Calm in the Chaos: Struggling to Find Hope in the Kavanaugh Hearings

I had an interesting conversation with my 86-year-old Dad today as we were driving in the car. He mentioned that it looked like Kavanaugh’s nomination looked like it was going to go through…it looks like he has the votes.

“That woman, Christine Blasey Ford had to go through all this for nothing,” he mentioned.

I said, “I certainly hope not, but the fact that it probably will happen can really make people feel hopeless.”

“People won’t feel hopeless, it they weren’t hopeful to begin with,” he said. “I was never hopeful.”

“So are you cynical? Or just pragmatic?” I asked.

“Just pragmatic. This is how things are, and they’ve been this way for a very long time.”

I asked him whether he saw or read about Trump mocking Christine Blasey Ford at a rally, and enjoying when his supporters laughed and jeered.

“Yes, even some Republicans admitted that was in bad taste,” my Dad said.

It’s incredible to me.

There are millions of decent people that know what’s right and kind and true that are joining forces for change, and the change isn’t happening. Or maybe little tiny changes are happening, just not big enough ones. Kavanaugh getting through sends a terrible message about honesty not being valued.

Speaking of honesty, the President of the United States of America is a notorious liar. I don’t understand (even though I know the rules) why on earth Trump can’t be removed. I know it’s because his party won’t do it. They have plenty of grounds, have since the beginning, and have more now, and they don’t have the strength of moral character to do what is right.

He’s a schoolyard bully, and his supporters love that about him. They can unite in their mean spirited rhetoric. It’s a club of bullies. So many famous journalists have said all this, much more eloquently than I, and it’s not making these human beings behave better. Shockingly, they don’t feel ashamed of their behavior. They are emboldened to act horrible to their neighbors by their leader. They don’t want to be kind and compassionate, and we can’t make them.

All we can do is be the change we want to see in the world.

All we can do is take responsibility for our thoughts, which become actions.

I know decent Republicans are horrified by how low our national discourse has become. And they can’t change it either. Their party is dragging them through the slime.

And I know there are decent men in our society, men that have never assaulted a woman. Or men that did and owned it and made amends. Men that regret the culture that they were raised in and want to change the system. Good decent men.

My 23-year-old daughter Danielle just called to see whether my Dad is okay and whether I’m okay. She had a feeling that I was feeling low.

“Grandpa’s in the stress test for 2 hours, and I’m writing out my feelings on the state of our reality; it looks like Kavanaugh might get put through…” I lamented.

“Listen,” she said. “Things had to get this bad so we can see what needs to change. Now we know, and there can be a whole new order. It’s my generation that will do it. Unfortunately, there are just a lot of dumb shits out there. The system is broken. The Electoral College needs to be abolished so people will know that their vote matters. At least we live in California, thank God for that, because mostly Californians do the right thing.”

“Yes, I wish we could have the Country of California,” I mused.

“I’d run for president of that!” She exclaimed. “I’d do a better job, now that I know how low the bar is!” she chuckled.

“As long as the government didn’t have any meetings in the morning, I’m sure you’d do fine,” I quipped.

“Ha, that’s funny! I love you mom. Do a meditation. It will make you feel better.”

Out of the mouth of babes. Do a meditation she says to the meditation teacher. It will make you feel better.

So I did… and it does.

May we find calm in the chaos. May we find peace in the midst of pandemonium. May we live with hope for a better day.

Please share your thoughts. . .
By |2018-10-05T14:47:49+00:00October 5th, 2018|Mindful Methods|

About the Author:

Julie Potiker
Author and mindfulness expert Julie Potiker is an attorney who began her serious study and investigation of mindfulness after graduating from the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction program at the University of California, San Diego. She was trained by Kristin Neff, Christopher Germer and UCSD as a Mindful Self-Compassion Teacher. She went on to study with Rick Hanson, becoming a graduate of his Positive Neuroplasticity Training Professional Course. Potiker also completed Brené Brown’s Living Brave Semester. Now, she shares these and other mindfulness techniques with the world through her Mindful Methods for Life trainings and her new book: “Life Falls Apart, but You Don’t Have To: Mindful Methods for Staying Calm In the Midst of Chaos.” She holds a B.G.S. from the University of Michigan and a J.D. from George Washington University.

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