I know I must say it every month, but I can’t believe it’s the last week of June. Wasn’t I just sitting down to write May’s One Little Word post? It certainly feels like it, but nope – June has already flown right by us. Thank you to Carolyn for hosting these monthly linkups, because they’re apparently how I keep my bearings straight as the year slips away.
I had this post nearly finished last week and decided to scrap it over the weekend. I nearly finished it again on Sunday morning but decided to delete it all this morning. There’s nothing that feels right at this particular point in time. I feel like I could cut/paste from last month’s Surrender post and just insert last week’s heartbreaking news. I’m still in the “crying for days” stage of grief.
Like the tragedy in Uvalde, I don’t want to surrender to Friday’s court ruling. And we shouldn’t. Instead — I’m surrendering to my feelings, allowing them to unfold in a way that feels natural, and then looking for a plan of action that feels right to me.
Yesterday was a good example. My brain was in an endless loop of how I’ve failed this country and every woman in it by not being a better activist and advocate (maybe yours was, too?). We decided to take a ride on the Kancamagus Highway in the mountains — it was hot and no one was very happy playing outside or being stuck in our un-air conditioned house. We stopped at a few pullovers along the way so that Matthew or I could take our phones out to do some birding with our Merlin apps. One stop was by a very low and gurgly river and I followed a little path to get away from the road noise. That path took me here:
A perfect, quiet little spot for us to throw rocks in the river and do a little splashing. We weren’t dressed for water play and had no changes of clothes or towels packed (lesson learned again). But I went back to the van and said, I think everyone needs to get out. So everyone tumbled out, after a little coaxing for Colton, and made our way down a very lightly trodden path (which required a LOT of coaxing for Colton). We ended up staying over an hour and it was exactly what we all needed.
It was an afternoon of pure delight tucked into a weekend of sorrow and disgust. Sorrow over the state of things and disgust in myself for taking the work of my foremothers for granted.
Friends, it’s time to surrender any guilt we may feel for “allowing” this to happen. It’s time to look to the future and to fight like hell. And we can’t forget to take the unexpected opportunities for joy as they show themselves to us – they will sustain us.
Where are you donating right now? Planned Parenthood and NARAL are my obvious choices and I’m interested in finding smaller organizations who are doing good work. Please share your favorites in the comments.
I hope to be back on Wednesday with a few bookish updates. Until then – please take good care and be kind to yourself.