I am going to try once again to catch-up with Calen’s challenge. This one is from way back on July 19th. Yes, that is how far behind I am. The question for this challenge is…
What do you hold sacred?
I doubt I could have answered this question back in July or even in August when I was trying to catch-up. My mental state was still too fragile. I had no self-worth, no joy and didn’t find anything sacred. I was so close to cutting and, dare I admit it? Yes, suicidal again. Thankfully, I am doing much better now, even if I am still living in a fog most days from the psych meds.
Some time in early September, the dam began to break for me. I hadn’t been so fired-up about anything in months. I happened to hear one of Trump’s speeches. I was so angry about some of the things he was saying and the way his followers were reacting to him. I hadn’t been political since 2004 and hadn’t planned on voting this year (just as I hadn’t the past two cycles). But I began to realize that the things I hold most sacred in life could be stripped away with a Trump presidency and so I registered to vote.
I realize that it is a shame that it took a narcissistic, misogynistic, bigoted racist to make me snap out of my self-imposed shell, but sometimes a good slap in the face is needed for someone with mental illness. I began to realize that I hold this Republic sacred, along with all of the social progress we’ve made over the last 50+ years. I’ve been a liberal progressive with socialism leanings for most of my adult life. I don’t understand the desire to turn back the clock to before women had the vote, people of color had rights, and the LGBTQ community was still in the closet. I know what Trump and his ilk mean when they say ‘Make America Great Again’. What they really mean is ‘Make America Great Again for wealthy, white male landowners (or CEOs, these days)’. That most people cannot see this is beyond me. I also hold our country’s status as a harbor for immigrants sacred. My own family was German and Irish immigrants. It pains me to hear how immigrants, legal and/or undocumented, are being treated in this year’s election cycle. And last but not least, I believe that Human Life is sacred and all of this racism and hatred this year has unnerved me like never before. I understand now what it must have felt like to live in the past couple of centuries for Native Americans, African Americans, Asian Americans, and Hispanic and Latino Americans, even though I am white and have only known privilege my entire life because of the color of my skin.
So while I now see that what I hold sacred is mostly from my own world-view, I also know that I am not alone in this thinking. Over the course of the last couple of months, I’ve met some great like-minded thinkers who’ve helped me come out of my shell. Most of us now are tired and worn-down by the crazy-making of this year’s election. We know that we have one last sacred duty though – vote. Our minds are set on who we will vote for come November 8th. We are choosing love over hate. And so many of us are now drifting away from the politics and trying to salvage our mental and emotional selves because we know that we too are sacred beings.