This writer has chosen to remain anonymous.
The sun is still in hiding, perhaps it is still in prayer. Enveloped in the bending melodies of the rolling mountains, it is smug with hope, with the rhythm of dawn. My body begs for rest, for the safe ignorance of unconsciousness. My mind has not stopped. The night has soared by. I hope this night soars by. Thoughts weave through the valleys of my mind, as the honey sun glides into view and drips into my window. I roll over to check the time and there is a text from my father waiting on my phone.
“Growing up we always told you how excited we were for you to be the second female president.
Now it looks like you’ll have to be the first.
Do not despair, my dear. Keep fighting.”
I begin to cry. I then realize that I was already crying.
Today I am educated in hate. I am a reluctant student. I write a list, or try to, in which I assert the facets of this heartbreak. (Dangerous word for a woman to use there, perhaps I should “question” instead, maybe “suggest?”) I write of the tragedies that this decision has shoved into my body, the doctrines that America begs me to praise.
Today, America tells me that women are such an evil that it is better to have a man who abuses them than a woman herself.
Today, America tells me that a man who dehumanizes and objectifies my body is worth the most honored position in this country.
Today, America tells me that I could dedicate my entire life to a cause, years of expertise and experience, but my shortcomings and mistakes will be screamed while my victories are whispered.
Today, America tells me that I should honor a man who has support from the Klu Klux Klan and an association of Neo-Nazis.
Today, America asks me to celebrate a man whose rhetoric is directly linked with an 89% increase in hate crimes towards Muslims.
Today, America tells me that I do not have the right to my body, that it is not my property.
Today, America holds me against the earth and gropes me. America shoves my head into the ground until there is enough dirt in my mouth that I struggle to breathe.
I climb out of my bed and I wrap my body in my mother’s favorite sweater. I sit on the floor and I drink last night’s cold tea and I am overwhelmed by the hate and the beauty that drifts through my window with every stretching beam of sun.
It is now 6:43 AM and my first class begins at 9:25.
In biology, I must excuse myself.
At assembly, a male classmate assures me that everything will be okay. I disagree, but do not feel comfortable voicing my opinion.
“Did you see his victory speech last night. In all honesty, I’m optimistic. I saw a changed man. He seemed sincere and he spoke about racial inequality and stuff”
Mr. Trump will not be a changed man until he openly apologizes for the violence he has incited. Or the sexual assault experiences he has attempted to make illegitimate. Or the millions of people whose oppression he has sponsored.
A demagogue given legitimacy to a group of America that does not deserve legitimacy. I understand there are facets to their ignorance and their prejudice. I understand this is a population of America that feels largely disenfranchised by the current political landscape. I understand that this America feels cheated from the American Dream. I understand that this America feels shamed for their inability to rise to the top.
But I also recognize this is not an excuse for bigotry.
I am frustrated about the articles that suggest the immense liberal arrogance that contributed to our surprise that so much of this American community supports a Trump presidency. To me this was faith and hope, not arrogance.
After school, I ride and it seems the horse feels that he too is being held down. We run together.
During study hall, I go to Mr. Sullivan’s house and we discuss.
My mind oscillates between entire heartbreak and defeat and determination. I am analyzing but getting lost in the layers and every 20 minutes I have to untangle myself from the knots of rhetoric and ideology that feel as if they’ll strangle me. My mind no longer feels my own, it is a fleeting chimerical presence that I cannot manage to slow down.
I am sick of analysis and I am sick of discussion. I hate that we can analyze this and intellectualize it like it’s a disease. Perhaps it is a disease. Yes, logic is a tool, growth comes from understanding.
But I am not yet ready to grow.
The feeling I have today is too familiar.
I am familiar with being held against the ground. And having my head pushed into the dirt. And being terrified.
And then getting up and being ashamed and moving on. I am familiar with having to clean the dirt out of my nails and brushing it from my scalp, though I did not put it there. I often try too quickly to grow and forget that first I am hurt.
Part of me wants to honor the 7-year-old girl I have inside of me and take a nap and cry, because she never got to do that. But I am guilty for being upset. I am still in a position of immense privilege. I will not lose much during this dawning era.
Around 10pm my brothers send me text messages apologizing, they say that they understand how they can’t understand how frustrating this is a woman.
My favorite acting teacher emails me: “May the arts be your solace, your unity, and your voice.”
My friend sends me a recording of the national anthem in b flat minor.
I am surrounded by love and I know the importance of solidarity.
I message friends that I love them.
I feel dramatic for letting this hurt me so much.
And I know it is now time to love. To scream Love, and then scream it louder.
I know I know I know. But today I feel, and this is what I cannot help.
I am proud to be a woman
I am proud to be queer
I am proud to be mentally ill
I am proud to be a sexual assault survivor.
But as hard as I fight, today I am ashamed that I exist.
It is 1:46 AM and I am heartbroken.