So, this has been a shitty week for the majority of Americans — I can say the majority of Americans because Hillary Clinton won the popular vote in 2016, and 58 percent of Americans actually turned up and voted in 2016 so I think my math is right but if it isn’t, I am sure someone will tell me all about it.
Why are the majority of Americans self-medicating this week? Because we learned that with his stolen Supreme Court seat Neil Gorsuch cast the deciding vote to allow fake health clinics in California to lie to women and upheld Donald Trump’s racist travel ban. And then Justice Kennedy announced his retirement; meaning the Cheeto-in-Chief will get a chance to appoint (for a lifetime, people) someone who will let him do whatever it is his little (if there is one at all) heart desires.
Like so many times since November 8, 2016, I felt a maelstrom of sadness and disgust and anger and frustration. I scrolled through Twitter, feeding all these emotions and then closed Twitter because I know feeding these emotions is not healthy only to promptly re-open Twitter moments later.
Somewhere in this cycle of self-harm, I thought about calling my mom and yelling at her and then I wondered why that impulse and why at that moment.
My mother and I used to be close. Very close. I was born the day before her 31st birthday and so we always celebrated our birthdays together. Whenever I had news, she would be my first call. Whenever I needed advice, I knew I could rely on her.
That all changed on November 8, 2016.
While I cried and drank and wondered where I could pick up a pack of cigarettes at 4 in the morning my mother slept in a blissful, champagne induced slumber.
My mother (and my father) voted for Trump. And toasted the news of his election win. Something she bragged to me later that week when she called to ask me why I had blocked her on Facebook (I hadn't, I quit Facebook.).
I have lost a small handful of friends since that day (thankfully only a small handful) but I can’t really lose my mom. But we haven’t been the same since and I wonder if she even realizes why. It is a struggle. She is my mom and I love her and I know that one day she won’t be around anymore and I will miss her. But will I regret these last two years of estrangement? I don’t know. I hope so but when I am this angry and lost and scared, I seriously doubt it. And, if all our worst fears come true, I will be in a perpetual state of anger and fear.
I have brought this up to her — not that I’m worried I won’t miss her when she is gone, that I am legitimately afraid Trump is going to end America as we know it — and she just shrugged and laughed and pointed out that she won’t be around when that happens so why should it matter.
And this pisses me off more. Mostly because it is so fucking selfish but also because I want her around when our country goes to hell. Selfishly, I want her to watch as our country burns and her hero fiddles. I want her to face that her choice — an unqualified, racist, misogynist she voted for because she couldn’t stand Hillary — brought on this shitstorm.
But the idea that she won’t be around for it should make me sad, not mad. And it doesn’t. And it breaks my heart.