These days, one evening goes by without blogging and I feel like I've abandoned ship. Working all day and coming home to household responsibilities, social engagements, and other ephemera of daily life can sure preclude quiet time to write. That said, I set aside a few minutes just to check in and jot my thoughts this evening.
Tonight's social/political/cultural event was hearing Malik Rahim, founder of The Common Ground Collective in New Orleans, speak at an event sponsored by a local activist group. The Common Ground was founded just one year ago after Hurricane Katrina. In that time, they have worked tirelessly, creating health clinics, homes for displaced women, distribution centers, a legal support center, and numerous other projects on a shoe-string budget. Their motto, "Solidarity, Not Charity" says it all. Groups like this clearly demonstrate how so much can be created out of nothing with the right blend of commitment, organization and purpose.
Another exciting event this week on my radar screen (or should I say "gaydar" screen?) was the New Jersey State Supreme Court decision stating that gay couples in New Jersey should have the same rights as heterosexual couples. Unfortunately, the justices left the actual work to the Legislature, and we all know that, especially when it comes to government, the Devil is certainly in the details. Still, a victory seems to be at hand.
Other victories also seem to be at hand as November 7th looms. I hate the suspense before elections, but there certainly seems to be a changing tide in this country, and I can only hope that enough of the flotsam and jetsam will be washed out to the Sea of Forgetfulness, never to be seen again. I've been feeling that our country is disintegrating, and while it can indeed do so under an administration of any political stripe, these last six years have been a painful time for me and those in my circles. Perhaps now some light will squeak through the haze of confusion and obfuscation. Perhaps we will only continue to be disappointed and disheartened, but I feel some stirrings of optimism within me, and feel a need for outside events to continue to fan that flame as I nurture it from within.
Exhaustion comes in many forms: political, emotional, spiritual, physical. Spiritual exhaustion seems to be the one that can most deprive one of one's vital force and desire for life. We all must find that well of optimism and forward thinking to drive us forward through our days. I am watching events around me and attempting to see possibility where I might otherwise see doom. An open heart of hope can certainly buoy the spirits.