Editor’s note: This is a decidedly U.S.-centric post, so, global friends, please forgive me, but I also hope you feel compelled to share your experiences as well. :)
When I was younger, I didn’t care about politics.
I didn’t understand how important voting was, couldn’t comprehend the lasting impact it can have on future generations. I didn’t ask questions, and I didn’t try to educate myself. When my family members would talk about it, albeit briefly, the conclusion was always a version of, “there are very bad people on both sides.” I did not feel empowered to effect change.
Over time, that mentality started to shift. I moved to New York, met an entirely new group of people who celebrated culture, diverse experiences and who were driven by a desire to embrace, rather than fear, differences. I started voting regularly, reading more and donating to causes that best represented my values. My political awakening was solidified in the months leading up to the 2016 election, when it was becoming increasingly apparent that we as a nation were going to elect the reality TV star. I mourned the results, as many others did, and found some solace in writing about my mom’s decision to vote for Hillary Clinton. I marched in Washington, D.C., and in New York.
Last week, I watched with bated breath as Dr. Christine Blasey Ford recounted an alleged sexual assault at the hands of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump’s nominee to the Supreme Court. Listened to her describe the terror that accompanies sharing something so traumatizing, so raw on a global stage, all the while maintaining her poise and unfathomable grace under fire. Truly one of the bravest things I’ve ever witnessed.
Despite her powerful testimony, a Kavanaugh confirmation still feels imminent, a sobering reminder that power is enjoyed and wielded by the privileged, and women are still not believed.
During the times I’ve felt most overwhelmed, I’ve sought refuge within my strong community of women, whether it be in the dedicated chat channel we have at work, through my network of friends or at The Wing, or simply by reading pieces by female authors (a recent fave was Samantha Irby’s “We Are Never Meeting in Real Life.”) I recognize that I still have a lot to learn and a lot of work left to do.
I’d love to hear from the women in this community: Where do you turn for strength in uncertain times? It could be a person, a particular organization, a hobby or volunteer work that brings you a sense of peace. Share it in the comments.
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