"I will not say: do not weep; for not all tears are an evil."
The Return of the King
We're one more day past the US election. There have been demonstrations in the streets of many major cities across the country. The continue tonight. So far, the demonstrations have been peaceful. Though they haven't been overwhelming in size, they have provided many ~ participating and observing ~ with an outlet for their grief.
It's nigh unto impossible to expect people not to grieve. Or to insist that they express their grief in one particular way. It's good that they are expressing it at all ~ and in a manner that remains peaceful if disrupting.
Grief shows up in several stages:
Shock/disbeliefThough we may think it's easier, we don't go through these stages in a linear fashion. Speaking with other people today, we all fluctuated through several of them in the past 48 hours. One person, still registering shock, spoke of waking up with the sense that it had all been a bad dream. Another, in the midst of denial, insisted there must be a way to demand a recount. Someone shook her head wondering if only she had been part of the calling or door-to-door campaign, the results may have been different. And on it went..... Not that any of us stayed in one place. As each person spoke, others chimed in with their stories.
I've cycled through several of those stages myself. In my own grief-bearing terms: Shock that what was thought to be a significant win one way, went so horribly wrong. Bargaining for a calmer and less phobic atmosphere. Guilt that I could have done more. Anger at people telling me how I should feel or that I should just get over it. Hope .... well, that one hasn't arrived yet for me. Maybe hope that my community will be stronger together as we move forward into these unknown waters.
How do you feel about the election? Are you in grief? Are you rejoicing? Are you sensitive to others who feel differently? What hope can you name and claim for yourself at this juncture?