The Introverted Activist: Be the Light

I was so depressed this morning that I could barely get out of bed. This administration becomes more monstrous by the day; there is so much evil in the world, and I can’t take it anymore. There aren’t enough anti-depressants in the world to make me feel better. Like, I asked the world to quit turning because I wanted to get off. What can I do? I called my senators (both Republicans, both speaking out against the abuses at the border), I called the Department of Justice (1-202-514-2000), but I didn’t feel better. Not at all. Again, what can I do? I am one person. And I figured it out. My most important job right now is to make my own tiny corner of the world the very best that it can possibly be. And so I did.

I did anything I could think of.

  • I picked up trash
  • I checked a reservoir before the end of the day so my co-worker didn’t have to fill it
  • I paid for the groceries of a little elderly lady whose check kept getting rejected at the check out
  • I let a birthday boy help feed Al his watermelon
  • I let cars into traffic, and I didn’t honk when someone cut me off
  • I talked to lots of zoo guests who had questions and tried to make their day a little better
  • I let son choose what we watched while we worked
  • I made falafel for husband and son
  • I didn’t expect son to eat the tabouli
  • I let smallest pick his own dinner – ramen noodles – and didn’t bark about nutrition (there’s always tomorrow!)
  • I fed my silver Arowana a little extra goodness. Roaches. Her favorite
  • I gave the dogs extra biscuits
  • I am making plans to take my husband to see the Mr. Rogers documentary – something that we BOTH need!
  • I wrote the report for today so my co-worker didn’t have to
  • I gave my intern some fun jobs to do – like feed Al. It was good for both of them

Am I cured? Not by a long shot. My heart still hurts, and I am struggling to breathe sometimes. But tomorrow is another day, and I will do it again. As much as I can for as long as I can. You do it, too. Do what you can to make your world better than it was without you. You do it, I’ll do it, and before you know it, we will have our world back. We can do it. Together. Be the light.

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12 thoughts on “The Introverted Activist: Be the Light

  1. You are an inspiration Heather, you know that, right? Don’t let the bad things get to you, find joy in the good things. And if there are not enough good things to go around, do them yourself. I strive to be like you!

  2. Al pictures never fail to lift my spirits! He serves as a good reminder of the importance of the little things — a nice mud wallow, a juicy watermelon — to one’s wellbeing.

    Oh, and I’ll be happy to take any leftover tabouli off your hands. 😉

  3. Heather, don’t despair! I’ve been away for a while, depressed about the whole situation as well. But just because of the current state of events I’m going to turn in my green card for citizenship so I can vote in the next election! Let’s do something about it in any way we can!

  4. I think you’ve got the exact right idea. I also feel depressed and overwhelmed by ALL OF IT lately. Just when you think it can’t get worse… But I think making your tiny world a little better is sometimes the best thing you can do. Sending good (and hopeful) vibes your way.

  5. I also get those moments when I feel so overwhelmed by everything in this world – from the violence and the politics and everything to everything that I need to be doing or should be doing and never seem to have time for. Doing things for others, doing the best I can – like you did – is the only way I keep my sanity sometimes. You are an amazing person, and you are making a difference in your little corner of the world. I know I’ve missed reading your posts since I went MIA and am glad to have your encouragement in my life again.

A penny for your thoughts! And by penny, I mean a warm-fuzzy in your heart.

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