Karen Rivers


Karen Rivers

Lately, I've been thinking about moving.  

I won't move, of course.  

My parents are here and if I were too far from them, I'd make myself sick worrying about the things they are going through over which I have no control.  I do that here, too, but if I were further away, it would be worse.   Being unable to move makes moving all the more appealing.  

I click through galleries of photos of houses for sale.  Houses on acres of land.   Houses perched on ocean-facing cliffs.  Houses nestled into clusters of trees.  Houses I could actually afford to buy.  Houses that would afford me the unthinkable luxury of not panicking every month when the mortgage comes due.   Houses that would allow us to breathe, to wander, to even occasionally travel, all while protecting us from the elements, forming the box around us in which we could live a different life.  

I'm addicted to looking.  I've always loved possibilities.   

Which isn't to say I don't love my house and my hometown.  I do.  It's such a ridiculous privilege to live here in the shade of the ancient trees.  I love my life, even with the crushing financial pressures and my children's anxiety and my own ceaseless worries and the way my dog has started coughing at night and how even though the snow is still not entirely melted, the weeds are already pushing through everywhere.  

But I feel like somewhere, something is ticking forward towards something else.  

A new destiny.  

I emptied the winter rain from the kids' swimming pool last week.  This felt like a huge accomplishment.  All winter, I watched it filling with rain that rapidly turned brown and murky, stained by fir needles and oak leaves.  I pictured drowned rats, dead birds, who knows what unknown horrors.  The actual draining of the pool revealed nothing except -- mysteriously -- a peeled orange amidst the thousand pinecones.    There's a metaphor in that, almost certainly. 

I haven't been blogging because it's seemed impossible to blog lately.  There is too much happening that is too implausible, yet is real.   And the truth is that I don't know what to say about it that hasn't been said more eloquently by someone else.  

I just keep saying, "I can't believe this is happening."  

I can't believe this is happening.  

But it is happening and I am so lucky to live here in Canada, awash with privilege.  Even through all my worry and panic, I have to remember that.  I have to remind myself.  

So lucky.  It's all such a crapshoot, a roll of the dice.  I'm grateful.   I don't want to sound ungrateful.  Not ever.  

The unimaginable has happened.  

But there is good:  the surge of people doing the right thing is heartening, inspiring, amazing.   America is not Donald Trump.

America is the resistance.  

The resistance is the peeled orange, the beautiful surprise in the mess. 

And I'm still writing and I'm still walking and I'm still living in my too-expensive-for-me falling-over rat-visited house and nothing has changed here, except the kids got taller and the dogs got older and it's probably time for something to change for the better, don't you think?

 Something magnificent is about to happen.  It must be.

I believe.