Today I am 38 weeks pregnant. I’m tired. I’m painful. I’m huge. However, I’m still working full-time at hospice, though I’ve reduce my caseload significantly. I’m still walking a couple miles a day. I’m ready to get this show on the road.
I haven’t written in awhile, and part of that has been due to rabid anger. As a feminist woman married to a feminist man, and future girl mom, I have carried so much anger around since last November. Don’t get me wrong, I am no fan of Hillary Clinton, who silenced her husband’s sexual assault victims to further her own political career, but I have been horrified by current events in my country since Donald Trump’s election. I cannot fathom how 24% of people in this country deluded themselves into voting for such an idiot. Nor can I fathom how he won the electoral college when he lost the popular vote by 3 million votes. I continue to be mesmerized by the numbers of people who continue to support him as our president despite the lies, deception, borderline treason, suppression of the free press, slander of the judicial branch, and pure stupidity.
Seriously, I don’t care how badly you hated Hillary Clinton, there were other options besides Donald Trump. SERIOUSLY. That vote, for that reason, is indefensible.
I have watched as Donald Trump, the leader of the free world, has used “alternative facts” (otherwise known as lies) to stir up hatred and fear to energize misogynistic, racist, and xenophobic feelings among people who are uneducated or who have felt disempowered by our broken political system. People feel their voices were not heard by the establishment, so they voted for the narcissistic, stupid, self-interested, ignorant, Russian-owned, deeply-in-debt, lying, tax-evading, child-raping, woman-raping, racist MORON — rather than holding their own party (Republicans) accountable for gerrymandering the $%#& out of our legislative districts, to the point that legislative representatives are SO assured of being re-elected that they have no accountability to the people they are supposed to be serving.
I grew up in a small-ish town in the south. Mostly, I hung out with conservative Christian white people growing up. I was raised in a very black-and-white world. Behaviors were either right or wrong. People were either good or bad. It was a very simplistic worldview with no room for grey.
I left the south at age 18 for the west coast. (A family friend gave me a blanket with the Ten Commandments printed on it, if that gives you a clue as to how my choice of colleges was perceived by people in my town. Yup.)
I did my share of exploring in college. I became friends with people from all over the world. I dated men of different ethnicities (including my first serious relationship with a fellow student whose family had immigrated from Iran during the Iranian Revolution). I worked in a gay bar for extra cash. I began to realize that people who were different from me in one respect could be AMAZING human beings, and that some people who were a lot more like me were total shitheads.
The world is much less simple than Fox News and Donald Trump would have you believe. Unfortunately, it seems as though a LOT of people in this country lack the ability to understand (or willingness to accept?) nuance.
But I have watched this administration attack people I care about, tear apart families I know with illegal religious bans (preventing lawfully and stringently vetted grandparents from visiting their newborn American grandchildren), attempt to withdraw rights I hold as fundamental, and destroy the very fabric of our democracy.
I keep thinking, “What kind of world am I bringing a daughter into?”
It’s scary. Fricking terrifying. At 38 weeks, I’m terrified.
But at the same time, perhaps the questions I need to be asking are, “What kind of daughter do I want to raise? What kinds of problems will she want to try to solve? And what can I do to support her, challenge her, and protect her so that she is able maximize her potential and make the world better for other people?”
I think asking the questions is the easy part. Answering them is the hard part. But I will NOT raise my daughter to:
- invest more time in her appearance than in her education or her character
- more often pass judgment on others than be kind or charitable or accepting of differences
- more carefully cultivate her social circle than her goals
- value herself more based on how men perceive her than on what kind of impact she makes on those around her
In our current societal climate, my husband and I have a difficult task. And it starts in T-minus 2 weeks.