My last blog post was in the middle of January. Initially, the lapse in blogging was because life happened. Then it became a conscious decision not to blog, for a variety of reasons. No more! Staying silent too long simply isn’t possible for me. The time has come to break my silence.
Let’s just get right to it. Everything that has happened between now and then can be summarized by a single word: transition. New relationship. New career. New home. Suffice it to say, I’ve made major life decisions since we last spoke. So much has changed within the past half a year it’s as if I have an entirely new life…which isn’t entirely inaccurate.
Those of you who don’t follow me on social media undoubtedly have questions. Even amongst the audience on my socials, I’m sure some are scratching their heads and wanting me to fill in the blanks. Bear with me. I’ll divulge what I’m willing to share in due time in the way I best see fit.
What happened in Uvalde last month shook me the core. Something inside of me snapped. Counterintuitive as it may sound, I had so much to say I couldn’t even talk. With the exception of reposting a few images [cue virtue signaling😂], I was surprisingly quiet for a person who otherwise excels at TMI.
Things have only gotten worse since then. Roe v. Wade. We’ll cover the decision of the SCOTUS to overturn it in another entry– though I don’t think it takes a rocket science to know that it saddens, frustrates, and scares me. What happened Friday was a tipping point for me in terms of how I us my voice.
After the tragedy [that word doesn’t even begin to cover it] at Robb Elementary, I lost my public voice. Or perhaps I should say how I use my voice in publicly, seeing as how I am not a public figure. The dialogue in my head was incessant, make no mistake. I just couldn’t find the words to express myself. I say it shocked me into silence. I also stopped praying. Until two nights ago, I hadn’t prayed at all. How grateful I am to be speaking, writing, and praying regularly now.
Due to my overwhelming need to process what’s happening around me, I’m back in the blogging business. Facebook is not the platform for me to air my grievances, talk political shop, or do a deep dive on topics I wouldn’t discuss in the workplace. Facebook is not the MySpace of yore. Facebook is not something I want to use as a way to increase the already rampant polarization between us. Not everybody who ‘friends’ me wants to see all that– nor should they have to– and I respect that.
Does this mean I’ll stop with lengthy, passionate statuses as they pertain to my personal life? Of course not! But when it comes to politics and religion, I’m toning it down on social media. Generally speaking, I’m taking things down a few notches, all across the board, on socials. Surely I’m not the only one who finds myself completely drained reading the comments on particular posts. It also shocks and upsets me when a person I otherwise like ‘exposes’ themselves on social media with a view that stands in stark contrast to my own.
If it wouldn’t be said in the workplace [my rubric for posting from this point forward], I’m not going to say it. I’m also going to take it a step further and say that I will try my best not to think differently of people who post things on their personal account(s). This isn’t censorship or being fake…it’s a known part of adulthood and employment that there are certain topics you don’t take with you to the office or whip out when you’re meeting new people. I think social media has given us false ‘courage’ to say things from our computers that we would never say when having a face-to-face conversation with a group of coworkers, business contacts, or new acquaintances.
With that being said, given the current realities in our society….I am terrified. I’m afraid for my children, particularly my daughter. It is shocking and abhorrent that I hold my breath every time they leave for school. And not just school, either. Movie theaters, nail salons, and even the grocery store aren’t safe.
In September 2021, our local Kroger was the site of a mass shooting. Not even a five-minute drive from my daughter’s school and our home. It’s literally in my backyard, my community. Our community. The same place where I accidentally left my keys in my ignition for almost a week, and nothing happened. Such a shocking juxtaposition. A place where I am comfortable letting my children play, walk, and ride their bikes outside. This happened here? If it can happen here, it can truly happen anywhere.
How do I keep my children safe?
Is it possible to protect them while still allowing them to play, explore, and learn?
Will they struggle with a lifetime of anxiety from practicing active shooter drills in the classroom and knowing that they could be shot at any second?
Is the safety of my children less important than someone’s ability to own a gun?
How do I tell my daughter that her government considers her a second-class citizen?
What if my daughter is the victim of a sexual assault?
Why aren’t more parents teaching their sons how to be better men?
Adam is old enough to have an understanding of the adult world now that he’s in his teens. At 10, Tatum doesn’t yet require the heavy conversations I’ve had with her brother. I know I have some time, but I’m dreading these discussions. My children have to grow up in this world we’ve created– less than a decade until they are both legal adults– and they deserve so much better.
With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,