Reacting and Responding

I’m now at the point where I can start differentiating between how I want to react to the presidential election versus how I will respond. Reacting is expressing and managing my basic feelings about this unbelievable turn of event.    How do I feel?  I’m actually drained of emotion and exhausted from trying to figure out what happened through my tears.  I’ve felt like locking myself in a closet and primal screaming my way into next week and/or punching a pillow until the feathers turned into confetti .  But I’m finished giving Donald Trump my energy and so I’m moving on.

I clued into how I will respond in church today when I was reminded that this is just another notch on my belt of life’s disappointments.  I’ve survived contracting Polio due to racism; the death of my father at four years old; having bad timing and ending up in the middle of the Harlem Riots, 1964 and Watts Riots, 1965; MLK and RFK assignations in 1968; Los Angeles earthquake 1971; loss of all my immediate family by the time I was 42 years old and the September 11, 2011 tragedy. There are many more notches in my belt but I don’t want to bore or depress you.  These are just a few of the times in my life when I cried and wondered why and thought the world was near its end.  But it didn’t end – I’m still here.

The soloist sang today,” Walk together children. Don’t you get weary. Oh, talk together children. Don’t you get weary. There’s a great camp meeting in the promised land”.  And it made me think about my steel magnolia grandmother’s sage advice when things were tough, – hold your head high and don’t be discouraged.

So I’ve decided my response will be not to fall into the “Trump Trap” of letting fear control and determine who I am and how I will live.  I must be as wise as a serpent and as gentle as a lamb.  I plan to let fear drive me to educate myself about the Electoral College process and learn what needs to happen to change the system.  Or find out if the system is the problem!

I’m going to work at not negatively responding to Trump supporter with my, what were you thinking attitude, that will get us absolutely nowhere but further divided.  This is what I strive to do.  But I’m not there yet.  However I hope to walk together with others on our tried but not wearied feet as we move closer to the great camp meeting in the promised land.

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2 Responses to Reacting and Responding

  1. Ronne Hartfield says:

    I am forwarding to you some discussion on the electoral college issues from a friend and colleague of mine, Joyce Hughes, the first Black professor hired by Northwestern Law School all those years ago. She, too, is disabled, uses a wheelchair, but continues to teach and enlighten many, many of us. A great role model and wonderful woman. Ronne.


  2. John Douglas says:

    This is wonderful.


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