“[If] a man does not have a job or an income, he has neither life nor liberty nor the possibility for the pursuit of happiness. He merely exists.” Martin Luther King Jr., A Knock at Midnight
I have been angry for several weeks; I cannot bear to hear stupid comments anymore. The news media asking someone to predict what the fall may look like is one of these questions and the comments that follow. I had a beautiful day. I finished all my patient visits and completed my notes and then had dinner. I went to bed early for a change, but I had the most vivid dream. I dreamt I was screaming. My husband, my son, and the world all trying to calm me down, but I kept screaming. I finally stopped, rolled over, and said, “I am sorry.” My husband moved over and went to sleep. I realized that this was a dream. The difference between sanity and insanity is not to scream out loud, but if you do, you make sure no one hears you. I woke up and felt a weight was lifted. I am not sure why I was screaming. Maybe it has to do with all we have lost, the lives lost, loss of insurance due to job loss, and all those people not wearing masks. It may be because of the white men carrying guns on the steps of statehouses or the vicious killing of another black woman’s son.
Perhaps I have watched too many White House Coronavirus Task Force Briefings or listened to too many people complaining about having to teach their children or being bored. My sister and her husband, with a joint effort, helped my 11-year-old nephew complete all his assignments for the school year. She was immensely proud of their work. Maybe I am anxious about him returning to school in the fall. Perhaps I am anxious about the fall and the prediction of a “second wave.” As we reopen our offices, I am concerned about not having enough PPE.
I have become a fan of the governors of New York and New Jersey. They do not hesitate to express their true feelings. I especially like that they represent what I am feeling. “That is stupid” or “don’t be a knucklehead” and “that is just insensitive and reckless.” I especially like “That shows a total disregard for others.” I am concerned about all those people who may become infected and about the lives that will be lost. I am concerned about those rushing to return to houses of worship.
I am worried about trying to provide an excellent educational experience to my residents. I have scoured the internet to compile resources for them. I realize that the root cause of my anger is my fear. My fear is caused by my concern of not being prepared, not being able to take care of my patients, family, or friends.
“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”
― Martin Luther King, Jr.
I am fearful that there will be a poor turnout for the November elections, and we get a repeat of the last four years. I am scared that ignorance, xenophobia, and racism will win. I am afraid those who proclaim to be religious will continue to spread hatred and evil and promote conspiracy theories over the facts of Science. I have not had that dream again. I hope it is because I have come to terms with this mess, we are in. I can work hard to change the things that are within my power to change but I must accept what is out of my control. Anger has it root in fear. Letting go of the fear frees you from anger.
“Science investigates; religion interprets. Science gives man knowledge, which is power; religion gives man wisdom, which is control. Science deals mainly with facts; religion deals mainly with values. The two are not rivals.”
― Martin Luther King, Jr