Is it over yet?

I know I’m not alone in saying I can’t wait for this election to be over. It’s gotten so ugly out there. I’ve unfollowed so many people in the last few months. I’m now  a pro at hitting that little downward arrow in the upper right corner of posts. Good grief. I haven’t unfollowed just the people supporting the “other” candidate either. It’s been across the board unfollowing. I can’t take it anymore.

There was an interesting segment on 60 Minutes last night with a panel of voters – decided, and undecided, voting for someone, and voting against someone. The person doing the interviewing – a man who’s been doing this a very long time – said he’s never seen anything like this, the way everyone on the panel was talking over each other, getting so angry, not listening to anyone else at all. It was a sad statement on our society.

I’d been blaming it on the 24-hour news cycle. The media has to hype even the smallest scandals or slip-ups, drawing them out, sucking the life out of every little thing, then re-hash it for days. I do think it’s contributed to our elections becoming a three-ring circus, full of mud-slinging, half-truths, insults, and a complete loss of integrity.

What I’ve come to realize in the course of the last year is that social media is just as much, if not more, to blame. First of all, social media is the biggest rumor mill outside of high school. Ever play the telephone game? Multiply that times oh, about 3 billion or so. Everyone  has a platform, a public voice. Too many people choose to exercise that voice without ever fact checking what they’re repeating or re-posting. It’s so easy to sling insults from behind the safety of a keyboard and computer screen – when you never have to see the person you’re sending a bunch of horrible words towards. I’ve watched long-term friendships go down in flames over stupid Facebook posts within the last year.

I have two teenagers and one almost-teenager. They’re very aware what’s going on. We don’t censor much.  I’ve watched the behavior of kids their age spiral back to a place we’ve worked so hard to crawl out of….This election  has led too many kids to believe it’s okay to say horrible things, write horrible things about those who are different in any way. We’ve shut it down with our children – reminding them this is just NOT okay behavior, and won’t be tolerated no matter what they see being accepted as the norm around them. It’s sad, and it’s heartbreaking.

I can’t wait for tomorrow to be over, for this election to be done. I have a bad feeling all the bad feelings aren’t going to end, however, with the end of this election cycle. I pray this isn’t how people are going to be from here on out. I pray we will be able to heal, recover, re-group, and support whomever is elected. Until then, I think I’m going to just hide over here in my little corner of the world, with my family, my friends,  and some chocolate. Tell me when it’s over.

PS…Yes, I did vote.

Friday Favorites #14

It is #14, right? I’m going to have to start keeping track of this somewhere. I missed posting last week….we were traveling for Thanksgiving. When I’m with my parents, I just want to be with my parents, so outside of a little bit of work, I tucked my laptop away for the most part.  I considered not posting today….we had Little Man’s IEP meeting this morning, and I just picked up the Princess from school to get her fed and curl her hair before we head up to the studio and theater for opening night of the Nutcracker. But then I logged on earlier, and started reading a post, which lead to reading another post, and before I knew it, I had about 15 tabs opened. So, lucky you, here’s today’s list of #FridayFavorites

  • I don’t know a single person who doesn’t struggle with negative self-speak. I believe this is magnified in autistic people, at least in my experience. I ran across Julia’s word sanctuary post this morning. I think we all could use a word sanctuary, but I will probably put this into Little Man’s bucket of therapy goodies. Thanks for sharing, Julia. This is awesome!
  • If you’ve followed my blog for any amount of time, you know I’m a huge fan of  Tricia at Never Less Than Everything.  All Hands on Deck touched me particularly today, in light of the two recent mass shootings in the US.  It frequently feels like nothing is going to change no matter what I say or do. But that doesn’t mean I have to stay silent. One drop in the bucket is tiny when compared, but it’s still a drop. Keep writing, Tricia. You are touching so many people, and you are heard.
  • Domesticated Momster is ever-informed. Who knew today was National Bartender Appreciation Day?
  • I’m sure Jason is tired of me linking back to his blog (stalker much?), but when someone writes captivating stuff, it deserves a share. Some may find some of his posts controversial (I don’t), but his poetry…ahhhhh. Go check out this one.
  • Riddle from the Middle raises the question of public vs personal when it comes to her kids. My kids have basically grown up on social media.  They still have the right to tell their own stories as they see fit, or not tell them. They also  have the right to ask/tell me to not post or write about something. I honor that. They deserve that courtesy.  That wasn’t necessarily the gist of her post, but it made me think.
  • Have a love/hate relationship with flying? See it as a necessary evil? Check out Geoff’s poem on airplanes. Made me lol
  • We got to see karma in action when we were driving out to my dad’s last week. It was so fabulous, I couldn’t stop laughing. Seeing this post on Daily (W)rite brought it back to mind, and made me laugh all over again. What have you sent out to the universe today?
  • This one…Keith Garrett….ahhhhhh…the words just bring pictures to my mind.
  • I literally JUST started following Epi-Centered, and it was because of this post. There is so much I feel, so much I want to say about all the mass shootings, the violence around the world. This also touches on my fear with an autistic son who lashes out. He’s eleven, and small, but he won’t always be. This is one of the dark sides of having a child with a mental illness. But it also gives hope in that our love for him brings him out of the darkest days.
  • Lastly, partially because after surviving a two-hour IEP meeting, and the stress of Nutcracker hell week, added to the nerves for my precious girl dancing tonight and tomorrow, I could use a hug. And who doesn’t think a sloth hug (outside of the smelliness) wouldn’t be totally awesome? And hugs from baby sloths? SOLD! Here’s your weekly Cute Overload link.

Hope you all have an amazing weekend. I’ll only make you suffer through maybe one or two more Nutcracker references, and the Herd should be back to regularly scheduled programming next week. Now, I’m off to curl the Princess’ hair, Clara-style!