Just Life

TGIF | Still Waiting.

Hello friends and happy Still Waiting Day. I can only hope that by the time you read this, the waiting will be over. I’ve been in a holding pattern this week that feels even weirder and more stressful than when we started quarantine back in March. At least this time I have a group text going with Katie & Sara. also, the weather is much nicer. and I’ve honed my Zoom and FaceTime skills to stay connected with folks. I finally went for a run this morning and I think it helped to clear my head. The colors aren’t great this year … still … they’re pretty!

Thinking About … maybe it’s a good thing Biden didn’t win by a landslide. We might’ve been lulled into thinking that racism, even Trumpism, was behind us. Now, though, we know we have a lot of hard work ahead of us. I read this in an Instagram story – I think – and I can’t find the source. If anyone knows where it’s from, please share!

Grateful For … the incredible work of Stacey Abrams to register voters and get out the vote here in Georgia. I’m seeing numbers like 800,000 NEW voters. WOW! After she lost the gubernatorial race here in 2018, she said it wasn’t because Georgia was a Red State – it was because Georgia was a Purple State with voter suppression issues. yep.

Inspired By … Sarah and Beth at Pantsuit Politics. Their Instastories this week have made me laugh. and cry. and today’s episode “Patience Is A Political Act” is so good. I really appreciated their assessment of the results we know so far and love their positive attitude about working to fix things. They don’t complain (well, not much 😉 ), they don’t fall for false binaries, they get that they are two well-educated white women, and they think creatively. Sarah read words from Parker Palmer at the end ♥ – she and I share a love for Fr. Richard Rohr and he quoted Palmer in his November 3 daily devotion. Sarah read the last paragraph on the podcast, and I think the first paragraph provides a bit of helpful context. So this is from Rohr’s devotion:

“Of all the tensions we must hold in personal and political life, perhaps the most fundamental and most challenging is standing and acting with hope in the “tragic gap.” On one side of that gap, we see the hard realities of the world, realities that can crush our spirits and defeat our hopes. On the other side of that gap, we see real-world possibilities, life as we know it could be because we have seen it that way. . . .

If we are to stand and act with hope in the tragic gap and do it for the long haul, we cannot settle for mere “effectiveness” as the ultimate measure of our failure or success. Yes, we want to be effective in pursuit of important goals. . . . [But] we must judge ourselves by a higher standard than effectiveness, the standard called faithfulness. Are we faithful to the community on which we depend, to doing what we can in response to its pressing needs? Are we faithful to the better angels of our nature and to what they call forth from us? Are we faithful to the eternal conversation of the human race, to speaking and listening in a way that takes us closer to truth? Are we faithful to the call of courage that summons us to witness to the common good, even against great odds? When faithfulness is our standard, we are more likely to sustain our engagement with tasks that will never end: doing justice, loving mercy, and calling the beloved community into being.”

and finally Fun … I mentioned the group text thread I have going with Katie & Sara … it is full of the best memes (Sara does Twitter and Katie follows some very funny and astute folks, too). Sara shared this whole thread with us this afternoon. Nevada gets most of the attention. Still, it’s funny. and I am incredibly grateful to the folks who are (STILL) counting ballots and doing their best to make sure every vote gets counted. Also, this is me, every night(thankful for all the leftover Halloween candy in helpfully sized portions … this was Wednesday night’s serving. looks like a 60/40 split to me!)

On that note, wishing you the best weekend available to you!

10 Comments

  • Diane

    Mary, I was so surprised that this Presidential race has turned out the way it is. I said to myself and close family and friends that I thought this would be a landslide. This tells me our country is divided. I was a poll watcher this year and a ballot box watcher also. I can relate to what the news has said about the people that are opening the ballots. Those people are working tirelessly and would be offended if someone would have said they were being dishonest. They take their job very serious. I am “Greatful for them”. Thank you Mary for you inspiring words!

  • Karen

    After listening to the news tonight (I try to limit myself to one helping of the news each day), it looks like we’ll have a couple more days before there’s any resolution. The votes are so tight in all the undecided states. And, yes, it’s truly a divided country. I hope there’s a road to more unity, but the way the political retoric continues, so I’m not too hopeful.

  • Sarah

    Well here we are a day later — still waiting! But I think right now we know that the outcome is inevitable, thank goodness, and we just need them to finish counting to confirm it. I know we’d hoped for a landslide, but the reality is that there is still a large portion of this country who are okay with the likes of Trump (or, as I’ve come to think of him after seeing all the Gritty memes yesterday, Bad Orange). I keep seeing people expressing shock at how many of their fellow citizens could look at the past four years and want four more, but think of all the people you see out there wearing masks with their noses hanging out! It’s clear to me that we need to not only improve how elections happen in this country but also take a serious look at our education system.

    Fingers crossed that we have a celebratory Zoom session tomorrow!

  • Bonny

    It looks like it may be Still Waiting Week, with all the outstanding ballots, along with cured and provisional ballots, and then court challenges. But better correct than fast, and this is pretty much what election officials told us to expect. So keep opening those hopefully predictive M&Ms and maybe we’ll have an answer soon(ish).

  • Jane

    I am reading on Sunday night but I agree with your “thinking.” I am an optimistic enough to think that maybe we are right where we should be in this country. Enough with what divides us and on to rolling up our sleeves and working together. It is time to quit demonizing the other side. David Brooks of the NYT’s wrote an excellent piece on what the voters were telling us. All of this said, I am incredibly relieved that Biden and Harris will lead this country. 2021 has to be a better year for all of us.

  • Kat

    We talked long and hard about this in Zoom Bible Study on Sunday… how to reconcile with “them”. One thing that struck me was something said by a friend who is much wiser than me… kind of hard to meet in the middle with someone who is in denial.

    It saddens me that, with the exception of GW Bush, the entire GOP is adding fuel to the “they didn’t win” fire. We are not out of the woods yet and I think the biggest battles are yet to come.

  • Alexa

    I am arriving late, sadly, Mary, and the results seem more clear now – but I won’t feel a sense of relief until later in the month when they’ve all been formally confirmed … though there’s still the will-he/won’t-he-accept-the-result uncertainty. Thank-you for the Rohr quote … Keeping faith in the tragic gap requires such a lot of energy.