November brings with it cooler weather, leaves of gold and the feeling of thanks in the air. It’s the perfect time to begin a practice of gratitude. You Know Neen is hosting the 2nd Annual 30 Days of Gratitude blog series, a place where the experience of gratitude will be explored and shared. I, along with several other contributors will be sharing our thoughts on all things gratitude.
Deep breaths. Very deep breaths. The past 24 hours have been a whirlwind of confusion, surprise, dismay, frustration and sadness. I am more than disappointed that Trump won the election. I am more than incredulous so many people voted for him.
But here we are. We live in a democracy where majority rules. I am grateful for this freedom. The majority has spoken and we are left with him as our president. And I’m afraid. And I’m nervous. I am above all, sad. So when I sit here and accept this new reality that I am not happy about, I need to ask myself “Can I be Grateful for anything about this presidency?”
Right now, I don’t think so. I hope this changes. So instead of focusing on Trump, my fear and my sadness, I will channel my energy elsewhere. Quite frankly, I think it’s fear that created a Trump presidency. So instead of focusing on what I don’t want, I will focus on what I do want.
I will focus inward and work on my own energy. I will focus on what I want to feel, think and how I want to act. I want to feel calm, feel generous and feel hopeful. I want to think kind and gentle thoughts and hopeful thoughts and clear thoughts. I want to express these thoughts with eloquence and candor and kindness.
I can’t do any of that without feeling some gratitude. Gratitude for living in a great country. Gratitude for being able to vote. Gratitude for all of us that want to live peacefully, want equal rights for men, women, gay, straight, trans, black, white, brown and red people. Gratitude that we are not alone. There are so many of us feeling lost and scared.
We can feel this way and then we need to rally. We need to lead by example by starting on the inside and showing our kids and our immediate circles that we still have hope, we will behave civilly and we won’t back down and will speak our passionate beliefs with clarity and kindness and integrity.
Sometime soon, we will find gratitude for all the campaign has taught us. I don’t know what it’s taught me yet. It’s still too raw for me to say. I can say, with certainty, I am going to keep moving forward one step at a time. I will move forward with grace and gratitude. I will ask my children to do the same.
And while I am not grateful for a Trump presidency, I am grateful Hillary Clinton threw her hat in the ring, and showed all the little girls watching that they should never doubt their value.
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