So, here we are.
It is the eve of the election and I am feeling a little numb.
I am part scared, part sad and mostly in awe of the potential for it being the day of the breaking of the highest glass ceiling.
Until this year I admit to never following politics…not in the slightest. But then, along came Trump.
And while I have never been active or vocal politically (in truth I have been uninterested, uninformed and ignorant), I have always been strongly opinionated and deeply committed to my values and beliefs.
However the past six months have shaken me, and this election has had a tremendous effect on me personally.
I have found myself in heated conversations with family, friends and children.
I have even lost a few friendships and found tension in others.
I have been insulted, marginalized and name-called in ways that I never imagined.
I have witnessed people I love and respect behave in ways that have forced me to re-evaluate how I feel about them; and what is most interesting is that all I have done is share my thoughts and beliefs through one platform, facebook.
I have not posted on anyone else’s page,
I have not commented on the posts of others,
And I have not used profanity, name-calling or insults to communicate my thoughts.
Rather, I have spent these six months watching, observing, processing, reading and researching to gather information from all perspectives. I have challenged my own beliefs, asked the hard questions and stepped outside of myself in an effort to determine the choice that fits me and my view on the world.
But I have watched as others have taken my personal thoughts and beliefs, and used them as an invitation to be angry, hostile and in some cases, mean spirited.
I am profoundly aware of the suffering of so many Americans; the inequity, the poverty, the anxiety, despair and loss that have been endured for so long by so many. And I also believe strongly that significant change is essential and that this change needs to happen quickly and boldly.
As I move into tomorrow, election day, I am more confident and clear on how I feel and who I want as our next leader.
I am proudly voting for Hillary Rodham Clinton, not because she is the perfect candidate, but because she is the person that I believe will move us forward.
I am deeply saddened and troubled by what the Trump candidacy has unleashed…the damage he has done to our society, our standards and our values will take decades to undo.
And while I have found the dialogue difficult, I am vowing that no matter what happens after tomorrow,
no matter who has voted for who,
no matter what the composition of the House, Senate and Oval Office will look like…I will walk powerfully forward in my life and career to exemplify compassion, collaboration, unity and dignity through my words, actions and deeds; and I will contribute to finding solutions and being part of something better.
It is up to each and every one of us to set a new standard in our lives…to come together on behalf of all of us. Together we are stronger.
My grandmother was relentless in her commitment to voting; to making her voice heard through this hard earned right as a woman.
Tomorrow I will walk proudly into my local middle school and honor her memory by not only exercising my right to vote, but being part of history and the fullest embodiment of the empowerment of women.