I haven’t posted since July. Too long, but too much has occurred. I couldn’t wrap my head around all that’s happened, and so my writing has suffered. The muse had fled, leaving me bare and exposed, and with my head exploding with thoughts. But today I’m motivated to write.

It’s strange how this year has progressed to encompass all manner of shit, not just for me, but for everyone. There’s not a single person I’ve spoken to who hasn’t flirted with mental instability, who hasn’t been treading water in the deep-end with their nose just above the water-line. It’s been one ass-kicking after another, like we’re in a never-ending episode of Cobra Kai (which is AWESOME by the way!).

2020 came in swinging, and I have a terrible feeling the grand finale is going to have us all reeling in pain.

I won’t go into depth about my own personal struggles, as they are very personal, but since July, I’ve lost two out of my three uncles, I reunited with my birth father via telephone, and I’ve been tested for COVID twice (both were negative, yay).

It doesn’t sound like much (and I am leaving out a couple of other personal things), but each has its own situation that has left me drowning in my thoughts. I suppose the biggest was the whole birth father thing. It’s complicated, and out of respect for him and his family, I won’t say too much, but generally it’s been positive, and we’re all moving very slowly, which is fine. But in the end, I just hope to know them all. It’s been a complete mind-fuck for me, and I can only imagine what it’s like for him and his family.

Throw that on top of COVID resurgence, and some seriously fucked up politics, and you’ve got a recipe for a mental health disaster!

I’m only kind of kidding. This year has tried my mental health to its limits. Thankfully, I have lovely people in my life who bring me joy. But to say it’s been hard is a complete and utter understatement.

The politicization of COVID-19 and mask-wearing has me seriously doubting this population’s intelligence. It’s pathetic. And honestly at this point, it’s simply Social Darwinism. Can we even call this a second surge? Some of these places that are surging never really had a surge in the spring, so isn’t this technically their first surge? That should worry us all. When 2020 ends, it’s not like 2021 is going to waltz in here and save us all from COVID ruin. We’re in this for the long haul. Sorry to break it to you.

But this nation is on fire. Literally, the West Coast is and has been burning, the struggle against racial injustice is being fought, COVID-19 has killed a quarter of a million Americans and is surging again, and we have a clown sitting in the White House running the three ring circus known as our three branches of government. Can it get much worse than this?

Oh yes, it can. And I suspect the election on November 3rd will be the set-up for the 2020 Grand Finale–whatever it may be.

I won’t try and speculate which level of Hell we’re all in right now, or where 2020 will leave us, but I am hoping once we do hit rock bottom, if we’re not there already, we can all take solace in knowing the only way to go from there, will be up.

So, here’s to the hope.

Hopefully, we’ll have a better person to lead this country.

Hopefully, there will be a scientifically validated vaccine for COVID-19 that won’t make us all get Bells Palsy or Guillain-Barre.

Hopefully, there will be systemic reform, and people of all colors, creeds, genders and sexual orientations will be treated equally within it.

Hopefully we can see each other’s faces, our smiles, when we no longer have to wear masks, and can gather together in public places, or indoors, without fear of contracting a virus.

Hopefully hospital workers can go back to their jobs without putting their lives on the line every shift, and will be appreciated.

Hopefully when next we gather with family and friends, we are all there, and no one is missing.

To quote the Dark Knight, “the night is darkest just before the dawn”. Cheesy, I know, but it’s true. Things always get worse before they get better. And when America is on fire, millions of people are trying to put her out, snuff out the flames, so we can rise from the ashes like the Phoenix we’re mean’t to be; stronger, unified, tolerant, resilient, inclusive, better. That is the America we’re meant to be.

That is the America we deserve.


One thought on “Thoughts on a Nation on Fire

  1. I’m sorry to hear about your struggles. I’ve had it easier than most, though I suffered from depression for the longest bout since my high school years. I haven’t had any family members suffer from Covid, but I had relatives who needed to evacuate because of the west coast fires. However, that’s ended and their home was spared. My adopted daughter had a friend shot and killed, which spurred her to participate in Black Lives Matter. I don’t have a problem with that, but I worry about her getting hurt. Fortunately, there haven’t been any serious riots where she lives. She turned 18 this year and moved to a city by the Gulf. She’s been through 3 hurricanes already. Luckily, there was no lasting damage. Don’t even get me started on politics. I’m no Trump supporter, but the other side has its own extremes that scare me. I’m afraid that no matter who wins, there will be riots. Our political system has become so polarized that there’s no room for compromise. It’s the fault of corporations who have a stronger hand in government than people. Career politicians are also to blame. They won’t compromise because if they do they will lose the support of their party and the corporations. It’s a mess and something’s got to give. I believe most people’s beliefs lie somewhere in the middle of these extremes but until the political system gives us better choices, we have no choice but to vote for the lesser of the evils. So far, my life is not greatly affected by the selfish people in office, so I try not to let it bother me. I focus on my family and friends, who have been instrumental in making 2020 worthwhile. I hope you do the same. Stay safe. -Dawn


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