Social Issues

What I’m Doing Right Now.

Can I just take a moment to be silly and comment on how I sit down to write and there are SO MANY THINGS I WANT TO WRITE ABOUT! So many different roads I want to walk down and pave with my words! Why is this so great? Because it’s National Blog Posting Month! So no struggles with content!

Of course it’s all dreary and dark talk of politics BUT STILL! LOTS OF WORDS! I actually wrote about 1,000 words on a different entry and then saved it in drafts because I kept coming back to an insulting conclusion and I couldn’t work my way out of it and I don’t want to offend Trump Supporters. (I know. I know. You have no problem offending them. You have no patience for them. Please understand some of us have Trump supporters we love and respect in our lives and we’re trying to work within the bounds of those relationships so PLEASE quit shaming me for still allowing some sort room for goodness out there.)

So many things to say that I can totally put a 1,000 word entry on hold for another day and start a new entry!

Let’s talk about some “easy” things you could do that I’ve been doing to try to allow myself some control over the situation.

  • Email your local Islamic center and ask if you can be put on their email list. I used the angle of “I just want to be made aware of any community needs you might have” and they added me to the email list and said to just ignore everything that only applied to the congregation.
  • Google to find the closest group to you organizing efforts for refugees. I found a refugee organization in the South through our Islamic center that is collecting clothing etc for refugees. Do a quick Google in your area and see if you can find the same. Just see if you can get on their email list so if there’s clothing needs etc you can help out.
  • Spend mindfully. It’s Christmas shopping season. Look up local business that may be owned by minorites and try to shop there. Or maybe own by people in your community who you know supported Hillary’s platform. Try to spend as little at the big-box stores as possible. Eat out at locally owned restaurants. You may not have money for charity, but you can spend the money you would normally spend mindfully. And it doesn’t have to JUST benefit local or American groups. Helping the disenfranchized globally is important too. I found this GREAT RESOURCE for how to shop for GOOD. So many great ideas! You’re shopping anyway – why not do it with a purpose? Also – my friend Jennifer does this thing which I love. She gives giftcards. is a great way help on a global scale. Donnie’s current favorite charity is the Seva Foundation and they have a shopping catalog here.
  • Find your local PFLAG chapter and follow them on Facebook. Ours does a lot of community meetings and vigils and beautiful events that you can simply show up at to show the community you care. Or even if you share out the events on Facebook that says, “Hey! Look! I support this group you should too!”
  • Allow people to hurt in the way they need. You may not want to protest in the streets, but don’t judge the people who get catharsis from that. We all handle pain and disappointment differently. We all grieve differently. We all process anger differently. Allow everyone their own process. Maybe they seem like they got over it too fast because they’re talking non-stop about the IronBowl. Maybe you feel like someone else needs to GET OVER IT ALREADY because you’re sick of hearing about it. Give everyone their space to cope they way they want to cope.
  • Offer hugs and pats on the back to people you know are hurting. I got a bunch of those at an event last night and they meant the world to me. I wear my feelings on my sleeve and some times that means I get love when I need it most.
  • Self care. I found I had to set aside time to let go for a bit or else I was spiraling. I told myself, “You’re more effective if you’re sane.” Don’t forget to take care of yourself first, so that you can then put the oxygen mask on the other people in your community.

What are some things you’re doing in the immediate future to help make you feel like you have some control over the situation?

7 thoughts on “What I’m Doing Right Now.”

  1. stepheniercm – Huntsville, Alabama – Stephenie has worked with and around books and authors for over 12 years, both at retail booksellers and public libraries. She is a rare Huntsville native, mother of two high-energy boys, wife of one, and eerily addicted to community volunteering. In her spare time she likes to stalk her favorite authors online, tinker in the kitchen, and also manages to conduct freelance marketing and PR work.
    Stephenie says:

    These are great! Thanks for the links – I’m coming out of the fog and getting ready to do less slacktivism and more real activism.

  2. I’m planning to join the ACLU, for one thing. Donating clothes to refugee organizations is a great idea. I definitely need to clean out my closets.

    And yes, I am trying to practice self-care as well. That meant eating an entire pie by myself this week, but now I’m trying to focus on doing it in more positive ways. I’ve finally taken the plunge and doing NANOWRIMO and it’s so hard to focus right now while I’m stressed and scared, but being serious about my writing again is something good I can do for myself.

  3. You’re the best! One small thing I did recently was write a Facebook post in support of third party voters. I felt like they were really getting beat up a lot and that they – perhaps more than many others – stood up for their principles with their vote. This is to be admired, not condemned. I also really love your idea of donating clothing to organizations in support of refugees and will do that as soon as I stop traveling and get back to my closet!

  4. You are a beautiful light in this world. “Be The Light” is what I keep telling myself. I was on a downward spiral Wednesday morning and one of my friends told me to keep heart because I am the light, and no matter how dark it gets that light is in my heart and will always shine through. That made me realize I was allowing other people’s foolish darkness to consume me and I needed to snap out of it.

    Thanks so much for all your words yesterday and today…CONSTRUCTIVE words. We are all so bummed out, but we have to USE that and learn from it. My biggest fear is we will all “forget” this feeling within a couple weeks. Our brains are wired that way: “Oh, what’s the NEXT thing in the news cycle?” It is also sort of a self-preservation thing…you can’t keep feeling so horrible…you have to get on with life. But I don’t WANT to forget. Privileged White Woman with nothing to really lose (OK, if the ACA goes away I’m in trouble as far as affording health care…) So, all day yesterday as I was going about my life, I was trying to think about what I can DO. What can I, personally, DO now to try to “be the change”? You gave some great ideas and resources here. Thank you so much.

    We can’t each do it all, so need to focus on one or two things we feel most connected with. But, if we EACH did that…!! What if the entire half of the country who voted Democrat in this election each chose ONE cause into which they could put some time and money?! I heard a thing on the radio yesterday (torturing myself listening to conservative talk radio…lol) that was about someone complaining about taking in Syrian refugees when we have homeless people who are US citizens who need care. My thought was, “Yeah! But you aren’t doing anything to help THEM, either.” And then I realized that neither am *I*!!! So, yeah…can’t just Talk the Talk, need to start Walking the Walk.

    I will choose local environmental issues (I live on the coast in Southern California, so it will be ocean related, probably) and get involved some where that pushes for public mental healthcare reform (son’s dad (my ex) bipolar, son anxiety and ADHD, so…hits close to home.)

    Thank you for helping me, and ALL of us, start to focus. You are AWESOME!!

  5. My plan is to be active locally. I can’t do much of anything about what’s likely to happen to the EPA for the next four years. But, I can make a difference if I support our local River keepers in advocating for strong local regulation.

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