There is no opening sentence that will accurately describe my emotional mindset right now. How about “my month has been a delightful Panoply of precursors to the next four years as well as most of what’s been happening forever that I never thought about?”
I started out after the election feeling numb and cutting myself off from my emotions to deliberately find a way to process all of the things. I was in this mindset as a survivor of sexual violence realizing that our next President is a sexual predator and that just sent me spiraling into this horrible place of terror and sheer, absolute despair.
I pulled myself through it (not out of it) by ‘using my tools’ as the self-care folks say and focusing on immediate concrete things that I could process and impact without destroying my sanity. I blogged. I am still pulling myself through it because I’m nowhere near a healthy ‘go get ’em’ mindset although I can acknowledge that active resistance is necessary for the entire Trump Presidency. So I will continue to blog. It is one real thing for me to do right now. Sometimes it helps me, sometimes it helps others.
So here’s how my blogging has looked this month
A series of posts about a young trans woman named Claire who, after months of harassment by a coworker, took matters into her own hands and shot him. This happened in Hermitage, PA which is very near to Ledcat’s hometown.
A series of posts about the erasure of the identity & name of Dalia Sabae for her own death after she was murdered by her husband in Cannonsburg along with a police officer responding to a 911 call.
A post about trans voices and experiences in honor of the Trans Day of Remembrance.
A post about the microaggressions I’ve experienced since the election and what that means for me and Pittsburgh.
A blog post about my cat’s cancer diagnosis and the fact that he will soon die.
The post about an #AMPLIFY tee shirt survey that resulted in someone sending me a death wish among other insults.
And, just this week, a post about the second murder of a young black lesbian who identified as a stud in Pittsburgh. By that I mean, another young woman was murdered in October. And why aren’t we talking about the trend of gun violence related deaths of QTPOC in Pittsburgh?
I did blog 29 out of 30 days for NaBloPoMo which isn’t bad. That’s more of a personal goal, a blogging exercise.
That’s a lot of work and a lot of stressful content to create, curate and manage in a rather short period of time. And almost none of this is new to me – I’ve blogged about the topics in past years, to hit so many tragedies in one month makes me painfully aware of what has actually shifted.
The world isn’t different, the way we experience the world is different. The knowledge of how racist white America, rural and urban, has created chaos, pain and oppression for our nation has been told countless times. Now, we are paying closer attention. We have to crawl into that feeling of OMG and acknowledge that we haven’t been listening hard enough. That’s part of the oppression. We are part of it.
People aren’t worse than before, they are just off the leash. They have a new sense of perceived freedom to be even more vocal and vicious than in the past.
I don’t have any better sense of what I’m going to do to survive than I did a month ago. I’m cranky and sad and defiant and all of the things. I just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other. Obviously, the blog topics still find their way to me. It isn’t exactly comforting except in the sense that I can continue to say the things (I think) need to be said.
This is what we are going to have to cope with for four years, struggling to find our own equilibrium and yet not normalizing this absurdity. That feels very difficult, nigh impossible.
So, December, here I come ….