Healing through social media
Today I got the heart monitor that will be attached to my chest until November 5. Not everyone has the opportunity to have a heart monitor when they’re having symptoms. I wish everyone did. Also today I found the words to say what I am feeling about those on the Left who hurt each other with criticism. I posted on Facebook a link to this article, and I had this to say about it:
Artists may be involved in direct service to impacted communities, and they may reach out to people who are not yet on board. Some artists reach out to liberals and neoliberals to call them in. Every revolutionist who grew up in the USA had to unlearn toxic brainwashing before they got where they are. We need each other. We need people who make art, people who make photographs, people who dish up soup and sandwiches, people who write poems, people who chain themselves to buildings, people who run for office, people who set trashcans on fire, people who knit hearts and light candles, people who sit or walk in meditation, people who write letters and blogs. Can we stop judging each other? Can we help each other out? Can we be models of justice and caring and compassion for each other? Those of us on the Left are up against a violent fascist State and all the weaponry and propaganda that money and power can buy. We are trying to relieve suffering and establish justice FOR THE FIRST TIME, because the USA has never known what justice looks like. We can only work for justice with the skills we have at this moment. We are all building our skills. We need ALL the people who are even vaguely possibly tentatively on our side, flawed as we all are.
The self-portrait was difficult to make with electrodes attached to my chest, but I got it on about the tenth try. The hat reminds me of my grandfather. The Iron Front pin on my hat is a gift of some loving activists who came to visit me Saturday night with roses and hand-knitted gifts.
Soon after I posted my statement, a young man in our community posted one of my photographs of him with these words: “Compassion, understanding, and solidarity are more important than being right. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. A lot of us forget this. I've forgotten it multiple times. I am so very sorry for all the times I forgot this. I am so sorry to all the people that I've hurt when I forgot this.” The person who had criticized Aimee commented on his post that she needed to hear his words. Steps toward healing.
According to Ellen Stewart, who led La Mama Theatre in New York, “All that matters is the love.”