Sorting My Priorities.

A photo by Mayur Gala.

When I find myself in times of trouble, Hermoine Grange comes to me, speaking words of wisdom–sort out your damn priorities.

Okay, it doesn’t rhyme and my apologies to Harry Potter and John Lennon/Paul McCartney.

Today’s blog post was going to be about either my three favourite words or five things to love about Dusk–a character from my upcoming mm novella, Found You. I tried. I gave a valiant effort on both topics. My heart simply wasn’t in it.

The world around me feels too fractured and divided.

Speaking as an autistic woman, all the anger and frenetic energy buzzes under my skin like raw electric energy. At times this weekend, I had to step away from social media and even conversations with friends/family. My blood pressure and anxiety spiked a bit dangerously, making self-care more important than anything else.

My father’s family is, for the most part, very American, very conservative, and very Republican. I am not. My mother’s side (the Canadian/British side) clearly rubbed off on me. Or maybe, being adopted, my genetics were stronger than my adoptive family’s questionable nurturing.

(We won’t get into the whole nature vs nurture conversation.)

No idea.

Needless to say, I’ve always been one of the odd ducks in my adoptive family. I’m liberal with libertarian leanings, certainly not republican. I’m more British than American, no matter what my birth certificate claims.

I get on with my immediate and extended family mostly when I smile and keep my opinions to myself.

In the wake of the past week’s election in the USA and the obscene gloating which followed, the rampant bigotry I’ve seen in my family, never mind the country itself. I’ve felt angry, disappointed, and heartbroken.

I cannot speak on a national or global level. I can and have spoken loudly to my friends and family. I won’t be silent. I won’t smile politely in the face of their vocal hate-speech.

Maybe the world wo n’t be changed by my actions.

I can offer love and strength to those around me who are as afraid as I am.

But, back to the word in the title, priorities. It’s one of those words that often evokes evil four-letter words like ‘work.’ I realised over the weekend that allowing my anxiety to send my blood pressure into a life-threatening tailspin wasn’t doing me a bit of good.

So, what are my priorities?

Love my friends and neighbours.

Continue to write inclusive and diverse romance novels.

What are yours?