I’ve changed my mind.
I can do that, you know.
I can say “no; sorry; something has changed” even after I’ve said, “Sure; I’ll do it.”
I don’t do that very often, of course, for each time I run the risk of eroding trust. But, sometimes, to care for myself, or because of new information, I must change my mind. And I’m allowed. We’re all allowed.
I told you I’d list for you today the promises made during the campaign so that we could pay attention. Vigilant was my word. That list is currently three pages long, single spaced. But, as I said, I’ve changed my mind.
Turns out Trump has too. He’s changed his position, backed off on at least 15 pronouncements made during the campaign. If you are interested, you can read about them in this article from Politico. Frankly, they are among his more outrageous statements, so I’m not too bothered that he’s changed. Moderated, some call it.
Don’t misunderstand me. I’m not embracing the notion of a President Trump — able to get those daily intelligence briefings even if he chooses not to, representing the highest ideals of my country around the world, leading this country from his “bully pulpit.” Not a bit.
I am, at the moment, just tired of talking about him, reading about him, writing about him.
I need a break.
Besides, I never wanted my blog to turn into a political manifesto. I love the focus I’ve found for And So It Goes and I want to return to those roots, my blog’s roots, planted nearly four years ago.
Here, we discuss culture in its many guises and the impact that culture has on us, often without our realizing it. Here, we share stories of bridging those cultural divides that separate us from each other. Here, we try on different ways of thinking, of being, or speaking, as an experiment in living this life to the fullest. Here, we bring our best selves in the hope that when we leave, we’ll be enriched, challenged, strengthened, validated, or educated.
At least that’s been my hope: to challenge, to educate, to enrich, and to ennoble.
For those who may be disappointed that I’m not setting Trump up for attack, here’s another article from Charles Blow at the New York Times; it’s an excellent follow-up to the Politico article above. Go ahead, read them; we all need validation from time to time.
Today though, as I sit down to pen the first draft of
Wednesday’sTuesday’s post, I wonder about my cultural differences theme.
I’ve come to the sorry conclusion that not very many people really want to bridge cultural divides. Not that many are eager to understand the differences that separate us. I can’t blame them; it’s exhausting. We want comfort these days, ease, familiarity.
Too often, we gather these “others” into an easy category that separates them from us: ignorant, misogynistic, racist, hateful, poor, misguided, or uneducated. If only “they” were more like “us,” we moan; all would be well again.
Or we find it tempting to latch onto a scapegoat. But, alas, scapegoats — by definition — also keep us from addressing the real issues.
I want, as much as anyone, to make sense out of the chaos that seems to be surrounding me, to find an explanation for the inexplicable.
Fortunately, I’m pretty fussy about which explanation I’ll latch onto. And there have been a slew of them flooding social media since the election.
I’ve been fortunate that I’ve had no cause to “unfriend anyone.” Quite the contrary. My Facebook News Feed has exploded with links from like minds, sharing stories I enjoyed, learned from, and often passed along.
In among the cute-animal videos that still sneak in from time to time, and the pictures of various Thanksgiving Day preparations, I found a wealth of anti-Trump articles, rants, and vitriol.
So many, it began to feel yucky. I began to feel yucky. So, I took a break.
It wasn’t easy to divorce myself from social media, it’s become such a part of my everyday life. But for nearly 48 hours I stayed off Facebook, Twitter, and email.
The bottom line, for me, was that I was losing my serenity. Folks who know me well know that my serenity is my most valued possession. When I preach acceptance, or understanding, or peace, or gun sense, or choice, or forgiveness, I don’t do it because these are ends in themselves (though they are for many). I do it because each one is, for me, a means to an end. And that end is, simply, serenity.
And so, I’m using my post this week as a friendly reminder to you–my friends, my readers, my followers–to please be gentle with yourself. Know your limits; know your bottom line; know your boundaries. Know what’s really important to you. Know what you need to do to stay healthy. Please stay strong, stay serene amidst the storm. I don’t want to lose any of you.
How about you? How are you keeping your serenity in the midst of the storm?
Tomorrow: Sitting in Ambiguity