Learning to Drive

The return to normal was jarring.

Kindness and gracious behavior. Missed opportunities for snubs, gentle jokes made at no one’s expense. Papering over treachery so fresh that spilled words were still visible on people’s shirts.

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris taught a master class in class today. It was instruction we didn’t know we wanted and hadn’t signed up for, like a Sunday School session on turning the other cheek when we wanted to run down the hall and punch Johnny in the face. But, just like in Sunday School, by the time you finish coloring the picture of Jesus being super-kind to people, you get all mellowed out. In the interest of moving on and coloring in the lines, you forget about Johnny and whatever travesty he committed. And so it was today. The high road had a lot of traffic and everyone was beautifully dressed and smiling.

This will take some getting used to.

I might need a deprogramming camp.

Oh, I am enjoying the reveal, for sure. I’ve known for a long time that Trump had neither the intellect nor the system of beliefs to drive what people were doing to the country in his name. He was yet another Wizard of Oz, a huge flowing social media cloak behind which ideologically-driven lieutenants pursued their own wet dreams. Tax cuts for the wealthy. Muslim ban. Child separation. And the most important, the waving off of an illness that has killed 400,000 Americans. Trump was an instrument, made powerful by people who convinced him otherwise.

I love that Trump is gone, removed from Washington D.C. via Air Force One early this morning, banished from Twitter, unable to get the adoration that he’s used to, but it bothers me mightily that he is sitting under a palm tree in the Florida evening, having a waiter bring him yet another Diet Coke. A big part of me wants him to be cast out on the side of the Florida Turnpike so he has to walk to the oasis and beg fries from someone leaving the McDonald’s counter.

I have bitterness in my heart.

I want there to be an accounting for the damage done. I want an admission. I want an apology. It feels like I can’t really start coloring the picture of Jesus being super-kind to people until that happens. I want to aim for the high road but it’s very foggy out there and my headlights are dim. It’s going to take some time.

19 Comments on “Learning to Drive

  1. You’ve done a wonderful job summing up the transition to Biden. I can finally relax. Someone likened it to getting out of a toxic, abusive relationship. I feel such a sense of overwhelming relief, and slowly my world is righting. For now I’m just enjoying the good vibes of people who believe in goodness and decency. And who ever knew it would be a treat to have people who knew what they were doing in charge? It’s like Christmas every time I hear a new cabinet member speak. As for he-who-shall-not-be-named, unless it involves indictments, I don’t want to hear about him or his family ever again.

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  2. We ARE going through deprogramming. It took me quite a while to realize Trump really was President. It is going to take me a while to realize he isn’t.

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  3. Jan – I’m in the same space as you are. Yesterday I felt pure relief, today my brain is somewhat scrambled. Keep on writing – your writing is good for both of us.

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    • I think we’re just now figuring out how great a burden the Trump presidency was on people. The daily damage to people and norms, to the whole idea of the country, I think it really affected us – people of our age. It’s unreal that it’s finally over.

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      • Yes, I agree. After four years of being in fight or flight mode every day it is hard to adjust of safety. I keep thinking I should be checking on what horrible thing is happening in this moment. And I keep letting air out of my lungs – probably air that has been held there for 3 years or more. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  4. I watched most of the ceremony via BBC TV – impressive and inspiring. What a relief you must feel; I feel relief and I don’t even live in the USA. It was my private nightmare that, on some whim or delusion, the orange fingers would press that Red Button that would blow us all to smithereens. Phew! good luck to you one and all.

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    • I think we may have come pretty close to what you describe. Trump was not well-educated at all, had no sense of the world, and was really impulsive. The last two weeks, especially, have been really scary. So very glad we have an actual president now. Phew!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I probably should not fully share what I wanted to see happen as I watched the helicopter rise into the sky and fly out of DC. Let’s just say there was fire involved, and lots and lots of teeny tiny pieces. Then I thought better about that dream as it would also harm too many innocent people.

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