I’ve been reactive lately. Something I hate. I always prefer to be proactive, forward thinking, ahead of the game, predictive and gracious, but not this. Not a reactor to circumstance, a person lashing out at things seemingly out of control. I’ve been road raging more, glaring at stickers on the bumpers of cars, veering away from empathy and defaulting towards prejudice and distance. This is not me. But this is not the America I know. The fringe has become the center, the ignorable narcissist the leader of the free world. 

I’m losing my grip. Things seem too unpredictable, reality suddenly doesn’t seem right anymore, and the trajectory of the way I thought things would go is all askew. 

In school today, the principal made an announcement, as he does every morning: “Gooood morning…!” But after the typical news about the ballet club, soccer practice, and new bus assignments, he said in the same tone of voice as if he was talking about who made the winning shot in the basketball game last week, “We here at S— Middle School just want to remind everyone that you are safe here. In these uncertain times, with the new executive order, we want to remind everyone that we will never ask you for any documents, or where your parents’ visa is from. You are safe and welcome here as part of our school family. Have a great day!”

And I bit my lip and yelled at myself so I wouldn’t cry. Grateful for grace, from public schools to public servants, from private citizens who effect change to outspoken demonstrators, from children who reach out their hands to grown ups who stand for justice. I am encouraged and renewed. I’m glad to hear these voices once silent and complacent through times of peace now emboldened by injustice. 

Keep pushing forward. Let us find ourselves again. 


2 thoughts on “Re-find

  1. L - Mama(e) in Translation

    I would have BAWLED if I heard that announcement, BAWLED! :-( I’d also be thankful like you are. I imagine how scared some of these children and their families are. Sigh. COME ON, don’t be reactive anymore, let’s be active, let’s go to the next march, protest, whatever! BTW there was a protest in Court Sq. in town on Sunday, but I found out 20 minutes before, so it was hard to go. Sigh…

  2. jelia

    Yes, let’s. I’ve been living in some kind of cloud of sadness since Jan 20. Trying to talk to myself that many people in the world have had to live through similar shifts in gov. I think about my parents. Other people in history. I guess it’s a kind of learning that just living takes courage.


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