Where do I even begin? We’re starting the eighth day of this new year, and while I was diligently aware of the fact that the changing of the calendar date wouldn’t equate to some sort of magic… I still feel utterly stunned by all we’ve experienced in this first week of 2021.
Like many of you, I’m sure, I rang in the new year in the quietest way. We wore pajamas, watched the ball drop, drank champagne, and played Siblings or Dating (have y’all heard of it? You’re welcome, and I’m sorry.) It was sort of lovely and one of my most favorite New Years’ holidays to date. I think in my thirties I’m just leaning into the fact that the over-the-top fancy dresses and big knock-down parties aren’t really for me. (But.. ask me again after this extended season of pandemic life.)
Since then, of course, we’ve had the overwhelmingly joyful experience of witnessing Georgia turn blue (and elect their first Jewish Senator, and first Black Senator… F**K YEAH!). AND, we’ve had the unfortunate horror of witnessing a white nationalist terror attack on the US Capitol, instigated by a sitting president who’s been inciting violence against Black, Jewish, Brown, and BIPOC people for years. We reached a predictable but still stunning climax after all these years of anxiety and horror.
Here at APW, we were all deep in our third day back in the office after our holiday break. We were head down, focused, making lists, and planning meetings. Suddenly, Meg pinged us all on Slack and said “Guys if your news isn’t on turn it on… they breached the capitol.” That was basically it for work for the day, as we all sat slack-jawed in front of our TVs and computer screens, along with the rest of the world, frantically watching one of the most horrific displays of domestic terror and white supremacy, as the US capitol was under siege for the first time since 1814.
Anyway… you all know the story. You all have seen 45’s Twitter feed (which was locked for hours, but he’s back and letting everyone know like an angry 3rd grader that he ‘won’t be attending the inauguration’), you know that the Biden/Harris presidency was confirmed at 3 am on Thursday morning (thank goodness), and that articles of impeachment are being presented for the second time against this president (as they should be). And in the end, I just hope that you are, like I am, clinging to the bits of good and strings of hope. Because one way or the other, we will have a new president in just 12 days, we have more womxn (and womxn of color) serving on Congress than ever before, and while the struggle isn’t over, we are making progress and it will get better.
So, friends. Deep breaths. Turn off the news, if you need to. Take a nap, if you’d like to. Take care of yourself. Stay safe. Wear your mask. This is your Happy Hour.