury.
Our kids are living through this experience that will ultimately change them in ways we can’t even recognize yet. Let’s give them the benefit of the doubt that those changes, while challenging, can be positive and they are going to get through this time and be more than okay.
What started out as a small rant of frustration and anger, has turned into a release of emotions and a reflection of the months passed.
Am I still feeling pissed off?-Yes, but there is a difference from when I began. If I go to the source of my emotions, I realize I am not pissed because one holds a different view from my own; I am pissed at the arrogance and reckless behavior I see and hear of around me. I’m pissed for those in our community, that have no choice but to walk into a store with a compromised immune system or the elderly, and continue to see people choosing not to wear a mask. I’m pissed at this State and how badly this virus has spiraled out of control at the hands of our leaders. I’m pissed at those who hide behind agendas to advance themselves in the world. And I'm pissed at the racism that exists within this country and the fact that it has taken us (including myself) this long to start waking up, speaking out and doing the real work needed for change.
But even though I am pissed, I’ll also choose to let the emotions flow and turn it into something more than anger and hate towards others.
So I'll close with hope- or better than that….
I look forward to the day when we learn to sit together with opposing views and have the difficult and uncomfortable conversations with respect for one another.
When we really listen to hear the other person and remain open to growth and lasting change. And within that growth, we are able to see past ourselves and our own experiences, and choose to uplift and care for all the people and the world around us.
I look forward to the day, when masks come off, anger subsides, hugs can be offered, and we see the progress we made as humans, with our created paths of silver linings that helped us make it through.