I began posting ways I found to cope with the emotions of living in the United States this week on Facebook. (I live in New York, which isn't really the U.S., but it's close enough, especially this week.) Today is Day #3 Post-The-Unthinkable and I am going to post my strategies here in hopes they might help soothe or empower you.
9 November 2016
Coping Strategy #1
It's 11/9 (in American date format.) It feels like 9/11. People are walking around like zombies, unable to speak. The city is blanketed in fear, horror and sadness. Unlike 9/11, this agent of destruction will continue to wreck it's damage upon us for 4 long horrible years. Tomorrow we can start figuring out how to survive and fight back. We can remember that we are all connected, all one. Today? We need to treat ourselves very gently as we nurse ourselves out of physical, emotional and spiritual shock.
Conscious breathing can help you feel less fearful. Big, slow, deep, belly breaths. Breathe in gently through your nose. Let your belly get really big. Then exhale slowly, also through your nose. This will help soothe your nervous system. Breathe like this when you are alone. Breathe like this around others. Share the peace.
10 November 2016
Coping Strategy #2
I'm feeling a bit less numb today. I can feel my chest. The shock must be lifting a bit. Today I intend to find my connection back to love. As I said yesterday, for me Love is an action verb, not an air freshener. I want to be able to feel it and put it into positive action, not just spray around a love facsimile to cover up the smell of the election. Today I am going to feel and share love for the people in my queer, sexy, sparkly, brave, resilient communities. When I feel sad or angry or hopeless today, dear Tribe, I will connect with You and feel the Love.
11 November 2016
Coping Strategy #3
Get on Your Bird. (This one is borrowed wholly and completely from Colette Baron-Reid. Thanks, Colette.) Climb on an imaginary winged creature of your choice and soar above it all. Fly above the screaming and shouting, above the angry shaking fists, the trembling fear and the abject despair. Take a few breaths. Get comfortable. Look down. Notice that from here, the earth is still spinning. People are still going to work and kids are still going to school. The natural world is still beautiful. Notice that the incidences of hate and violence—while more than last week—are still fewer than the millions of random acts of kindness that people perform for each other every day. Say to yourself, “I am safe.” Because anytime you can say “I am safe,” you are. Rest here for a while. #JustForToday