Four years ago on Election Day, I took my daughter with me to vote and we were hopeful. She was excited about helping me vote for the woman that would be the first woman president of the United States of America. We all know how that turned out. Yesterday, I took her with me to vote not with hope in my heart but with anxiety. Spending the last four years, trying to raise my daughter to be a kind, compassionate, good person has been difficult when the leadership in our nation continues to show that they will be mean, break the rules and do what they want with little regard to others.
She recently learned in school (2nd grade) that not so long ago women and People of Color were not allowed to vote. During the lesson, she turned to me and said, “that means that I wouldn’t have been able to vote because I am a woman and I am Black.” Just typing it reminds me that this country has never valued me or those that look like me. And let’s be honest, I pass the paper bag test so my look is a lot more “acceptable” than others.
I see a lot of talks online about people having to censor themselves to protect their brand. The thing is, some of us do not have the privilege of staying quiet. This isn’t about our brands. This is about our lives. My brand is authentically me. It is my life. It is my family. I’ve seriously been walking around devastated since RBG died. I can’t imagine what her family feels like because I am beyond in despair about how this government has spit on her legacy.
I didn’t come on here to moan and groan though. I came here to remind those that are feeling like I am that this too shall pass. We will rise because we are magic. They tried to bury us but did not know that our seeds were being planted and we will continue to grow through the concrete. (Shout out to the local elections that welcomed more progressives into the fold this time around). Yup, I mixed and merged a lot of metaphors there but you know what I mean. We will not be stopped. We will take this moment and wait patiently because we have learned to bide our time. When the results finally come in we might be happy and we might be sad. Either way, we will not forget that many members of the country voted not just for a candidate that we don’t approve of but they directly voted against us, against our rights, against our safety.
I came here today to remind you to find the joy. Look through the shadows and find the light. Today, my light will be watching my baby girl play with items from her Holiday of Play Swag box. I will watch her create art projects using her Playfoam. I’ll happy cringe while squishing Crayola Glitter Dots to create keychains.
I will work on creating content like the video we want to do of her opening Blume Baby Pops. I will laugh and promote my Avon lady during an Instagram Live for Women Winning Wednesdays. I will not let fear or despair stop me but I will also not forget that my fellow citizens didn’t make this an easy election. I won’t forget that many of them chose hate and prejudice over love and the opportunity for equity. I will commit to wearing a mask for the foreseeable future because people chose their privilege over science.