Why I’m Weary

I have never wished more fervently for the ability to disconnect, to not feel, to not care.

This week has been exhausting, and it’s only Wednesday.

I’m trying to stay informed, but there just seems to be too much. I’m trying to perform well at my job, but I’m distracted and tired and the grading keeps piling up. I’m trying to take care of myself, but I don’t really know how because nothing I’ve tried seems to allow me to rest.

I see other people continuing on with their lives, saying things like “I’m not really into politics,” and I wonder what it must be like to be able to ignore the things that are happening around us. I don’t mean this to sound like judgement; if I’m honest, I’m jealous of that ability. I’ve always been someone who cares “too much,” if there is such a thing.

But when I read about yet another thing the President has done, or about another bill that’s been introduced, or another call to action that I should be a part of, it’s not just political; it’s personal.

I have friends with pre-existing conditions who are afraid they won’t be able to afford their medication, which puts their jobs and even lives at risk. I have friends whose marriages and parental rights are at risk. I have students – bright, passionate, amazing students who were brought to this country as children – who are at risk of losing their DACA status and being deported. I have friends who work to prevent violence against women and help women who have already been victims whose funding is at risk of being cut.

I look at the water protectors at Standing Rock and I know that the constant, repeated violations of their rights going back centuries is personal to them. I look at Muslims and other religious minorities and I know that immigration limits and rhetoric that fosters suspicion and fear is personal to them. I look at women and I know that a system that they feel seeks to control them, but does not punish rapists is personal to them. I look at the black community and I know that discussion of “empowering law enforcement” and a “law and order administration” is personal to them. I look at black children in the Shelby County Juvenile Court system and I know that the harsher treatment they receive is personal to them. I look at families who aren’t fortunate enough to be at my school and I know that lack of quality education options, even if they had a voucher, is personal to them.

I don’t know how to ignore any of this. I don’t know how to stop posting about it, to stop talking about it. I don’t know how to stop checking the news to see what else has happened since the last time I looked. I don’t know how to stop worrying about all the issues I’m missing because they’re not on my radar. I’m not at nearly as great a risk as others, and I don’t know how I’m going to make it through the next four years.

I don’t know how to bring this burden to Jesus when so much of the church community doesn’t think I should be feeling burdened at all.

I don’t want to be ruled by fear. I want to have hope, I want to look for solutions, I want to build bridges. I want to be able to rest when I need to and fight when I need to. I want to not be so tired and upset.

I just really don’t know how to make my bleeding heart stop bleeding.

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  • A collection of ramblings and musings on Jesus, life, education, family, and anything else that pops into my head.

    Twitter: @rachel_heather
    Email: raltsman@gmail.com
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