Boring Adult Things, Uncategorized

300 Before 30

I have never been busier. I like being busy, but there’s certainly a balance to strike.

I’m booked pretty solidly as far as work through the end of the year, balancing three clients simultaneously and making sure all are feeling the love. Come January, my hours cut back a bit, which is probably a good thing, as I’ll want to be nesting while also dragging around a full-on extra human strapped to my front.

There’s so much preparation – the holidays and gifting, vet appointments, doctor appointments (I’m changing OBs and hospitals at the 11th hour, NBD), daycare shopping/applications, updating wills, errands, finishing the bathroom remodel, invoicing, budgeting, thank you notes, travel (4x trips over 3 weeks), getting the nursery ready (while it’s filled with remodel crap), and political activism. I am drowning a bit.

However, I see the light at the end of the tunnel. Head down for December and sprint from weekend to weekend. We’ll get there.

In the meantime, it’s been clear how much love is in our lives. I am naturally very resistant to favors and help; feeling like an imposition makes me extremely uncomfortable, and I hate feeling even remotely incapable. But being in the situation we’re in, Brandon and I are having to lean on others a bit. His mom planned a lovely baby shower for us last week, and we were overwhelmed by the amount of love his extended family brought forward – including many people I hadn’t even met before. This coming weekend, we have a maternity photo shoot and another baby shower my amazing friends and family are throwing. It would be impossible not to feel blessed.

My priorities have shifted from trying to tackle my “list before 30” (partially because some of those things are physically impossible at this point), but I’m nevertheless still running the long game. Life has never been crazier but I’m also, against all my instincts, welcoming help from a few directions as we screech into the finish (or starting) line. So thank you to those wonderful people who are our support system. I hate asking favors. But I feel so lucky to have them delivered without even asking the question. I love you all.

Boring Adult Things, Politics

Turn Your Frown Upside Down

I’ve been in a pretty significant funk for the last few weeks, like many of us have. I don’t see coming out of it anytime soon. And I don’t frankly care about being called over-sensitive or a whiny Millennial or whatever kinds of insults people think are warranted these days, because my opinion of those lobbing them is below most pond scum.

But for my own sanity, I have to find silver linings, and I need to lift my spirits. I have to remember how much there is to be grateful for today, the day of one of two baby showers being planned for our little one, who is in his seventh month of gestation. Very soon, Brandon and I will be a family with a baby, and he will turn our lives upside down.

I can’t wait to take him to the zoo and watch him grow, read books with him and teach him how to talk. I look forward to his hugs and cuddles, and to taking him on trips with us so he, too, can become a citizen of the world. I look forward to watching him love all over our animals, and learn to ride a bike.

I’m hoping that by doing our small part to bring a beautiful, considerate, race and diversity-conscious little boy into the world, we will be giving something back and not just taking away from the planet. We are so lucky to have that opportunity.

Today, I am thankful for my growing business, and the supportive people I work with, who are as happy as I am that I’m expanding my family. I’m thankful for my clients and the ease of this transition into self-employment – because even though there’s been a lot of effort, I can’t complain about where things stand.

I am thankful for a family who loves and understands me, supports me, and holds the same core values I do. I am thankful for a husband who is the kindest man I know.

I am thankful for a world that is full of hope, and different kinds of people. I am thankful for whiny Millennials who won’t let a wrinkle in time permanently crease the future. I am thankful to be part of a moment in history in which my actions will truly be for the good of others, I can put my money where my mouth is, and schoolchildren will one day read about right and wrong – and I will be able to say I have no regrets.

I am thankful for my pets, who are blissfully ignorant of anything other than our love, and the occasional fallen piece of turkey.

Today, I am thankful for life. And tomorrow, I’ll try to be thankful for the future.


Love Trumps Hate

Since the election, in between bouts of interminable sadness, I have:

  • Called my senators to oppose the appointment of Steve Bannon
  • Emailed my electors about their upcoming vote
  • Called Rep John Lewis to thank him for his service
  • Gone to my first neighborhood meeting
  • Worn a safety pin
  • Voted in favor of keeping the ACA via Paul Ryan’s phone poll (despite the long pre-recorded diatribe he made me sit through before getting to it)
  • Put out a “Love Trumps Hate” yard sign
  • Donated to Planned Parenthood (in the name of a Trump supporter – thanks, Kevin)
  • Made mashed potatoes for a local teacher appreciation lunch
  • Bought lunch boxes for a couple of kids from an impoverished family

I am taking this opportunity of immense grief to be motivated to action.

I’m not giving up, and neither should you.


To the people in my hometown who voted for Trump


It’s been a while since I spoke with you. It’s intentional.

I lived among you in a small Georgia town during a highly charged time in my life, my teenage years. During my time with all of you, I felt marginalized, pushed to the fringes, and completely unheard. I was told regularly that I was going to hell, my beliefs in tolerance and acceptance of others were naive and unholy, that had I dated a black man I would be socially rejected, and that all the things I’d been raised to hold dear were patently unsupported.

I have never felt more alone than I did among all of you.

I have had so much anger and resentment over 2016’s election. I can’t fathom how anyone with a heart or a head could have voted for a monster. But I forget that 14 years erases many memories. I forget I’ve been living among my people since I ran away from all of you.

I realize in this moment, though, that in the same way I felt so ostracized and erased by you, you’ve felt the same way for years about the city folk I find my home with. Your way of life has not only been threatened, it’s been all but erased for years, and you are desperate.

I believe many of you were racist, xenophobic, and homophobic when I lived with you. I also believe, and hope, that most of you have evolved in the past two decades. I have watched many of you fork away into lives of your own outside of our country town, choosing to expose yourself to a point of view other than your own. I have also watched your town begrudgingly welcome “some gays” who renovated plantation homes near the church – and then, much to your shock, join your Baptist church. (“They’re actually very nice; we were concerned they were heathens but they’re actually normal people.”)

I have seen the race gap closing by micro-inches at a time, as your Millennials marry each other and give birth to some of the most beautiful, race-ambiguous children you’ve ever seen. I can see the stigmas falling away, albeit 30 years behind the rest of the world.

I am furious at you. But I don’t believe most of you voted Trump out of hate.

We elitist liberals, particularly those of us who have the inherent benefit of being straight and white, have the privilege to denounce you and scream, “How can you care about your taxes when my rights, and the rights of my neighbors, are at stake?”

I forget quickly that if I’d asked, your response might have been, “How can you care about your neighbors’ rights when my family can’t eat?”

I get it. I get it. You needed a system shake-up and you voted for the man who promised it. Your jobs are disappearing and your town is dying. The Town Square is a shell of its former self and the church is rapidly losing members. Half the county is on welfare and you struggle between needing to enroll yourself and chastising those who milk the system, because you’re proud of how hard you work to support your family, even when tough times make your paycheck meager. Washington hasn’t given a shit about you for years, and even though I believe he tried his damndest to pass legislation to help you and was often stopped by dissenters from the opposite party, Obama has indeed largely failed on his promise of change for you.

Your desperation urged you to miss the hint that Trump (and I say this with no quiver in my voice) will fail you, spectactularly. He has only ever demonstrated one consistent value in his life: pure and total self-interest. I suspect you see this, too. But you also knew for sure (and I’m apt to agree) the alternative would fail you as well. At least this guy screamed, “Fuck the system.”

Here’s where I can’t go: I can’t accept that we’ve landed here. I don’t actually believe that in this long ideology war between you and me since I lived with you, that I lost and you “finally won.” I don’t think it’s about winning and losing right now. It’s about fixing this terrible mistake.

Let’s all agree on a few things, if we can.

  • The system has failed you, and we failed to notice.
  • The person coming into power will not save you and now has no incentive to care.
  • This awful moment has presented us an opportunity to change the system for the better. Because for all the awfulness that came out this week, we liberals now have an incentive to listen to you – and we wouldn’t have otherwise.


But I need you to understand the side that is so passionately protesting right now as well. For our fault in ignoring you, you have also adamantly chosen to insulate yourselves from our side. Let’s be clear: this is not an issue of sour grapes, it’s actually an issue of the same Christian values you yourselves promote. Tolerance and love of others, inclusiveness and making people feel safe, finding the common humanity in others. And on Tuesday, everyone who wasn’t a straight white man felt as marginalized as you have for years… and even worse, they lost all sense of personal safety. WWJD?

We have to fix this for them, too. The easy road is to live inside of a bubble and pretend the rest of the world doesn’t exist. But this road will end. You have the choice now to embrace another path, and to get outside of your comfort zone to recognize the hate wrought upon this world because the same system-shaker you supported is also tacitly encouraging a civil war. You must do the hard thing, the uncomfortable thing, and open your minds and hearts to your fellow man. Wear your safety pin knowing you voted with your heart but need to change your mind. Our country depends on you right now, because without your support, in four years, we will oust this president and return to status quo. Without mutually working on empathy, we will continue to fight each other.

I am angry with you. Against all the values I was raised with, I dance on the precipice of hate. But I am trying to understand your fucking side, because I know there is one. I just need to hear that you’re going to work with me to fix this disaster we’re in, so some of this anger can dissipate and you won’t feel pushed back to the fringes the next time around. So that as we ride this roller coaster of horror for the next four years, we agree that we’re all going to fix it and truly not let love trump hate… on either side.


I’m Sorry, Baby. There Is No Hope.

I wanted to write a post I could share with our growing baby Cameron one day; a message of hope and unity that reassures him not to worry. I wanted to tell him people are inherently good, and that the sun will rise again, and there is still worth in being a person who cares about people, a person who defends good.

But I’m not sure I believe those things today.

Today, it’s the End of Days. This is a travesty this country hasn’t seen in more than a hundred years. This is the precipice of civil war. This is the brink of worldwide disaster. This is evil incarnate.

I also wish I could say I believe anything I’m saying is hyperbole, or an overreaction. That it’s a response to the immediate aftermath of half of our country electing the least-qualified, most despicable human being we’ve ever encountered in American politics. I wish I could say it was fueled only by the anger that everyone who wasn’t a white man was told on Tuesday that they don’t matter.

But it’s not. It’s all of those things, but it’s not just those things. This is a tragedy. This is the end of our world as we know it.

Cameron may spend his life dodging the reality of life in this country, and he may not spend large chunks of it in this country at all. He may very well grow up in poverty. At a minimum, he will grow up in a world in which he is reminded that his rights matter more than his neighbor’s. But to be perfectly honest, that is now the least of my concerns.

I can’t speak the man’s name who will be leading this country. It’s still too painful to know in my heart that this world is not only full of hate, but that in the perhaps even more important war between stupid and smart, we lost. In the battle between good and evil, evil reigns.

This person who will be leading our country has built a fortune on the backs of those who voted him into office. He has exploited them, used them, and wrung them out like tissues for his own personal economic gain (and often, even more ironically, his disastrous financial failures). He rose to power by living in an age that values rhetoric, celebrity and swagger over truth. He feasted gleefully on the disenfranchised anti-intellectuals.

What’s worse, his cold open was to the most deplorable fringes of society, leveraging lunatics to project his messages more publicly. Yesterday, those nonhumans were justified in feeling superior to all the groups they hate so much.

Half of the country–the uneducated white half, driven by men–have also voted to surround this elect with a group of politicians who will push legislation to his desk, legislation he and his VP will endorse, that takes social progress back ten decades. The checks and balances Bush removed from the Executive Branch will be exploited to the fullest potential, just as this elect’s taxes were exploited within an inch of their life to cost this country payment on a billion dollars of income he had graciously been forgiven by debtors. This unchecked power will lead decisions around economic policies, foreign relations, human rights, and war.

I look at men differently today. There is a fear now, a fear that I could be sexually assaulted with no recourse, a fear that I won’t be able to obtain birth control, a fear that very soon, a decision about whether or not to move forward with a pregnancy, no matter how early on–a choice I made six months ago–will no longer be an option because men decided it wasn’t my place. That if something awful happened to Cameron tomorrow, I would have to potentially carry him to term and deliver a stillborn baby, or a baby that wouldn’t live more than a few hours, or die myself, because white men in Michigan decided it was their right to make that call.

Today, I have an anger and a hatred for men like nothing I’ve ever experienced. I feel so fortunate to be married to a kind man who supports reality, who supports minorities and the underprivileged, and supports women. Because if I wasn’t, I would be painting all men with the same broad brush. It’s already hard not to do that.

The social unrest this whole disaster has created is terrible. It’s a justified horror. But that’s only the beginning of what’s to come.

The economy already began its implosion on the eve of this news. The world is not on our side, and may never be again. Our enemies are licking their chops and congratulating our new elect. Those who voted Red this year are cheering now, but will be losing whatever jobs they have in the months to come. They will lose their homes and see their taxes increased dramatically as Wall Street pilfers their pockets. Big businesses will pay minimal to no taxes and cripple the system. The world will react to our plummeting dollar by reminding us that we reap what we sow.

The pathetic individuals who felt unheard last week celebrate today, but they are blind to the horrors that will hit them the hardest. And they will find that in the aftermath, the half that could even possibly help them will tell them to go fuck themselves.

I have always considered myself a tolerant and nonjudgmental person. Yesterday, I was reminded that I can only extend that love to those without intended malice in their hearts.

Today, there is no God.

No God of mine planned this.

There will be no forgiveness from me on; there will be no unity and peace and love for the other side. I will bind together with all the people who were wronged this week, the people who are smart enough to have seen this train coming long before it hit us (but never in a million years expected it would), and we will save ourselves. We will cry, we will lick our wounds, and we will have no sympathy for the pain the other side will endure at their own hands. Because we will be too busy getting our own asses out of this fire. And the thing we have going for us is that our collective IQ is above 80, so at least we have a shot.

I won’t say all the things I predict, because they are all dire and I’m feeling a little superstitious. I have yet to see much out there that predicts otherwise at this point. There is a real possibility that one of these days, the sun will not rise again. We have seen this history before, but never on an eve of the world balancing on such a precipice already. We are economically unsound worldwide. Our environment is crumbling around us. Today, we are all filled with rage. At this point in history, many countries have weapons that could wipe out the whole planet in moments.

So today, I can’t tell Cameron it will all be okay.

Today, I am apologizing to him that I’m bringing him into such a disgusting world.

Today, I regret creating him, not because I don’t love him – but because I do.