In just a few days, it will be three weeks since I cut myself off from reading the news feeds. I am glad to say that though I remain functionally up-to-date on current events, to the extent that my outrage is fully righteous and regularly conveyed by phone and email to the office workers of my House and Senate representatives, my mental health is considerably improved.
While my anguish and anxiety concerning the future of our country had not dissipated, I do find that my refusal to attend to each and every stinking detail of the Dumpster fire has increased my sense of agency and individuality. Meaning, limiting my interactions to those workings of government over which I can at least contribute my small say feels much better than frowning mightily at the non-stop stream of wretchedness available for consumption. Also, I feel more like an individual insofar as I can better function as an actual person among other actual people.
We are more than the dismal sum of misdeeds currently on report. America need not be defined by the degenerate, but rather observed as the goodwill of daily interactions sought among one another. Looking upon the faces of all those to whom I can relate to as people with small lives hoping for the best, all of us who are seeking at bottom the peace that lets us love without the burdens of fear or hunger, I learn a lesson of gratitude and still feel the tug of hope.
Looking beyond the scroll of sins packaged in small characters, we can be pleasantly surprised by the good that remains. The trick is to resist the turning of our minds to hopelessness or nihilism, to tune out what we can of the grotesque sideshow, and turn our eyes instead to the faces that truly compose our days in common.