My first downward dog of 2017 has happened. Creating space in my spine might as well be my only New Year’s resolution this year, and if I could stick to that simple goal I’d be set. This year, though, screams for more. Space in my spine, more breath, I know that those things could see me through the fear that clamps down on me regularly since the election of Donald Trump to the office of president of the United States of America. Even as I typed “United States of America” that fear shivered down my spine.
I yearn to feel a soaring patriotism in mentioning those united states; the unified desire to make good for all citizens, and yet when I sit to read the stories of our country, and of our world, my heart breaks.
The Washington Post noted on January 1, 2017 “that the most compelling predictor of any U.S. county’s partisan shift between 2012 and 2016 was not race, income or education levels but health. The most dramatic changes in voting patterns happened in counties with low life expectancy and high rates of diabetes, obesity and heavy drinking focused on issues of public health and cultural decline.
And with the election of Mr. Trump, the future of so many of America’s citizens is in further jeopardy if they lose the health care that they so recently acquired.
My family’s health care is extraordinarily expensive. I keep telling myself that if there are adults and children who are receiving care they need because we are stepping up, then so be it.
Our family takes responsibility for our health. Eating right-ish, exercise-ish, see downward dog above; we think about it, we live it. The healthcare that we are providing for our fellow citizens, in my mind, might not be the kind of support that could help them thrive. Do I know what others need or want? No.
What can I do to step up into the world, as a lowly singer, performer, volunteer at the high school? How can I reach the people that The Washington Post is referring to? I don’t know, and not knowing compresses my spine and my heart, and tomorrow I’ll go back to downward dog.