The Morning After
I am sitting in Terminal E at Logan Airport waiting for my flight to Toronto, trying to think about how to explain or describe or understand.
The election has knocked me down and broken my heart.
I will survive this. America will survive and someday, make amends. I know this is a historic swing. Nativism to progressivism and back again.
Eight years of Obama in the White House was the far edge of progressive politics for the moment.
I lived through Reagan’s election (twice) and was consumed by disbelief and dread. I’m older now. I’ve watched the cycle.
It does feel worse this time and it is worse. The hatred is naked. The boundaries of civility have been breached. The world is more fragile and evil happens on a hair-trigger.
I don’t know how we move forward from this dark place, but I know we will. Eventually.
The arc of history…. sometimes looks like a corkscrew.
There are so many people of good will. The bruises will heal. Lessons will be learned. Other elections will be won.
If you think it sounds like I’m trying to talk myself into this, you would be correct.
I’m going to Canada to talk to the lovely people at Holy Blossom Temple about books I’ve written. I’ll spend much of my allotted time talking about The Boston Girl, which is the story of Addie Baum, American-born daughter of immigrant parents. Although my story is very different, that description fits me, too: American-born daughter of immigrant parents.
Obama’s election felt like a personal triumph. This election feels like a personal defeat.
I know my Canadian hosts won’t expect me to explain. I’ve already received words of comfort from one of them. And yet, I want to say something helpful or wise or consoling. Maybe next week.
Today, I’m simply in shock. Sitting in the airport. My flight delayed.
Thank you for this. You’re awesome. Although at this stage there’s little hope left, reading your words comforted me. Have a safe trip.
Thank you Melina
I’m a South African and yet I empathise with all Americans on the election of Donald Trump as President. Unfortunately we also have a man that 90% of the population would rather not have, but unfortunately, that’s the way the cookie crumbles!!
Have to say that The Red Tent was, and will always be, one of my fave books EVER!! That goes for the rest of the book club and friends that have borrowed the book outside of the Club. Your books that I have read are all very special in their own way, and I thank you!! All the very best, Lyn x
Much appreciated. Lyn
Anita… great post. I was a news junkie until the election. Now I spend more time with the music on. On to better topic. I was lucky enough to attend your interview in Duxbury, Mass about a year ago. I was very excited because I love your books. You were great. I am so happy to find your blog.
I found you on a local bookstore’s website, I’m very happy to “meet” you.
Thank you for this blog post.
I’m compelled to go to Toad Hall in Rockport this weekend to purchase “The Boston Girl”
I did indeed buy it (the Boston Girl) at Toad Hall Bookstore and have already finished it. Loved it and look forward to a next read!
Anita. I really appreciate your blog about the election. My feelings are parallel yours and it’s good to have a bit of your optimism about what will be years down the road. I campaigned for Hilary here in Nevada and on the bright side we were able to elect democrats in most other positions, including two outstanding women for Senator and in my Cong. District. So that gives me some small comfort
I have just read The Boston Girl for the fifth time. I was born in Newton in 1944 and your book brings my aunts and uncles to mind. Thank you so much for awakening old memories.
I,too, am a first generation American. although not Jewish, I found a remarkable similarity in upbringing, family bonding, customs, expectations, education. it took me 12 years to get through college, raising a family, working fulltime. Enjoyed the Boston Girl and read it in 2 sittings, only because the first started at 9 p.m. yes, life is more important than death. Friends enrich our lives. Family is everything.
Shalom Anita, it is some time since the election and perhaps you have moved on. I live in Australia and we have our own home-grown version of Donald Trump in the person of Pauline Hanson. She has been elected to our Senate and it is alarming to see the move to the radical right wing of politics which seems to promote nationalism, closing of borders, intolerance of anything that they disagree with or don’t understand. This ignores the fact that my country, like yours, is a country mostly populated by immigrants. It would be laughable if it wasn’t so serious. I am reminded of Nazi propaganda about the perfect blue-eyed blond-haired Aryan ideal.My concern for our country is the number of eminent people who are standing beside her in her views. Please pray for my country as I pray for yours,
I thoroughly enjoyed your book The Boston Girl. I look forward to reading your other publications. Please keep me posted on any further books that you will write.
I live in Boston & saw your book at the airport. I bought the Kindle edition & am currently reading it. I’m having a hard time putting it down. Decided to Google your name & came across your November blog about the election result while reading about the latest executive orders.
The only positive thing I see is solidarity among some Americans. Frustration & prayers & escaping in a good book. Thank you for sharing your talent.
Dear Anita, I found this site while I was looking for a way to connect with you. I live in the world of non-fiction writing and haven’t read fiction for years. I finally carved out a few minutes before sleep for a story and happened across The Red Tent. I am so glad that I did. I enjoyed every word thoroughly. It is such a terrific read that I was going “to bed” earlier each night.
You are an amazing writer. Thank you for your words.
Thank you Nancy. Hearing from readers is the icing on the cake.
I wish that two months after your post we could say “maybe it won’t be as bad as we had expected” but unfortunately it has turned out to be much, much worse. We can only hope that goodness will eventually prevail.
I loved The Red Tent when I read it almost 20 years ago when I was a much younger woman. I just finished The Boston Girl and loved it as much or, if it is possible, even more. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Thanks for your kind words about my books. We must do more than hope that goodness must prevail: we all have to work to make it so.
Only love …