The universe has apparently conspired to knock me down and steal all of my energy today, which is probably for the better. Perpetual anxiety will negatively impact one’s immune, and other systems. Aberrant sleep patterns, increases in caffeine and alcohol consumption with commensurate decreases in water intake. All bad.
Last night I experienced a body-wrecking fever. I went to bed shivering with a t-shirt, two hoodies, both hoods on, sweatpants, and socks, under two blankets. At some point, likely when the medicine kicked in, I awoke a damp, clammy, somewhat confused mess.
Today, I just can’t do much. I left the television off. Slept mostly. Eventually sat down here.
I went back and read my post from November 9th. I don’t feel that way anymore, but I certainly remember how rough that first day was.
Here’s what I had to say then:
I awoke at 3:30, used the restroom, checked the computer, heard the news (…today, oh boy…), and laid awake, mind churning in silent desperation, until the alarm dared me to get out of bed.
In the kitchen, staring at the coffee bar, staring at the blender and smoothie ingredients, staring at the dog and cats who wanted nothing more than to eat, I…continued to fucking stand there, incapable of repeating the same series of events I’ve been doing in the precisely the same way, like a man with Autism, for over 3 years.
Eventually, slowly, unenthusiastically, I moved. And I opened the notepad app on my phone. As thoughts emerged, any one that seemed poignant or insightful or important or helpful, I recorded it. Here, in very specific order, are my thoughts as spilled out of my head beginning at 6 a.m.
- I’m feeling much worse than I thought I would.
- I’m so sad and I don’t want to cry in front of people who will psychically harm me. I live in Trump country. (I know, we all do now. But my community largely Trumpeted for months.)
- I’ve not felt this sad, anxious, and emotionally fragile since I got the call from the dentist that my wife had a several minute grand mal seizure in the chair, and the ambulance was taking her to the emergency room.
- As a straight, white, baptized-Christian, cisgenendered, U.S. born male, I totally get the safe space thing now.
- What do I do as a man who could easily skate through the next four years, given my on-paper demographics, but feels so unsafe, so fundamentally sad, so morally and ethically challenged for simply what I am…given what I believe, feel and think? How do I go to the gym, the coffee shop, chat with a cop, smile at a Black person, hug a child with a disability…knowing that I’m a representation of the very people who oppress and then blame and punish the oppressed for the fall out of said oppression?! Tell me, how the fuck?!
- I don’t want to eat breakfast. Have no interest in food. I think this is just the third time I’ve been completely healthy and utterly disinterested in eating. The first two times were the roughest patches of my life and ushered in panic attacks and depression. I don’t want another panic attack.
- I’m rehearsing what to say to people so that I don’t cry…or fight.
- Today I am Muslim. Today I am a woman. I am transgendered. I am Black. I am disabled. Spanish is my first language. Today I am all of those things. But tomorrow…I’ll still be a white man and the world will still be my oyster.
- Fuck every privileged syllable of “this is a devastating blow for Democrats.” This is a devastating blow for the entire country, and perhaps planet.
- I’ve run through the Kubler Ross stages of grief three times already. In my head. Denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. I want to land on acceptance, but not a defeatist acceptance. Rather, I want to accept what has happened, where I am, how we all got here, and then continue to stride forward with radical, organized, non-violent love.
- Why the fuck should I continue to watch American Horror Story when I’m living in it?
- It’s so hard to cultivate love in my heart right now.
- Here’s what I’ll do…go love and build-up anyone in front of me. It’s all I can manage.
- Here’s what else I’ll do…I’ll let go of anger, of doubt, of jealousy, of snap judgments, of everything that keeps me, that keeps you, that keeps all of us, from the oneness of God. Define “God” how you will, but we are all one. One soul. One reality. One planet. One cosmos. Separateness is an illusion.
- Here’s the final thing I’ll do…open myself to anyone who wants to join me.
And here, after 15, is where I sit now. 11/9/16. 2:44 p.m. I love you. I really do. My chest has been tight, as if my sternum is desperately trying to escape through my spine, for hours. My head hurts. My heart is utterly broken. I’m stunned. I spent time with my wife. Processing. I met with two lovely men, Mike and Tom. They are friends and they are beacons of love and progress.
Grieve. Cry. Rage. Fucking break every goddam thing in your immediate vicinity. Hide under the covers for the rest of the week. Drink yourself into a stupor this weekend. Smoke all of the weed. Cry again.
Then…stand up, straighten up a bit (…nobody wants to see you with THAT hair…), throw on some deoderant, and go out there and love radically. Make art. Do your thing like you’ve never fucking done it before.
Christ, why does it feel like my Mother died?
(I know. She did.)
It will get better, and we will make it so.
I honestly don’t know, and this definitely isn’t the day for me to go making decisions, predictions, or ultimatums.
Just take care of yourself. And each other.