I feel so many emotions, so much heaviness, and am overwhelmed with how to put everything I’m processing and experiencing into words. Last night we elected the 45th president of the United States of America. The election fatigue surpassed any remaining stamina within me.
This morning, the day after Election Day, I woke, exhausted. I need sleep. I bet you do, too. I woke up, and I craved a hug from – anyone. More than anything, I felt lonely. Desperate for a loving embrace of consolation and assurance that we will be okay. I invaded my little dog’s space and hugged her, cried onto her, so hardcore (I think she’s still rattled by my unhinging).
This morning, I had breakfast with a long time girl friend. We voted for opposite candidates. And we talked about our fatigue, our fears, and feelings. We lamented the incredible outpouring of fear, shock. Shock and awe. We regarded how much anger and disappointment is being shared.
The shame… and shaming. Shaming from Republican voters who wrote smug admonishments to supporters of Clinton. Blaming and shaming from the other side toward people who voted for Trump.
In quick time today (almost immediately upon viewing brief scrolls through news feeds), I deleted multiple social media apps from my phone. I knew it would not be good and healthy for me to give myself such easy access to such strongly and negatively felt reactions.
Whatever you happen to be feeling about the outcome of last night’s election, your feelings are yours and they are valid. No matter what you feel, have all the feels. Take extra care of yourself if you are particularly discouraged. For me, one step was removing easy access to social media. What it looks like for you, take care of you.
I write this with devastated acknowledgment my candidate did not win the Electoral College. In fact, the man elected for the greatest position in leadership I observe, represents nearly everything directly opposed to what I believe is needed to be a good person. I have a lot of friends who voted for him. Who are loving and lovely people. I know of people for whom his messages of anger and division were appealing.
I write this while I come to my own terms that the President Elect has been a daily reminder to me of my abuser. He physically resembles, speaks in similar patterns, has familiar rhetoric, the temper… of a man who physically, verbally, and, in every way that he could, abused me – for years. It took me years of healing and hard work to understand my abuser and his effects on me. I know this is uncomfortable information to disclose to you.
I share this not to be shocking or gain sympathy but to share a bit about how hard this is for me and how determined I am to find peace. I’ll offer you my apology if my disclosure causes you discomfort. This may be oversharing.
Watching the campaign was painful. Watching people support him, and minimize the effects of his behaviors and words, was at times unbearable. The election was especially inconceivable for me and I’m still reeling. To me, it was not about “never him” at any cost.
For me, she wasn’t the lesser evil. I had, on one hand, a candidate I loved and admired. I volunteered and canvassed for, and donated to her campaign. On the other hand, though, was a candidate who was my very trigger.
But – I know I will be okay. Not because I am moving to Mexico, which I AM moving to Mexico, but not for any reason connected to the election. Because I accept the internal work I must do to accept profound setbacks in my life.
I believe we will be okay. Because I believe in America. I believe in us. I mean, come on, we survived Nixon.
We need to breathe. Deeply, and exhale fully. Instead of pointing fingers and attacking… and further dividing us among ourselves. We need to love. Love does trump hate.
We need to respect each other. Respect and celebrate how diverse our dreams, our skin, our faith, or heritage, our love, our families, are and not be afraid. It’s not easy for me to write this, but I believe in the power of positive thought and intention.
People are scared. People are in pain. People are angry. Fear, pain, and anger are contributing factors for how we arrived here. Let’s get to work. We have a lot of inside work to do for ourselves and each other. This is our opportunity to step up. United we stand.