This week is the annual Banned Books Week, celebrating our First Amendment Right to read…
THIS MOMENT TONIGHT.
I’ve just gotten home from the gym, where I found myself in another unexpected conversation with a survivor of childhood violence. Despite knowing this person for years, I did not know anything about this part of their history until tonight, and I felt honored and blessed by the trust they placed in me by sharing this history with me and their long and determined trajectory of healing. This person’s face was so open, so present, so available to the exchange between us that the clarity and trust and sheer loveliness of that exchange nearly brought me to my knees. I left the gym and I looked at the sky, this impossible sky, as impossible as our simple beauty sometimes is, the beauty of both all around us at every moment.
I’ve had more people than I could count share with me across the span of the last 25 years their difficult histories, their doubts and deep pain and dismantling loneliness, all created by those histories, as well as their strength, courage and resiliency, their trust and faith and will to live and to heal. I’m dumbfounded by the power of human nature, and astonished again and again by the array of stories all of our lives represent individually, as well as by the factors of a current cultural, social and political moment that inform both our individual stories and our collective understanding of them. We are all so amazing, so complex, so beautiful and wounded and fragile and fierce, and we are all together a part of this one particular moment in time. Together. We contain everything within us, beauty and terror, love and indifference, compassion and cruelty. We are all wounded, and we are also all charged with holding each other and ourselves as best we can in the face of both the ravage and the wonder that announce themselves daily.
Tomorrow is a critical moment for us here in this country. And because I raise my voice publicly about the topics I know I can speak into, I usually refrain from posts that border on political appeals. With that in mind, tonight reminded me again that we are all, in this moment, in need of the best that we have to offer, in need of one another’s presence and empathy, compassion and sometimes even protection. We live in a world divided, in a country on the expanding edge of turmoil, and there are so many among us who are vulnerable, at risk, oppressed and victimized on a daily basis. Those people are all around us, and they are US, and all I will ask is that when you go to use your voice tomorrow, if you go, please consider the power of empathy and compassion, of healing and protection, of holding those most in need of being held as you go. This moment matters, and we are positioned to influence this moment. In some ways, we ARE this moment, so I hope that we show up with the best and the most beautiful that we each have to offer from within ourselves to be the best moment possible together.
All peace, especially to those among us who have known voicelessness.
All peace to each one of you. Dora