I have been wanting to post for some time now. But my fingers stopped me from typing on the black keys that add the words coming from my tiny brain. My tiny brain that holds so much. So many words. And those of you who know me personally – I have many words to share while in a conversation. As careful as I may be on social media of what I share, care to share, my opinions or views – I have been collecting thoughts and words of others these past few months. And one of these topics has been the sexual harassment slash sexual abuse slash celebrity outburst slash, slash, slash.
Allow me to begin with #metoo. Though this hashtag was started out of support – I learned just last week that in some cases of rape or domestic violence and sexual harassment women are not wanting to have support via social media. Women are wanting the physical support group where victims are face to face. I was puzzled at first. I was one of many women who lived in a relationship of abuse. It seems like a lifetime ago and it was. It is such a good feeling having the relief of not having to relive pain and anger. Why don’t I support via social media? Because I don’t feel supporting with a hashtag is enough. And I won’t post anything so personal on Facebook. (okay so I basically use the internet to voice my thoughts and opinions)
If we are to heal from what society is selling us – then why don’t we speak? Why are we not raising our children to be kinder? Why are we not guiding our children to be patient? Respectful? Selfless? Our sons and daughters. Instead of giving them opportunities to hashtag their way through their emotions – speak about it. And support those who fight the struggle. Because it’s real.
Another topic of conversation was with my friend Yvonne. We talked about what my Middle Schooler has been sharing with me as she interacts with her peers in PE. Apple finds it difficult to understand that kids who are “friends” can find it in their hearts to call one another “autistic”. I can only imagine what she was feeling as her peers behaved so wrongly. Last year Apple was part of a “Buddy” program that partnered fifth grade students with an ASD student from a neighboring program. This hurt as she knows for some of the students she got to know last year – it’s a daily struggle. As she cried in the car, my only wish was to wipe away all the painful visions and voices my daughter witnessed in PE. As I shared with Yvonne, neither one of us needed to say a word. I knew what her heart was feeling. Protecting a young son in a society where we have lost civility.
As a mother spoke during a Holiday PTA meeting, she boasted on how lucky we are to live in such a perfect area. We’re far from perfect. But when the average income is three figures, and a neighboring suburbia has their landscaping “sprayed” green for aesthetics – my head begins to fill with the what is and what ifs. Our perfect urban-suburban communities with their farm to table restaurants and NFL players giving our communities a touch of coolness (not really) having DC as our backyard with a new metro line coming – how could this not be the perfect area?
We may have greener lawns – but our grass isn’t any greener. We still have homelessness. But yet no one wants to see it. Just three miles towards Dulles International Airport is a camp. It’s hidden under the bypass. You will see tents set up just as you pass through the Virginia Avenue tunnel into DC.
A single mother who I see each morning as we walk our kids to school opened up about what takes place during her night shift in the ER. Suicide. Overdoses. The brokenness of humans. Brokenness of society. As an intake supervisor she begins to wonder if society has a chance to heal. To redeem itself. We talk more about our children. It’s not a gloom and doom conversation – but it’s real. I walked back to my home with our pup trying to think of a way to stop this whatever this is. Enough. Enough is enough.
It wasn’t until this afternoon as I waited for Apple to get out of school that I decided to write. Actually it was directly after my phone conversation ended with a friend who lives in PA.
So as I sit here hitting the black keys on my laptop – my mind begins to re-play the latest conversations with some of the strongest women I know. I’ve was given sight to their thoughts and views. Strengths and weaknesses. And they too say #enough .