Last night I posted, what I thought to be a low key, respectful nod in support of my presidential pick on Instagram and lost over 200 followers within a matter of two hours. A number I'm sure at this point is still dropping. A fact I can't help but laugh about. Reminded of just how easy it is to alienate / irritate people by simply voicing the rare "Political" fodder - right or left, social media customs tells us it's the ultimate turn off.
So I sat watching my numbers drop and my feed unravel, spewing heated comments that quickly rolled off track and became less about my enthusiasm for Hillary and more a bitter debate racking through the issue of pro life vs pro choice. I didn't expect it, honestly, I thought I could get away with posting a single sentimental photo of the women who's got my vote - stating plainly that while I am NOT for everything she stands for and do keep qualms with certain aspects of the Clintons, I found the choice very easy considering our alternative. A big business bully with an ego so reckless it's destined for disaster given the chance for inflated power. And yet I felt pressured to keep up with the conversation (in real time, even) as it unfolded. Not because I felt inclined to foster a platform for these particular sentiments, but because I think it's important for people to see that no matter how passionate we are on these topics we can still manage to talk big life issues and find a civility in our words and even support in the face of opposition.
I don't think it always has to be an end all divider between us - I wish it didn't. We all need to work on our tendency to answer back with a bite, offering hate and contempt where our ears should be.
In spite of the controversy these types of posts entail, I never regret sharing them. Mike always warns me to stay out of this stuff during such intense times but I whole heartedly disagree. I follow and engage and respect those I feel are informed and affected by these same things. Regardless of party ties I like hearing from varying voices on big topics as a break from the safe and mundane things we share daily. When the election is over, win or loose, we're all still in it together. Soon enough we'll go back to the breakfast photos and the sunlit selfies and the babies bathing in sinks and be surface level friendly again like we've grown so good at, even in the midst of tides turning.
Today though I remain unapologetically enthused. Hopeful and optimistic. I've always loved election day and today, a few days before my next birthday I was so proud to wake up and vote. I drove through the coffee line before school, and into the parking lot of our community clubhouse and cast my ballot for the women I watched late night as a kid dance with her husband to FleetWood Mac when he won the presidency two decades ago. And I'm looking forward tonight, to this next era, to seeing a new chapter unfold no matter the flack, the unfollows and insults it entails.
Souls to the poles.
Best wishes to us all.