We Have Today

Image description: A sunrise. Public domain.

I heard the “Rocket Man” lyric, and I felt a sudden wave of various emotions. “Oh, I think it’s gonna be a long, long time…” As my Spotify app continued to shuffle my songs, this lyric stood out to me. If there’s anything I know how to do, it’s wait.

I know how to actively wait. (More about that in a moment). Testimony: I can think of so many chapters of my life when I kept living a day by day life, while also pondering the bigger picture and waiting for the on-the-ground conditions to change — within communities, within situations, within conflicts, within circumstances, within pandemic lockdowns, within eras of time.

And I’ve lived to see things change meaningfully, sometimes in remarkable, unexpected ways. I can point to a number of stories like that.

As I said, I know how to actively wait. This isn’t passive.

I know how to live well in the day I’m in, continuing not only to hope for change, but to move it in that direction actively, even in small, but still significant ways — not as an individual only, but within a nexus of relationships. I know that this adds up too. It takes time, and yes, I do grow tired of active waiting.

And it’s crucial to remember too, that people get hurt in difficult conditions, and this is worth grieving, and raging. And they are worth protecting.

I realize that living well in the day I’m in is a *skill.* I was thinking about this on the way home yesterday. This is a skill that’s been developed in me. Maybe in you too? Not without feeling. Not looking away. Not shrugging. But also, when we’re not actively grieving and raging (valid), we are truly protecting, and living, building the world we want to see, and whenever possible, not letting people or situations-at-hand steal our joy.

So here we are. And here this is. And we should feel our feelings, not looking away, and not shrugging.

And we also have this day. We have this very day.

Renee Roederer

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