Recently there was a presidential election in the USA. Pre-election I tried to speak up for what I feel is right in person and online. Online is far tougher. I will continue to do so, but it is difficult because I believe people type things that they would never say to their so called friends. I was in a funk, but now I’m back.
I’m less than excited about a Trump presidency for many reasons. I’m not going to list them here. I’m not asking for opinions today. To begin to cure my disappointment I have found comfort in friendships and comedy. For me those two are truly a winning combination. There are so many satirists that have made me chuckle with material that is on point, but my favorite was Dave Chapelle’s opening monolouge on SNL on November 12. He outlines some current events in the USA: Mass shootings, Black Lives Matter, and Trump as president. My friends listen.
I’ve never been big at looking backward. There is so much “should have” that “would have” in these past weeks that I’m about to scream. And while there are lessons to be learned from the past, they do not mean anything unless you apply them to current situations or to the future. When I was in church one Sunday as a kid, the pastor pointed out that you can’t drive a car looking out the rear view mirror. He was right.
I was talking with one friend who was feeling particularly discouraged about election results and she asked me how I remain upbeat. First, I am not always that upbeat. But what keeps me sane is remembering that I have the power to change my world. For me, I focus on what I can do right now and I get out there and do it. There is garbage on the street, so I pick it up. Teenagers acting a fool at the gym. I point out that I can hear them and so can many others. In addition, I have also started volunteering with an organization that closely matches my values. On the Saturday after the general election I talked with nearly 500 girls about being a fire captain and answered their questions before they ran their first 5k race ever. Some of them got their hair done at a booth and some of them wore tutus and capes. And some of those girls also tried on my fire coat. I looked yesterday and my fire coat has a fine coat of glitter on the collar. I don’t think I’m going to wash it off.