My daughters and I marched this past Saturday in the Women’s March in Dallas. That same day, my motives and intentions were questioned in person, on Facebook and on Twitter.
I’ve seen and heard some awful, nasty things, these past 8 years but I kept scrolling or I unfollowed but I didn’t engage. I do believe that everyone is entitled to their own beliefs. I know that we all come from differing backgrounds and experiences and perceptions.
However, friends and followers were questioning me on MY profiles, over the phone and in person. Why come into my house and question me? So I felt the need to explain myself, even if I’d already explained why I wanted to march already.
Do you know how frightened I was to march?
The lump in my throat and tightness in my jaw were only relieved as more women in pink hats boarded the train my daughters and I were riding downtown. I was potentially putting us all in danger and it would have been on me if my children were hurt. I don’t typically stand up for myself, much less others, so this was a terrifying and vulnerable moment for me. Yet, it was also one of my proudest as a human and as a mother.
“Give him a chance!”
People are exclaiming that we’ve not given the new president a fair chance. They’re saying we’re judging him on his campaign rhetoric. Well of course we are! What else do we have to go on? And isn’t it that same campaign rhetoric that cause YOU to vote for him? Do you actually want him to change from the person you believe you’re getting? With all of that said, I do believe in giving chances so I agree that it’s the right thing to do.
It’s now been nearly a full week of “giving him a chance”. I’ve been on Twitter reading news and his direct tweets and reactions and still… I’m still waiting and giving him a chance to prove us wrong, that he actually is for ALL Americans. So far, no go. Instead I see more ignorance, more anger and assumptions, more refusal to listen or even communicate, from either side.
Ever since walking in that women’s march on Saturday, I’ve been left with a mix of emotions that change daily. I was terrified. I was proud. I was angry. I was confused. I was empowered. I was humbled.
I still feel all of those emotions and more.
I bow down and give thanks to every woman and man who has ever marched before me or stood up for the rights of others. I offer praise for any movement where others put themselves at risk so that I could give my children an option of what a just and fair world could be. I don’t feel like I’ve done my part, or else my part is just beginning. I’m still scared and doing what I can from the safety of my home and yes, my white skin. My heart hurts that so many have to still face cruelty or discrimination when I walk relatively freely. My heart hurt before too but now… now I am more filled with humility and sadness and rawness than ever before. I’m sorry if it’s never felt that I was fighting before. I am now.
There have been people, situations and experiences in my life that have caused me to wake up. This march and this presidency is one of them. How fortunate are those who have the luxury to still be sleeping. The sad truth is that some of those who have questioned me will claim that “ignorance is bliss”. As long as these things don’t affect them, they don’t look at it.
I’m not calling for a recount, impeachment or burning the president in effigy. This march was a bold way of communicating with him instead. I wish others would see it that way. I wish the intentions wouldn’t be questioned and more a divide created. I wish more would want to help and listen instead of defensively shutting down.
When women rise up, we all do. I don’t understand the fear in that.