All in Personal Essay
Thirteen years ago today, my mother knocked on my bedroom door around midnight, and I told her to come in. For some reason though, my door was stuck, and my uncle had to break down the door before my mother could come in. As soon as my mother sat on my bed, I knew what she was going to say. I knew that my father had passed away, after a two-year battle with brain cancer.
Empowering women, working towards protecting their rights, and discussing/shaping gender ideologies is what makes me come alive. This is where my experiences, my background, my passions and the voice within have led me. This is my calling, my life’s mission statement, my raison d’être...
On my wedding day, I was making a public statement about private feelings, and it was important to me to be able to show up at least once in my element. Coming to my reception as me, allowed me to enjoy my reception as me. I was sparkly and sweaty. I jumped and danced and laughed. My make-up bled and my curls fled. I probably broke all the rules of well-behaved brides, and I had a heck of a time doing it. In fact, when I reflect on my life, some of my happiest moments have been the times when I was bold enough to enter and leave situations as myself. In a world that constantly prescribes who and how a woman should be, being ones self can be an act of activism.
What if we shined light on the cracks more often? What if our descriptions of our journeys are the maps that those behind us desperately need? And no, I am not suggesting that we gather all our dirty laundry and air them in the market place. But as discretion guides us, can we at least put our clean laundry out in the sun? Can we acknowledge that the clean clothing we dress our tales in, once had dirt that came out in a rinse?
There are very few things I had envisioned about my wedding before I had a ring on my finger- my mother walking me down the aisle was one of them. When my mother and I began to plan the wedding program and she asked me whom I wanted to do the honors, I responded enthusiastically: “You of course!”