I'm bipolar. I blog about it. I also blog about sex, theology and atheology, funny shit and sad shit, books, music, feminism, and love. Mostly love.

Monday, December 24, 2012

I can't fix this world, but if I'm dying anyway, then I will die trying.

After the shooting in Connecticut, I didn't want to post hastily about gun control and mental health and the shallowness of people on Facebook and Twitter about the whole tragedy. I didn't want to write insensitively about something so painful, so real when the child who is most precious to me is in kindergarten now. I didn't want to write with a reactive vendetta for all the wrongs in this world. I've done that before, and there are consequences for thoughtlessness. But I've had time to sort through those feelings, and I'm as ready as I'll ever be to speak about it.

Tanglewood Press has made a really beautiful statement with the help of a Connecticut mom and Audrey Penn. Go to the link to be a part of that.
That whole project inspired me from speechless disbelief to hopeful action. The only way to confront Evil is the produce Good. "Be the change you want to see in the world," right? But I feel only a hate that I don't even try to drive away when those bastards at Westboro Baptist capitalize on people's pain. But the public support gathered to block their idiot cries trying to make their statement of hate gave me hope. Hope has been in short supply lately. (Quite literally, as the One Hope United employees will tell you. My mom collects hope trinkets and ornaments that are only sold this time of year among peace and love items. But for some reason, in cruel irony, the have been nearly impossible to find this year.)

But I found it.

I've looked to the things that make me feel better. I paid for the guy behind me in the drive-thru at Starbucks today--a guy in a piece of shit car, smoking a cigarette, and petting a cat sitting on the console. That made me feel better. Being a part of giving those kids at One Hope the best fucking Christmas of their lives... that made me feel better. It's not that I'm a saint or anything. I'm doing this to prove to myself that enough Good will drive out Evil. The generosity of those who donated to One Hope brought on a regular flood of tears. It's as if those people were doing what I was doing--they were proving to themselves that the world doesn't suck. The world has been acting shitty lately, you know? But even with the lack of hope, in the way that I sought hope, so have so many others. Among Mom's gifts from coworkers, hope was bountiful. It was nearly, but not quite impossible to find.
That's my sweater, bitch ;)

When a mom smacks her kid in Wal Mart, Kayla is tickling the piss out of Julian. For every child (and parent) at Sandy Hook, The Kissing Hand will provide much needed comfort. There is plenty of Evil in the world. Plenty, plenty. But there are good, good people. And we can make a difference. You don't have to save all the starving children in Africa to do that, though. You can just wrap presents for kids who don't have a family to spend the holiday with. You can help out at a soup kitchen (props to Noah), and you can forgive that dude that cut you off on your way to work.

I just read John Green's The Fault in Our Stars (you can stop judging me for dropping the ball on reading. I'm catching up, okay?) and I finished it in a night. I stayed up past my self-designated bedtime to finish it, sobbing alone in my room. The world is trying to prove its fragility to me. Hazel Grace is telling me, Connecticut is telling me, Hurricane Sandy is telling me... You can't turn on the television (something I gave up a long time ago) without those images forcing themselves into your conscious. The Fault in Our Stars hit me hard, probably because I'm already in an estrogen-induced, emotional break down, but it knocked me on my ass. Hazel is me if I were dying. Which, she would point out, I am. But if I was made more aware of my dying, I think I would be a lot like Hazel. Or maybe I have a flawed view of myself--I tend to judge others more accurately than myself. But in her voice I heard myself. Fragility. That's the word ringing in my head. I'm living a very fragile life. There's only a few cancerous tumors between Hazel Grace and I. There's only a few states between my precious babies and Sandy Hook. I can't fix this world, but if I'm dying anyway, then I will die trying.