When the inauguration was underway last week, I admittedly was not as exuberant as my peers were, and I was beyond disappointed about it. There was nothing — not the gorgeous coats, wonderful performances, or historic swearing-in — that could make my spirit soar. Sure, I was relieved that Donald Trump would not be in office for the next four years, but I was depleted by the sheer cruelty that he and the rest of administration unleashed upon this country.
Back in November 2016 when the election was called, I knew I had to move out of my apartment because one of my roommates was a Trump supporter, and he had been making my living very uncomfortable in the weeks leading up to the results. Since then, like many other Americans, I’d witnessed too much: the Muslim ban, the transgender military ban, the “very fine people” after the Charlottesville rally, the migrant children snatched from their parents and detained in cages, the lax attitude toward the Covid-19 pandemic, the insurrection at the Capitol building, the continual gaslighting. We’ve learned from Trump’s presidency that there was no bottom to his ineptitude to the challenges our nation faces. And yet, more than 70 million people voted for this man in November 2020. Seventy million. May we never downplay the magnitude of such a number.
Now that Trump has moved out of the White House and has been kicked off of Twitter, I will say that I do not wake up already anxious over what he’s going to say or do each day. But I will never forget his reign of terror, and I hope I live long enough so that I can make sure that no one will whitewash his history (because they surely will).
Since the inauguration though, my shoulders can finally stop grazing my earlobes. My upper back is less tight, and I’m getting better sleep. But I still need time—much, much time to process.
The good news is that, thankfully, I now have the space and time to do it.