Passing the Flame for the Final Stretch

green lit torch
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Hello blogosphere. So back to school has arrived in my neck of the woods. I just want to commend any parent out there who had to endure any agonizing process to determine which was the best course of action to pursue for their child or themselves with education. We may not have all landed in the same place, but it seems we have arrived just the same.

My teens, being who they are, and at a crucial developmental stage where socialization is everything, adamantly wanted to go back to school. I’ve honestly had concerns for their psychological well being over the last few months.  It seems there was a void I just could not fill no matter how hard I tried. Our compromise was a hybrid model for both.

My daughter goes to school half days and since she is at a private school, her student body size is one third of that of her brother’s school. She is not bothered by mask wearing and has always been somewhat of a germaphobe which I am grateful for. I can trust that she will be proactively meticulous with taking precautions, without all the reminders. My son…not so much.

My son will be going to school two days a week, and homeschooling two days a week. He is on the autistic spectrum, so I believe protocols will be harder for him to follow. He has a harder time adjusting and in the event that there is a school closure, I already want him to have one foot in the classroom and one in virtual learning. I’d honestly considered doing a hybrid model with him even before Covid 19 because full time high school can be so over stimulating. There were also risk factors with his allergies, asthma, and his neurological disorder. Because he is higher risk, I get the low down anytime there is a positive case at school. Other parents not so much unless their child has had direct contact or are also considered high risk.

This is not a full proof plan. This seems to be “the new normal.” Suddenly we are flying by the seat of our pants with cost/benefit analysis. In a way, we are making decisions based off of picking the best of the worst. So this is where we are. It was such a relief to arrive at any sort of decision at all. I also feel that I got a little bit of validation from the Universe that I did the right thing. I wasn’t expecting it, but it sure was nice, or maybe I’m just some crazy lady thinking the Universe has given me a pat on the back, because I so needed it.

I want to trust my own intuition SO MUCH. I’m telling you intuition is vital in times such as these. Which leads me the point I am trying to hammer out today. Decision making is hard when there is excess noise. Yet, zoning in on the problem too much can be equally ineffective. Might I recommend, not zoning in on the problem too much and cutting out the noise.

So I’ve been meditating for a few weeks now, and let me tell you my mind has been such a clusterf*ck, that I’ve had to meditate as needed, which generally means two times a day, sometimes three. I save longer meditations for those moments when I am tired and sometimes I even fall asleep during them and let my subconscious mind do the work. Creepy because my mind always seems to wake up to “you can come back to the room now” and I’m telling you, I used to think any type of self hypnosis was scary as F. I avoided those meditations like the plague and I used to think it was laughable when I’d hear the disclaimers about not listening to guided meditations while operating machinery. I’m a believer now.

I had a hard time with some self guided meditations at first. I’ve learned which voices I find to be the most soothing, and sometimes I’ve been totally thrown by visualizations that were too far out. I did one meditation where I was guided to “imagine myself as a baby” like that was supposed to be soothing for me. For some reason imagining myself as a tiny helpless human wasn’t cutting it. It felt like something creepy right out of Benjamin Button.

So after weeks of sampling self guided meditations I’ve kind of come up with a playlist, and one guy stands out for me more than the others. I like his voice, I like his accent, I like how he creates echoes with his voice, the background music is not obnoxious, and  every once in a while he just throws in a random “and you’re doing good.” Also, he tells old stories that remind me of something right out of the Jataka Tales. So drumroll please…Kenneth Soares. He is the bomb. Recommend.

I have one more thing I’d like to throw down about meditation, and the need to do them so frequently. Yes, they were helping, by not making anything any worse. I was maintaining my well being but then I had an epiphany (which I do attribute to the meditating). The epiphany was “maybe it is not about what I was adding to my new meditation regimen in my life, but what I needed to take away.”

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My friends, I have a news addiction, which means I have a social media addiction because that is where I get a lot of my news (I strive for unbiased and vetted news sites of course, although not always full proof). I’ve declared this before but it’s a MAJOR source of detriment in my life. Of course I want to be informed but really what was bothering me the most about the news was other people’s reaction to it, or lack of in some cases. Of course we are all on the edge of our seats. Corona and upcoming election-Hello??? Then there’s the wildfires and the hurricanes, and so much civil unrest.

This seems over the top, but I’ve been fighting. I’ve been fighting so hard. I’ve pretty much been fighting the last four years. I know whatever outcome befalls us in November there is going to be backlash. It won’t be an election year that will resume quietly. It hit me SO HARD that I need to be mentally prepared for whatever is coming. I’ve been telling myself “HOW CAN I? HOW CAN I? I’m SPENT. I’m EXHAUSTED.” Might I also mention that I’ve pretty much also been threatened by a few people who are so far gone with this.

One of these really got me to the CORE. A troubled youth (who is now grown) became  hostile towards me.  I was invested in his well being at one point in his life because his parents were going off the deep.  He has now acted threatening towards me when in the past I had provided him and his sister with some sanctuary during one of the worst periods of their life, basically preventing a DFS takeover.  I could not believe that due to his immersion into Trumpism and all that vitriol, that none of the above no longer mattered.  He completely unloaded on me. I didn’t deserve it. Not by a long shot.  It stung. It was utterly hurtful.  Like our previous history didn’t matter, as if I’d suddenly become something less than human because I hadn’t crossed over to that place, wherever he was.

This was the beginning. A sister of my mother’s was trying to red pill a cousin of mine whom I used to babysit. It was all happening right in front of me. Where we go one, we go all, and all that Q sh*t. I called it out for the crazy that it was. I also don’t attend church anymore because I think the majority of my congregation is prescribing to a different form of Christianity than I am. I can’t unsee the blatant racism. I’m livid that their goal is to bring  others into the fold, and they are repelling those who could use a little empathy and grace the most. Those who are lost or in the depths of despair have better luck seeking grace at a flea market at this point. Any downtrodden, wounded, or injured soul will not find respite or peace there. Trust me, I’ve tried.  So here I am meditating in my house.

I cannot for the life of me fathom how the ring leader of criminality has been deemed the chosen one to bring god’s divinity to this nation. Everything just feels like some snake oil scheme on a MASS scale. I also felt completely deflated when I saw four former friends of mine who I thought were RATIONAL people become taken in by this over the course of the last two days. It’s one thing to see it from those you expect, but not those you did NOT expect. It felt like a bad scene from Jungle Book. Like mayday,  slithering forked tongue, incoming.

I feel this overwhelming sense now that things are squaring up, and the DNC and RNC conventions are leveling fields where everyone must now choose a side, and who knows who will be speaking to each other when this is all over. I remember in American history courses hearing tales about brother against brother and I can only hope this does not turn out to be an unleashed heap of insanity. It all feels like dipping a fork into an undercooked cake and realizing that it’s not going to come out clean no matter how hard you try.

So my friends (if I still have any at this point) this is starting to feel like The Farmer in the Dell where the cheese stands alone, or there are crickets. I realize with an election coming up, to some that means FIGHT HARD and FIGHT LIKE HELL. It could mean campaign harder, recruit everyone you know. I’m feeling the same way I did about making that school decision for my children, like I just want to get my ballot in the box already and be done with it. “Campaign” also seems like such a strong word anymore. It seems overly solicitous. I’m just campaigning for some sense of stability.

I’m tired of these punisher antics. Where one can be punished for not thinking the same, worshipping the same, not having the same color of skin, not being the same sex, income bracket, elderly, disabled, or even the same health status etc. Everything just feels so authoritative. Punitive action against marginalized people.

It’s as if somebody is shouting out, “You WILL respect my authority. You will submit,” and I’m reminded of my inner child who grew up in an punitive household who would meekly cower to clenched fists and wandering hands and think to myself, “You haven’t earned it.” While the authoritarian figure was fooling everybody, gaslighting them all in plain sight. This feels traumatic. This entire thing has been so traumatic and triggering.

So, I saw a comedian the other day talking about these people who are still deciding. That seems like some fantastical myth. Is anyone still deciding? REALLY? Like, what has and hasn’t done if for people at this point? Initially I heard a lot of “I didn’t want to vote for Hillary so I voted for Trump. ” Hillary is not in the equation now. Unless you are some Q conspirator neck deep in Pizza gate.

Anyway, what I’m trying to say is that what I needed to do was to shut out the election. I’ve shut off Facebook. I needed to stop observing where everyone was leveling up at and with whom. There have been a few surprises. There will be more and I can not watch. This is just the beginning, where everyone falls in.  If I want to continue to have any sort of relationship with anyone that is not defined by what separates us instead of what brought us together I must bow out now.

I also want to add that many things about the FB platform and Mark Zuckerberg have been disturbing. Why have I been contributing to it? I recently read that Facebook took down a “call to arms” event AFTER two people were shot in Kenosha (I have cited the article below).  I also want to recommend to anyone interested to contemplate a story about Shiri’s Scissor. This is one of the most profound things I have read that applies to FB so far. It is a fictional tale but so eerily close to reality, especially with algorithms that favor controversy and negativity. I recommend giving this Blog Post a read. I will cite it below.

I need to be strong for the election backlash. I even need to mentally prepare myself for another four years (if it comes to that) and I can not do that mentally in the current state that I am in. So no, I do not have the energy or the stamina for this last stretch. It’s a vote. That’s all I have left to give at this juncture. I don’t want to feel defeated or deflated come result time. I want to feel energized like I am ready to go for whatever outcome and whatever repercussions may befall this nation.

I’m not quitting. I am accumulating strength.  I won’t have any left at the most crucial hour if I keep going at the rate I was going.  Also, nothing about this nation is going to come together over social media, a comment or a post. It will be in the hours that are not spent on the web, the conversations we have in private, the ways that we show up and reveal what we stand for in our everyday interactions and in our communities, who we are when there is no platform to stand on or someone watching  in the wings to agree or disagree, “like, ” comment, share, troll, or post an angry or sad face.

Life is so much bigger than all of that and life’s complexities can not be contained in a handful of emojis, a comment section, an elephant or a donkey, or even in black and white. There’s so much gray.  I really honestly feel there is nothing more I can do on any social media platform to influence anyone anymore, and to be honest, all I am accomplishing at this point, is leaving the door open for more apathy, threats, and abuse. These are becoming increasingly concentrated.

I feel like I’ve been swimming in sludge and like any addiction, (and here’s another meditation epiphany) when quitting something there is going to be a hole left behind. That dopamine fix I’ve been flying on that has made me a news junkie flying from controversy to controversy must be replaced somehow. So yes, long story short, I could add meditation to my regimen, but without quitting the things that have been detrimental to my well being I’ll simply only be maintaining my own standard of care at this level that is sub par.

To maximize what meditation can do for me, I can’t keep allowing the pendulum to swing back into vicious news cycles that will only bring deflation and despair. Every time I tango with the masses over the latest shock event my energy gets sucked and I feel as if I’m undoing some inner peace that has taken me weeks to initiate.

It seems so contradictory at this point. What’s to be done? I know that love and light feel superficial and will not bring social justice. Yet, I also know this entire thing is entirely bigger than me. I must tap into a higher source and I must do it at the most crucial hour. Like, legit, a miracle would be nice. I must not squander my energies into the things that are out of my control. The time has come for me at this juncture to let go and let god so to speak because this entire thing is beyond my control. So this feels like an olympic sprint. This final task, the task that must be done to bring this home, so that whomever is higher than I can carry the torch to the finish and ignite the flames.

So legit, my final election strategy is to take a leap of faith and turn it over to God, or a higher power for the home stretch. I’ve always been taught, do your share, do what you can, and god will complete the rest. How is this any different? I’ve got nothing more to give at this point other than a leap of faith by allowing some divine force to take it from here because I’m spent. Ugh. This gives me so much anxiety because I want to be in control, but I am so not in control. This is my wait and pray moment.

I’m reminded of a scene from Apollo 13 where a faithless NASA scientist spouts off about the mission being an epic disaster. In which the response by the head commander is “with all due respect, I believe this is going to be our finest hour.” So here I am at this threshold. November is on the horizon and I must wait with the full intention of being okay with myself, for taking care of me, so that I can withstand whatever lies just beyond that horizon. May god bless this nation, give comfort to those who are hurting, give respite for those who are not okay. Self care my friends. We need it. We all need a lot of it because something big is coming.

Until Next Post!

Rachelle Whiting

Campbell, BJ. “Facebook is Shiri’s Scissor.” Handwaving Freakoutery. 24, December 2018. http://freakoutery.com/2018/12/facebook-is-shiris-scissor/

Fried, Ina. “Facebook Criticized for Slow Action Against Kenosha Militia Page. ” Axios. 27, August 2020.

 

 

 

2 thoughts on “Passing the Flame for the Final Stretch

Add yours

    1. Thank you. Turning things over is easier said than done. I read something today that I absolutely needed. A little reprimand from the Universe perhaps. It was “stop going back and checking on things you already left in god’s hands.” Ha ha ha. The Universe knows me so well 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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