My dearest community of activists and compassionists –
I rarely activate these days. Not because I don’t want to, but because at some point last summer I grew weary. Being attuned to the madness became too corrosive. My sources of information -- endless cycles of news reading, watching and social media -- felt like the swirl of an endless storm, spinning around and picking up trash at the rate of madness.
For my humanity and sanity, I needed to step away. Yet, in stepping away, I’ve turned off the most essential piece of me, the piece that knows that with each action we take, change occurs. By taking no action, I have turned away by from the time we’re in, which allows the storm to continue with ferocity.
These are incredibly unique times.
On one side devastation and heartlessness rule, and on the other side deeply heartfelt and determined resist.
I’ve said this before, it’s like we’re in a Marvel or DC comic.
Villainous creatures are working with all their might to steal and rob humanity of its beauty and sacredness. They are causing damage. Yet, we know that arc of the universe bends towards justice. We, the people united in humanity, will persevere for our families, our communities and our mother Earth. We know we are all in this together, interconnected, and the only way through is determination.
Like a comic, we will prevail.
I am optimistic. We are changing the course of history. With each courageous act, I am moved and awestruck.
The young people of Parkland are fierce. Thank goodness. The youth are rising and they are bringing us with them.
So many heroes have emerged and will continue to do so, both sung and unsung. The Mayor of San Juan Puerto Rico. Nicole Hockney, who lost her son Dylan in Sandy Hook. Ady Barkan, the young man with ASL who is spending ever moment he has left of communication fighting the corrupt healthcare system. The storytellers. The water protectors. The first responders. The ten people on stage with Common and Andra Day during the Academy Awards. These people who are on the front lines daily protecting Native lands, feeding those devastated by hurricanes, refugees and immigrants, on the front lines of reproductive health, sharing stories of marginalization and changing lives.
Each time we make a phone call, donate to a candidate, talk to somebody in line at the grocery store, each time we turn towards the pain of others instead of away, we are awakening consciousness and fighting evil.
I woke the day after the election with a sense that I was made for this moment. I had no idea why or how; I simply knew I needed to be a light in the shadow.
In my own small way, I hope I have been just that.
Sometime around the Solar Eclipse, the shadow enveloped me. Since then I have been in the dark. I can see the light around me and yet I am not the light. Not right now.
Darkness is scary. Even at age almost 50 (49 is a non age…), I struggle to remember that this too shall pass. Even knowing the progress being made outside of me, I wonder if I am stuck in the dark. Even having traveled between the light and dark in the past, I can’t remember how I emerged. Wisdom of experience fails me. I feel like the closing of a Looney Tones cartoon when they said, “that’s all folks” and the screen churns into a pinhole of blackness.
I feel like I’m bringing you down by saying that. I feel embarrassed. It is hard for me to show you my pain and my sense of personal despair, as I don’t want to be seen in my pain and yet, this is my current truth.
Having had that sense that I was made for this moment, even though I didn’t know why, connected me purpose and meaning. The darkness has rattled that connection. I see others lighting the path, which is how I remain optimistic, even when I can’t see how to get on the path myself. I am not hopeless. I am simply in the thick of fog.
Which brings me to what I need from you.
I need your stories of inspiration.
- How do you keep going when things get overwhelming?
- Who inspires you?
- What do you do to keep the faith?
- How do you stay healthy and well and in love and in hope and in action and in connection?
- How do you stay connected to your purpose?
And lastly, since this is an activism list, and today is primary election day in Texas,
- Please remind your network to vote.
- Please consider phone banking for local candidates. The link above has a list of races that matter (all of them matter).
Hillary was close to winning in Texas. That big red wants to be blue.
The best thing we can do at this point is support local candidates who will change laws towards humanity, away from greed and guns, and towards progress and positivity.
Thank you friends. Thank you for each of you. Thank you for being beacons of hope and light.
In love and gratitude –