We hereby give you a permission slip.
If you're anything like me, you've spent the better part of today endlessly refreshing Twitter and Facebook, hoping that the next update will magically reverse what just happened to our country.
It won't. Put that out of your mind.
The bad news is clear: Donald Trump won the election. That's a BFD, with potentially serious, negative consequences for a lot of Americans — women, people of color, immigrants, LGBTQ folks, and those living with disabilities.
There's lots of news out there today. Lots of posts from people you know who are angry, sad, frustrated, bitter, and need space to vent. If that's productive for you, you should, by all means, vent to your heart's content. If, however, you're the kind of person for whom reading a steady stream of lamentations drives you further down the rabbit hole of your own despair, please feel free to opt out. If you need time to process, if you need time to let it all sink in before you're ready to talk about it, that's OK.
Right now, you don't have to read about, think about, or talk about the election. Not if you don't want to.
That's right, you don't have to talk about politics with anyone today. You heard it here first. To help you deflect those conversations you're just not ready to have, feel free to share the images below.
If you're a barista and people come by to order coffee, and you just can't stand to hear another "Whoo, boy what an election, right?" comment from someone who really just needs a coffee, slap this down at the register.
If you work at a salon and can't stand the thought of having to listen to political chatter while you're cutting someone's hair, tape this to the mirror.
If you're a woman, a person of color, an immigrant, living with a disability, part of the LGBTQ community, or literally anyone else who is feeling gut-punched by the election and you just can't handle another person asking if you're OK because even trying to begin answering that question feels too overwhelming to comprehend, feel free to wear this damn thing on your forehead.
This is not a permission slip suggesting you can or should ignore the news forever — or get complacent or wish it away.
We just experienced the longest, roughest election in a generation. If you haven't processed everything yet — and really, who has? — take that time now. Go for a walk. Go for a run. Go for an ATV ride. Read a book. On an ATV. You'll feel better. Maybe just a little better, but better.
The information will still be out there tomorrow, the next day, and the day after that. We still have months to digest what happened and start planning for the next steps to ensure that women's reproductive rights stay protected, that our LGBTQ friends can live here in peace with their families, and that our Muslim neighbors are shielded from hate crimes. There is so much more work to be done. And there will be time to do that work.
For now, you can do you.
And that's OK.