Tuesday, November 15, 2016

On Feeding the Creator in Yourself

For me, blogging fills the inherent need to create. To contribute what only I can contribute. To let myself be the version of myself that is energized, that feels, that is whole.

It's a beautiful thing, but at the same time, it's intensely dissatisfying when I am unable to produce words, to unlock that version of myself. It's a muscle that lately I seem to be neglecting during the workout of life.

But with the holidays right around the corner, I want to be that person, feel those feelings, fill my corner of the world with the things no other person has. The words crafted together that no one else would have strung together (for better or worse). I know that seems arbitrary but I think something about this season encourages me to be that person, to seize the songs and the decor and the nostalgia that flood this time of year.

I believe everyone has something that takes them to that place in themselves. For my husband, it is fishing. He feeds his Creator by throwing a piece of plastic and a hook into a body of water, with a line of string connected to it. (In case you couldn't tell, fishing, and the idea of fishing filling this need, is entirely foreign to me.) And though I find myself easily frustrated out on the water, for Angel, each cast is the hope of catching the elusive. Each change of lure is a learning moment, the gaining of expertise, the improvement of skill. And each catch is progress, excitement, success. Spending time at a lake is spending time with his best self, the version that is both calm and engaged, hopeful and determined, looking to improve and still undeterred.

Although I doubt I will ever fall in love with the act of fishing, very quickly do I fall in love with the man that fishing produces in him.

But who wouldn't fall in love with someone who feeds their inner creator.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

On Pain and Politics

Tonight I lay in bed, my husband sleeping beside me, unable to comprehend sleep. My whole body is haunted by the pain I see reflected in my country. On both and every side of the political spectrum, I read posts that are seeping with tangible pain and fear.

To my friends on the right:
Please be patient with those of us who are disappointed by the results of the election. To us, each vote for Trump was personal, a voice saying, "I am okay with what Trump says about you as a person of color, a woman, a religious person, an immigrant, etc.". There was and is real fear that having a president with these beliefs will lead to wider acceptance and policy manifestations of these beliefs in a way that will directly threaten our safety. In that way each vote for Trump was a de-prioritization of our value as human beings.

To my friends on the left:
Please be slow to demonize and quick to empathize. Many Who voted for Trump were expressing pain that we have been sheltered from even acknowledging. Pain of direct threat to their livelihoods, their families' welfare because economic growth outside of metropolitan areas has been painfully slow. They felt abandoned for so long and in so many ways that they were willing to support a deeply flawed candidate who was finally campaigning to them, and not to you and your circle of friends who have been so well represented in the media.

I do not attempt to speak for all. I do not pretend that pain will be quickly erased on either side. I do believe it is possible to look past differences. To empathize with underlying fear if you can put aside your own line of thought. And I do believe we as a nation can use this election as a point of unity, growth, and as cheesy as it sounds, love.

So on a night like tonight, where I can do so little to ease the pain that I see, I focus on love. I place my hand on the chest of my sleeping husband, feeling his heartbeat. Inhaling and exhaling to that rhythm and letting that love ease my own pain, if only for a night.