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Daily Gratitude: Integrity

in-life-you-always-have

I have grappled a lot this week with the direction I want this blog to go. When I revamped my blog, one of my main goals was to “stay on subject.” With that, I didn’t want this to become one big political platform. However, this week has been, in no uncertain terms, unusual circumstances.

Here’s the thing. This IS a blog about finding life’s magic and so much of finding life’s magic is about finding the good in life, standing up for what is right, and defeating our monsters, whatever they may be. So much of fantasy, and of happiness, is rooted in adamant beliefs in the importance of altruism, open-mindedness, interconnectedness, and the seeking of truth.

I woke up very clear-headed this morning and the anxiety I had all week was replaced with a dauntless integrity. I made some promises to myself, to my readers, and to the world at large. Some of them were hard to make but I will try my best to stick to them. They are as follows:

1. I just subscribed to NPR and plan on making a donation to them as well. I am going to do some hard research into various news sites to make sure the information I consume and share is reputable, truthful, well researched, and supportive of diverse opinions and contrasting views.

2.I will continue to engage in respectful discourse with those who have opposing views than mine because that is the only way we can all move forward. I will try my very best to listen. I will continue to try my best to support the rights and interests of all Americans regardless of political affiliation, so long as those interests don’t infringe upon the inalienable rights of others.

3. I promise to try my best to vote with my dollars, to support local businesses, to support fair trade, to put my money where my mouth is.

4. I promise to stand up for the safety of my fellow Americans from all walks of life regardless of their political views, sexuality, skin color, or gender. Provided the American government also stands up for these inalienable rights, I promise to support them as well.

To these promises I would kindly ask my American readers to consider doing the same because the only way we can all move forward together is with integrity, empathy, understanding, open-mindedness, and in being as informed on the facts as we possibly can be in an era of media misinformation.

Tomorrow, I will go back to “programming as usual.” Today, I faced my greatest monster, my own uncertainty, and I can now put my sword back in its sheath, sling my shield on my back, and walk away in good conscience.

Daily Gratitude: Being Alive

girl-forest-alive

Yesterday, I was one of the people reported as deceased on Facebook and my page was briefly memorialized. Apparently, this was due to a glitch in Facebook’s programming. Some people found it funny, but I found it disturbing for two reasons:

First, because I knew that Facebook friends can report you as deceased and I fully believed that something about the election I had said had caused someone to lash out in a very cruel way, and I was extremely upset and hurt.

Second, because as I mentioned in a prior post, I am still waiting on the results of an important medical test, and while it’s far from imminently life or death, seeing “Remembering Stacey… We hope people who love Stacey will find comfort in the things others share to remember and celebrate her life” was…disturbing. It was certainly an odd way to end a very upsetting week.

Today, though, I’ve had a lot of perspective on a lot of things. I am alive. That’s a good thing. I am driven to try to live the fullest, most honorable life I can. That’s also a good thing thing. I still have the chance to see Hamilton live and get one of those German advent calendars with the little chocolates in each window and wear that pretty turquoise dress I keep putting off wearing because it hasn’t been right for any outing this year and figure out why the restaurant down the street stopped giving out the yummy appetizer crisps and asking them where I can get some because they were my favorite part of the whole meal.

So, maybe digitally dying was the best thing to happen to me this week. It reminded me to live.

 

Daily Gratitude: Sadness


Yesterday, I was struggling to make a daily gratitude post because I was sad.

I was sad as a woman who has been groped and called derogatory things and followed late at night and intimidated and talked down to.

I was sad as a person in an inter-racial marriage, who has dealt with ignorant and sometimes judgemental comments.

I was sad as a person currently waiting on the results of an important medical test, the outcome of which may now determine whether or not I can get insurance in the future.

I was sad for all the people I know who now fear for their own wellbeing and even their lives.

I was sad as a lover of fantasy literature, which endlessly echoes the mantra that love, kindness and goodness prevail.

I was not feeling grateful. But then, I realized, ironically, that I am grateful for sadness. I am grateful that I know and understand that holistic mental health doesn’t just consist of positive emotions. I am grateful that I am able to feel and express a variety of emotions. I am grateful for a country where I have the freedom of speech to express those emotions. I am grateful for my writing passion which gives me an outlet to express those emotions.

Gratitude is important to happiness. But, so is sadness, and so many other feelings. Most importantly, being honest with ourselves and acknowledging the validity of our own feelings is vital to the human experience. It doesn’t mean that we are bitter or hateful or disrespectful. It just means that we feel sad.

So today, I am grateful that I don’t have to feel grateful. That can wait for another day.

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