Four years. It’s been a long four years. But we made it, somehow.
We’re lucky. We made it through these last four years. I had to use this term, but we’re survivors. We survived. There are far too many who did not. It may have been due to the pandemic, to long term health issues, or so many other factors, but we’ve lost people along the way. They weren’t able to be here for this moment. It’s tragic and in some cases, it’s a tragedy that could have been avoided.
But we’re here. We made it. We can carry the memory of those gone too soon with us as we move forward.
Move forward we must.
The last four years have been a regression, a falling back into past bad behaviors, of a tacit approval of things that never should have been acceptable in the first place. We saw blatant racism, homophobia, transphobia, anti-semitism. Those among us with darker skin ran the risk of being killed, simply because they committed the “crime” of having darker skin while sleeping in their bed or walking down the street. Families were torn apart at the border, crying children pulled from the arms of their parents. We had conspiracy theorists claim that there was a dark underworld of the elite who were trafficking children and growing youthful on drinking their bodily fluids, all the while ignoring the fact that the same migrant children, taken from their parents, were either being trafficked or had simply disappeared without a trace.
We had literal Nazis marching in the streets.
As I said four years ago, I knew it was going to be bad. I just didn’t know how bad. I didn’t know that we as a country would spend the next four years being gaslit. I had no idea that “alternative facts” would become a thing. I had no idea just how narcissitic Trump would be. I knew it would be bad, but I couldn’t fathom just how bad.
I learned the hard way. I think we all did.
That was when I made the decision to make a post–even a short one–every day. I had been lax; I had a small platform and I could have used it. I could have made a post, telling people to get out and vote. It wouldn’t have even needed to be a paragraph. Just a cute picture and a quick reminder to hit a local polling place. Nothing fancy. But I didn’t. Granted, 2016 was not a great year; I had to deal with getting a chunk taken off my chest–thanks a lot, Leftie!–and I was now dealing with being on a long term medication. I hadn’t been at Costco for even a year. I was out of my comfort zone, hitting midlife, and everything seemed to be in a state of flux.
I didn’t see my blog as anything more than a hobby. But things changed after the 2016 election.
It was a difficult journey, getting to this point but we got here together. However, it isn’t over yet. We’ve still got a long way to go and a lot of work to do. But we can do this. Things can get better. It’ll take some hard work, but this can be turned around. We just need to put in the effort.
I’ll close this with a quote from another leader, one that I’ve admired since childhood. In the words of Optimus Prime: “Let’s roll.”