Tuesday, November 06, 2012

VOTING, OF COURSE

Well, I don't really want to add my voice to the political fray on this election day.  There are many others that have said things much more eloquently than I ever could.  (I really like what she said and also what she said.)  I am very ready for political coverage to stop being the main event on every news station all the time.  I know I sound whiny, but I've realized that I don't really have a stomach for most of it.  The promises seem disingenuous from both sides, and people have such strong opinions - opinions that often target other people.

All of that aside, I am so thankful for the privilege and opportunity to vote.  I don't take it for granted - especially as a woman.  So, knowing that we would be out of town on election day, John and I loaded up the girls to go early vote on Saturday morning.  We spent time researching on Friday night and were able to go in armed with information, which made us feel like responsible citizens in this democracy.

Untitled

When we showed up, we were greeted with an extremely long line.  We had planned to go running as a family and soon saw that that would not be part of our plan.  Instead, as I was waiting in line, John ran laps around the area with the girls.  I stood there, eavesdropping on those around me, scrolling through stuff on my phone and watching the politicians that were standing about 50 feet away from the poll.

I also took notice that people with strollers were considered "special assistance" and allowed to go through the back door.  (Have you ever waited in a long line with two young children?  I do feel like it requites a lot of special assistance.  It is no joke.)

On John's next lap around, he stopped, and we took that back door line.  As we were getting out of line, the woman behind me said, "I don't think it's fair that you get to get out of line just because you have kids.  I mean, do whatever, but it doesn't seem fair."  All I said in return was, "Yeah" as we walked away.

We did our civic duty and were out in about 20 minutes.  As we were leaving, I was hauling Bella, who was screaming, and Lily was still in the stroller with John.  A man in line looked at Lily and told John, "When my kids are that old, I make them walk."

As I was recounting all of this experience to a friend, her comment towards these encounters was, "Just because you are in line to vote doesn't mean you get to vote on everything."  I found that response fitting on so many levels.

I was glad that we voted, but I was a little less thrilled about all the people that chose to share their opinion on our lives in a poll I was never taking.  As this election day comes and goes, I am still learning how to best use my opinions in real life.  Often, I get it wrong.  I have a lot to learn.  I want to spend less time on my own opinions and more time trying to determine what is pleasing to the Lord.  I believe he convicts each of us differently, and I want to learn how to better respect those that I may disagree with and to be more certain of my own convictions in some areas, while still approaching life with an attitude of learning.

That is a line I am still not great at walking.  Maybe with more time and practice, I will get better.

At the end of this election day, I am thankful that no matter who wins the presidency, I know where my eternal hope is.  I am putting all my eggs in that basket.

1 comments:

Tales from Goshen said...

Wow, you encountered some grumps in your voting line. Sorry you had to experience that. Never enhances what can be a chaotic experience anyway. Kyle and I also did our research last night before going to vote today (also with our kids) and fortunately, we encountered no lines or snippy comments, but it's a hit or miss thing. :) I too, cherished the opportunity to vote. I know there are still many countries where that never happens. And I still get a teensy thrill every time I do vote and then know that I have been counted.