Please bear with me. I am writing and sharing not just for my own desire to reconcile this past week, but also for my children, my community and the many people I call friend south of my border.
I have been realizing that the importance today, Remembrance Day (here in Canada) is one that has been slowly setting in over my 43 years. Growing up I was lucky… the ‘big wars’ were history, even for my parent’s. It only directly affected my grandparents so I never felt connected to it. The world was on a path of hope and change and improving the life of the individual. And now it seems I was naive about our current world views. We are not all on the same page. There is so much more work to do to change dogmatic views and create ones that include individuality in a global community. There hasn’t been any war on the same scale, but so many smaller conflicts meant to avoid such larger ones.
There are lives being lost for the sake of the greater good everyday. My children and I live in a world of hope and goodwill because of them. It is no longer a matter of history – it’s a matter of daily struggles. We all struggle between our own internal egos (that thrives off of drama and can only think for itself), and our own humanity (our love for our community small and large). Finding our own moral compass is a daily struggle. When fear and doubt rear their ugly heads we need to keep in mind that we are challenged in this way. Reaching out to others is how a society thrives. Lashing out is never productive.
I woke up this morning with so many thoughts in my head that have come from my heart. With so much understandable frustration with the political process, best courses of action or reaction involve us being the change. It isn’t voices, but actions that matter. And in order to take action, we need to truly have a core value and vision to reach for.
I think what holds us back is knowing what actions/steps that will make a difference. Which brings us to the dilemma of who is willing to risk anything without knowing they are going to work? It’s this risk of putting ourselves out there that hold us back.
We need to get to that point where taking the risk is worth it. Today in fact is a perfect day of reflection to see an example of those who risk their lives everyday. We all need to ask ourselves a question, “What am I willing to risk for more, for better, for what is right?”
So many people have put themselves in the line of fire because they found those answers in themselves and to honour them, we need to do the same. I am not saying we all need to arm ourselves with guns. I am saying we need to arm ourselves with vision, hope and integrity. We can keep our world safe with words and actions that inspire others to keep our family, friends and community feel safe and valued.
After the outcome of the latest American election, I had good cry to vent out my own personal frustrations and sadness. I may not be a citizen of their country, but I am of our global community. And the thing is, I have been horrified for the last two years watching this process and how it has played out. Seeing how a culture that bases their decisions on TV ratings and the reality shows that we all know are not based in reality. Perceptions are defined by what is around us. All the shock, surprise, and outrage is misplaced. We should all be looking around us and at ourselves at what we value, not by what we say, but by what we are doing, our actions, our interests, where we spend our hard earned money. How children feel less than if they don’t have the cool shoes or latest iPhone… Why can’t we be happy with a good meal, loving people to surround us and a warm bed?
Choices made by other countries in this digital age will forever affect our global world. We are naive to think that we are a community of righteous values and ideas, but Tuesday, November 8, 2016 confirmed that we are wrong. We have been deceiving ourselves. There is still racism, bigotry and small mindedness in our own backyard. And on Tuesday it reared it’s ugly head and said, “Honey! I’m home!”
If anything the neighbours down south have shown us, beside the negative is that there are soooo many good people out there. If you tally the total votes for the democrats combined with the independents, that totals 52.6%! And add to that, those who voted for the current president elect whose basis for their reasoning was for change out of frustration for the system, you have an environment that is ripe for change!
One asks, where do you go from here? I thought we were done with this! But we aren’t. And one can wonder if we ever will be. Knowing that each individual has internal angels and demons that battle our hearts and minds everyday, makes me feel connected in a way. And really, would you want a life of only good things? So many have said a utopian society can never really exist – for those who have seen the “Matrix” movie series, I think they summarize it pretty good in there.
After taking some time to digest things – I am seriously amped up! A purpose is growing for me. I have been volunteering with the CreativeMornings community here locally. This community has collaborated with Shutterstock to create a space online for us to share what can happen #InACreativeWorld. So in that spirt I am inspired to create.
I will be creating with design, art (such as the poppy above) and words (yup this is the start) for a world that balances respect with hope and teaches there is more to life than the black and white – it’s the grey path with the most adventure and possibility. I will have my eye out for situations where I can stand up for what I value and be a safe space for those who need it.