After the election, I was going to leave Facebook because I was sick of the bile on both sides, bile that had infused my consciousness like blunt force trauma to the head. Among the ugliness was a gay male friend who slut-shamed Melania for posing nude, while lambasting Trump for being anti-female. I watched a relative who voted for Trump actively discuss being anti-gay rights. This relative is aware that I once fell in love with and dated a woman, which means I have a trace of gay in me. In any case, I changed my mind and decided to stay. I don’t want to run away from or unfriend those with whom I have shared a smile in the grocery store or a piece of pie over Thanksgiving dinner. I won’t forget the way we, united by grief, swabbed morphine into my mother’s dying lips on her hospice bed. I want, instead, to realize that I am not, nor will I ever be, my president regardless of who wins that prestigious title. I am I and in this world I can talk to you, whoever you might be. I bet our smiles and camaraderie while waiting to pay for our gasoline at the neighborhood station have the ability to move mountains. I believe the only way to break down the walls of hatred is to touch someone so much by my inherent warmth, that they are compelled to love me against their best wishes. That is where we win, on the streets we live on rather than some grand patriotic political scale. So I will stay here and love my friends and family and continue to say what I feel is right. I have also realized that I have taken for granted the fact that many feel like I do. According to the election, they don’t. So although I love Burning Man and medicine journeys with friends and healing sessions with those who believe like I do, I think my time will now best be spent going into the communities that are opposite me, that do more than validate my ego and party apparel. I love those pursuits and those places, and their validations, don’t get me wrong, but if they’ve taught me anything it’s that love conquers all, and now I want to spread that love amongst the deplorable, counteract their yin with my yang, pay respect to the existence of perpetual duality by infiltrating the other side with an honest heart ready for hearty dialogue. It won’t be easy but easy only leads to complacency. I am humble, raw, ready, and eager. Take me on. Don’t turn me away when I knock on your door requesting some authentic intimacy. Together we can change this distasteful culture. The two-party system has proven itself obsolete in yet another year of division. I almost fled. But now I know, standing strong is the only answer, albeit with love and not fear.