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Ten Ways to Prevent Self-Destruction During the Time of Trump

It’s incredible how much my life has changed since November 8, 2016. And I’m white, so it’s nothing compared to what many of you are dealing with.

I still can’t believe that this is our world EVERY MORNING I WAKE UP. I can’t believe my black friend asked me if she thought our town could see a child’s birthday party shot up by white supremacists, like what happened in a neighboring county. I can’t believe I had to answer “Yes.”

But it is our world. Whether we like it or not, whether we want to believe it or not, whether we stick our heads in the sand — it is an unstable, frightening world, led by a crazy, narcissistic, greedy, compulsive liar/con-artist with an elementary-school vocabulary. It is a world where we can take nothing for granted and must face it head on.

I remember the good ol’ days when I kept an eye out and an ear out and read stuff, but didn’t have to really do anything. I posted on social media, I had the occasional light-hearted, boozy debate with someone, I gave a few bucks to a campaign or a cause. That was the extent of my political involvement. I cared but I was happy to let someone else do the work.

And most of the time, someone with some sense and experience was in charge, and most of the time, they were fairly moderate, not too far from center. Even if I didn’t like him or agree with him, I could see how he got votes and became president.

Those days are gone, friends. We are not in the best of times. The Time of Trump, these last 100 days that feel like 100 years, is one big, dark, sad, constant heartbreak.

The good ol’ days of apathy paved the way for our current tragedy. Now we are in the streets. We are making signs, we are chanting at rallies, we are buying  “Nasty Woman” t-shirts. We are incredulously marching for facts. We are somehow marching for science, of all things.

We are calling and writing our members of Congress in DC. We are calling and writing our state representatives. We originally had to look some of them up, but now we have them on speed-dial.

This is who we are now. This is who we will always be because we learned the hard way  what happens when we don’t participate.

It’s all exhausting. None of it is easy. There’s a lot of good stuff, too, but there is a lot of hard stuff. That’s why so many people aren’t doing anything. It’s a lot. I certainly wish I didn’t have to do all of this. Having hard conversations, organizing events, and worrying about everything from “will anyone attend our meeting” to “will I be shot at the protest by an NRA kook”…these are just some of the things that wear you down. Sometimes I get down and burnt-out. But I feel like I don’t have a choice anymore. I would actually feel worse if I weren’t doing anything.

When I do get tired and discouraged, it’s time for a rest day. Usually it’s Sundays for me. Here are some ways I’ve learned to take care of myself during the Time of Trump:

  1. Look For The Helpers. I always listen to Mr. Rogers! Actually it was his mother who said that. This time, the helpers are the protesters. They are mostly women, but also men, families, children, grandparents. The leaders of the protests are women, black people, Muslims, immigrants, victims of gun violence, scientists, medical professionals, researchers, and politicians. They are fighters and they are smart. They are non-violent. They are right. They will lift you up.
  2. Find A Group. There are so many wonderful groups, on social media and in real-life. They will keep you sane and you will realize how many people feel the same way you do. I started in Pantsuit Nation and now have joined many spinoffs from there. I also have a local group of people and we meet twice a month: once for a business meeting and once for a happy hour social. We meet up for protests and support each other, which is especially important in a red town/county/state like ours. There is power and safety in numbers. And it’s so heartening to see how many people care. There are so many good people. If you’re local and want to join, message me!
  3. Take A Break. Taking a break is not quitting. When it gets to be too much, I unplug. I do anything that isn’t news and politics. I put my phone away, turn it off if I can, ignore the CNN notifications. I remember there is life outside of political activism and I can take a breather when I need to.
  4. Get Outside. Even if it’s a walk with the dog, it helps. I find some fresh air, get the blood flowing and a good sweat going. I work in the yard. Plant some flowers. Sit on the porch. Have a picnic at the park. Throw the frisbee. Read a book in my eno.
  5. Eat Well. By this, I mean eat both healthy and happy. I eat things that are good for me but also eat things that make me happy. It’s ok, we need to enjoy life, and if that chocolate cupcake makes me happy, I eat it.
  6. Drink Well. Cocktails are a must, let’s be honest. The liquor companies must be raking it in. I thoroughly enjoy a cocktail (or several) and happy hour is my favorite time of day.
  7. Take Naps In Front Of HGTV. In the Time of Trump, sleep is a challenge. If you need to grab a nap here and there, don’t beat yourself up. If you’re like me and not sleeping well at night, you need to catch up. After those cocktails, feel free to take a long nap.
  8. Binge-Watch Netflix or Bravo. Escapism at its finest. On the former, I can recommend The Get Down Part 2 and the latter, Sweet Home Oklahoma. You’re welcome.
  9. Read A Home/Food/Entertainment Magazine. After constantly reading the NY Times, WaPo, LA Times and NPR, it’s nice to unwind with a Real Simple or Coastal Living. They always allow me to imagine what it would be like to live a super-organized life in a beach bungalow. One can dream, right?!
  10. Fiercely Love Yourself. God made us and loves us. All of us. The haters and trolls are miserable people who don’t love themselves. That’s why they lash out. Ignore them and know that God loves them, too. Keep loving yourself and doing you. You matter.

Have a good week. Take care of yourselves and each other,

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❤ YellowDaisyChick ❤

The March, Part 1: This Is What Democracy Looks Like

Last time, I posted a blog about my disappointment in/incredulity at my fellow white Americans who voted for Trump.

A lot of people loved it and a lot of people hated it. A lot of people love Trump and a lot of people hate him. This is where we find ourselves.

I have family relationships that are now strained, friend relationships that are strained, friend relationships whose status is just…unknown. I have made new friends, I have lost some friends. I have trolls who are now responding to my blog and social media because I am speaking out against Trump and questioning voters who voted for him.

It’s a strange time for all of us. I think we can all agree on that.

My last post was an outlet for how I was feeling. We are all processing these events in our own way. You don’t have to like it. I stand by it. Based on my life experiences, that’s how I was feeling. Based on your life experiences, you can like it or hate it. If you liked it, I hope it helped you. If you hated it, I hope it is part of one of many difficult conversations we all have to have at some point. If you hated it, let it serve as a reminder from me that we are all still here, no matter how much you want us to go away. We’re not moving to Canada. Your candidate won but you still have to deal with us.

Another outlet for me was the Women’s March on Washington. It was the honor and privilege of a lifetime to attend the event. I posted on Facebook why I was marching and I’ll post it here again:

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I have decided to do multiple posts on the March, as I am still processing it and it’s something so much larger than myself. I want to do it justice. I hope you enjoy Part 1:

The March, Part 1: This Is What Democracy Looks Like

I rode a bus from Atlanta with about 50 other women and a few men. They were all different shades of white, black, brown. My incredible, supportive husband dropped my friend and me off. Shout-out to him and all the men (including my dad, my father-in-law, my brother, my cousin, my friends’ husbands) who support women and their need to march.

There were six buses going from Atlanta, with many more from other cities/towns in GA. It appeared that most of the women on my bus were from inside the perimeter but there were some of us from OTP. I have never done anything like this before in my life, and I had my share of anxiety about the whole thing. Would it be safe? Would the other women be nice? Would someone near me get me drawn into a fight and get me arrested? Would the buses have a wreck or break down? (One did break down but made it in time for the march.) Would I have to go to the bathroom when no porta-potty was around? These are the things I thought about as I got on the bus.

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Lining up to get on the bus! #ATL

First of all, the bus was lovely. It was like an airplane, with tv screens, personal lights, air vents and charging outlets at every seat. There was a bathroom that held up until near the end. They stopped every few hours for bathrooms, food and leg stretches. I would like to shout out to the Flyin’ J where we stopped twice — the nicest workers and cleanest restrooms ever. We were treated with kindness and respect by everyone when we stopped and I can only imagine what people thought when six buses of women wearing “Nasty Woman” and “Women’s March” shirts and matching pink knitted hats entered the truck stop. Not one person said anything ugly to us. Not one.

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2:00 a.m. Many thanks to Flyin’ J’s for the oasis they provided us.

The bus drivers were also lovely. The loveliest. They sang softly to us to wake us up (“wake up, sleepyheads, it’s time for a poopy stop!”) and took such good care of us. They supported us completely and told us so. They told us that they would be marching with us if they didn’t have to sleep so they could get us home. Our main driver, Lamont, was full of kindness and love and good humor. I feel so fortunate to have had him as a part of my March experience, and consider him, his co-workers and his company Atlantic to be a big part of its success.

The women around me on the bus were quiet and sleeping for most of the trip. We chatted a bit and shared info but for the most part, tried to rest. The bus captains were absolute champions. They kept us informed and organized. They answered our questions. They were tough as nails. Any anxiety about this trip diminished as I saw how competent and fearless they were.

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My bus mates and rockin’ bus captains!

(Note: Sleeping on a bus is an under-appreciated aspect of protesting. There is literally no comfortable sleeping position in a bus seat, no matter how hard we tried. Eventually, your body gives up and you will sleep a fitful sleep of a few hours. You consider lying down in the aisle. You study how others are sleeping and try to make it work. You remind yourself why you are doing this and you don’t complain. Well, maybe you do a little. You’re not perfect, ok? So I now want to say to civil rights protesters like John Lewis, “thank you for getting your skull cracked, for getting arrested and beaten, and for sleeping on a bus for us.”)

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Not me or my bus, but basically all of us on my bus.

Once we finally arrived after 12 hours of travel, we pulled up to RFK Stadium and saw bus after bus after bus. I saw a sea of pink hats walking toward the Rally location. I felt the energy. I felt alive. I felt the love. I knew that missing two nights of sleep was a small sacrifice to be able to be a part of this historic and important event.

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Not the best photo quality but it was a marvel to see.

Stay tuned for Part 2!

 

 

What the Actual Hell, White People?

HOW IS THIS YOUR GUY?

We all have political issues that we care about and place our vote in such a way as to support our issues. But when it came down to it, HOW THE HELL WAS THIS YOUR GUY?

I’ve often fantasized about an America where the two political parties both put up the best of the best and we all have to really think hard about our choice. Because that would really be good for the country. As we all know, that didn’t happen and never will. Neither candidate this time around was perfect. But when it came down to that choice in the booth, HOW THE HELL WAS HE YOUR GUY?

I remember talking with moderate (obviously white) Republicans early on and they were disgusted by him. They said they either wouldn’t vote or they would vote for HRC. So I said to myself, “Self- it’s going to be fine. These good people get it. He will never win.” But you know what? My red county that always votes around 70% Republican — they voted 69.3% for him. Hmm.

Republicans, that’s about as sad as sad can be. I believe you that you didn’t like him but you voted for him because you wanted a piece of the Trump pie. If he won, you were betting that you would get your piece. In spite of all of the horrible things he did and said, in spite of the horrific person he is, you voted for him.

So how’s that pie tasting right now? Delicious? Bittersweet? Giving you the runs yet? Most likely a flavor combo of Borscht and vodka. I don’t know because for the most part, you’re not talking to me about it. Most of you are awfully quiet on social media. I do wonder what you all say to one another to rally yourselves. A Republican, non-voting relative did send me a conservative defense of DT and it was heartbreakingly ignorant. It more or less said “fear not, conservatives — we should get what we want out of him even though he’s an asshat.” So do you just not care about other people who aren’t white Christians? Aren’t you worried that he might not give a shit about you, either? Given his cabinet appointees, most of them aren’t concerned with the little guy. But I guess Fox News is telling you differently, and for that, I truly am sad for you when he screws you, too.

But I also blame you. For aligning yourselves with this National Joke to get what you want. He’s your guy now and you’re responsible for him. Period. We all hold you responsible. How must that feel? It gives me the creeps and makes me want a shower to even imagine it.

I’m giving a great deal of my time right now to fight you and your guy. Time I would rather use for many other things, but I must give up to do what’s right. I’m a white, Christian Democrat. I might be the only white, Christian Democrat you know but trust me, there are many of us. And we are pissed and we will fight because we care about rights for all and that’s what we were taught to do as kids in Sunday School. Were you there? Where the hell did you go to Sunday School that HE IS YOUR GUY?

You’ve also made it super hard now for us white people who actually like black people. We had made some progress but things had heated up recently with the police shootings and the Black Lives Matter vs All Lives Matter/Blue Lives Matter debacle. (BTW they just wanted you to say, “yes, we hear you, of course, yes, black lives do matter.” That’s all. They just wanted you to acknowledge that their children’s lives matter. And you chose not to.) And now YOUR GUY has the support of the KKK and white supremacist groups and even has one in the White House. So, yeah, now it makes it even shittier to be a white person who likes black people because they aren’t going to trust any of us and frankly, I don’t blame them.

What the actual hell, White People? What the hell have you done to all of us? #Resist

 

 

 

 

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