Even people without PTSD are finding the daily onslaught of DJT horrors too much to handle, especially first thing in the morning, plastered all over your feed. The anxiety and menace are very real. How much more so for someone recovering from a lifetime of extreme trauma, abuse, and marginalization. It becomes debilitating, on top of all the other insecurities and fears.
So to counter all the early morning Trump-triggers, I’ve come up with an experiment for both of us to try. First thing in the morning, instead of the usual zombie-lurch to the laptop full of dire news and social media screams, I’m redirecting E and her coffee to her cozy chair in front of the big screen with continuous nature scenes and soft background music.
I’m also delaying my own exposure to doom and despair until I’ve had time to focus and start my day. I may glance at subject headers to make sure I don’t miss anything personally important, but that’s it. All the existential threats to humankind and the earth itself will still be there later in the day.
I realize there’s not a lot we can do to change this catastrophe, but there are small, everyday things we can do to modify our own intake and behavior. It’s safe to assume that many of the people we run into out there are also going through their own worries and fears, if not suicidal thoughts. I figure if I act as civil as possible to each person I meet, that will ripple out and affect others, and maybe even avert some tragedy. You never know. It’s the least we can do to reduce some of the pervasive tension, post-election.
I realize our particular situation isn’t typical of most people, who are still too busy working and raising families to have time in the morning to do much of anything, let alone waste time on social media, or relax with nature programming. But we’re in this peculiar holding pattern, stuck in a tiny apartment staring at each other, until we’re able to move this summer.
To make matters worse, the squatter colony below us is becoming increasingly deafening and confrontational, and there have been break-ins. They’re constantly yelling, cursing and banging things loudly into the night, with their little children right there, not to mention fumigating us (and their kids) out with all the stuff they smoke. Upstairs, we’re trying to bide our time and hold on as best we can. The constant fighting and disrespect is also a trigger for someone with trauma issues. It’s challenging, finding ways to maintain our equilibrium and sense of security.
But this isn’t intended as a negative post, but rather motivation to modify ordinary daily habits to be more nurturing and sustaining, rather than to succumb to the disturbing negativity coming at us from all around. This evil isn’t going away anytime soon, and there’s not a lot we can do to control it. All we can do is not give up on ourselves, our fellow humans, our values, and our goals.
On that note, here are cute animals.