The Struggle is Real

The day before had started with a news item that took up the whole day and the woman had immersed herself in it. She hadn't listened unconsciously to the news in the background or scrolled without thought on her phone but rather, she had listened intently all day to the news presenters trying to get their heads around the latest insanity of government. She had listened to callers on the phone-ins during the day, and in the evening, the serious newscasters had continued the theme. The theme was racist mysogyny and whether it was ok to call for a member of parliament to be shot. It was staggering that it even had to be discussed.

The woman had listened all day because it felt important to be aware of where the country was at in its views. She wasn't sure why it felt important but it did. Perhaps because as a woman of colour, whatever that actually meant, she was feeling increasingly vulnerable in the land of her birth. Perhaps because, as much as she hated a lot of what was going on, it was still her homeland and so she had no choice but to be part of it. That was part of the struggle though she thought. We all think we are part of this land but the people in charge don't seem to want us here.

Who did she mean by 'us' she wondered? Certainly, listening to the radio, lots of people felt that 'us' was everyone except the people in charge. Perhaps the 'us' was whoever wasn't different. That raised the question of who is different and that led to her wondering how the differences are defined and who defines them. All of it was divisive and this of course was the struggle.

She felt that most people could tell that division was a problem and that those in charge of a nation, if they themselves are in trouble, will seek to exploit and expand those differences. That's what was happening and had been happening for a while now but surely, we have reached our limit of acceptability? She sighed. That old familiar sigh of hope meeting reality and still reaching for air. Deep breath. Was that better than sighing? she thought it probably was because there was more of a sense of hope and determination in a deep breath rather than a sigh. Who knew?

She knew that she had felt the exhaustion in the voices of the black women who had called the shows to say how tired they were of the abuse. The struggle. The pain. She had felt roused and enraged and reassured and terrified and all the way round again and when she had finally switched it all off for the day and sat in front of the fire, it had been a relief. It was important to be tuned in and it was important to switch off.

Now it was a new day and after a reasonable night's sleep following a full day of news and broth bravery, she was ready to see what the new day might bring. She had some packing to do for the monthly trip to Devon where she would spend time with herself and the new friends she might make whilst her beloved would spend three days working with a group people seeking to integrate their understanding of bodies. She was a trained anatomist amongst her many skills and this made it fascinating for the woman who herself had not studied as hard as she might but who was deeply interested in the ways of the human being and body.

Amongst the packing, she hoped to see the woman who had become a daughter to her over the years and to see the young man who was so essential to the smooth running of her life. There were bits of real life that needed to be attended to and bits of dream life that needed time and space to mellow and grow.

It was the usual way she supposed. See it, acknowledge it, move it on. The struggle was real but she had a strong mind and a big heart and this was all she needed to stay steady. She sent out the cosmic hug to friends and thought she ought also to reassure them about what she was sending every morning. If they were getting her posts and hadn't had time to read, reply or respond, that really was ok. Nothing needed beyond a commitment to grow hahalala, however that looks.

She was pleased. She had a great group of people in her life and she valued each of them for who they were. There were the titles, firefighter, student, checkout staff, headteacher, cobbler, cleaner, politician, psychotherapist, caterer and so on and then there were the whole people. People from across the globe, with backgrounds she would never know and whose hearts were full and who she loved. Yep, writing it out was definitely a healthier way than keeping it all in and once again, for the umpteenth time in her life, she was grateful that she could read and she could write. Not everyone could and so she didn't want to take that, or anything for granted. Hahalala. A mood, a mindset, a moment. A way of life for everyone. Big hugs.