Oh man, what a crazy week it has been! The good news is that the weekend is here, the great radiant sun is still rising and setting just like it always does, and now, more than ever, is the perfect time to take a deep breath and look forward to the future. Many of you may be shaking your head right now, asking how could we possibly push forward and look ahead? Let's remember that that everyone has their own personal feelings about the 2016 presidential election results. I’m not here to tell you what is right and wrong, how you should feel or shouldn’t feel, or even what my own personal feelings are. This is not that type of blog. What I am here to do is to give you some hope, some perspective, and some advice in times that may be filled with fear and uncertainty, or perhaps even triumph and celebration. First, let’s take a step back from any emotions we may currently feel and gain just a little perspective. Please take a few minutes to listen to one of the greatest speeches about humanity by Carl Sagan.
Wow- some pretty powerful stuff. Let’s think about this for a minute. Yes, every single human being on this planet Earth is unique. Each one of us has different views. We have had our own life experiences vastly different than our neighbors. We are different races and come from different places. We are different sexes, have different sexual preferences, and we have different religious views. But one things ties us all together- we are humans living on planet Earth. We are all Earthlings.
The only home we know is a small blue planet in an expansive solar system in a tiny corner of the Milky Way galaxy surrounded by billions and billions of other galaxies. Our earth appears as just a tiny pale blue dot in the vastness of space. On that pale blue dot is “everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.” (Sagan)
So what can we do to come together as Earthlings, as Americans, as neighbors in these emotional times? Let’s take look a look at the opportunity that lies ahead. What can we do to facilitate a positive change, not only in America, but throughout the world? I believe that our future is in the hands of our children and all of the children of the world. As a stepmom and a longtime nanny, I am all too familiar with a child’s ability to absorb everything like a sponge. They look to us as elders for examples of how they should live their lives. They parrot what we do and what we say. We are what they want to be. So let us be what we want them to become. Let’s lead by example and show them what it takes to rid the world of not only the hatred, but the dishonesty, the fear and the negativity that has been present in the world for longer than I can remember.
Let us be role models and expose our children to positivity and hope. Whether or not you supported Hillary Clinton, there's no denying the significance of her run as the first female presidential candidate. My hope is that with her highly publicized run for president, Clinton helped pave the way for young American girls to work towards and fight hard for their dreams, no matter how high the odds are stacked against them. I hope that just the very prospect of a woman as our country's president will continue to inspire them to pursue their passions and destroy that glass ceiling.
However, we must remember that it is our job as a society to make sure that we not only empower our children to strive for greatness, but that we instill the right kind of values along the way. When they finally get their chance to lead, it must be with an an honest, open heart and an intelligent, loving mind. It is crucial that we provide the guidance and tools necessary so that our children may see their full potential, their power and their influence in this world. Yet, we are also responsible for teaching them something even more important than this. It is absolutely imperative that we teach them to live a life filled with humility, honesty, understanding, compassion and empathy. These children are our future. They will be the next to run this country- the next to rise to power. The response, from all sides of the political spectrum has been extremely negative and disappointing as of late. Our children can’t avoid the coverage. They see violent protest on the news. They read hateful messages on social media. They hear rumors of armageddon from their friends, and sometimes even from ourselves. This is why it is absolutely necessary that they learn now how to treat other people with respect, with fairness and with love. We can only hope that these values will stay with them throughout their lives and carry through into their family life and careers.
Alongside our children, we can help create better tomorrows. Let’s lead by example and teach them never to give up hope in the face of adversity. We can make little changes to become those positive role models our children need. Always remember to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes, and together we can learn, not only how to forgive, but how to make compromises. Today is the perfect day to start making a difference in the lives of others. Flash a quick smile at someone who looks like they’re having a rough day- just little bit of kindness goes a long way. Volunteer your time to a cause you feel passionately about. Consider helping those who are less fortunate than you. We should all stand united and look forward to the opportunities for change that lie ahead. There is no time like the present to start to make a change in this crazy world. When we stand together united, we are strong. United, we can be the positive revolution that our country and our world so desperately needs. Pura Vida!