As I sit here, tucked under a cozy throw, watching my granddaughter slumber in sweet peacefulness, I wish and want and hope.
I wish for her to live a life in a world different from the one I have lived in. A world where all people are safe and respected in body, mind and soul. A country where everyone understands that everyone has the right to live free from abuse of any kind.
I want her wonderful, brilliant mind to be embraced, encouraged and utilized. A system of education and work where her talents and dreams are seen as not just valid but invaluable. A place where work and health and life are an integrated whole for everyone.
I hope she will never know the pain of abuse. I hope she will be seen and heard and encouraged not to just do well, but accomplish more than anyone else before her. I hope she will have the power to choose her own path, her own life, her own love based on her own guidance system with the support of a good education, healthcare and economic system that values people over product and bottom lines.
Enough now. There’s been enough darkness.
While she sleeps peacefully on this cozy afternoon, I read the news and shiver, not from the cold but from the darkness growing across our nation.
I’ve lived in a very different kind of world. (Yes, #metoo) A place where power meant pain. Physical punishment was not only accepted but encouraged. Where on Fridays, the nuns would use a belt on the week’s worst child and broadcast it over the school public address system. Where little girls were to be quiet, sit still and listen more than talk.
Graduating at the height of the feminist movement, I thought now, everything will change. Finally, women will have power over their own body, mind and life. Finally, there will be no more abuse or pain or inequity. I worked and got paid more than my mother did, but there was no big change. Yet, I was encouraged by even those small steps forward.
Forward or Backward?
It seems with every news story, we are moving backward instead. Why? I’ve been asking and asking myself that question over and over in a desperate attempt to figure out how we are now where we are in this country.
I thought, when I was 20, that the world was changing for women in a good way. Twenty years later, I prayed that the world would finally change for my daughter in a much better way. Now, I look at my granddaughter’s sweet, sleeping face and I see that the world hasn’t changed very much at all.
And I’m angry. No. I’m pissed. This was totally unacceptable then and even more so now.
Here is the truth: Those patriarchal men know their time of power and evil is ending. That is what these men really fear.
Now it’s time. Our time to see beyond this darkness. It is our time to step into the light.
And create a different kind of world.
Look to the horizon:
The sky is dark and the stars blink bright.
Softy, the celestial night lights dim as the world slowly turns from night to day.
The deep black sea turns grey as light pink dabs the clouds and blue fades up.
Birds silent in the dark, begin to speak up and the first boat jets across the waves.
Good morning, world.
A new day has begun.