Women's March Boston
I should probably give it more time to sink in and let my thoughts sit a little before writing about my experience and feelings, but when you have two little babies, you take what time you are given and use it wisely.
I'm so glad that I went. I was heartbroken when I accepted the fact that I would not be going to the main march in D.C. I gave birth October 3rd and have a 2.5 year old daughter and a husband who works a lot. So it just really wasn't an option. When the sister marches started to come together I was thrilled. Then, my dad scheduled a visit from California and that sealed the deal, three adults and two babies, we could do this!
Walking to the Boston Common was amazing. There are so many women (and men) there to support progressivism. There were beautiful signs, painful signs, uncomfortable signs, hilarious signs, simple signs, complicated signs, artful signs, basic signs that were so powerful for having been just thrown together. The mood was joyful, caring, loving. (No one was arrested and have you seen the pictures of the day after - no garbage). Women are amazing. The message was "together we are strong." I needed that. I made lots of pictures.
I am a mother of a daughter and I want her to have everything every feminist wants for their daughter. Having her there was so important to me. Idealism. Practically, it was kind of a mess. We also had my 3 month old son. So my daughter only wanted to be carried by me, my dad carried the baby, who periodically wanted to nurse. Eventually it was toddler nap time but we hadn't even marched yet and toddler meltdown ensued. I was nursing the baby so couldn't hold the toddler who had become a mama cling and everything was awful and we were stuck in a mass of people not moving and waaaaiiiiittttting for the program to end and the marching and waaaaiiiiittting and melting down and aaaaahhhh we're all going to die. Oh wait, we're going now Yeah!
Advice: if you don't like the people marching next to you stand at the side for a little bit and wait for some people who are more enthusiastic. Alternatively, if you're an aging yuppie man at a woman's march, don't make disparaging comments about the march and how you're over it and how everyone is too tired to chant slogans, and how you want a Starbucks. Get over yourself. If you're me marching next to this man and you can't wait for a better group of people because there is a screaming baby and a 37lb toddler clinging to you focus on how awesome the rally was.
Luckily on our way back to the car we watched section of the march with amazing, awesome, powerful women kicking ass. Plus, I had the toddler chanting "This is what democracy looks like," and I felt much better.
The Picture Making
It was a struggle. See "the children." I'm sharing a few, the silhouette is my favorite.
Going Forward - Two Thoughts
One - I'm learning a lot from an amazing group of women in Facebook about radical inclusivity. I think this march got people talking about inclusivity (we're certainly talking about racism post election) but it didn't go far enough and there was definitely push back from white feminism. To the oppressor equality feels like oppression. We need to be uncomfortable to move forward. White people feel efforts to topple the hierarchy of white supremacy as personal attacks, these are not personal attacks, these are attacks on an unjust system. Look up decentering whiteness. Get uncomfortable, move through it and find the depth of empathy on the other side. All boats rise with the rising tide. I'm not good at talking about this yet, but I want to be.
Two - I don't know who to credit for this quote, but I think it is incredibly important. "One day to mourn, one day to march and then we get to work." Find someone active in your local political system and ask that person what you can do. We need people on the streets. We need organization. We need a groundswell of small actions. We won't have change without it.
Oh, and pussy hats everywhere! Love!!!