I Identified With Her Loss
I have never been a fan of Hillary. After much discernment on my 1.6-mile prayerful walk to the polls at a mosque on Election Day, I voted for her. I stood before the voting machine and pressed in my vote. I could have exercised my right not to vote at all but I did not.
I fell asleep watching the returns on TV on election night. I woke up in the morning. I had no words. However, Hillary Clinton's concession speech the day after her devastating loss moved me. Her words comforted me. I watched it live on TV. We have all endured defeat of one kind or another at one time or another. I empathized with Hillary's pain. I identified with her loss.
This is Painful
Trump is now our president and our only president. In her concession speech Hillary said, "Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and a chance to lead."
As her voice began to crack, she continued, "This is not the outcome we wanted and hoped for. This is painful and will be for a very long time." I teared up. I had pain in my heart. Hillary has endured other personal painful events in her life, including her husband's infidelity, but she has always dusted herself off and carried on.
I have had experiences in life in which the outcome was not what I had hoped for. These events have been extremely painful. I have written about them in my Huffington Post blog. These devastating experiences have been transformative. The healing is life-long.
Scripture in my daily life has helped me to endure the difficult times. For the first time, I publicly heard Hillary look to Scripture for comfort. In her concession speech she quotes the Bible: "Let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season, we shall reap if we do not lose heart." While she doesn't mention where in the Bible one can meditate on this beautiful passage, you'll find it in Galatians 6:9.
Hillary's faith has also helped her to understand that when we pray to God (I'm sure she did a lot of praying on Election Day), God will respond in one of three ways: yes, not now, I have something better for you. God has other plans for Hillary.
No Joy in Elected Office
Being elected to public office is beyond hard! Although it's no comparison to being elected president of a nation, I was elected to the local K - 8 school board in 1992. I won by ONE vote. The anger was immediate. The wife of the incumbent I unseated wrote a scathing letter to the editor. She simply could not accept that I had unseated her husband. Her letter bordered on libel and I had to put her on legal notice.
When I ran for re-election, one of the candidates electioneered, that is, he passed out his fliers to voters next to the voting machines and not 50 feet away from the entrance to the polling place. The poll workers and I reported him to the Elections Commissioner. The cheating candidate hunted me down and found me seconds after I voted. My then 8-year old daughter was with me. He corned me into the wall. He used profanity. He threatened to sue me if he lost. That night, I filed a police report and he unseated me. I was just a mom who wanted to serve, volunteer, and be an advocate for children and public education. I have not run for or held public office since. There is no joy in elected office.
Grace and Humility
The world is a cruel place. Trump, who has demonstrated his gift for behavior and conduct unbecoming of a president, is not going to have it easy. Who knows, his presidency might transform him and make him a better person.
Let us learn to accept defeat with grace and humility as Hillary has. To help process and mourn her devastating loss, let us engage in simple tasks with care and consideration. We can do our part to make our only world and country a better place. We can say please and thank you, hold the door open for others, break bread with a stranger, plant a garden, read a book, walk in the woods, pick up other people's litter, run on the beach, knit a scarf, volunteer, dance to our hearts' content, play board games, keep a diary, bake a cake, protest with purpose and not with anger, forgive, and pray more and worry less. It's a start.
Honor Hillary's Request
The outcome of the unprecedented 2016 presidential election, while shocking to many and a welcome change for others, does not have to be so awful and polarizing. This, too, shall pass. We don't always have to agree but we can strive to find common ground. If you have always supported Hillary, don't stop now. Honor her request. Keep an "open mind" and give our new president "a chance to lead."-