Post-Presidential Election: An Ode to Self-Care
It’s been a week since America went ahead and voted the internet troll, trump, for president and I have to admit—I have been in a confusing state of emotions ever since.
On election night, as the electoral votes were coming in and the race went from super close to “Jesus, Hillary is really about to lose this. Unbelievable”, I went from uneasy to physically sick to bowing out and going to sleep completely, leaving the television on for whenever I popped awake and just needed to take a glance at the screen. Realizing that the race would be a close one made me exceedingly uneasy and although I was one of the people that were reluctantly for Hillary, there was no way in my mind that trump would win it. I mean come on, he’s got zero political experience, is a reality television star, has admitted to not paying taxes, has been bankrupt more times than anyone could count and on top of all of this, he is also the counterpoint to much of the recent hatred, abusive rhetoric, outward racism, xenophobia, homophobia, sexism, and other –isms that simply make the collective drop their jaws and hang their heads. No way would he be voted in. No freaking way.
………..or so I thought.
When I realized that this was actually happening, and that trump actually might win, my body reacted severely. I literally instantly got sick right in the middle of the televised poll count. I didn’t understand what was happening until I decided to pay attention more closely to my feelings. Whenever I looked at the television screen and saw how close the electoral count was (it was precisely at 66-68 going Hil’s way when I started to really pay attention to my feelings and my body’s response), my stomach would literally turn. I would get a lump in my throat and ultimately, at some point, I let out a brief but deep sob, drank a can of ginger ale, and went to sleep.
The next day, I was in a deep depressive state and couldn’t hop out of it. The fact that almost half of registered voters sat out during this election infuriated me, but it did not bother me as much as learning that Hillary actually won, yet still lost. She won the popular vote (just as I suspected), but lost because of the electoral vote. And what else infuriated me was that most white women that voted at all….voted for trump, the man that has made public claims of sexual assault, the same man that has been heavily involved in a publicized sexual assault/child trafficking case, the same man that is trying to do away with women’s right to choose on important things with regards to her body, and a host of other adjectives. I can’t and will never understand it, but I’ve decided that this isn’t something that is meant for me to understand. I am a black woman first and foremost and I shouldn’t have to choose between the two (black and womanhood), however if there is anything that comes to harm on the part of one or both of these definers for me, then I, personally, cannot be a part of it. I cannot support it. This is how I move. As for the white women that deliberately chose to put their womanhood aside, but their whiteness at the forefront? I cannot relate. We move different(ly).
Self-care is something that I took heed to at this time. My self-care included unfollowing many people on social media that I value and cherish. I had already done a clean sweep over the course of this year of deleting racists and belligerent trump supporters from my space. I am not talking about those people. The ones that I value a great deal, I could not delete from my spaces. These people were not trump supporters but they were non-voters who boasted on not voting, refused to show empathy when the people showed to have endured a collective heartbreak, and even taunted and teased voters, whilst simultaneously spewing misinformation on the voting process, saying how “woke” they were, and were generally, getting on my nerves so badly that I could not afford to see them on my timelines anymore.
My self-care also included me getting some much needed mental rest. I slept quite a bit on Wednesday, and moved slowly for the remaining weekdays. By the time the weekend rolled around, I was back into my normal routine of things tenfold. I set some goals and I’ve made some very important moves.
I looked up and it seems as though trump has reneged on much of the very things that made up his entire campaign. From his disdain and obnoxious removal of ObamaCare (Affordable Care Act) to the statements he’s said about Muslims, and even to the Great Wall that made up the bulk of his campaign headlines, he’s appeared to either remove them completely or has actually said that he will keep them (ACA) with some tweaks. Many people have cited that trump may have pulled an Andy Kauffman move and trolled us all this entire time but I have no comment. Why? Because the harmful rhetoric he’s stated and based his entire campaign on has ignited hate, lit a fire to racists so they could be OUTWARDLY racist, has supported sexual assault both directly and indirectly, and has continued to marginalize disenfranchised people. He was even heavily endorsed by the KKK and I believe the NRA as well. So even if his campaign was all a hoax in the first place and he really does intend to do good, what his campaign has caused doesn’t deserve my respect. I don’t support the moves he’s decided to make in lieu of his “greater point”, should he have a greater point to begin with. He will never earn my respect. He will be a lowercased trump for the rest of my days.
Do I hope that trump will make good for everyone? Of course I do. But do I also hope that the country-wide protests, the anguish, and the outcries that America have been displaying post-decision ignite the fire under the electoral voters on December 19th and turn this thing completely around so that trump never sets foot in the white house? Yes. A thousand times yes.
America will be watching and that is all we can do now. Watch and pay attention.