I spent Monday with CSpan running on one of my computer screens at work. It was a great Inauguration, and I was thrilled to see so many people cheering on the president. And, of course, Handsome Joe Biden.
On the way to and from
work, I caught the last speech Martin Luther King, Jr., gave, and both
times, I ended up crying while I was driving. His words were/are moving and haunting. And his explanation that what he was fighting for was bigger than any one person - bigger and more important and necessary - really resonated.
It emphasized that moving forward, being part of something bigger, making a
needed change, is within anyone's grasp. I am in no way, shape or form
as impressive a person as Dr. King [at least, outside of my own mind],
but I am a person who can do something, who can make a difference, no
matter how small it seems. Even helping one person in one way is enough
of a goal. This had been growing in my mind since the weekend, and hearing it again made it stick.
On Saturday, I ended up at a knitting group for the National Day of Service [what did you do, you piker?].
I spent the morning at water aerobics and running errands. My plan was to get those things done and go to the knitting group at 12:15, when it started.
Except by the time I got home, I was wiped out. I knew I wanted to go, but I also knew that if I didn't go, it wasn't like I would be letting anyone down. I didn't know anyone, and I was just one person. Plus, I was running late, so I'd have to rush, and that was stressing me out. And to top it all off, I hadn't knitted anything in . . . I literally can't remember how many years.
So I sat down and thought, "Eh, fuck it. By the time you get there, it'll have been going on for an hour, and you'll only be there for an hour. It's not worth it."
And then, because I am working on not being such a fuckhead, I told myself, "You should go. Don't you want to volunteer?"
"Yes," I answered myself. "But I'm tired and I'm already late and it could be awful and awkward."
"Maybe you'll meet some nice people."
"Just fucking go, you dumb ass. Make changes. Be the change you want to see. Stop lollygagging. Get your ass in gear."
And so I went.
And it was fun. I did, in fact, end up meeting some nice people. And they're starting a group to volunteer to continue to knit stuff for the homeless and at-risk girls/young women. I said I'd be interested in that, too. It's not a huge thing, knitting hats and scarves for people, but it is something. A way to get my feet wet and make a small change that can help someone. I can't solve all the problems, or even many of the problems, but I can give someone something made with care and concern to help keep them warm.
Because I can move forward. And so can we all.