Upstream

“Umbro” (Shadow), Union Square, Somerville, MA, August, 2017

There was a time in my life when I told myself,”If I/we can just through this [insert Crisis of The Week here], I/we will be just fine.” This went on for years. Slowly it came to me: there’s always a crisis. Stop saying “If I can just . . . ” and start looking at why this keeps happening. Figure out how to protect yourself from constant fear and anxiety. Figure out what’s going on, upstream, to keep this constant flow coming, coming, coming? (And so, Dear Reader, I did.)

Nevertheless, it took Naomi Klein’s amazing No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump’s Shock Politics And Winning the World We Need to recognize that the scenario I once knew so painfully is everyone’s, now.

Here’s the bit that did it for me:

Experiencing Trump’s tsunami of Oval Office decrees—seven executive orders in his first eleven full days, plus eleven presidential memoranda issued in that same period—has felt a little like standing in front of one of those tennis ball machines. Opponents might swat back a ball or two, but we’re all still getting hit in the face over and over again. Even the widespread belief among many (or is it hope) that Trump will not last his full term contributes to the collective vertigo: nothing about the current situation is stable or static, which is a very difficult position from which to strategize or organize. (p. 135)

Precisely.

So how do we find our collective footing when we’re all getting hit in the face? (As I write this we are, again, on the edge of nuclear war with North Korea. Dear God! And I marvel that my computer allows me to write those terrifying words without shuddering—and turning itself off.) Naomi Klein offers us a handbook.

Let’s get started.

 

One thought on “Upstream

  1. Dear Patricia,

    Well, hello, there, Patricia, and greetings and salutations to you and to you and FOR VERY ESPECIALLY FOR YOU, my absolutely awesome and precious, dearly special soul sisterfriend Christian Quaker woman who you’re For Always so, so very much!!!!! UGH sistah, UGH!!!!! Sometimes I struggle with insomnia and I thought that instead of tossing and turning to no avail that I’d feel better writing to YOU, my dear, dearest, precious Patricia and your very inspirational blog!!!!!! WOW, what a very helpful, informative, chock full of such interesting and fascinating information, materials, resources, and with the very in-depth article with a vast amount of important, must-need-to-know, vitally urgent and important info here in this great link which I’m still reading through. What a marvelous link to this powerful, beneficial, and educational article this being bountiful food for thought!!!!!! The other link is wonderful as well with the grand information about Naomi Klein with good info on her new book and also her older books. Sistah, WOW, WOW, WOW here, Patricia!!!! I would love to read our brilliant with such astute and acute sagacity Naomi Klein’s very empowering and illuminating book!!!!! I must check at my library to see if they have her latest book and also her older books and I can even request that they purchase her newer books and get the older books through interllibrary loan. My library won’t purchase older books so I must try via interlibrary loan if I have to, sisterfriend. I’d actually love to own this very enlightening new book of hers, sister, and her older ones. I must save money so that I can look into buying the new book and also her older ones, my so, so very dearest and darling friend, Patricia. What true and accurate words in the very apt review of this astounding woman’s new book with these salient, succinct, and cogent words here quoted in Klein’s very words from her book, “It is not enough, she tells us, to merely resist, to say “no.” Our historical moment demands more: a credible and inspiring “yes,” a roadmap to reclaiming the populist ground from those who would divide us-one that sets a bold course for winning the fair and caring world we want and need.” What so, so very right on words here which guide us all towards more definite, concrete, intentional, effective, productively proactive action in these dire times we’re in now proving with these very urgent words as such a clarion call that there is a more realistic way to be effective in this stressful and downright dangerous day and age with that evil man as the so-called President proving to bring on the change and the upheaval with this vile regime we all as such liberal and progressive people are striving for, sister and friend of mine, Patricia!!!!!! Sistahfriend, I’m with you here with the very moving and touching quote which you have quoted from our outstanding Naomi Klein’s illuminating book here. The painful scenario which you once faced, endured, and experienced, Patricia before you successfully escaped that pattern and the freedom I have now being liberating from those painful patterns that I once faced, endured, and experienced in my very life are very pertinent to the very reality folks are facing, enduring, and experiencing now as you very wisely share and declare here, sister and friend of mine, Patricia! This is such a prophetic quote here with such keenly precise clarity from our brilliant Naomi Klein, my friend!!!! When I reflect on my younger life when I was thoroughly trapped in a cycle of repetitive pain that I learned that condition from having been abused in every way growing up from both of my parents, two older brothers, and very many other relatives on both sides of my family. As I came out of denial about their practicing alcoholism and addictions, and also sought out help for myself with my own alcoholism and addictions as well as getting deeply helpful past, and current, ongoing therapy to learn, grow, and heal from having that abusive family background that I gradually cut into that cyclic painful patterns in my life back then! As I learned, healed, grew, and continue to recover with my past and current, ongoing therapy and as well being a rejoicing and proud member of very, very many, multiple 12-Step Programs I gradually escaped and learned how to avoid toxic and destructive people and to break my own self-destructive patterns, Patricia! I had been very downtrodden with my self-esteem being so low just being in shreds from all of the abused heaped upon me in every way from my family of origin that I gradually learned to create creative positivity with my very thoughts and actions and to changing and even literally and figuratively rewiring my brain with more positive thoughts leading to more positive outcomes in my very life, Patricia! When I was a lot younger I had so, so very little faith and worried and even doubted that God loved me!!!!! I was so sweetly helped by our So, So Very Loving, Good, Powerful, Caring, Friendly, and Sweet Spirit who DOES love me and loves us all each and every one of us!!!!!! 🙂 <3 I had one of several spiritual awakenings when I was a lot younger and found that God DOES love me and that I can have faith and no longer doubt that I'd be taken care of no matter what life might bring me and that I, too, would be blessed with such abundant, bountiful blessings, Patricia!!!! As I grew in my faith and in the awareness and indwelling of God's love for me, I just blossomed and grew into a much healthier woman-healthier in mind, heart, soul, and spirit just knowing that God LOVES ME and that I can find love and good in my life!!!!!!! Then as I learned, healed, and grew with all of the great help and resources which I received and continue to receive I found that for me that I broke out of those cyclic painful patterns which once fiercely plagued me, sistah and friend of mine, Patricia!!!!!!! 🙂 <3 Having spirit and Spirit and my wonderful faith and church community here in my beloved Iowa City, Iowa at my Faith United Church Of Christ, and the overflowing blessings with my very, very many, multiple 12-Step Programs with the healing meetings and delightful people all in all have served to be my greatly immense blessings to cut into that cycle of repetitive patterns of pain, friend of mine, Patricia!!!!!! Sisterfriend, I so, so very much loved, liked, enjoyed, and appreciated reading and learning about your journey and your very process here!!!! YOU are such a good woman of faith, a good woman of God, and your deeply keen spiritual attunement and discernment shines with such glorious and brilliant radiance, Patricia, very much so helping me, sister, and very many other people!!!!! WOW, Patricia, I thank-YOU so, so very profusely, kindly, dearly, and deeply, sistah!!!!! 🙂 < 3

    Sister, this engaging blog post article by absolutely FANTASTIC YOU is such a joyous blessing to read and to respond to you and your blog very joyfully with my very heartfelt, detailed, and thorough thoughts, ideas, and comments. The title of this endearing writing is just perfect, absolutely perfect and very fitting and applicable to the great themes and topics of your empowering and uplifting writing here. The picture which you have as usual as always very graciously and generously featured and included with this very masterful composition in the written word is just perfect, just picture perfect here very much indeed adding to, complementing, and highlighting your delightful words here, my friend!!!!!! As usual as always you've very graciously and generously featured and included some wonderful links here with this very fine and excellent piece of writing, Patricia!!!!! I'm still reading through this powerful article here so chock full of such major and important information with all of the voluminous information this empowering article provides for certain, Patricia!!!!! Sister, I'm terrified, too, that we are perilously close to nuclear war with North Korea but somehow I keep the faith, Patricia!!!!! Sister, YOU are so, so very right on and on point in saying very sagaciously that Naomi Klein offers us a handbook to effectively cope and to engage in direct, concrete, and intentional action helping each and every one of us as you share and declare here, "Let's get started." I'm with you here, Patricia, and I say, "Amen!," and "Praise be!," sistahfriend!!!!! 🙂 <3

    My friend, I've such greatly added cheer and brightness to my very day joyfully reading this encouraging and emboldening blog post article here by absolutely AWESOME YOU, and joyously responding with my very heartfelt, detailed, and thorough thoughts, ideas, and comments, Patricia!!!!! 🙂 <3 Now I'm even more renewed, rejuvenated, reinvigorated, and re-energized just wanting and willing read to suit up and to show up, to resist, persist, and to interrupt, Patricia!!!!!! 🙂 <3 Sistah, it is my very joy, honor, blessing, and pleasure to read with such bursting and delightfully eager anticipation your very stupendous blog post articles and to write my comments, thoughts, and ideas and so, so very much fun for me, too, Patricia!!!!!! 🙂 <3 Sisterfriend, I thank-YOU and God continually FOR YOU and FOR YOUR VERY PRESENCE in my very life, Patricia!!!!! 🙂 <3 YAY for YOU, Patricia!!!!! YAY for all you do in such very fine and excellent fashion in such a diligently conscientious manner doing your absolutely very best like with your chock full of such sharp clarity blog post articles, other enlightening writings, books, and with all you do straight from your so, so very dearest heart and spirit, Patricia!!!!! 🙂 <3 YAY for our very sisterhood and friendship, Patricia!!!! WOW!!!!! YAY YAY YAY YAY!!!!!!! Sistahfriend, please have such a fun-filled and fantastic Friday with what will be Friday by the time you read this, a wondrously wonderful weekend ahead, and may all of your very days be so, so very especially blessed!!!!! WOW, Patricia, YOU are my life and eternal blessing as I just know somehow that YOU are as well for very many other people!!!!!!! 🙂 <3 Patricia, Spirit so, so very much loves and cherishes YOU A WHOLE BUNCH and SO DO I!!!!!!! 🙂 <3
    What a grandly great and immense joy and blessing YOU ARE for me, Patricia, and for so, so very many other persons, too!!!!!!! 🙂 <3

    Very Warmly and Sincerely For Always, my so, so very For Always awesomely special and dearly precious soul sisterfriend Christian Quaker white woman who you're For Always so, so very much, sister of mine, Patricia, with My and God's Very Peace and Love For YOU FOR ALWAYS, friend of mine, and with Such Blessings and Such Very Even More Blessings FOR YOU FOR ALWAYS, sisterfriend of mine, 🙂 <3

    Yours For Always soul sisterfriend Christian black woman and For Always in the very great spirit of unity and solidarity, Sherry Gordon in Iowa City, Iowa

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