Just a few more hours

Last night my friend called me. She is like my second mom and is a lifelong Republican. But, she called me just to tell me she was so excited for Obama to be nominated that she could hardly stand it. She had been watching coverage all day long and had her DVR set to record everything today. She told me she and her husband had voted for Obama. I was floored. She hadn’t voted in years and thought politics in general were a joke. “He is my president.” “I’ve never been this excited or hopeful.” These are things I never expected to hear my friend say.

This is what is so unique and special about Obama. He has managed to bring so many people together from such a wide swath of the populace.

I have been excited for so long that my emotion today is mostly just relief. I cannot wait to the reigns are officially handed over. Things are so bad in so many ways but I have never felt more comfortable in who will be dealing with the challenges we face. And a big part of that confidence is that he is asking everyone to be a part of it. I have never been asked to help, to stand up and be a part the process in this way. Even in our most desperate hour, we were told to go shopping. We have been so long alienated from the government that is supposed to be ours, it is exciting and empowering to be asked to do our part.

I am at work now. I am removing all my 1-20-09 paraphernalia from my bookcase. My hat that says “Bush’s Last Day”. My Bush stress doll. The several tins of mints – “National Embarrassmints” “Indictmints” “Impeachmints”. The little magnet that says “Rarely is the question asked: Is our children learning?” The one that says “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me you can’t get fooled again.” The hat that says “I love my country, it’s the government I’m afraid of” no longer is true. I love my country. I am part of the government now. All these things will go in a box, kept so I will never forget exactly how bad it can be when we don’t take the responsibility that is ours.


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