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The Emotional Baggage of Politics

Mental Wellness



The Emotional Baggage of Politics

Morgan Daniels

Photography by Michael Courier

Photography by Michael Courier

Written by Zhanè Hibbit




Nose twitching, I roll over in my bed. The drip from the bathroom sink is bothering me again.

I feel the pressure to wake up, but too afraid to open my eyes. When I went to sleep earlier that morning, I knew it wouldn’t be the same when I woke a few hours later.

Last night wasn’t even the same, it was like the people around me knew the outcome before I did.

My eyes open and I find myself facing the muted television. CNN has been a permanent fixation for hours.

My eyes still blurry, blindly scans the screen. I must reach over and put my glasses on.

Eye’s searching the screen, moving rapidly you’d swear I was watching a ping-pong match.

Breath held, almost to the point of lightheadedness. My breath stutters, too shocked to exhale.

I feel a sharp pain in my chest proof that I’m breathing incorrectly. I hear a constant thump in my ears, the shallow beats of my heartbeat replacing the noise of the dripping sink.

Photo by GIPHY

Photo by GIPHY




Reports say that anything can be a traumatic experience, that the trauma depends on the person. I think, at that moment, I became traumatized. My body overloaded with a stress call—blood rushing in my ears, shallow breathing, fast pulse, and shocked mind.

On November 8, 2016, my world changed, hell, America changed.

“Donald Trump is our new President-Elect” is what the caption reads on the news coverage.

Photo by Photobucket

Photo by Photobucket

I’m no longer able to form a coherent thought. All I see is destruction. The crying babies, the sexually assaulted women whose perpetrator will not be convicted, the poor individuals who will not get proper health care, and the minorities who will be turned away from a place they call home because of their lack of European blood.

“Make America Great Again” is such a stupid slogan to me. People act as if America was ever great. It was good, I give it that, but never great.

It’ll be great when it starts living up to what our founding fathers promised us decades ago, “That all man will be created equal…”

It’ll be great when we start recognizing that women can do “men jobs” too, and that they’re not to just sexual objects that people can abuse, knock up, and leave at home to be mute, bare foot and pregnant.

Did you know that our new President-Elect told a reporter that it’s an inconvenience when his female employees get pregnant? This is the same man that claims that he doesn’t support abortions, but supports birth control and the morning after pill, the irony.

Still America wouldn’t be great enough until we, we as in ignorant people who believe that the world only has one race, acknowledge that there is a plethora of people on this earth that look different.

Whether Black, White, Hispanic, Asian, or Native American we are all children of God, placed on this earth to serve different purposes while looking differently, but being treated equally.

Later I’ll be asked how I took the news. Looking back on the past few hours, and walking around the silent campus that’s usually bombarded with noise, I will shed my first tear.

In a psychology classroom across campus, a professor has decided to interrupt the normal class itinerary and have an impromptu group therapy session.

“How are you ladies feeling today?” she’ll ask.

Some will fail to say anything, too emotional to utter a word.

Me? I will wipe a tear away that I’ve been holding in a while. That tear will lead to more tears. I look around the classroom at the somber faces and I say, “Can you tell we lost faith in this world. It is obvious by today’s news that we aren’t as accepted as we thought. Now I’m aware that we were hardly accepted in this country already but never to this degree.”

I’ll then bow my head and ask, “I think he won due to peoples hate, Does the world hate us?”

As a little girl, my mom used to tell me that hate can ruin people. It can ruin the hater and it can ruin the hated.

She’d go on to say that hate never allows someone to grow mentally, that hate would consume someone’s body and obliterate their health.

She said the same thing about fear. She said hate and fear are weapons that can kill.

Does the world hate us enough to kill us? Do we fear enough to kill too?

Before you ask, what rambling tangent am I going on. I thought I’d educate you that these are the thoughts of a person who in a matter of 24 hours has been violated morally. She’s suffering and there’s so much hate and fear in this world that it’s going to take a lot of mental health to cure those fatal thoughts.

See, America was never great—if so, why is half America crying in fear and the other half celebrating their hate?

Photo by GIPHY

Photo by GIPHY

Banner Photography by Michael Courier