You survived the week! YAY YOU.
Whatever shape you’re in right now, take a minute to congratulate yourself. This was a tough week. Lord have mercy, let’s figure out how to do democracy better by the midterm elections, shall we?
I, for one, have emotional whiplash from all the hurt and pain I’m seeing. (And feeling, because I’m not a robot.) I’d planned to write more about listening and healing our nation this week but we’re not there yet as a nation. So what I’m offering up instead is your game plan for the weekend. No cute graphics, no tweetable quotes, just find yourself on the list below and use the steps as a starting place. If you change “categories,” that’s fine. Just check in with your new game plan and use it instead.
You’re mad as hell and aren’t going to take it. This is a good action position heading into the weekend but your challenge is going to be slowing down. Here’s your action plan:
1. Sleep. Staying up all night stewing won’t accomplish anything.
2. Find something concrete to do this weekend. If you can find a group that’s meeting to plan next steps, join them. If not, make a list of your friends, family and contacts. Who on that list might feel vulnerable right now? Ask them, “Are you ok?” Then listen. Do not attempt to get them involved in planning right now. They aren’t ready, you’ll both be frustrated and you’ll burn out because you’ll feel like no one cares. They do, they just can’t care this way yet.
3. Make a donation to a group that does the work you’re worried about getting done. I donate to the ACLU, my local LGBTQ outreach and a low income health care organization.
You’re sick, sad and haven’t stopped crying.
1. Sleep. On Tuesday night, as I watched the election results, I texted my husband in disbelief. “I can’t even understand what’s happening.” He gave me the best advice ever. “Make some Sleepytime, read some fiction, go to sleep and figure it out in the morning.” (Well, almost. He actually said, “take a sleeping pill, wash it down with a glass of wine, read some fiction and figure it out in the morning.” But that advice was time limited. It’s not a good long term plan.)
3. Take a walk. If you can’t be outside because you don’t want to see anyone, do yoga. I recommend Yoga with Adrienne on YouTube.
4. Look at your calendar for the week and ask yourself, “What is the bare minimum I need to do to be ready for the week?” Do that much and no more. The rest of the time is yours.
1. Assess the risk. Are you physically safe right now? If not, get somewhere public and assess next steps.
2. Call two allies. These are people you think you can trust. They may be friends, a local safe house or a church. If you don’t have one, message me. When you call, say this, “I’m really scared. If I need anything, can I call you?”
4. Make a safety plan.
You voted for someone other than Donald Trump and you think everyone is over reacting.
1. Check in with someone who is struggling. Say this, “I know this is hard for you. I’m so sorry. If you want to talk about it, I will listen.”
2. Listen. Do not say, “it will be ok,” “the sun will come up,” or “God has this in control.” Say this, “I’m so sorry.” “This is not ok.” “I will stand with you.” “What can I do to help you get through the next few days?”
You voted for Donald Trump and you don’t understand what all the fuss is about and/or your feelings are hurt because everyone keeps calling you a bad voter/American/Christian.
1. Take a deep breath.
2. Call a friend who is struggling. Say, “I know this is hard for you. I’m so sorry. If you want to talk about it, I will listen.”
3. Listen. Do not say one single thing. Nope. Not one. You are in the position of power here because you won. You’re happy. That’s awesome. But the loser doesn’t have to comfort the winner. This is how we help each other: the people with the most emotional strength help the people with the least emotional strength. Right now, you’re in group A, even if it’s not fair that people are mislabeling you. I know, it sucks. I’ve been there. Next week, you can talk with them about it. Not now.
4. If you’re really up for it, ask what you can do to help. If not, that’s ok. Offer a hug and listen if they say no. (Again with the over-reaction, I know you’re thinking that. But one of the issues on the table here is how we treat each other’s bodies, so some people are in need of a safe, loving hug and others want to huddle down. That’s ok.)
Love and light, friends.