Yesterday started with a failed meringue.
I was trying to channel all my stress and energies over a baked Alaska birthday cake for my hubs, above my capabilities. I drove an hour to get the best vanilla beans I could, made ice cream from scratch, made a perfect raspberry coulis, baked a fluffy lemon chiffon, assembled the baked Alaska cake quite satisfyingly and the meringue refuses to brown. I scraped it off, put cake in freezer and thought I would give it a second try last minute after dinner. It was my kind tolerant husband’s birthday afterall, made plans a month ahead to flawlessly work in voting at 6pm after a full 10+ hr work day.
I didn’t even know what precinct I belonged, have never voted in this state. It was a lovely 30min wait in line, civil friendly small talks with fellow voters about the weather, our withering tomato plants, the homemade cake that is not exactly working out, cute very excited but super well behaving children offering to share last swatches of Halloween candies tagging along their folks, perfectly aware we are quite squarely split in povs, the battleground middle America state we are in.
It was a half moon, sky was clear, air crisp under the light glow of dusk, there was a tiny field of cosmos daisies and my delulu mind jumped to last scene of MDBC and almost made my hubs took a selfie of us holding hands. He refused of course, we had better hurry, last hr or so to vote. Yes.
The grandpa volunteer who looked up my precinct for me, walked across the elementary school indoor court we were voting, just to make sure I was in line in my correct precinct, so my ballot will be counted in the right machine without glitch. That was sweet and I smiled my loveliest and hugged him a thank you.
We nodded goodbyes to all our fellow voters we spent the half hour pleasantly with, thanked all the volunteers with smiles and stepped out with our ‘I voted!’ stickers in hand. I still insisted on a selfie with the MDBCflowers and my hubs let me, but by then the night had settled in, clouds blocked all moonlight and it started drizzling. I could walk by tomorrow for my morning jog, I thought.
We made it to restaurant exactly at our reservation. Had a perfect dinner, and was home turning everything on as I heard ‘It is a very close race’ taking off my heels.
Literally I made my own sound effect as my shoe drop, My heart sank in shock. What the fresh hell?! I never thought this was even a possibility. I thought the night would be bumped if HRC did not win by a landslide… but it was Waterloo, yes there is a Canadian town drivable distance of such name I recently passed by.
Great that serendipity of imperfection kicks in I still had a failed cake I could focus on, it could not be, night is long, there is the 11th hour. Still, the meringue refused to brown.
I blocked out last night. I didn’t sleep till some time near dawn. I wasn’t awake either, shellshocked, very dazed and confused and furious and extremely sad. I felt like an emotional ragdoll being punched and assaulted on my every shred of humanity glued to my social media, where I have coworkers, boss, relatives, church friends neighbors cheering for their candidate not mine. I felt violently physically unwell, I did have acid regurgitated. I did something very irrational perhaps, irresponsible for sure but the only thing constructive and emailed a sick leave to my boss as he expressed his elation on fb.
I need some time just to harden my shell before I can face this world and the people I have to share space with, just a day i am literally sick and weary to fake civility greeting neighbor a good one patting his dog next to his T+P sign on his lawn. Because this was one of those days I had tears falling out of my sockets whenever I wanted to shut them, preserving them from this horror, this horror that would not end all, yet would not be the end of hell yet to be witnessed, even if we will all, mostly be ok henceforth, it is not the same world we could pretend. After today, I would still be expected, as a level headed minority grown woman to be able to rein in tears constantly beyond my control, and the F!Us I would love to just lash out, working with otherwise normal sweet appearing fellowcitizens/voters who voted for a racist, a bigot, a misogynist, a rapist, an unqualified to be the shitstain he is, let alone some ‘the best our nation deserves’ his words, and unifying… what exactly… shits?! I had never feel this fear, I turned down a college gf dragging me out of bed, out of my frontdoor just to commiserate over coffee ‘let us not talk one fking thing and just let yourself enjoy the constant of my beautiful face, company, caffeine and croissants or your strange obsession of savory wheat crepe w lox’. So tempting, but I could not control this rage in me, this ugly beast in me that I know would judge every passerby today with a cheery normal disposition minding their own business on a ridiculously fine breathtakingly awesome fall day in a battleground, where women and minorities lost a gallant battle just to fight for basic rights and decency deemed insignificant by half of the normal people roaming the land. I might randomly hit people and things. I am giving myself a day, just to revamp that pokerface, mind set on inserting an edge to it comes Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year when i have to eat and catch up, bond with relatives and friends of decades I must face now who have earned themselves labels of flagrant racist and sexist which they might still be ignorant about the offense as minorities and more shattering… as women.
A 70sth neighbor of such finest coolest badass make-up, spends every morning smoking like a chimney, sipping her hot teas in front lawn in her perfect bathrobe and curlers even if it was some brutal -15 snow day, my pick-me-up braving morning jogs whining about everything, dropped me wine and muffins at porch without knocking. My husband was worried, he has never seen me this distraught over some election and asked her to check on me. I felt all the ugliness of humanity is now legitimized, normalized and I fear as victims we all are, even the manipulated bigots, large or small, we are expected to tirelessly put up a front this is ok. I have never been as terrified for my soul surviving the daily grind. This is my new reality, let me have a day to whine and baby myself. But some sweetest human kindness, a sip of wine directly soothing my knots there is still perfect good in humans especially how classy womanhood could be, a very dignified concession speech by HRC, one unbelievably strong woman flaws and all, moves me to applause and tears. It saves my sanity.
I walked by that tiny field of cosmos lilies, they didn’t survive the freezing downpours last night… and it wasn’t close to such dreaminess with hope and disillusionment inserted. It was a chilly night, a sun rises I refused to wake up, but my tough little plant have braved a few below freezing nights now, still miraculously blooming one bright flower the afternoon after.