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Life in the Time of Global Warming

I don't even know how to start writing today.

I just know I need to write.

Where to begin? I haven't posted since the beginning of September. And so much has changed.

I guess we can start with the Big One.

November 8th, 2016. I wasn't thrilled with my choice for the next leader of the free world, but I had accepted it. Made my peace. Knew that we would keep moving forward, and it would be so much better than going 50 steps back.

As my husband and I watched the results roll in, anticipation turned to disbelief, and dread. I kept refreshing the browser pages, my phone, anything to tell me that this wasn't actually happening, that it couldn't actually be real.

I didn't go to sleep until 3 am. I woke up at 6:30, bleary eyed, and in shock, and went to work. My mom called me to ask how I was. I burst into tears as I told her I was terrified.

As the transition began, we settled in to a "new normal"...daily there were things that made me angry, made me sad. I vowed to get ready to fight. And I did. I jumped into activism with both feet. As consuming as it all was, he wasn't the President yet. We still had sanity in the White House, and I was able to manage the low level anxiety I was experiencing every day. I became a monthly contributor to the ACLU, I asked for donations to charities in lieu of Christmas presents, and joined and participated in the #injusticeboycott. I became committed to intersectional feminism and environmental issues and racial justice. I learned and grew so much.

And then January 20th came. I wore all black. I was in mourning for my country. Saturday, the 21st, I rallied with 10,000 other people in my hometown. It was intersectional, it was beautiful, it was empowering.

But every day...there is something new. Some new, crazy, psychotic thing that enrages me. Every new executive order makes me want to shake people, tell them to wake the fuck up and march before this new fascist state digs its claws in too deep.

Another part of me is almost constantly in a state of panic. I keep it locked up in my head so I don't have a full fledged panic attack, but I feel it beating on the door, begging to just be let out so we can FREAK THE FUCK OUT. I can't do that. Instead, I worry. The dread sits in my stomach like a rock. In the back of my head, a little voice is saying, "Quick! You need to learn how to homestead, you need to learn how to spin wool, you need to buy chickens and goats and sheep because it's all going to come crashing down around you!". My very own Chicken Little who is getting steadily louder.

After the ban on refugees, the anxiety is starting to spill out all around me. I sit at work, doing a job I don't love, that is so unimportant in the big picture, far away from windows and the sun on my face and I just want to flee. I want to do something with meaning. But I also need to be able to bring in an income. My brain is keeping me frozen with fear and I am stuck.

Where do I go from here? They say the average person changes careers 6 times in their life. I have essentially been in customer service for 16 years now. It's varied, of course, first with retail and then with banking, but it's always come down to the same skill set. But I am so much more than that. And truthfully, it is not my strength. My strength is my empathy, my intuition, my courage to keep persevering, even when it's hard and it hurts. My strength is my honesty. I feel this overwhelming need to put everything I have in to fighting what is happening to our nation right now, to fight for the marginalized and the voiceless. The call to dedicate my life to helping others is stronger than ever. But I'm stuck 40 hours a week in a cubicle that makes me feel like I am drowning.

My heart hurts.


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