Here’s a short guided practice to help you celebrate the magic of spring:
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”
AND no one can take your power without your permission. Nelson Mandela, Rosa Parks, Mahatma Gandhi and so many other warriors for justice proved that.
What do YOU care about passionately? What do you care about enough to stand up and really fight for it?
Clean Air and Water?
Black Lives Matter?
Saving the Forests?
Quality Public Education?
Feeding the Hungry?
Increasing Minimum Wage?
Choose one cause you passionately believe in and get out there! EXPRESS YOURSELF! Make your voice heard. IT’S TIME.
#WeAreALLPowerful #ThisIsOurDemocracy #WakeYourDragon
May Brigid bless the house wherein you dwell
Bless every fireside every wall and door
Bless every heart that beats beneath its roof
Bless every hand that toils to bring it joy
Bless every foot that walks its portals through
May Brigid bless the house that shelters you.
In February the ancient tribes of Europe celebrated Imbolc and the return of spring. Imbolc marks the halfway point between winter solstice and spring equinox. It falls on February 3 in 2017.
Brigid is the Pagan Goddess / Catholic Saint that the Celtic people associated with Imbolc. In Celtic tales, Brigid is said to have been born at daybreak. She rose into the sky with rays of fiery sun beaming from her head. As an infant, Brigid was fed with milk from a sacred cow from the fairy realm. It is also believed that small flowers and shamrocks would appear wherever the Goddess Brigid walked. As a sun Goddess, Brigid’s gifts are light (knowledge), inspiration, and the healing energy of the sun. Brigid is also associated with sacred healing waters. There are many springs and wells named after her in the British Isles.
Whether seen as a Goddess or Saint, Brigid commands the power of both fire and ice. You can honor Imbolc and Brigid by lighting a candle and offering gratitude that spring is on its way.
My maternal grandmother had 8 children. Her first baby was stillborn, but the other seven lived to adulthood.
Birthing and raising 7 children was no small feat for a poor woman in a southern Illinois mining town. My mom told stories of tough times when the family only had bread and butter to eat for dinner. She spoke of wearing the same dress to high school every day because it was the only one she owned. They were dirt poor. Even though my grandpa worked 6 long days each week in the coal mines, his salary simply was not big enough to keep them all fed and clothed.
The struggle to survive left my grandma tired and angry. That’s how I remember her – tired and angry. I rarely saw her smile. Grandma had little reason to smile. She lived to be 90 years old, but much of her life was just plain hard.
Is this the life my grandmother dreamed of when she was young? Somehow I doubt it. But with no birth control and little money, what other choices were available to her?
My grandmother needed choices. Grandma deserved to have control over her own body, control over how many children she would birth and raise. She is why I am a feminist today. Every woman deserves to choose how many children she will bear. Every woman deserves the right to say No, I simply cannot feed, clothe and raise another child.
So, yes, I’m a feminist.
I’m a feminist who believes that every woman should control her own body, life and destiny.
I’m a feminist who demands that poor women have free access to birth control.
I’m a feminist who insists that abortion be legal and available in every corner of this country.
I’m a feminist who stands up for the rights of poor women, black women, gay women, abused women… ALL women.
Most of all I’m a feminist because of my grandma. I keep standing up and speaking up because of her.
“I am not free while any woman is unfree,
even when her shackles are very different from my own.”
Lots of women are online today lecturing the women who marched in one of the Women’s Marches across the country. Apparently, lots of women feel the need to dictate to other women exactly how they should protest… even telling them not to feel happy about a peaceful march, insisting that the peace and joy the marchers experienced was all bogus because the crowd was “too white.” Lots of women are also lecturing other women about the best way to support minority women. Lots of women are judging and guilting and dismissing other women today… Is this really helpful?!
Sorry ladies, but you don’t get to define me. You don’t get to dictate what my protests look like. You don’t get to guilt me simply because I’m a middle class white woman. You don’t get to tell me what kind of sign to carry or hat to wear when I protest. You don’t get to dismiss me because I marched with a smile and didn’t scream in rage and burn shit. You don’t get to poo poo my commitment because I don’t protest the way you do.
I will choose when and how I take political action. I will choose when and how I speak out and act. It is MY choice, NOT YOURS!
When one group lectures another about how to behave and how to feel, it sounds suspiciously like old patriarchal Bullshit to me – even when women do it to other women.
EVERY woman needs the space to take political action and express herself in the way that’s most appropriate to her WITHOUT being judged and lectured by other women – and that includes white women from the suburbs!
We won’t fix this mess by telling one group of women to shut up and stuff their feelings, their needs, their wisdom in order to serve another group of women who now take precedence.
We want change, right? Real change? That requires creating a space where ALL women can dialogue with each other and be heard with respect and love. That’s true inclusivity.
“The language by which we have been taught
to dismiss ourselves and our feelings as suspect
is the same language we use to dismiss and suspect each other.”