It seems we write when we feel inspired. And we write to connect with others. But as I get this blog under way, I notice something else: I write not just to connect but when I already feel connected to others. Feeling connections is inspiring.
I opened this blog a week ago, on Inauguration Day, the first inauguration in a long time, maybe ever, that I could celebrate wholeheartedly with the winning team. Seeing those hordes on the Mall made me feel more connected to the people of my country than I have in many years.
(I voted for B. Clinton in ’92, but his inauguration didn’t so much thrill me as inspire a spot of cynicism. I remember remarking to my boyfriend on Clinton’s inauguration day that he was about to become a compromiser. Sadly, the first bill he signed was Don’t Ask Don’t Tell—a compromise if there ever was one.)
Connection inspires. Feeling connected to others is empowering. We are living in a moment pregnant with possibility, when millions of people not used to being taken seriously—young people, black people, biracial people, those who grew up in communities far from the centers of power—can now see themselves mirrored in the faces of the first family.
It’s enough to inspire one to write.