This day. This weird little fucker of a day.
Trump wins the Presidency. And I wake up and my girlfriend comes over crying. I’m not crying, because I can’t even feel it and all its ramifications. I haven’t even had caffeine. I feel nothing but the movement of the day plugging away. David, always the Aussie, is shocked and pummeled too, but cracking jokes about Americans. We deserve it. Still, I say, maybe you should become a citizen, because, well, you never know…
I mean, now, we don’t really know what could happen.
Lucy wants me to do her hair, and make her a salad for lunch. She will eat out of the vending machine if I don’t. School vending machines might be worse than Trump, I think. I get on the salad. I talk to her about the election as I chop. She tells me her best friend is a Republican, and a Trump supporter, and she had no idea. She is processing this and what it means. Does it mean anything? I don’t know. I thought only white people like Trump, she says. Her best friend is black. After school, she tells me they talked about the election in every class, in her school which is heavily Mexican, and that kids talked losing their parents to deportation, losing their homes and businesses if one parent is sent back, losing their insurance when Obamacare is repealed.
They cried at their desks.
The baby wakes up this morning, smiling. Happy as Larry. And when I look at her, I realize she has no idea half the country is sad and shocked and gobsmacked. And because I can’t explain my deflated feelings to her toddler mind, I snuggle her soft, warm, chubby body. I giggle when she giggles. I make myself. We lay together, waking up for a few minutes, happy to be together. She brings a relief but really, I have to keep smiling for her, or she will think it’s her. Because babies always think it’s them. They take the blame. So I smile, and cuddle and laugh.
This weird little fucker of a day goes on. It has to.
Our boy has a visit with his bio mom today – if she shows up – and he is lit up, a fire rod, electrified, in flames. A mess. And his caseworker comes. I am expecting her, and the house is kinda clean. But she sees him flipping out, sees how these visits light him up. She sees him play with the baby too hard, destroy things, jump off tables and slam himself into the sofa. How he won’t listen to me. I don’t want him to grow up to be the boy who can’t listen to other people. I don’t want him to be rough in all hs relationships. Like Trump. I want him to have good connections to people. But he can’t control all the bad stuff inside. Not all the time.
And our neighbor next store locks himself out of the house, so we were all there trying to pick his lock with a credit card and a butter knife. Then, a neighbor, a Trump supporter comes by on his bike, and does it. Bang. Bang. Opens that door. It’s like the Trump people can make anything happen today. I think, such a nice guy. Is he racist, xenophobic, homophobic, sexist and he’s just hiding it from me, while he rides in to help a neighbor in need? How can he be so nice and filled with hate at the same time? Is that even possible? I look at everyone now, staring at them, as if I can see who they voted for, as if that tells me who they are. I mean, doesn’t it say who they are?
Or am I the bigot relying on stereotypes to categorize people? Ugh.
And then, I take the little ones to school and the boy won’t let me leave. He falls into me, kissing my face, begging me to stay. Clinging to me in my arms for the longest hugs. A half hour before, he was so angry he wanted to punch me, now he is submerged into me. The visits are hard business. So much emotional gravel that gets turned over. His life, his brain and his heart are a tumult, a struggle. I feel it so hard that I can’t even care about who sits in the big White House. I have to fix this here, I think. This little tiny stuff is ours to overhaul. And mold. And work with. Things aren’t right.
I still haven’t had caffeine.
And Edie is awake and hungry and needs food. So I provide it. I have to teach her what has happened the night before. I have proof positive now to show her that we live in a place that needs work. Needs to be overhauled. Needs to be molded. Things aren’t right. And when she wants answers, I say start here. Start on this street. Start in this family. Start in your girl scout troop. Start with strangers you meet. Start here. Be kind. Listen more than talk. Be open to change. Tell your own stories loudly. Listen to other people’s.
I get some tea. Finally. I let that seep in.
And I call my mom, and it starts as I hear her voice, before I even say hello. The only thing she can eat on the menu at the home where she lives is pot roast and she’s sick of pot roast. Would you want to eat pot roast every day? And Trump is a jerk, but at least Hillary didn’t win. Then she tells me she hates the lady at the bank, and the guy who runs her home, and Hillary, who should be in jail, and the country, and the world, and everything in it. It’s the computers fault, she says. If we didn’t have computers….Then she reminds me she is alone, and that because I have so many kids she is on the bottom of my list, and I choose to put her at the bottom, because I have so many kids, and she might as well die. That’s right, die. It would be better for her and for everyone, she explains. (This reminds me of my grandmother, who in the throws of Alzheimers, used to say she would die if I left the house.) Mom is 86. She has so many muddled, anxious, obsessive thoughts. This catches my heart. I worry for her. I visit. But she won’t live here and I can’t live there. “You moved away…You had too many kids,” she tells me over and over. Also, and she’d want me to tell you this – it pisses her off that Hillary kept everyone waiting for her concession speech because she didn’t think she would lose.
Arrogant women are the worst.
I’m not crying. I’m not even angry. On the surface anyway. I can hardly look at social media because it’s everyone’s anger bleeding all over everything, people yelling and lecturing, and I don’t want everyone else’s anger to be my anger, because anger is a burden to carry. I spend a lot of time processing it on a regular day, so I do not have to hump it around on my back like broken old hunch back.
And truth be told, I don’t have even one tiny fucker of a moment to dwell on this election. Or our bigoted President-elect. It is what it is. I have work to do. Things are not right. There are things here in my perimeter that need to be overhauled. Little people that must be molded. Loneliness that must be mended. Love that must be spread. Peace that must be given. Pain that must be healed. Mistakes that must be fixed.
And I’m just gonna keep at it.
#ImStillWithHer #LetLoveWin #FamiliesLikeMine