On my understanding of BLM

I don’t even know where to begin. I went to a lot of sites and weeded through a lot of stuff to learn about claims against Black Lives Matter. 

Not to call anyone out – but this was posted on my Facebook page last night in response to my last blog yesterday “On Facts vs Beliefs”, which by the way had nothing to to with BLM.

“have you actually visited their website? Do you know they admit that their goal is to eliminate the nuclear family? Do you think it’s racist & presumptuous that they admittedly and blatantly target affluent neighborhoods? As if they assume black people cant live there & also that all white people are racist. Do you know how much money they made last year? Do you know what they do with the money they receive? Do you think it’s a promotion of violence when their flyers portray the “fist of black power” with flames & fire in the background? Do you know that one of their leaders said that looting is fine because we as a nation owe black people because of years of slavery? Do you realize that they automatically hate and harass black people who do not support their cause or agree with them? These are the makings of a CULT. Can you recognize how the racial divide in this country has increased since the inception of BLM?”

Below is what I pulled out after scouring the site for the mission and what they claim to be about. I don’t see anything about anti-nuclear family unless you want to see it that way. https://blacklivesmatter.com/

·       We are expansive. We are a collective of liberators who believe in an inclusive and spacious movement. We also believe that in order to win and bring as many people with us along the way, we must move beyond the narrow nationalism that is all too prevalent in Black communities. We must ensure we are building a movement that brings all of us to the front.

·       We affirm the lives of Black queer and trans folks, disabled folks, undocumented folks, folks with records, women, and all Black lives along the gender spectrum. Our network centers those who have been marginalized within Black liberation movements.

·       We are working for a world where Black lives are no longer systematically targeted for demise.

·       We affirm our humanity, our contributions to this society, and our resilience in the face of deadly oppression.

·       The call for Black lives to matter is a rallying cry for ALL Black lives striving for liberation.

·       The Black Lives Matter Global Network is as powerful as it is because of our membership, our partners, our supporters, our staff, and you. Our continued commitment to liberation for all Black people means we are continuing the work of our ancestors and fighting for our collective freedom because it is our duty.

·       Every day, we recommit to healing ourselves and each other, and to co-creating alongside comrades, allies, and family a culture where each person feels seen, heard, and supported.

·       We acknowledge, respect, and celebrate differences and commonalities.

·       We work vigorously for freedom and justice for Black people and, by extension, all people.

·       We intentionally build and nurture a beloved community that is bonded together through a beautiful struggle that is restorative, not depleting.

·       We are unapologetically Black in our positioning. In affirming that Black Lives Matter, we need not qualify our position. To love and desire freedom and justice for ourselves is a prerequisite for wanting the same for others.

·       We see ourselves as part of the global Black family, and we are aware of the different ways we are impacted or privileged as Black people who exist in different parts of the world.

·       We are guided by the fact that all Black lives matter, regardless of actual or perceived sexual identity, gender identity, gender expression, economic status, ability, disability, religious beliefs or disbeliefs, immigration status, or location.

·       We make space for transgender brothers and sisters to participate and lead.

·       We are self-reflexive and do the work required to dismantle cisgender privilege and uplift Black trans folk, especially Black trans women who continue to be disproportionately impacted by trans-antagonistic violence.

·       We build a space that affirms Black women and is free from sexism, misogyny, and environments in which men are centered.

·       We practice empathy. We engage comrades with the intent to learn about and connect with their contexts.

·       We make our spaces family-friendly and enable parents to fully participate with their children. We dismantle the patriarchal practice that requires mothers to work “double shifts” so that they can mother in private even as they participate in public justice work.

·       We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and “villages” that collectively care for one another, especially our children, to the degree that mothers, parents, and children are comfortable.

For me from reading their other bullet points above and below, and all throughout their site, I take that as:

§  Women and other traditionally silenced people can be on their own and not need to be in an abusive relationship to survive or raise a child because we support one another.

§  Other people will help to raise and watch your child in this ideal community so you can participate in social justice work. 

§  Anyone on the LGBT spectrum shouldn’t feel they need to prescribe to a traditional role or risk not getting the support from the community they need to thrive and raise a child. 

·       We foster a queer‐affirming network. When we gather, we do so with the intention of freeing ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking, or rather, the belief that all in the world are heterosexual (unless s/he or they disclose otherwise).

·       We cultivate an intergenerational and communal network free from ageism. We believe that all people, regardless of age, show up with the capacity to lead and learn.

·       We embody and practice justice, liberation, and peace in our engagements with one another.



I also learned a lot of people are upset about the Now we Transform slogan (below)  

I actually see as a powerful slogan. Transformation is what makes societies better. I see this and the nuclear family line almost like looking at one of the optical illusion pictures. Such as this one below of the old lady and young lady. Most people really do only see one thing until someone asks them to see the other side. Only then can you realize there is another way to look at it, and once you see it, it’s difficult to ‘unsee’ it.  I would have never looked at that Slogan or the line about the nuclear family as something bad. Pulled out on its own it looks one way. But in context it is something really supportive and inclusive of all people – IMHO.

Lastly the original 3 female founders who created the name did begin the movement over police brutality, but it was to take a stand about injustice against blacks in general- pointing to police brutality as one of the major symptoms. The founders have been associated with Marxism but if you read about why & how, it’s meant for a purpose of equality and not that they are pushing for communism. What I have understood it to mean from watching a few videos is that they are educated about another way to fund problematic social issues. They aren’t trying to make American socialist or communist.

This has lead to the defund the police portion that I think most people are associating with currently (although I could be wrong). I’ve said in other posts on other people’s pages many times that I don’t know anyone who thinks this is a good idea, BUT what I read today is that BLM and the police defunding movement are only talking about 5% of the money that goes to the police. 

Before drumming up all the reasons this won’t work and how much more they need – I’d like to bring up the Post Office. 

I actually feel the post office could do with a 5% cut. I am tempted to drive to my local post office and take a picture of the obvious and complete waste you see before even walking through the door, but the town is out of power and trees and lines are down everywhere at the moment. My favorite one to complain about are the two GIANT blue boxes that have a pick up FOUR times a day, alongside another giant box that does something slightly different. Two might do fine to help with sorting issues, but 3 and 2 for an old purpose of mail drop off that no one really uses anymore? So, we send someone out 4 times a day to pick this up? That seems a waste and who knows what I will find after walking behind the counter. Don’t even get me started about the waste of junk and 3rd class mail. All the sorting, delivering, recycling, trees burning…. It should be considered a sin (again IMHO). A lot of what I’ve done at work for years is Systems Redesign by getting behind the scenes and looking at the way places work to make recommendations for efficiencies without cutting out the main mission. SO many of our business and enterprise systems are full waste that discard precious time and money without even knowing it. When you are in the system it can be difficult to to see. But if someone points it out there is often no good answer anymore for why a lot of practices and things people do in the work day are done. After the initial huffing and puffing they nearly almost all agree that was is pointed out as waste is indeed waste.

For the government particularly, I think it’s a crime to have waste because it is directly tied to taxpayer dollars, and those really should be used carefully to best fund public services. I am no expert on the police, but I do know from minimal experience that there is a lot of paperwork that almost everyone believes police could do without. A lot of time wasted if a little more was spent on updated technology. A lot of people in jail or clogging up court systems and/or paper trails for petty crimes like marijuana or drunken conduct. And training and response to mental issues (I have personal experience in this one) where if we reallocated the money to public services that work alongside the police, someone like a social worker or trained mental health expert may be a better fit.  

It’s a different way of looking at it. It is nothing like the memes I myself have joked about with no one coming when a crime is happening because we defunded the police. This is the best article I could find (below) which describes what this 5%. cut would be. Unfortunately “defund” is a government term that doesn’t sound like it is (most government terms do not sound like what they are). In the same way white privilege doesn’t sound like what it is either. The terms incite people without even knowing what is behind it. And who has time to sit and research every last term?

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/06/12/black-lives-matter-defund-police-is-country-ready/%3foutputType=amp

It makes me a bit sad and a bit angry that the media isn’t more straight up fact based and descriptive of all sides so people can make a rational, well informed decision. All we hear are incredulous claims that are far left or right.

Most people do not have the luxury of doing all this digging that I fortunately had the time to do this morning. The public looks to the media for their news and information. It’s all SO slanted. There is no one in the middle trying to get both sides to understand each other. 

I think we all want the same thing and assume the worst about others because we hear so much oppositional and radical information flying around. We are more isolated than ever due to social media and now COVID. Not looking a person in the eyes and reading things from one vantage point is a perfect combination of becoming more isolated to a certain set of beliefs and way of perceiving things. 

If someone were in the middle bringing us together, perhaps we wouldn’t be having these issues. It has to start with the media and leadership. We cannot be divided. If necessary when I have time and feel motivated, I’ll spend the rest of my days using the tools I know how in order to have people understand one another. I have NO agenda except for people to be able to work together toward common goals with collaborative solutions for the greater good.

On Facts vs Beliefs

As a current data analyst, and a data analyst as a major role in most of the professional positions I have held in the past 13 years; I am quite accustomed to people questioning data. 

Most of the time compiled data is unquestionably passed along and used for managerial decision making. Sometimes after someone looks at it, new parameters need to be put in because either more information is needed or there was a miscommunication about what was wanted. And on occasion I may have made an error in inputs or pivoted an incorrect field. It happens. To avoid a circumstance of error, my co-workers and I usually do a second review of one another’s work to ensure that we pulled and compiled an analysis correctly. 

Once it’s sent out, we often answer questions about parameters, assumptions, categories, etc. No one has ever accused us of being biased. If something seems wrong or the requestor doesn’t like what the data shows, there are other people who can run the same thing. When the same results are shown over and over by different groups whether or not it’s within my local organization or around the country – it ends up being facts that don’t have a “belief” on whether or not one agrees with them. 

On some rare occasion a manager or physician will find one or two lone people who will run data to support what they need. Or they unknowingly asked someone who doesn’t do it often enough to know what to put in, and they just happen to get results that support a new position, that supports a clinic is more full than it really is, or some other result the individual wishes to be true. 

However, there are measures in place to ensure that when other results overwhelmingly outweigh a small number of results; what the vast majority has found is what is used. This is also true in clinical research which I’m also very familiar for obtaining data for as a side job. 

Peer review is a common practice in professional papers, journals, and research. In my first job at the VA before any data analysis, the physician I worked for was a peer reviewer for several medical journals in her field around the world. The process is blind – meaning, you have no idea who wrote the paper or pulled the data in the paper. And the writer has no idea who reviewed it. The reviewer makes suggestions to the editor and writer about whether or not the paper has validity, if more information is needed, etc. It’s a brilliant process that has worked for decades and lead to serious advances in all areas of life. 

That is what I have found disturbing about COVID. COVID isn’t the first thing that is indisputable but ends up becoming a “belief”. But it does seem now like things questioned in the past are now forums for long angry discussions, some become political points, and others are ripping apart family and friends. I really don’t understand this. 

The facts and data shows- 

  • COVID isn’t made up
  • COVID numbers aren’t made up
  • Climate Change is a real thing
  • Racism is real
  • Sexism is real 

At some point – where the bell curve flattens (around 98% or so; or arguably even before) it’s time to believe the majority. When something is new – such as the world is flat, I really understand that it can be hard to believe. But when 98% of the studies show the world is indeed round, it’s kind of time to flip the flat earth viewpoint. 

No actual data or studies show most of the poo that is tossed around about political candidates or parties. Some clown (or brilliant jokester) either in the US or a foreign country is probably laughing in their garage about Americans eating up whatever nonsense they drummed up hook, line and sinker. These are rinky dink memes and articles and unvalidated data. Even articles and opinion columns in well respected news media are not backed by any studies or data. We would hope they stay neutral (but they clearly don’t); so our only real hope for good information is from the professionals who do this for a living. 

You can have an opinion, but when it conflicts with overwhelming data – I have to side with the person who posted this on social media. 

Beliefs are not facts. And that is a fact. 

Namaste 

On Why This $600 Unemployment Check is so Important

I want to start by saying that there are a LOT of lazy people in this world that want something for nothing. There are a lot of people who as my step-brother put it are “cry babies”. Americans around the world are sort of known for being cry babies. At the moment our country is a the butt of so many jokes – and for good reason.

 

Corona and politics aside – this $600 is an important issue that shouldn’t be taken lightly.

 

When so many Americans lost their job and the $600 weekly check (CARES) became a thing – there were two reactions – both that started with What!! $600?

  1. For some – even dual income families that sentence ended with “How can we possibly afford to live on that”
  2. For others the sentence ended with “Wow, that is more than I was making, now I can afford to live!”

 

The deadline for the original agreement for this check is July 31 (today).

 

What is really on the table here is a living wage.

 

I grew up poor. Welfare poor. I watched my parents literally break their backs. Both of them actually had bad backs from manual, constant labor. We didn’t have health insurance. I watched them fight, struggle and cry opening or behind closed doors about finding work and providing food for us 3 kids. No time or motivation to tend to our needs, ask about our day or homework. Forget college or anything. We couldn’t even get to the doctor when we were sick.

 

I found a way out with the military and subsequently putting myself through school. Once I left – I felt like I made it in life. I had a job that paid the bills and healthcare in case I or then later my children became sick. A bonus to that was time off in case I got sick! And just for pure joy  – vacation time. Wow! I didn’t want for a thing more. I felt secure.

 

But now I need to question why “making it” for me meant just to live with basics – food/shelter/clothing. I believe in the value of hard work. It not only contributes to a better society – but it feels so good to be able to do something yourself. Everyone should contribute.

 

But there is a point when you lose hope. You lose hope when no matter what you, do you cannot afford food/shelter/clothing for yourself and/or your family. There is no amount of hard work that can get the a LOT of people out of a bad situation. There are so many places around the world yes – but even in the United States where there are zero opportunities for upward mobility. Period.

 

When you lose hope, you lose motivation. Motivation works when there is a gain from doing something that you put effort into. If you can’t make a living wage – there is no motivation.

 

I felt secure at the moment I had a livable wage and health insurance. When you don’t feel secure and motivated, you don’t want to work – you want to riot because it doesn’t seem fair that some people have it and you don’t.

 

Again – it’s not the $600 on the table here, it’s the living wage.

 

We should be fighting for a living wage. Other countries have figured it out. Why can’t we?

 

This isn’t a great America for a lot of people. My own family included, up until this very day. The slogan “Make America Great Again” gave people hope. But it can never be great when we can’t provide our own citizens with life’s basics that motivate them to get out of bed in the morning.

 

United States inequality has risen to Gilded Age levels….

https://inequality.org/facts/income-inequality/

 

Tell me all you want about a growing GDP, job rates, etc under Presidents So & So’s leadership (insert any president here) – but none of that matters if it’s not being distributed equally.

 

I don’t think the cry babies are the ones who put in 60-80 work weeks in 2 or 3 jobs just to feed their families. The cry babies live amongst the upper class (pretty much all the media shows) and have no idea what it means to struggle or not be secure. They “cry” the moment life just doesn’t meet their unrealistic expectations that had been consistently handed to them.

 

If you want to make America great – we have to ensure each citizen can make enough to live.

 

It’s not a handout, it’s what will motivate the masses to get up out of bed. Lying, cheating and stealing (and now rioting) comes from despair. And despair happens when no matter what you do you know you will not have the security of life’s most basic needs.

 

It’s not the solution – but this fight for the $600 Unemployment check is the start to a better future. It’s a moment to understand and seize.

A decent article explaining a little more about what is on the table right now: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.cnet.com/google-amp/news/extra-600-cares-act-unemployment-benefit-ends-july-31-heres-where-things-stand/ 

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On Cancel Culture & How No one can “Win” right now

Our country is divided. It’s a sad fact, not an opinion. A new phrase has emerged: “Cancel Culture”.

 

I had to look that one up the first time I saw it a few weeks ago. According to Wikipedia it’s a form of Online Shaming and is defined as:

 

The act of canceling, also referred to as cancel culture (a variant on the term “callout culture“), is a form of boycott in which an individual (usually a celebrity) who has acted or spoken in a questionable or controversial manner is boycotted.

 

I am going to begin by stating I do not believe in cancel culture. I believe in understanding. In healthy debate. In trying to see where the other party is coming from. I cannot accept that people/groups/etc simply have different opinions, and end it there, when they are at odds, are competing for the same resources, and have to live or work together harmoniously to benefit the greater good.

 

For the majority of my professional life, I taught and practiced the facilitation of teamwork and how to use neutral tools to make collaborative decisions. I find it difficult to believe our nation’s leaders (all parties included) try to undermine one another and don’t use these types practices on the Hill to work amicably for the common good. As a citizen, it is what I expect from elected officials making decisions on policies for We the People.

 

We have a national leader that consistently refers to “Us and Them”, “My people and them”, “Us and the ‘bad’ people”. Cohesion is not possible when the viewpoint is that there is a winner and a loser. At the end of the day it’s likely that we all want the same thing. Food, safety, shelter, clothing, opportunities to grow, and to be understood. If we start from the perspective of a great divide, no one will actually be understood, and the food/shelter/clothing/opportunities will only go to the winner.

 

When all parties do not benefit– no one benefits. Hatred, animosity, and the idea of being at war with one another continues.

 

It doesn’t have to be this way.

 

Cancel culture does not provide the party who is being “cancelled” a chance to explain. Even if they are by the majority’s belief completely wrong, that person or those who quietly side with him/her will never have the opportunity to understand why others believe they are wrong. The canceled party(ies) will not feel heard, and we may never have the opportunity to learn why they think as they do – what their own hopes and fears are – and perhaps even have the opportunity to learn something from them.

 

Others will listen to us if we listen to them. The late Steven Covey explains being understood akin to air. When you don’t have it and cannot breath, it is the ONLY thing you can think about. When you have air, you can do other things such as listen. You can’t throw your opinion out there, say it just is and expect anyone to fully respect you. That doesn’t make you a leader, it makes you a bully.

 

Habit #5 of the famous Seven Habits Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood. Those who feel understood will be more likely to listen to another point of view and reciprocate understanding.

 

Until we listen and hear the pain of someone, even if you think they are wrong; no amount or type of explaining on your part will help them want to hear your point. More often than not, when you JUST listen you will quickly understand why someone or some group is doing what they are doing. From there, a facile leader or facilitator can create a common bond based on the ultimate goal both parties are seeking.

 

It takes a more enlightened person to listen first. Someone who has mastered the other 4 habits. The first 3 pertain to gaining control over yourself first.

 

Think Win-Win (Habit #4 actually!). Nobody wins unless everybody wins. That means ALL opinions belong at the table for consideration, no matter how crazy or wrong they may initially seem. You have to master your own demons and fears to be able to believe this and actually work with and listen to people you do not agree with. Cancelling suffocates those you don’t agree with.

 

It is possible to do things a different way. History does not have to repeat itself. Through technology and innovation, we have enough land, food, and resources on the earth for every human to thrive. We do not have to be at war with one other at all – EVER.

 

For dozens of reasons we are on the cusp of change as a human race, so why not join the crusade of knowledge that it is very possibly to live cohesively and for every person to have their basic needs met? Every human has the same right to life and the same right to be heard. We are all the same.

 

We all have that glimmer of light inside of us that, when not repressed, can shine and thrive into the most beautiful expression of itself. Knowing that, what is the point of creating divisions or holding anyone back through cancelling them out?

 

It is hopeful on this side of the fence.

 

That light inside of us… you can see it in others when you let your guard down and look.

 

Namaste

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On Weeds and Pseudo Humans

I love to garden. I spend a lot of time outside puttering around. I find gardening and having my hands in the dirt to be peaceful. I feel connected to the earth. I feel accomplished because I witness the fruits of my labor.

 

I prune lifeless or waterlogged leaves. I deadhead. I water. I cut back things that start encroaching into other areas. And I weed. And I weed. And I weed.

 

Weeds can be tricky. A few years ago I wrote a blog “On Lessons from the Garden”. I wrote about how initially going out in the dirt to garden it can be confusing to determine which life popping up out of the ground is legit, and which are weeds.

 

I’ve thought about this concept a lot through the years. One of the first times I spent significant time weeding and tending to the dirt was in 2002. I was only 26 years old and I had my first condominium with an incredibly small patch of dirt in front of it. I was astounded as to how many things looked like they were bona fide plants, but actually weeds.

 

While removing buckets of rocks and weeds from this tiny garden area in the spring of 2002, I learned that weeds tend to mimic what they are coming up near. At the time I thought about heaven and hell. I contemplated how people might look like good people but really are not. If you don’t remove the weeds from the beautiful place you are trying to create – they may take over and possibly kill the garden. It is not too dissimilar to any battle between good and evil.

 

Over the years I’ve thought about Carl Sagan and his famous lines about how we are made of star stuff. I’ve thought about Yoga and the 5 sheaths of the koshas. I’ve thought about Taoism and balance. I’ve related all of this to the garden and where weeds fit in.

 

Another quote I’ve always thought about in conjunction with weeds is “As above, so below, as within, so without, as the universe, so the soul…” ~Hermes Trismegistus

Not too surprising these days I’m thinking about and often feel confused over the news, the state of the world, what “friends” post on social media, and fellow humans that just don’t seem to get what loving on another really means. Flowers and plant life come in all shapes, colors and sizes. With the right conditions and care, they are able to be all that they came into the world to be.

 

The inherent property of a weed is to mimic what it is near, so it appears similar the product that is alive & well, and attempting to thrive alongside it. Impersonating is often the only way a weed can survive above ground for any length of time unnoticed. If you aren’t paying attention as a caretaker, you will inadvertently allow it to flourish. I often wonder if weeds actually know (not to say they are consciously thinking this) that they are not like the life they are trying to imitate. I do not think they do.

 

Intrinsically, the genetics of a weed is different from that of the flower it is trying to look like. Outside of initial appearance, the weed will eventually grow faster and from an aesthetics point – uglier than the flower. It may eventually stand out but at that point it also may have done some significant damage. Additionally, some weeds do not do any harm and live peacefully alongside the intended botanical it is near.

 

If the laws of nature are in the same in the unseen world where the weeds and humans simply appear from as the material word, (As Above, So Below quote above) who is to say that some humans are not really inherently human? Perhaps some, like weeds do not possess the natural beauty and radiance they were intended to deliver here in the material world above the ground and amongst the others. Perhaps like weeds, they have no idea they do not have the intrinsic properties of those they are trying to mimic.

 

So if weeds come right through the dirt into the world without any prompting, can pseudo humans as well? Like weeds, they likely don’t even know they are not real. Could it possibly be that the case with some people we know and/or in high places making decisions on our behalf?

 

Just some super crazy food for thought ❤

 

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10 Years Later

Love can be messy and unpredictable. Every couple has a story.

 

10 Years Ago 

Friday July 9, 2010

 

It’s a HOT day outside, but inside the building within the air conditioning I was quite cold most of the day. I wore a sweater over my red dress. It’s even hotter inside the car. The car was started a while ago so the air conditioning would cool it down. But without the movement of the car, it’s not cooling down very quickly.

 

I’m not in this car alone. It’s not even my car. I’m not supposed to be in this car. If my husband knew he’d be furious. If the guy in the car’s wife knew – she’d be equally as furious.

 

We just carried out a ton of boxes out to the car full of meeting materials to bring back to our main worksite on Monday after finishing a 3-day long meeting series that my group hosted. On the elevator ride down before exiting the frigid building, he said to me: “When Jack texted me today I told him I took the job. I’m going to announce it to everyone else Monday but I wanted you to know first“.

 

My heart SANK. Took the job? It was my worst fear. Since he hadn’t mentioned it for a few days I thought perhaps it may have been a dead issue. I suspected it, but secretly hoped my efforts could reverse it. If I were able to wave a magic wand I would have had things go back to the way they were before.

 

Also – for a quick moment I had no idea who “Jack” was. But not a microsecond later after the shock that he took the job, my heart started rapidly beating – nearly out of my chest. Jack… Jack my husband? Yes, who else? Jack texted him?

 

“WHAT? Jack texted you and said what???” (me)

 

“He asked if I was going to take the job” (him)

 

With the giant lump forming in my throat it was all I could muster to mutter “Congratulations”.

 

We walked quietly out to the parking lot and to his car to deposit the boxes before he asked if I’d like to come sit with him for a few minutes. Warning bells SCREAMED about what a terrible idea it was, but my heart bled over and instantly won. Without thinking I said yes.

 

Here we are… This could go well or not. I don’t even know which outcome is considered a well and which isn’t. I don’t even know what I hope. I’m confused. My head and heart are in two different places. We are sitting appropriately far apart. These precious minutes alone could be life changing before we have to scat and our absence is noticed. His hand is close to mine. He is in the drivers’s seat and his hand is resting on the center console, as is mine. Neither of us knows what to say.

Unknown

The silence is broken when one of us asks how the other has been. Suddenly a flood gate has opened. We are both expressing all kinds of emotion. Both of us are catching one another up as to how the last 6 weeks have been and what has transpired. How did his brother take the news that he backpedaled? How was his best friend in CA’s wedding? How are his kids and wife? Similar questions come my way. Everyone is fine. The brother was shocked and ticked. His best friend pulled him aside to ask if his heart wants what his head tells him is right, and asked when is he going to do something that makes him happy. I asked how he answered and exclaimed that my heart and head were just in a quandary about whether or not I should even get into the car.

 

The next few minutes are a blur. At some point he tells me he is confused too. Unknown-1At some point his fingers inch over to mine and touch the top of my hand. It’s so hot despite the cool air starting to blow through the car. We start to notice some people we know trickling out of the building and decide to drive to another part of the parking lot.

 

It was only for 6 weeks that we attempted to begin a relationship. And in 6 weeks I was already sick of doing things like this – driving to a different place, needing to hide or duck; or change the conversation when someone else came in the room. And now it’s been 6 weeks since he broke it off and both our spouses sighed their relief and put us both on constant watch. No text, email, social media post or call went unmonitored. The only place they couldn’t monitor was work, and his wife insisted he take a new job – soon. More than anything that was my worst fear. While my husband who was the most non-religious person prayed he took the offered job, I tried to undue his efforts with my own prayers. My husband never texted him before. This was a new level of desperation. I couldn’t help but wonder if he said yes to the new job simply due to the fear of the text.

 

So we pull to a new spot. We confess the feelings and confusion are still there. Now that he will not be working in the previous capacity he did, it does open a new door for us. Heck, if I ever want to see him again I have to continue some kind of relationship. I said something along the lines of what a great meeting we just pulled off because we were a great team. He said the only way we could be a team now would be on the home front. It was the crack in the door that perhaps he was looking for something more.

 

12 weeks ago things were simpler. I was attracted to him of course, but no conversations ever took place where a line was crossed. That line was traversed 12 weeks before. From that point there were a whirlwind of conversations and meet ups before and after work, and on weekends where we confessed how much we liked one another. Some dinners, some stolen romantic moments, and many, many emails. We began confessing how unhappy we were in our marriages and discussing what life together might be like, as difficult as it may be. We became a little less cautious and were caught when his wife came behind him late one night when he messaged me the words “Hi sexy”.

 

That’s all it took. She confronted him. He confessed he was thinking about leaving her. She posted something on one of my social media pages that I didn’t see until early the next morning. I took it down immediately, but not knowing who may have seen it – I confessed the same to my own husband. My pseudo lover broke it off with me after a few days of confusion and now 6 weeks has elapsed. What will become of us?

 

Do we pick up where we left off? Which was basically at ground zero… We hardly knew each other outside of work, which isn’t to say much. He wasn’t even at my job that long and heck – I reported to him!

But the strangest thing happened the moment I met him. It was a cold February day in 2008. I was sitting in my office with my oldest and coziest sweater I drug around everywhere encased around my body. My bare feet were curled under me, heels kicked off under my desk. I had my reading glasses on and my hair was clipped up in a messy bun. My then acting boss Lydia walked in with a man behind her. It was the first time I saw him in my life. And I don’t kid when I say that my world just kind of stopped.

 

It was less than a second, but in that second I felt like my world would fall apart and then all would be better than anything. I saw my then 13-marriage crumbling, tears of joy, tears of pain all around, literally structures of something I couldn’t see falling to pieces.

 

This took a second. It made my heart race and brought a fleeting moment of panic. Lydia had a call and walked away. He walked into my office and asked about my pictures. I snapped out of it my temporary flash of terror and answered. He was a complete stranger. Lydia came back in and apologized for having to walk away for a moment. She then introduced him as the person who was hired to be my new boss. She sang my praises and explained my position to him. They left so Lydia could take him around to meet others, and I went back to work with an uneasy feeling in the pit of my stomach.

 

He didn’t start work until September that year, but every time I even heard his name, I had a similar feeling of when I met him that one time. I experienced a brief moment of panic followed by a feeling of peace.

 

 

10 Years Later

Friday, July 10, 2020

 

More than 12 years later and now 10 years since that day in the car I realize that something in the universe showed me in lapsed time what my future would be.

 

Tonight I sit and knit, getting up occasionally to dance to some 80’s music alone or with the dog while Daren cooks us dinner. Every once in a while I feel like I need to pinch myself. Tonight was one of those nights. I told him so. He has those moments too and tells me when they happen. I happened to realize what day it is. I remember it because July 9 is one of my brother’s birthdays. I remember the day in the car well.

 

That day in the car was a turning point. We made the conscious decision to give “us” a shot. Both of our marriages were already over for completely different reasons than the “us” factor and from what each of the respective breakdowns were. Daren made the announcement at work that Monday that he was leaving. There wasn’t a person who wasn’t shocked. I played along with a very broken and very scared heart.

 

My head and heart were in such conflict. I followed my heart. Not everyone would agree with our decision. It’s not a story we enjoy sharing, but it is OUR story. And during the ‘pinch me’ moments we have on evenings like this I am confident that I would do it over again and again.

 

All relationships have their own story. Ours wasn’t easy, but nothing in life that is worth it is. Most decisions are difficult ones. The trick is to make them and know you did the best you could at the time.

 

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On Where to Go from Here

Seriously….

 

White men get it the least from the possible perspective of any kind of human that roams this planet.

 

Anyone who knows me or has been following my blogs knows that 2012 was a really transformational year for me. I won’t post my long story yet again, but a Franklin Covey class about the Steven Covey book “ 7 Habits” really transformed my thinking. I was just in a place in my life where it hit me at the perfect time. Then 4 years later I started Yoga Teacher training, and again I was hit with change. Change that this time I had to actually take steps to make. It caused anxiety to a point where I got a reasonable accommodation at work and was able to transform my whole life for the better. I couldn’t support the world as I knew it even unintentionally for a second longer.

 

Then in 2017 I took the CT state 50-hour mandated reporter training required to teach yoga at domestic violence shelters. Another training that rocked my world. My two greatest learning points were about white privilege and that I had PTSD.

 

I write this now because I’m not stupid. I have an MBA, but I didn’t know a thing about white privilege or that I had PTSD and was regularly triggered. How could I? It’s the same way a white man doesn’t understand and wouldn’t even comprehend until a woman told him about walking down the street with a key under the index finger – you know, just in case. Or how it feels when you are just going about your business and some man tells you to smile. Smile??? WTF. First of all, who walks around smiling? And secondly there is no good response to that. If I smile I am encouraging this stranger. If I don’t the stranger seems to just judge me as “Who does this bitch think she is?”

 

Most men that hear this are not those who tell women to smile and don’t get it. But I don’t know a woman who hasn’t heard that. Or “You look really nice today” (from someone you’ve never met). This is harassment because no matter what I do or say, I don’t feel comfortable – so how about um… you don’t say anything? I’m not going to feel better about myself because someone I don’t know tells me I look nice or to smile.

 

And why do I write this?

 

Because our world is dominated by white men for some reason. Most boss’ I have were white heterosexual men. Though I’ve had male boss’ that are not heterosexual or disabled, and they still might not get this blog. Most of the things I’ve had to put up with came from the perspective of a white man’s world. It’s not the norm and no one should put up with the insane perspective of “normal” any longer.

 

Perhaps I thought some things were normal. I grew up as the only female child in an immigrant Italian American household. Women were subpar. I didn’t believe it, but I was taught by my mother that it’s something women just put up with.

 

In a similar (thought NOOOOOooo comparison) way black people are taught about what is “normal” to put up with.

 

As I’m becoming older and more educated, I’m realizing how NOT normal it all is. How ‘un’ OK this is. It’s not OK that anyone male, female, black, white, red, yellow, gay, trans – whatever is not equal and should ‘put up with’ ANYTHING other than 100% respect for being a living being and having the privilege of life on earth with everyone else.

 

In the same way at 41 years old I suddenly learned and began to comprehend the term white privilege – it’s time for men, any non-minority and even women who don’t think for themselves to understand what they take for granted and are either purposefully or inadvertently supporting. I didn’t know. I also didn’t know how much sexual assault was prevalent until this training either. I took this in May 2017 when the budgets were just getting cut for such things and learned that they were using leftover funds for public awareness campaigns about these two things. #Me Too and the term white privilege came into play right around that time. It was the social justice funding that raised awareness and it needs to keep going. We need as a society to SUPPORT and not mock these things.

 

That is what these protests are trying to teach. I don’t support looting and shooting or any of that – but I CAN understand being FED the “EFF” up with so few understanding how poorly you’ve been treated. It’s not OK, but hate and wrong do not justify hate and wrong. Though – AGAIN, being a child abuse/domestic violence survivor – I understand (I really really really do) that at times the mind snaps and you are taken to a place where the only thing your body is doing is trying to survive something that may not even be real at the moment. I’ve been there. I’ve snapped… . I’ve dealt with the horrible consequences of it. But if the public is even more aware of how one could snap from being treated poorly due to these social justice issues (NOT to play down BLM at the moment) – perhaps folks like me wouldn’t snap and the public wouldn’t have to pay for the results of me being human and cracking under the pressure I’ve been put under. If I were black and experienced the same thing ON top of being black and what that must feel like every day… I can’t even tell you – I would have spun myself off the planet by now.

 

I know I can’t be the only person who understands this. I feel alive when I see similar stories and posts. But a piece of me dies inside EVERY time someone who is white, or male, or has never been raped or has never been abused in anyway replies in some way to tell me I’m crazy or that it’s BS. Once way back in the day when Facebook was new I wrote “I’m either an insane person living in a sane world, or a sane person living in an insane world”.

 

I didn’t have a platform or reason to point to why I felt like I did. But I know I felt like the world didn’t understand at the time. And I now know for sure that it’s the world that’s insane and not me. And even though I wrote that previous sentence and can erase it before I post it. I’m not going to. The humans in this world who were all born equal as the bible and all spiritual text tells us have been systematically trained to think in a certain way. And we can not only be systematically untrained, but we can then teach a new more loving and comprehensive norm to the younger generation – who will then do the same.

 

We have to invest in social issues. Invest in our youth. It’s the only way out of the mess we are in. We have to know at a cellular level that we are all equal. That we all want the same thing for ourselves and our kids and our pets no matter where we stand by the outer color of our skin, or genitals in our underwear, or political party that we check off at the DMV. We all want love and to be loved. It’s not a crime to understand that by accepting another viewpoint of getting there is a loving viewpoint and something those spiritual teachings we point to would want us to do. It’s ONLY by that example that the viewpoint of others who think there is only one way to get there would consider doing the same.

 

This blog might seem a bit all over the place – but the point is that we are not all equal right now. By acknowledging this FACT, changing the conditional way we’ve been taught to think, and by just letting go and accepting that as humans we all want the same things (and have an equal right to get them) BUT have learned by society different ways of getting there -we can make a difference.

 

Friends, we are in a strange time and have the ability to change history to make a difference. I want our kid’s kid’s kid’s…. to read about how in 2020 humans transformed rather than ‘effed’ up again. We have the power to do that! Are you in?

 

Please say you are… ❤

 

Because the light and humanity and all that is love in me, sees and honors the same you.

 

Namaste

 

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Despair at 3 months into this Pandemic

11:30am

I log off my work laptop and stare at my personal one. I’m unsure what to do. I start typing. I don’t know how this blog will turn out, but I do feel the need for catharsis.

 

The world seems to be going down in flames. Our country literally is.

 

Each morning I wake up and feel compelled to open one of many news apps before I even get out of bed. The last few days have been another round of evening lootings, protests and fires. I feel safe in my home in my little neighborhood, but I want to help – don’t know how and feel helpless, depressed and anxious most of the days as a result.

 

I take a few deep breaths and get up oh so very slowly. Since not having to physically go into the office the mornings have been so much less rushed. It’s a welcome change to feeling harried from trying to get out the door. But it came at a price of lives, justice and the perceived feeling of safety and peace. Maybe it’s a good thing to expose what wasn’t really there as a safety net.

 

COVID-19 seems to have split an already divided society. I literally unfriended quite a bit of friends and family members from social media after reading such a barrage of insulting things about stereotypes of people. Yes, perhaps it could be seen as funny; but in a time like this and with working in healthcare – it’s not something to joke about, question or start putting up hoax flags about. I felt it to be utterly disturbing.

 

The past week since George Floyd has been even more disturbing. My husband has taken to looking up how to be a good leader during these times. He is prefacing each meeting he hosts by saying that silence is it’s own terrible statement, and then provides meeting members a platform to voice what is on their mind. After almost every meeting whether I’m working or not, he has been coming over to me and talking about feeling the need to connect. It’s kind of what is missing from society – connection. Not just because of COVID, but because people have all seemed to put “others” in a box and through the power of the Internet and social media have been able to only view what they’d like to in their own “special” box. Instead of all this advanced communication bringing us closer and able to understand one other as a human race, it’s driven us apart.

 

The riots and looting are not too much of a surprise. I’m white but I cannot express how much I feel for my fellow human black souls. While I don’t agree with destruction of property, I empathize but never understand the overwhelming feeling of being silenced for so long. How can they NOT be angry about the injustices that are all around us? It’s not as if it went away with the abolition of slavery or the 60’s movement for civil rights. Has it gotten better? Yes. But we are far from any place that is really equal. How long should anyone stand by quietly and accept a crappy reality?

 

I never even heard of white privilege until I was mandated to attend a class in 2017 to be able to volunteer to teach yoga at domestic violence shelters. It came as a shock. Not because I am ignorant, but because it has never been brought up to me in any format. In a way I feel guilty that I never understood the societal safety and validation I feel. It makes me want to cry for others that don’t feel that. We are all just so human in the same way dogs are just dogs and they have different fur colors. What does it matter? And why did humans along the way somewhere decide that it did?

 

COVID has exposed so much of what is wrong. Back in early March I wrote a blog about how Social Justice is not Socialism. What is wrong with national healthcare? Was our system working? Did it ever? I was seeing too much of this meme on Facebook and thinking that my friends were losing their minds.

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Little did I know that a week or so later our entire system would be put to the test. It just exposed how much it wasn’t. And instead of coming together as humans to determine what seems to be a fact that it sucks that people can lose their jobs (hence healthcare) in a heartbeat, that our black communities were more at risk because of their access to dependable news/sources/jobs, and that the country was not exactly booming when after two weeks into a pandemic many individuals and families alike had any savings to count on – we as a country DIVIDED! I’m still scratching my head about how. I know we all agree it sucks, but how did we turn that into a division of beliefs and political ones at that yet again?

 

Then throw in Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd…

 

I’m sorry, at no time and ESPECIALLY during these times should any leader be promoting violence, egging on protestors for a valid international health initiative (masks) and scorning peaceful protests for justice. It’s disgusting and I’m embarrassed to be considered a human with equal rights to some of our leaders. Not all opinions should count if they are hurtful to anyone else. Leaders do not have the right to say or do hurtful things because of their position.

 

I want to help but I don’t know how. I’ve been wanting to. For today I’m going to just put my despair out there via this blog; and perhaps weed the garden before it rains. And think. Think about how little ol’ me can help my fellow humans, because the light in me sees and honors the light in each and every one of them. Namaste.

images

 

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On Why going back to work right now NOT a good idea

Ok, so there is the obvious – you could get or spread COVID as an asymptomatic individual. DUH. This is a fact. A very important one. Arguably the most or only one. And while that is already a super serious reason why. It’s not the only one.

 

Either I’m terribly misinformed about how economies work (I do hold an MBA) or there is something I don’t understand. The way I see it, if we go back to work now; we will be perpetuating an unbelievably broken system here in the United States.

 

The United States of America. The “Greatest” country in the world.

 

Everyone’s saving’s is dwindling. Retirement (based on the stock market) is disappearing by the day. People are losing their healthcare and benefits. Our citizens would rather risk their lives and the lives of their brethren to go back to work for some cash BECAUSE they want to live and feed their families.

 

BUT shouldn’t they have made enough in living wages to be able to save for a rainy day or year? To have their retirement savings in a protected place that can’t just dissipate overnight? Shouldn’t our taxes cover more basic things that nearly every other developed country already has like healthcare, childcare, higher education, eldercare, maternity leave and some reasonable time off???

 

If we go back and just make it all “normal” again now, we’d be going back to what is broken in the first place. Right? It’s broken.

 

It’s not broken because of the Democrats. Guess, what? It’s not broken because of the Republicans either. It’s not because of the Chinese, or the immigrants, or Nancy Pelosi. It’s a broken system. If now isn’t the time to fix it, when the heck is?

 

Other countries have figured this out. Other countries that are NOT communist or socialist. First world developed countries with fewer homeless, no worry of mass shootings, universal healthcare, educated citizens, and almost no worry about being put out on the street because their country was shut down for you know… a world wide pandemic.

 

When I was in 3rd grade we had the Reagan/Mondale election. I lived in Brooklyn and New Yorker Geraldine Ferraro was the Vice-Presidential candidate. I was growing up in an Italian immigrant household with some REALLY old-world standards where women were like children – “to be seen and not heard”. I didn’t have any beliefs at the time about Democrats or Republicans. However, I did see the injustice of the genders, even at the age of 8. I wanted Mondale to win because I wanted to see the first female vice-president of the United States and show my father that women were just as worthy as men.

 

Mondale/Ferraro did not win. But I was conditioned to learn in my Catholic school that the United States was the greatest nation in the world, and that we were lucky to live here. When my immigrant Italian father ever heard these words (the US being the best country in the world), he would fly off the handle about how untrue that was because it could only be Italy that was the greatest. Benito Mussolini and only Mussolini was where it was ‘at’ in my father’s mind. So I learned pretty early on that it was all in the perspective of where you were growing up and what kind of teacher you had that shaped what you thought about what was “the best” or not. I learned there was no best. Perhaps that is what gave me an open mind.

 

Fast forward to now. I know, like myself; many Americans have grown up learning and even wanting to believe that there is nothing better than the great ol’ U S of A. I kind of sort of half believed it myself until about 7 or 8 years ago when I started researching and learning about how the United States compares to other developed countries in areas I was beginning to have clinical stress in.

 

My stress and burn out was brought on not just from the PTSD I very later learned I have from growing up with child abuse and domestic violence, but particularly from being a female and SQUEEZING into the various expected roles of amazing wife, mother, daughter, employee, sex goddess, volunteer, church goer, giver, nurturer, saver of all human AND non-human kind– while dancing backwards in high heels (in a shapely 36/24/36 body of course complete with stockings and a dress) … making dinner, creating a new fabulous sweet treat for all the bake sales, rocking it at work, putting the kids to bed every night with bedtime stories (AND baths, well brushed/flossed teeth, full tummies of nutritious homemade meals with the perfect balance of treats after dinner and in their handmade lunches in the fluffiest of sheets and cleanest of soft pajamas), playing tooth fairy by having some perfect amount of cash on hand, having that same exact amount of cash to pay for allowances and snacks/field trips at school AND after-school daycare in perfectly labeled envelopes for the kid’s teachers and care givers tucked away in their backpacks (which of course contained completed & checked homework with the dozens of papers that came home each night filled out by hand and signed).

 

…. Only to then hop into bed wearing something provocative to make sweet love to my husband – all while miraculously never being tired or needing some “me” time to regenerate when it seemed like the children, the childless women, and all men of the world had no such expectations.

 

We were supposed to be superwomen helping those groups while never complaining about the unequal pay or time off… IF of course any time off was left after watching or picking up sick children from school or day care… or burning up vacation time because it snowed and yeah… I was unable to get out of my driveway even if I went out there with the snow plow (if I was lucky enough to have one) or the shovel myself because the STREET itself had not been plowed. The female usually stays home because worldwide, but even more so in the United States; since women make 88 cents to the dollar on men- it only makes sense who should stay home with sick kids or when it snows and the childcare centers are closed (you know… if you are able to drive out of your street that is).

 

Yes – as female working parent in the United States VERY luckily making a good portion of income above and beyond what it cost to put the children in childcare when it wasn’t closed, I was tired and ticked. It seemed so incredibly unfair.

 

AND… And… and… I’m supposed to be one of the “lucky” ones.

 

How about all the single mothers with no help?

 

The dual couples who work 5-6 jobs between BOTH parents and can hardly afford to put food on the table or pay the rent?

 

The employees who don’t have health benefits (as my parents [hence me] didn’t when I grew up) or affordable health benefits.

 

What happens to the kids of those parents???

 

… Well no one is home after school as soon as the child is old enough let themselves in the door. So those youngsters may not do their homework to par (IF they do it at all). They may entertain shady friends in that parentless house, are potentially malnourished, consider dabbling with drugs or gangs… and then end up exactly as their parents because no one was there to help them get up off the ground and into college (NOT as if their parents could afford it). Total disclaimer – my folks were not able to pay for college either, I put myself through with the tiniest of “benefits” (14k) from joining in the military and then through sheer blood, sweat and tears at work through loans.

 

These same people without affordable health care couldn’t go sit on a therapist’s couch to complain or get treatment or obtain medication for their suffering… all that is around are some street drugs to help cope. COPE meaning having the wherewithal to get up out of bed and go to work again the next day. This would be in an attempt to set an example for their children. These children seeing that this is the best life has to offer.

 

These are the “other” people we don’t know who experience this. Well if you are reading this you know me, although I didn’t have it that bad. They are the people out there rallying in the streets to go back to work right now because they don’t know any other way to make money and don’t understand that it shouldn’t have to be this hard just to live when the world have enough for everyone to be comfortable.

 

“These people” (and allow me to include anyone) shouldn’t be victim to non-livable wages, little to no healthcare, barely affordable childcare, zero paid leave after giving birth, shoddy if any vacation/sick time, and then at the end of it all be expected to pay for college, their parents in elder care, retirement and SAVINGS, you know – in case there is a worldwide pandemic and the planet shuts down. And if you are a woman – all that and more!

 

When you think about it, it’s amazing anyone is still standing.

 

What I learned during my own personal burn out is shown below in charts & links I pulled up just today. I learned these things and I wanted to shout them from the rooftops. I don’t understand why I or anyone else isn’t marching on Washington! But at the same time, who has time to march on Washington when you need to get to soccer practice, viola lessons, make dinner, help with homework, do the bedtime routine, write a presentation for work and get ready for the next day (laundry, lunches, processing mail/paperwork, making coffee, setting out kid clothes, looking at the insanely packed calendar and plotting out strategies to fit all these ‘very important’ things in) all after working a full day that starts 1-2 hours before leaving the house for the actual paid work. I was lucky if I had time to take a shower, let alone shave my legs.

 

COVID is teaching me that those things were NONSENSE. Who cares about soccer or practice or lessons? It’s not like my children were going to be professional sports stars or musicians. Why couldn’t the grocery stores provide healthy types of lunchables so I didn’t have to spend precious minutes daily and on the weekends preparing meals that weren’t going to cause diabetes or heart disease later in life. We have all the information, knowledge and technology there for those things, so why was I or anyone going crazy trying to keep up??? Why is more expected of women? It’s not said out loud but don’t get me wrong, there isn’t a woman out there who doesn’t know what I mean whether the men in their lives believe this or not.

 

This is the greatest nation in the world according to my education and the belief of the majority of Americans. I’m asking from a purely curious perspective… How is this U.S. capitalist thing working out for you?

 

I’m going to repeat what I wrote above:

 

Everyone’s saving’s is dwindling. Retirement (based on the stock market) is disappearing by the day. People are losing their healthcare and benefits. Our citizens would rather risk their lives and the lives of their brethren to go back to work for some cash BECAUSE they want to live and feed their families.

 

BUT shouldn’t they have made enough in living wages to be able to save for a rainy day? To have their retirement savings in a protected place that can’t just dissipate overnight? Shouldn’t our taxes cover more basic things that nearly every other developed country already has like healthcare, childcare, eldercare, maternity care and some reasonable time off???

 

Other countries have figured this out. Other countries that are NOT communist or socialist. First world developed countries with fewer homeless, no worry of mass shootings, and almost no worry about being put out on the street because their country was shut down for you know… a world wide pandemic.

 

This isn’t to be mocking. But if you obtained your education in the United States and have a high school diploma, you should be able to read these charts and link to these sites.

 

Poor living wages

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Lowest retirement benefits

 

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Healthcare Costs vs General Health

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Unaffordable child care

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Horrific vacation time

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The ONLY developed country without parental leave after birth (this one bothers me the most)

 

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If you still disagree and believe in our system and our version of unfettered capitalism… then I hope you aren’t one of the protesters because if everyone has an equal opportunity to make it if they try, then you should be trying a new job in a new type of economy? Why hang on to the dusty old illegitimate pre-COVID experience now?

 

I believe these protestors wouldn’t be on the streets believing COVID is a world-wide scam or a threat to their personal liberties if they weren’t worried about their livelihoods. Only desperation could possibly lead a rational human to believe that.  And how well is a governmental system really working if their citizens mistrust it so much that they are on the streets rallying against that government’s efforts to help them and save them from dying. If we are really a well organized first world country, we should be banding together as citizens with the government to find a more rational solution. One that doesn’t believe that those “other people” [insert party opposition(s) of your choice] don’t care, are heartless idiots or don’t want to work.

 

What I learned in my 26 years in the workforce working with data and Systems Redesign is that is not the people who are broken, but the system they are trying to work in that is broken.

 

It’s not us or them. It’s the system that is malfunctioning. Running back into the workplace at this moment will keep it broken AND risk overwhelming the healthcare system with too many people and too little resources. It’s time to look past the immediate needs of the moment and plan for a better tomorrow as a unified country. Demanding living wages, equality for women and minorities, and taxes that pay for meaningful benefits.

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Was COVID-19 Inevitable?

Was something of this magnitude such as COVID-19 inevitable?

 

The current rate of change has risen exponentially in the 20th century. Because of the scale and how close recent time could show on a graph, it’s nearly impossible to see the impact of the rate of change since the industrial revolution because it is nearly vertical.

 

Recently something crazy happened on here….

 

After the Internet and Genome Project we became mobile. There isn’t even a place to put Mobile because it has changed the world so quickly that it’s almost as if they curve needs to go backwards to show the rate of change with population growth. It’s scientifically impossible for time to go backwards. On a flat graph it is a mathematical impossibility if the Y axis literally cannot go anywhere but up (so change can’t move) but the X axis must go on (time). Perhaps that is where we are in time – coming back to a state of being able to keep up.

 

As a society it’s imperative that we do more with less and back off from the expectation of instant gratification. Is any layperson suffering without Amazon packages arriving the next day? Does it hurt to plan grocery deliveries a few days ahead? Far more quickly than our ancestors who harvested and planted months ahead of time had to plan!

 

Societally our expectations are unrealistic.

 

These expectations are raping the earth and our resources at a rate that we cannot keep up with. Furthermore, the disbursement of resources over the human population is implausibly skewed. We are living unsustainably.

 

Yesterday I watched an interview from 1957 with Carl Jung. Over 60 years ago Jung stated that man is his own greatest enemy. Our minds, our fears, and the pursuit of more is a danger to the world. All we need to do is change our minds, our attitudes, and our expectations. If we live in gratitude with what we have, we would cease to take more than we need, and we would be part of the tipping point to bring the planet back into balance.

 

Humans couldn’t do anything about it, so maybe nature did. Let’s work with nature and give more than we receive for the greater good. Something will prevail. Let it be nature – because if man does, there might be nothing left.

 

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