With all due respect, she said: How, on earth, are you supposed to “get up, to stand up”, when fear weighs you down, like a stone in your gut? Fear of debt and loss of dignity, fear of the future, your own and that of this entire planet? When grief flows through you, like brittle leaves in the wind. Grief for those neglected and disempowered, for conversations that never take place, connections that just aren’t made. When rage curls your hands into fists, with no room for anything else. Rage at all the misguided selfishness, the betrayals and spirit-numbing corruptions. When despair and longing make of you an empty vessel, cavernous, aching to be filled with something – better. Aching for justice. “How?” she said, throwing her head back in ragged misery. Her eyes closed, lungs expanded and contracted. She noticed this. And in the space before the next breath felt a rhythm, deep within – the beating of her heart, of a thousand and one hearts. She noticed also that she was already standing. And was not alone.