Today, I don’t think we need to talk about who we believe and who we do not believe. Because those two teams are pretty well established. And the one you’ve decided you are on is likely informed by a veritable ocean of values and experiences, all of which are intensely personal, and, at times, quite polarizing. In other words, there isn’t a lot of switching teams in situations like these, so trying to convert the players can be a total exercise in futility.
I do think, however, a good use of time is figuring out how to therapeutically, usefully, move on from how it feels to be on the team that lost, and more importantly, what to do with the smoldering embers that sort of painful loss can leave inside your heart and soul. The obvious advice is to get out and vote - which I have done faithfully in every election since I turned 18 and Joseph Lieberman was running for Senate in my home state of Connecticut. But my truest belief is that the pendulum of politics just swings and swings. Sometimes my votes work out and sometimes they don’t. To be honest, I think voting with your dollars every time you make a decision about what to purchase and what to leave at the store (and even what store to shop at in the first place) can be as powerful as going to the polls. But make no mistake - get out and vote.
I spent the day with my sister yesterday, and was with her when we got the news about the Supreme Court confirmation. It’s helpful to have a sister who is a therapist, and it’s helpful to be with a therapist when you get bad news. “How do you cope with this type of terrible news?” I asked her. “How do you deal with it so you can move on with you life and not feel like you’re ignoring a huge problem?”
My sister and I can both be a bit German in our warmth, if you know what I mean. “Look,” she told me, “we already know that the world does not take rape in any of its forms or iterations seriously, so there’s no use in getting worked up about that part. At times like these, I try to return to what is the most basic truth. We will all be faced with ourselves, alone, on our death beds. I know that I personally have lived my life according to the ethics and values I believe in, and when I face my last moment, I will take comfort in my own freedom of spirit. People who do horrible things will not have this same freedom, and what really matters more than that?”
We cannot solve any large problem in a single try, and we must often agree to accept non-closure as a part of the process. Peace to all of your spirits, and happy Sunday.