Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Remember When

I can remember exactly where I was when Barack Obama announced his candidacy. I was at the gym. I was watching while I was on the treadmill and feeling sort of overwhelmed and teary (which is a pretty common state for me). It was a Saturday (or Sunday?), so I didn't have to get Laney from the childcare center and could just take off. I remember hopping off the treadmill, putting my coat on and then stopping under the TV on my way out and thinking, "maybe this long, cold winter is really about to end."*

I don't remember many moments that clearly. I can remember with aching clarity the morning of Sept. 11, 2001 and the August, 2003 call that my father was dead. But this is more like the humbling, awesome clarity of memory I have of getting the call that we'd gotten the referral for Laney. I was so used to things not being right, and then suddenly feeling like maybe there was a chance that things might turn out after all.

This election goes so far beyond the political junkie stuff. I feel, like so many have said, like the American soul is at stake, which may be grandiloquent. I may look back at this blogpost a year from now and think, "Oh, Meg... you have GOT to lighten up." But, I don't think so. After all, that freezing cold February was almost two years ago, and I still find myself thinking that the long, cold winter may be about to end**.

* I was embarrassed by the obviousness and triteness of this metaphor
** Almost two years later, I remain resolutely embarrassed by the obviousness and triteness of this metaphor