And here we are

November 18, 2016 |  Category:   life


I didn’t mean to be so silent here after the election, but after actively engaging in conversations on social media immediately following the results, I think I needed to step back after the initial shock and anger. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still angry and disappointed that Trump is our president-elect, but the initial numbness and shock of last Wednesday has finally worn off and now I’m feeling overwhelmed at the sheer number of articles, essays and opinions that are flying across my feeds everyday. I needed to shut everything off for awhile and refocus on life (which has gotten very overwhelming if I’m being honest). It also seemed wrong not to address the election here, so I’m just going to leave a few thoughts.

We shouldn’t let complacency and time normalize the situation because there is so much that is uncertain, particularly for marginalized people in this country. It should go without saying that it’s hard to explain to our children that a man who has openly made disparaging remarks to women and minority groups can go on to be elected president and become one of the most powerful men in the world. What kind of message does that send, particularly to our daughters? But here we are. Of everything that I’ve seen following the election, I think the most heartbreaking thing for me is the rise in hate crimes in this country, particularly those committed by students as young as middle schoolers. Seeing news footage of kids the same age as my girls chanting “white power” in school hallways had me reeling. This is what makes this election so different. But it also encouraged me to see kids as young as my girls really care about the election. Seeing their genuine devastation at the outcome and their openness in expressing their feelings gives me hope that our future generations will care enough to stand up for what they believe in. The world for a lot of young people suddenly became very very real.

There are things we can do when we feel helpless. Join a march; teach your children acceptance and tolerance; support businesses owned by women, LGBTQ, immigrants, and people of color; donate to organizations that help these groups. Show them that they matter because a lot of people in this country are genuinely scared – about their status in this country, about healthcare (I know I am!), about racism, about their rights as women. Despite all this, let’s not give up hope and let’s show our children that our collective voices matter.

Photos from a recent visit to Storm King.






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  • Melissa@Julia's Bookbag November 19, 2016 at 11:59 pm

    thank you jenna. as always, you have a way of expressing what’s been swirling around in my head. xoxoxo

  • Roseann November 20, 2016 at 10:42 pm

    I always appreciate your insight. This is beautifully articulated, thank you for sharing.

  • silke November 21, 2016 at 3:11 am

    dear jenna, I was waiting for a post of you in the last days, because also here in germany the newspapers are full of articles and opinions and analyses of the US election and it is good to hear some thoughts of a woman and family who and which is like ourselves. this is what I can tell my children today when they are asking again why trump is president now: that there are kids like them who can not really understand and accept what happened und who will work and discuss against this. This is what gives us hope here in germany. Have a nice day!

  • Vanessa Bailey November 23, 2016 at 5:57 pm

    The thing that has had me so surprised about me was that I KNEW Hillary would win, and actually that is true, she has won the popular vote by nearly two million votes now. But honestly, I thought she’d win by a landslide and that he’d be humiliated after the election. I really thought there’d be months of him claiming that the election was rigged and how boring that would become. So it was my failure to see beyond the way I typically think about life. There is also a failure in the way TV places so many liberal commentators on the air, apparently it should be 50/50 liberal/conservative. About 7% of my facebook friends voted for him , which is really interesting b/c it never crossed my mind that any of them might. Now I am wondering why half of them did not vote for Trump, because clearly half the country did and I had no idea I was shunning all those conservatives. So many times I have thought, “I am going to unfriend that idiot,” but how silly. A lot of them are great people in many other respects: wonderful parents, nurses, hard workers and all are kind to me whenever we meet. Just like my liberal friends.