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Essay

Today

by Grace Bonney

This morning I woke up feeling numb. I came downstairs, made coffee, fed our pets and tried to step away from the news and unplug. But I found myself sitting here, in front of my computer, writing.

I write because it makes me feel connected to other people. And connecting with other people gives me hope. Hope that we’ll hear and understand each other. Hope that we’ll find a way to ensure everyone feels welcomed and valued. But as a gay person, and a person who values black and brown lives and who cares about women and our rights to our own bodies, it’s difficult to feel that hope today.

Everyone needs time and space to feel things and process emotions in a way that works best for them. And today, I need that space to be quiet. I need room to listen, to try to understand and to try to make a plan for how to move forward and support the people around me who feel unsafe and unprotected in their homes.

I know this site is a respite from stress and world issues for so many of you, and I’m truly sorry that we can’t be that today. Tomorrow we’ll resume normally scheduled content, but today I am overwhelmed with the need to be silent. To listen to the people around me and to hold their fears, their sadness, their frustration and their concerns in a way that creates connection and understanding.

I have no desire to hold and feel only the concerns and voices of people who share my points of view. I have spent the last two years living in a rural area that has fundamentally different points of view on many issues that are important to me. The adjustment was difficult, but in this moment, I am reminded yet again that my job is to reflect and tell the stories of everyone in our community.

I do not and will not support stories that seek to promote racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, or any other viewpoint that represses people based on their identity. But I am committed to doing good work here- work that includes being dedicated to broadening and expanding our platform to make room for people from different backgrounds and with different points of view. I believe that when we understand each other, progress happens. And while it’s very difficult for me to feel that this morning, I believe that the people I’ve been connecting with on the road for the past two months and the people I’ve gotten to know here online over the past 12 years have good in them, and good work to be done.

I understand anyone who feels overcome with fear, anger, anxiety or disappointment today. I feel all of those feelings today, too. I wish there was an image, a quote or some perfect turn of phrase I could share to make us all feel a little bit better, but there isn’t one. I think today is a day for connecting with our communities, hearing each other’s concerns and fears and trying to find a way to make a plan to move forward supporting each other and ensuring our safety and rights. I do not pretend to know the right way to do that, but I promise that I will always here to listen, to support and to do the work. –Grace

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Comments

      • I love both of you ♡ & I am SOOOOO grateful that I’ll be getting your new book in the mail today Grace. The distraction will be greatly appreciated.

        Adam (I’m assuming your Adam J, Kurtz, although I could obviously be totally wrong there) I loved your quippy, but to the point posts on ig with regards to the election, they made me laugh, even when I was so intensely stressed that I couldn’t breathe.

        I am finding it so hard to embrace the fact that democracy is about the people having the right to choose their leader in this case. I am so distraught and devastated that Trump won, I simply keep repeating “this can’t be real, this can’t be real over and over in my head.”

        Thank you for this community you have created, D*S has gotten be through some very challenging things in my life.

        Ooooodles of love, patience, tolerance, and laughter,

        Ash xo

  • Thank you, Grace. Thank you for being you and thank you for doing the work. We must be in this together.

  • Thank you, Grace. It seems like there’s nothing else we can do today but just what you’ve said- we must try to feel connected to one another in this scary time.

    Sending love from Boston to everyone in the DS community,

    Elizabeth

  • My Canadian heart is numb today. Thinking of everyone who voted with respect for each other, for women’s bodies and for our planet.

  • You’re a good egg, Grace. May America find a way forward together.

    (An Australian who may have shed a tear)

  • Thank you for writing this and I hear you. You must know that my plan for today includes reading your book and signing up for few more community volunteer opportunities today. I genuinely have hope that people voted with the best intentions and though the choice seemed clear to us, it wasn’t clear for everyone. With community, all is possible. I am a new immigrant and hence couldn’t exercise my right to vote but I get to live here and I care. That’s a good place to start. Love you for being you, always.

  • I woke up to hearing NPR saying that HIS first course of order is to select a Supreme Court Justice. I was stunned. I am now overwhelmed with uncertainty, especially for my disabled son.

  • Sending love from Canada. For both yesterday and today, we are all American. We shed a tear and brace ourselves with fear with you.

  • Thank you for your grace. I needed to see the fog covered, completely still water out my window this morning, and read these words.

  • This. Thank you for this. You are wise. In The Company of Women is sitting on my bookshelf waiting for the right moment to be read. That moment might be tonight.

  • I’m getting ready to go to work and wondering how I can possibly pretend to be normal today. Lots of love to all who are going through the same thing.

  • Thank you, Grace. Design Sponge has always been my go-to spot good design, but these past few months, it’s become a place to feel safe and welcome and understood as well. So thankful for this beautiful community you’ve collected here. And thankful for your words this morning, as well. <3

  • I’m an expressive person and I almost always have something to say, no matter what happens. But now, I’m in denial, so much so that I didn’t talk a word to my husband for an hour after waking up, and finally when i did, I told him not to put any YouTube videos for the next few days. I thought I was the only one who wanted to shut myself out from this horrible nightmare, and I’m thankful to you for making us all feel normal.

  • Thank you so much for this post and for this community!

    Right now I’m torn between wanting to brush it off and go on with my daily routines and just confronting all of my emotions. I seem to be trapped in between those two, not being of much use as far as work goes, but too restless to be truly mindful.

    I didn’t think I could feel lower than I did when a family member told me that I support a sociopath, by being a vocal supporter of Hillary. But here I am, trying to pick myself up and hold my head higher than I did yesterday and finding that it’s very, very hard to do so.

  • Grace, you are aptly named. The grace you put forward will help comfort us all. I’m not gay or someone of color but I am a woman of substance and I feel exactly as you this morning. Thank you. I admire you so much. Let’s all stay united against the hate. Promote love.

    Lauri

  • Came to this Country as a 21 year old with dreams, hope and at last freedom. I have loved this country as my own and have felt at home nowhere but here.

    Today for the very first time I feel like my country perhaps did not love be back and that I have been wrong all along. As a woman, a immigrant and person of color my heart hurts and it fears for my future and the future of millions of others.

    Thank you Grace for this post , reading it and seeing all the comments gives me solace. I find peace in knowing that I am not alone in this sadness. To everyone that is experiencing all these terrible emotions know that you are not alone. You have us supporting you and standing by you. Let’s be good humans beings, true to ourselves and our beliefs. Like everything else, we will overcome this too. It’s true, together we are all stronger.

  • Thank for this, Grace. I think that in the days to come, the community you’ve created here will help to remind me that I’m not alone. Thank you for all you’ve done to create a space of respect, kindness, beauty, and thoughtfulness in a chaotic world.

  • I feel the same way, devastated, scared and a little homeless. But I’m trying to move on and tell myself to be hopeful.

  • My heart sees your ❤️!
    Our family is heartbroken, and when our daughter calls and begs us to please stay in our house, it brought a bigger reality home, fear.
    Does this means that half of our country thinks less of our family just because we are different?
    It has always ignored that we have been trolled because of our ethnicity by strangers as well as “friends” more than ever before, and when confronted with the possibility of racist behavior it’s all been excused and denied.
    But to now know that this is clearly how so many think, is devastating and I feel the need for a plan also. I do know that light needs darkness to be seen, and the comfort of having a community that shares your heart is something I’m grateful for!
    So thank you for letting me rumble away. And although I feel lost and very scared, I also feel hopeful that if we keep on helping each other with our sorrow, joy and fairness will follow soon!
    Namaste and love my friends!

    • I hear what you are saying and I am trying to wrap my head around all this emotion I feel today, too. Know that, while a portion of our country may not be the people we thought they were, there are many, many more who ARE. I have always felt I have a good foundation of hope, faith and compassion, but I intend to dig down for more. I also pledge to get more involved. Hang in there, you have friends you have never even met.

  • I share your grief and concerns. This is devastating. I hope we can all find a positive way to act and make a difference.

  • Grace, thank you for this post, the first thing that has calmed my heart today. I was an early Design Sponge fan, for years I started my work day with your website. I wandered away for a while (not that this is at all important today)but I have been back in the last few months and your voice is so so important and we are all very grateful. I wish I could say something profound but I am too stunned but love and connection is the only way and I am not going to respond to hate with hate, that is enough for today. When I have a minute I want to respond to your post from last week about women business owners of which I am one, after last night even more important to keep talking on this front. Sorry this is rambling from exhaustion Thank you and I am going to make some comfort food today from Small Victories. ❤️

  • Grace, I just want to say thank you for NOT posting election stuff on this website. While I was aware of what was happening via other websites, I needed one space where I could take a break from it. You provided that. I am forever grateful for that.

  • I’m really upset that we have elected a president who does not believe in climate change (believes it is a Chinese hoax, to quote him literally). All the current research suggests that we don’t have much time to make a big dent in CO2 emissions: the damage done will soon become irreversible and unpredicatable in scope. We cannot afford to lose the next four years. In all the rightful distress at Trump’s hatefullness, I don’t want us to lose sight of this other big problem which will have catastrophic effects world-wide. Somehow we have to keep climate change high on our to-do agenda for the next four years. We have to leverage the Republicans and Democrats who do see the threat and try to get something done on this…

  • Grace, I’m also a fairly new arrival in Ulster County. Some new local friends and I want to get together to brainstorm action and activism on a local level. If you’d like to join us, let me know– we’re just getting an email list of interested people together.
    -Sara

  • Thank you so much for this essay. I found myself searching for words this morning that would comfort and rekindle hope. I found them here, along with the first thoughts of what we do next. How to leverage the power and strength of all of us who are not white men to make the country better for all.

    • Beautifully written-thank you so much taking the time to express what so many of us feel. I am trying to move forward with grace and empowerment. We are a world with so many brilliant, compassionate, creative peoples maybe a day like today will bring us closer together somehow. Again thank you again for making my day a bit better. All my best to you. Robbin

  • You have expressed beautifully what so many of us are feeling. I have countless things running through my mind at the moment. Fear of what the future holds, anger with how selfish and blind people can be, frustration with how things played out, worry about my college aged daughters, wonder about when I might stop feeling like I’ve been kicked in the stomach and yes, regret that I (a Canadian) reside in this country with my American husband and dual citizen kids. Also running through my mind is, a desire for something positive (which is why I messaged you Grace first thing this morning, to confirm the time for your event in Philly tomorrow. I’m sure you likely asked yourself what my problem is given the circumstances, but I know it will be filled with the energy and love we all need right now), the knowledge this country has been through worse, much worse and has prevailed, in four years we get to choose again (I know damage can be done in four years, but then it can be potentially undone), in two years there will be a midterm election and choices can be made then too, and finally, there were more people who voted against the president elect than for him. No doubt about it, this is a very sad and disappointing day. We do need to take time to digest and reflect, but not too much time. There’s work to be done. We cannot allow ourselves to be dragged backward. I truly believe something positive and meaningful will grow out of this; it just has to. Peace to all and ever onward!!

  • This morning I woke up crying…and then I remembered, my son was already awake. So I cleaned my face and proceded to talk to him. He was already in panic, as a 16 year old teenage gay boy, with muslims, hispanics, imigrants and LGBT community friends…his friends where texting him…Should I be afraid to go to school today? Is my family leaving the Country? Do I have to leave the Country? Should I be afraid of more homofobia around us? ect ect…I stopped him, and told him very quickly…”Fuck Fear”… First of all, I’m here to protect you…second of all, like us, there a millions of people that are going to be very vigilant, defending the rights that we so hardly have work for. I’m in for the GOOD fight…the fight for a better future for my son and his friends that are my family… I will not let Fear win….

  • My words are stuck in my throat and I, too, am trying to sort out my thoughts by writing. All morning so far. Seems the only way I can think straight. While my 40 minute drive into work this morning looked the same, it sure didn’t feel right.

    I have always felt so proud of my country and this election has uncovered things I never even contemplated about how half of our citizens may feel and think.

    I am still trying to wrap my mind around it. That there are people who are so different from me and the people I know – who feel such hatred and bigotry – I am stunned. It has been quite the revelation. On the other hand, a large part of our society feels strong, responsible and open to diversity of both people and thought. I can’t imagine being any other way. I will not tolerate being fearful or intimidated and I hope, with all my heart, that no one has to start now.

    Thanks for your words, they have helped me cope with my feelings about an impossible prospect.

  • Thank you Grace and everyone who has left comments. It is so important to allow ourselves to grieve through this. I often find it easier to get consumed with the media analysis because if I let my heart feel what is going on, I find myself overwhelmed with sadness and despair. But feeling all of this is important to be able to heal. Not only within ourselves but as a country. We have to find a way to move forward together; as hard as it may seem. I have to believe that people all want happiness and to avoid suffering; however their misguided actions may be.

  • Let’s do as Grace has suggested and run toward what scares us. We are a tiny moment in time and may be we had to go here to get somewhere better.
    There is so much to do.
    Shouldn’t be too much of a surprise that we are were we are today. It is not a statement that we can not handle a woman president. It is a statement that Hillary represents a lot of what is wrong with politics.
    And for any creepiness that could be dug up on Trump, there was plenty to dig up on the Clintons and I am sure Trump was well aware of that.
    This country is crying for change in DC. It was so loud and clear and the Democrats didn’t read it loud and clear.
    There are a lot of people out there with legitimate concerns.
    The $ the Hillary has spent in all her campaigns is shocking. That money could be put to such better use.
    How do we feel about the media? Presidential campaigns have become big business for the media and this is dangerous.
    Do we want another two year campaign? Do we want the amount of money Hillary spent to ever be spent again on a campaign? We have to work to get big business out of campaigns, we have to work to shorten the election season. It is so frustrating that the elected officials spend so much time blocking each other for the sake of blocking each other. But what are we doing in our own lives? Are we listening to legitimate concerns of people who are not exactly like us? There is so much to learn here. And this is a time that is ripe for change. Liberals talk about a country that is inclusive but I find that liberals can be exclusive to people who are not in their circle. We definitely need more than two parties. This is so important. What can we do on this front? May be the most important thing. President Obama has a very high approval rating but many of his supporters went for Trump. What does this tell us? It is a waste of time to predict gloom and doom for the next four years. We don’t know what will happen.
    But we do know so much about DC. We know both candidates were unpopular. We know presidential campaigns are way to long and there is way to much money involved. We know there are people outside our circle of concerns that have legitimate issues. We know we need to press Congress to listen to us and not the gun lobby, issuance lobby and so on. So I see this as an incredible time to get to work.

    • K

      It’s true, we don’t know a lot of what’s to come. But we do actually know many of the things this candidacy has promised us, like the deportation of immigrants, restricted rights for LGBTQ people and women and a lack of safe spaces for people of color. So yes, there is a lot to learn and a lot that is unknown, but so much of what IS known is terrifying for a lot of us who fall into those groups.

      Grace

      • I am the mother of some of the minorities you describe. I have friends and family of the minorities you describe. I work with the minorities you describe and others. i do not care if you are a man, woman, what color, gay … I want to know you. I want to kow about your family, where did you come from, what do you do. My relationships and those of my family are based on getting to know a person with an open mind. I have been blessed to have been treated with love and respect by my family, which happens to be largely male and by my husband. My husband and I have raised children that look for goodness and common ground in people before anything else.
        I am not a stranger to concern about all the groups of people you describe.
        But I am always looking for how we can get to the nitty gritty and what are really the problems. That is why I wrote the post on social media in your most recent business section. I am very concerned with how people can create an untouchable image with social media and that is taken to mean “good person” or “good business” and this gets passed all over with out going deeper than the picture.
        So we have to go deep now. What went wrong? It is many faceted. We have to go deep to find out how to get better. We have to get to know each other face to face. Of course, I am thinking what to tell my children. Of course it is “Press On”. We have so much work to do and there is. They are quite disillusioned but life is hard and if we are lucky enough to be blessed with health life will be long. I don’t want my kids buying into despair now. They are talented and good. I heard a woman on the radio today say she felt strangely empowered becasue she knew she had and may be this happened becasue she wasn’t involved. Local is powerful. I want to take this opportunity to strengthen and do better. We can’t spread fear. I have someone very close who is having a pretty hard time with cancer and this person refuses to live in fear. If this person can do that, I can not live in fear today. What are the Obamas taught us? What are they going to do? They are not going to live in fear, they are going to get to work doing good things when they leave the White House.

  • Who knew that a design website would offer the most insightful and thoughtful responses to the biggest political shift of our lives. I’ve been so moved by Grace’s essay and all your posts. Much of the world shares you fear and concern, but we’re with all our American friends in your struggle for fairness, equality and dignity.

    Bon courage friends and much love.

  • Grace-
    Thank you for this. I went to sleep heartbroken last night and cried as I got ready for work this morning. I keep blinking back tears… I can’t stop crying. I’m so angry, and sad, and feel completely helpless right now, but it is a comfort to know that I’m not alone. And neither are you. If anything, this is a calling for us to fighter harder to defend the rights of ALL Americans. I agree we need to work harder to create a more meaningful dialog between the citizens of this country. I’m taking these election results as a challenge to cultivate patience, courage and more peace in the hopes that we can somehow find a way to fix this broken system, this broken country and our broken hearts. Thank you for the love, beauty and compassion DesignSponge brings to to us all. I truly enjoy coming to this place every day to soak it in.

    Allison

  • Thank you Grace for sharing this. This blog has evolved so much from its exclusively aesthetic origins. I still love those beautiful “respites from stress” posts found here and from other design blogs. But I feel it is important and in-line with the values and character of this blog (which highlights social awareness and diversity within design so well) that you are sharing today what many of us are feeling. There is still hope yet.

  • Who knew that half of our country feels the way that they do – to vote in someone with his frightening feelings toward others that don’t look, feel, or act like he does? I have never been so fearful for my country, in my 63 years of life. BUT, I WILL NOT LET THE FEAR WIN. Peace and love to all of you~

  • Thank you Grace. This honest reflection (and Hillary’s concession speech) have made it a little bit easier to face everything today. The work is far from done…not giving up hope!

  • I am sad, afraid, shocked, mad, exhausted and confused. I had so much hope, optimism, unexpected exuberance for the possibilities that this election truly represented to me. My daughter, what do I say to her. What I did say was, I am here to protect you — that has and will not change; the election didn’t go how we hoped but we will get through it together.

    But she is understandably confused and scared. She is young, only 14, she is still questioning who she is and how she fits into this country, our world. And last night she was stopped in her tracks, cold, with the realization that so many of her fellow Americans don’t believe and hold dear the same things she does.

    Last night, she shared her feeling of loneliness and anger, bewilderment and fear. And as her mother I feel sick that I can’t shield her from that hurt and pain. Today I am numb and nauseated; unsure how to proceed, but I know I have to figure it out — for myself and for my sweet girl.

  • As always, thank you for sharing your thoughts, Grace, and for a safe space for reflection. I have been in tears since last night. I fear for how this will shape my young son’s life. I am terrified but we will be brave. We will not be silenced. We will always stand for what is right. It will be hard and it will may get really bad for a while. I live in NYC, a bubble, but today the city is already different. I witnessed an election-related fight on the subway this morning and crying on the streets near the Trump building. The sky is as gray as everyone’s countenances. My vibrant home seems hopeless and sad, like nothing I have seen since 2001. But we’ll pick ourselves up. We have to.

  • Grace –

    Thank you for the encouraging words. Maybe this is the rock-bottom we needed to hit to wake up to the realities of our country right now. The 18-25 year old statistics from this election cycle show that the future is bright and love and progress will eventually prevail. The same momentum toward a progressive future that has elated me in recent years has so many people in our country feeling petrified and resistant, so here we are. The future IS bright, though; this may be some devastating hurdle we need to face as the divided, democratic nation we are.

    Thank you for making me feel a little bit better.
    -Lindsay

  • You have summed up exactly how I am feeling today. I went to bed last night with hope and optimism and woke up to feelings of anger, fear and disappointment. I just watched Hillary’s concession speech and have a renewed spirit about our country and the many diverse and beautiful people that make America what it is. Kalyn from Effie’s Paper wrote a beautiful piece sighing Maya Angelou poem “Still I Rise” and the words are so appropriate to how far we’ve come as a nation, how far we still have to go and how we still have to rise up and be the America we all believe in.

  • Thank you, Grace, for speaking to what is happening today. And for your words of openness and honesty.

  • Thank you so much. I went to bed last night certain that I would wake up to a beautiful day in our history. I was looking forward to putting this ugly election cycle behind us. Now all I have is a nightmare I can’t wake up from.

    As the daughter of naturalized citizens, I am sad and disappointed. I am afraid, angry, heartbroken. The one thing I know for sure is that I will work harder than ever to ensure our country’s true values are honored in the future.

    I know no quote or platitude can alleviate the pain and fear so many of us are feeling, but these words brought me some comfort, and I hope they do the same for some of you. “For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die.” – Ted Kennedy

  • Thank you Grace.

    I am somewhat relieved to note that Hillary did win the popular vote, even if only by 200,000. And our government, (thank you, founding fathers, ) has its own checks and balances.

    It is, however a wake up call for those of us who thought America was mostly a country of people who care about their fellow citizen, no matter their race, gender, sexual orientation or disability. People who care about the environment and want to build a better America, not live in a past that has died.

    As you said Grace, we have a lot of work to do. Get to know how to contact your senators, representatives, governors, mayors and aldermans. Our voices ( and our votes), will need to be stronger and louder than ever.

  • Yes we have work ahead of us indeed, it’s too bad our next leader doesn’t know a thing about it. He has bullied his way through everything his entire life to do what’s best for him and there are some bigger bullies out there that will take advantage of it. This position will just inflate his megalomaniacle tendencies. We shall see what we shall see as with every change of power. God Bless Us All!

  • I would like to master English well enough to thank you in a more extensive way for this post. I send you a huge hug from the Canary Islands. Strength and courage in these circumstances. Things are not much better here.

    With love, Nazareth.

  • I am sorry for you. I know what you are feeling. It is what I and so many Americans felt four years when Mr. Obama was re-elected.

    • Gale

      I hear you and respect your difference of opinion. But I have to ask- did you honestly feel nervous for your personal safety and security under Obama? As a gay person with many people of color in my life, I have heard first hand how this presidency has threatened our basic human rights (from basic safety and to housing and job safety) and promised to act on them. To my knowledge, those sorts of claims were never made by Obama or Biden based on anyone’s identity.

      Grace

  • I’ve stayed away from the news all day and then said, “let me see what Grace wrote today.” I knew that I would find some comfort and I thank you for that. As a black lesbian living in an urban city I know how much i and my community have to lose and it’s frightening.

  • I awoke this morning at 5am, just to check the election, i already had that sinking feeling. At 6am GMT i knew, that this would be a day i would never forget. I knew that i had to explain to my two daughters that Hillary would not be elected. I was completely gutted, nauseous and shocked. My girls 8&11 scratched out trumps face on every page of the Economist early this year. Even they, living so far away realised the perils you will face.
    Bigotry is gaining ground, not only in the US but throughout this planet
    Know that millions of people throughout Europe share your pain, and anguish. We also share your fears.
    I wish every one of you, never ending love, strength and courage each and every time you face a person who cannot reconise you for the beautiful wonderful human being that ypu are.
    Love from Zurich

  • Thank you very much for these words. They are so much needed. I also have been trying to just take everything in and listen to my family & friends. We are all sadden and in dissbelieve. I just want to send everyone a huge hug and let them know that tomorrow is a new day. ☺️?✨

  • Hi Grace and everyone in the comments,

    I realise that I am from the UK and am only 17, but I heard the result of the US election today and I was so saddened. To know that half of your country can vote for someone stands for everything which is wrong with the world worries me. It brings me hope to read this post and the comments and hear from people on social media that they will continue to fight for all minorities and groups which are discriminated against. It worries me that the world holds so much hate, so I really hope we can fix it with love.

    Sending my love from the UK,
    Hannah

  • I’m sorry this election outcome saddened so many of you. But, there are those of us who are excited. I’m not saying I agree with everything he says, but I am for fairness. Christians have been knocked foe for so long under the guise of political correctness. I deserve as much freedom to be who I am as much as anyone else.

    I am sorry that you feel so much loss. I am and always have been proud to be an American and am thankful to live in one nation under God.

    Thanks for reading

    • Linda

      I hear you and understand that there are some who are excited, and I don’t begrudge you your right to be happy that your candidate of choice won. I just honestly am struggling with understanding how people can feel as though Christians in America have had their human rights and personal safety threatened in the same way this incoming administration has threatened LGBTQ people and people of color outright (their right to basic rights, job and housing safety).

      Grace

      • Grace,

        I never comment but I have to tell you that Christians in America DO have threats to jobs and education and religion. When I was an MSW student I was open about being Catholic with my cohort – a place that was supposed to be safe and where we could all talk about our lives, school, and field placements to get help and encouragement. You know what I got? Bullied. I got hate mail. I got ignored and gossiped about. When I took the emails full of hate to the school nothing was ever done.
        I’ve lost out on jobs because I am Catholic. I was a student active in a Catholic student group and that is on my resume. However I know of at least 3 jobs where I was passed over for that reason.

        Just as how I have problems with people who ignore discrimination based on race, gender, sexual orientations, identities, and more I also have problems who try and pretend that religious discrimination doesn’t exist. I didn’t think it did but having experienced it now I will be honest and tell people about it.

  • Thank you, Grace. I know that we have a lot of work ahead of us. I’m scared. But today I’ve heard from so many that just need to grieve. Thank you for allowing us that.

  • Thank you Grace, for thoughtfully and eloquently expressing what so many of us are feeling and grappling with provided peace and hope for our future as a country. I do hate that we are reduced to continually using labels to identify ourselves, but… I am human. A black, female with three young adult children who all voted in this election in a “red” state filled with neighbors, friends and loved-ones. I don’t recognize this America, I am also still in shock and reluctantly hopeful that this really can not be the end.

  • So beautifully put. And, thank you for being an advocate for all women and sharing your perspective. Today is a tough day for so many people- the sadness is palpable. I believe in the humanity of our country and know we will find ways to come together and connect through compassion and kindness. Love will overcome; it just has to.

  • Thank you Grace for your commentary…wise and thoughtful…
    A lot of people are shaken by these results..We cannot continue to allow ourselves to be shaken by this..if so, it will take our energetic power that flows within all of us…the uplifting words Michelle Obama were inspiring and also powerful…I want to be as she is, to feel that energy and positive path that is a gift to all humans when they are born..to express ourselves creatively with passion and love.
    I found these words : The dogmas of the quiet past, are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise — with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disentail ourselves, and then we shall save our country.
    –December 1, 1862 Message to Congress

    ABRAHAM LINCOLN –
    ..essentially, do not go low, go High! Our energy, our power, is dissapated with fear and apprehension and energized with conscious, positive action. We are the world, and how we see the world is how we are affected by it…it is not an easy task to constantly remind ourselves that we will not have fear or anxiety, it is a dedicated attention to our thoughts and feelings each day..This IS a beautiful world we live in, our fear blocks us from seeing, feeling, appreciating it. Our collective consciousness can recognize fear and feed on it. On the flip side our conscious love and respect of ourselves and all other human beings is also recognized and passed on. It is a goal to aspire to..let’s go high.

  • ‘… today, I need that space to be quiet. I need room to listen, to try to understand and to try to make a plan for how to move forward and support the people around me who feel unsafe and unprotected …’

    Although I am not American and do not live in the States I am feeling the same emotions from afar. My thoughts are with you. I too am needing to be quiet today because this outcome will impact everyone.

    I send you my very best wishes for strength and for moving forward.

  • Thank you for your kind and thoughtful words Grace. I don’t come to Design Sponge for politics but it does feel good to know that the woman who curates this site is so thoughtful and justice minded.

    Please know your friends in Canada are also feeling the pain of the hatred and intolerance that this American election has brought to the surface.

    Let’s continue loving and fighting for a more just world.

  • Sometimes we need to grieve and process our anger and sadness before we can figure out what’s next. Thank you for recognizing this on the blog. Your recognition of or commentary on political/personal issues keeps me coming back just as much as any of the design content.

  • Thank you for your post and the comments. I feel a bit more empowered knowing you are out there in America with me.

    I was so proud, so hopeful to finally have the right to vote for a woman as President. How could my fellow citizens find a self-confessed… We’ll, you’ve seen the videos and the articles. I was wrong. My neighbors have let me down. Badly.

    Let us pick up the pieces and carry on. There are, and always will be, more of us basically decent folk than of the bullies. Together we are stronger than the violence and humiliation they crave to inflict us with.

    I wish you peace and love, courage and endurance.

  • These are challenging times. From a green little corner on the other side of the Pacific, our hearts go out to you. Be strong, be kind, and take courage from the knowledge that you are not alone.

  • This is a very sad time for our world. I am so grateful for all the kind and loving people I know out there. Keep the good work! It is the only way we are going to get out of this terrible mess.

    Thank you, Grace! You are a kind and loving person.

  • Very nicely put Grace. Very kind thoughtful words. As a Canadian watching in absolute shock. Please know the world is watching and we care.

  • As a mom and citizen of this confused world, I know that my first job is to teach my children kindness, acceptance, faith that women will break that ceiling someday, and most of all hope in the strength of human nature. I’ve had to explain to my four children that the country has made a choice contrary to our beliefs in love, and that we just need to try to love more to compensate.

    It’s a hard lesson to teach our children right now. Thank you for showing that we are not in this alone.

  • Again, as Grace says, let’s run toward what scares us. Let’s get informed. Why did Trump win? It’s not so simple. If we believe that everyone who voted for him does not care about “us” we can not move forward. Listen to Terry Gross from Nov 9. Listen to a podcast called “Hey Liberal Listen Up”. There is so much opportunity here to make what seems like a step backwards make us better. What can we do? I mentioned this before but the NRA has a stronghold on our Congress. We can not blame Trump for that, only ourselves. What can we do to make our representatives listen to us instead of the gun lobby or the insurance lobby? What can we do to get big money out of politics. The twp party system is not good. Look what it gave us. Two candidates that were the most disliked candidates ever. So people had two rotten choices, what are they going to do? If we all did something today, something concrete – make an appointment with your congress people, join a group working to cut campaign spending, we could do so much better.

    • K

      I agree, it’s not all so simple. I’m with you on the part about moving forward together and working with local elected officials. I plan to make that a huge part of my personal life going forward. However, I don’t believe we all share the opinion that we had two “rotten” candidates.

      Just this morning I’ve been going line by line through the Republican Party’s agenda for 2016 and I’m terrified at the thought that my basic human rights as an LGBTQ person could be removed very soon. Reversing the marriage equality act, reversing gay adoption rights and supporting amendments that make it legal to restrict housing and work based on sexual orientation are all openly on the table now.

      I agree that there has been a LOT of liberal complacency. There are no two ways around that. But there are a lot of people whose basic human rights and safety are now being considered less important, and proudly so, in a way that makes a lot of us feel paralyzed with fear. But I agree, none of us can afford to be paralyzed right now. It’s time to act, stand up, speak up and work together to ensure that we don’t actually take these steps backward and let any agenda that advances racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia or hatred succeed.

      Grace

      • Hello Grace, I am a huge fan of your work and blog. I am not from America, but reading these comments it is apparent that so many people have been hurt by the policies and decisions of past governments and presidents and so many are fearful of policies that may possibly be implemented by the Trump administration. Those who have governed your country have caused great angst to your society and those who will be given the privilege of governing from January 2017, I hope and pray, will listen and learn from past mistakes and put policies in place that begin to mend and give individuals hope. And, I agree, that it starts with each person (no matter which nation you call home) treating each other with the respect and dignity that we ourselves like to be treated with. And, I understand, that this is hard to do when one is on the receiving end of pain and anguish. I do think it’s important, as K said, to become involved in our local communities and work on improving issues unique to them. And, I’m guilty of not becoming involved in mine and working to improve it – something I am going to change.

  • I just sat watching the TV in shock for ages, I kept thinking maybe if I looked hard enough things would change. I can’t believe he got in. I can’t believe Brexit happened. I am very worried about the state of the World and how we live in it with other people.

  • Grace, I understand your words and feel the same way. We are still united, citizens of the US, even though there is a chasm between us. We must find a way to work together, to love together, to be a light to each other, even among the dissention. It is going to be a challenging journey for me to strive for the high road and to be a compassionate example in the face of hate, ignorance and bullying. Thanks for writing so eloquently what we all are feeling.

  • Nice thoughts, but I’m hanging on to my anger. I’m letting it wash over me, letting it bring the pile up into my throat, letting it make me cry and scream, because I remember!
    I was there in 1978 when hatred and fear murdered Milk and Moscone. I was there for the marches when that hatred and fear gave Dan White a slap on the wrist.
    I was there when Aids started to eat up the community I loved and worked so hard for and the President couldn’t be bothered to acknowledge it’s very existence, so I protested and marched.
    I was there when my bi-racial son was treated differently than my white daughter. When he suffered bias and racism and couldn’t lead the life that his white sister could.
    I was there when people wouldn’t take me seriously in business because I was a woman,
    So, hell no, I won’t let go of it. Because once again we are faced with the fear and hatred of everything I hold dear. I will allow that anger to motivate me to once again get out and march and protest and put my money where my mouth is to save the freedoms for my children, my friends, members of my community and my grandchildren.

  • Thank you so much Grace. Your remarks provided great comfort and by offering them in this forum, you exemplified that the gravity of the event which just occurred has the power to impact the very ability to enjoy the simple things we love. This demonstrated appreciation outside of the political arena is a timely reminder of the goodness that lies in others never met, and reassures me that there are great things yet to come.

  • I needed to hear this, thank you. We are mourning now. But in time we will have to all come together to fight and protect our cherished rights, the environment, our water, our food and communities. And it will be hard.

  • Grace, I am so happy and grateful to have DesignSponge to turn to during this stressful and emotional week. One other thing I am doing to move forward right now is writing a thank you letter to HRC for all that she has done. Thank you letters can be sent to :

    Hillary Clinton
    Post Office Box 5256
    New York, NY 10185-5256.

    I am even looking back at some old DS posts for inspiration on DIY lettering and card making :)

  • I share your sentiments, and am using today to figure out my best way to move forward and work to protect our basic human rights. The divisiveness of this is more than I know how to handle, and having family members who support Trump is complex. (Being conservative is one thing, but to stand by this man boggles the mind) Thank you for sharing.

  • Thank you so for those thoughtful words. I don’t want anyone to become complacent over this. I’m so afraid that this will all die down and we’ll just accept what is. In my sadness and disbelief, I’m searching so deeply for something to hold on to, something to DO to help all of us.
    We as women must continue to unite and support each other.

  • I’m ashamed of myself. I’ve talked a good game but not played. Voting is only the first step. Writing my council members, my state and federal representatives is not even a step. It is time to involve myself with others who are like-minded and organize, to put time and effort in each week. I’m of the half generation after Secretary Clinton. At eleven a classmate’s father, Dr. King, was shot for his words. We are still divided by superficial characteristics – ethnicity, religion, culture – keeping us from recognizing our common humanity. There is no “other,” even when it is one with radically different opinions from our own. We need to see the good in all and draw it out, sometimes drag it out, never violently. I donated to Planned Parenthood yesterday, and to our long-shot candidate in a run-off for the Senate. I plan to volunteer for his campaign and work to make him a sure shot. I realize this election won’t effect me to the extent it will others economically, but all are my family, even when they’re bone-headed and not using rational, factual thinking, acting on feelings and gut. Heart and mind combined; we’re awake. I see young feminists again, art activists, LGBT rights organizers, Native American, AA, and more and more and more jumping up and working! We will change the nation, and the world this time. Please. This old cancer/car maiming/flood surviving woman will be marching on her one foot, fighting back with facts and heart. Peace, child, it will happen, but only with action.

  • I have a tremendous amount of respect for this post. I was surprised when many lifestyle/design blogs I read continued on as if Wednesday were a normal day when you might be interested in nail art or baking. D*S had the balls to recognize that the things we all value within these blogs–creativity, beauty, people who think/act/look/behave in the way that make them feel like their truest selves–now feel in question. It is Thursday evening and now that I have cried on my knees more than once I am able to see what is good about this week: I am proud of my life and my values and the people with whom I choose to be surrounded. I am committed to giving more money this year to non-profits I believe than I ever have. I will do a better job of keeping in touch with old friends. I will appreciate the things in life that bring joy and beauty into my life. That includes this blog. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you, everyone.

    • When DS regularly features artists and designers of all walks of life and interests, it simply feels normal. It’s good; it’s interesting; and hearing the artists discuss their work, be it political or aesthetic or silly or macabre or what have you is, always, an invaluable discussion.

      What isn’t interesting is Grace’s incessant need to point out what a champion she is. The value of all these varied artists are overshadowed by, what seems to be, Grace’s desire for a pat on the back.

      I haven’t been on this site since after the Pulse shootings, when she wrote a post about being offended by another blogger saying he couldn’t wait to “murder a hamburger.” Grace’s post was so absurd, I read it several times to verify that it was real. I am a writer. Words are my freedom. I was born speaking in sarcastic hyperbole. No one tells me what I can and can’t say. A design blog will not police my language. Trump will not police my language. No one. I’m an agender person who grew up and still lives in Orlando. I drive by Pulse every few weeks as I go about my life and errands.. A week after the shootings, as my husband and I were taking a drive–it was June, at this time, and Orlando was built in the middle of a swamp, mind you–I said, “I would skin someone alive for an iced tea.” We pulled over and got an iced tea. Everyone survived.

      I will not return to this website, which is a shame because, when the content is simply allowed to be content, it is often beautiful and enriching. I’m a far-left progressive. I’m angry about the election. But I’m not here for Grace’s performance of her liberalism.

      • RM

        I’m sorry you won’t be returning to discuss this. I hope you will be, because I’d like to talk to you about the way these posts have made you feel. I hear that you feel policed or restricted and that is not my intention, but I own any effects of anything I (or anyone else) posts here and would truly be happy to talk, online or off, about your feelings.

        When you said, “No one tells me what I can and can’t say”, I hear you. But I feel strongly that voicing an opinion is not the same as telling someone what they can and cannot say. In the same way that you are free to tell me that my language makes you feel restricted, I am free to communicate what words, language and boundaries make me feel safe.

        My desire is to always hear, understand and try to find a middle ground between two different points of view. I hope you’ll be open to discussing yours further with me in some way.

        Grace

  • Grace,

    Thank you so much for posting this article. It truly warmed my heart to read. My name is Manuel, and I mainly grew up in Hyde Park Chicago for the majority of my life which is essentially a very educated college town within the city. The wee hours of Wednesday I became nostalgic thinking of Bret Harte Elementary and the other children who attended. I also looked at a class photo on Facebook that was one decade before I attended the school. In our classes were people from every culture. All I could do is smile and feel so fortunate as I realized the first time I had hate thrown my way was in my college town in DeKalb as I rode a bike.

    I grew up in very complicated situations. Sounds strange, “situations,” which is not as strange as many would think but so often every family that has what is out of the “norm” just don’t talk about it. Because somewhere along people lives they had been brainwashed to believe a home should be Leave It to Beaver, The Brady Bunch, etc. Anything without a humorous outcome or twist is shameful. The idea of shame I parked away from in my mid-30’s and have never looked back.

    My mother is from Madrid Spain and when you see her ethnicity or her paperwork she is listed as Caucasian. My father U.S.A. born of Native American descent, African American Descent, and Irish Descent. Listed on his death certificate and birth certificate as Afro-American. On my birth certificate, my father was listed as colored. My parents met while my father served his time in U.S. Air Force in Madrid. After my father’s service to his country from the United States writing letters to my grandfather manage to convince my grandfather because he had served his country it afforded him opportunities and had no reason to fear for his daughter. Our country divides us by the shade of our pigment and uses ethnicity as a guise. So at age four my parent’s marriage was illegal in 20 something states and could be arrested in those states. I learned this in high school thanks to the truly well-rounded education we were so fortunate to get in Chicago Public Schools. OK, let’s be honest a Chicago Public School within the “jurisdiction” of the University of Chicago.

    At the age of 12, I would have to find out my father was gay, another story. So here you have me, twelve, already knew I was gay (different), during the Black Power movement some of my fathers side of the family got a little into the rhetoric, and all I could think was my mother is white, and she doesn’t hate anyone, my grandparents, aunts, uncle, and family in Spain are white, and they don’t hate anyone. I chose to shut them out in my head. I refused to be part of that.

    In the late 80’s and through the 90’s I held the hand of friends who were dying senselessly of Aids which in the 80’s had no name. But was known as the gay disease. Gay people organized and protested in numbers. We all came together and said we are no different and we will not be ignored. And yet look today at the complacency in the gay community as well. I can say this especially after a good friend organized a night our for dinner with eight of us. During the conversation, one of them said I am voting for the very first time. This is a 54-year-old man. I went in for the kill with my line of questioning. Bottom line, his white New Yorkers privilege was no longer working for him and yet he had no intelligent defense of what he was saying.

    Today, I am married to the most wonderful man, and I saw him become unraveled at the results of the election. I attacked the complacency of America and people’s attitudes and would always rap my point up with it is time to be diligent, watch every piece of legislations, vote out all the other bad politicians we can, and protest in numbers letting all the politicians know we are watching. While everyone is crying foul and no fair at least this is not the 60’s where evidence had a way of disappearing. Today we have cameras on our phone which we can upload video as we shot to social media. We have more tools than ever to affect change.

    People need to stop bitching already and make a plan. And for those who crashed the Canadian Immigration website on Tuesday about 11 PM looking to flee your country, I say to you, you are cowards and have no backbone. Fear is exactly why this country is in this shape because you will fight for nothing. You want easy. Wake up, look at the rest of the world and maybe what you will discover you took what you thought you had for granted.

    What we need now is to support each other and make change happen through actions, not just words.

  • First time poster–thank you for writing this! So many blogs didn’t even acknowledge that half the voting country voted for someone who is putting the safety of many Americans at risk. These issues need to be human rights issues, not partisan issues. This site promotes art and creativity, and the world needs creative minds to envision a more tolerant world. Above, RM calls this post a “performance.” As a writer who thinks language is revolutionary, I hope that if this post was “performance” that we all start performing A LOT. Thank you again, Grace.

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