About a Blogger Who Remembered How to Laugh

About a Blogger Who Remembered How to Laugh

This is my life now

Running a bit behind on my way to work means I’m stuck in I4 traffic. I hate the radio talk shows so I usually listen to DJ sets of House music or long jam band sets from JamCruise. But if I’m in traffic after 8:30, I make calls to each of Senator Rubio and Senator Nelson’s DC, Orlando, and Tallahassee offices to leave a comment on current US Congressional actions – This is my life now.

Literally me every time my New York Times or Washington Post app sends up an alert.

My weekends used to be drinking, relaxing, yard work, dinner with friends. Lately they’ve been meeting at Panera with fellow Seminole Democrats to have post card parties or track bills in the Florida Congress that would limit a woman’s right to choose.

My Friday nights lately? Assembling massive Google documents to track bills, subcommittees, the contact information of all Central Florida Members of Congress, and a shared calendar called The Resistance to keep track of all the events going on in my area – This is my life now.

February has been busy.

My evenings after work used to be “grab dinner and tell Vince about my day.” Now it’s “fill up my gas tank so I can make it to local legislative speaking events around Central Florida to voice my concern to my representatives.” – This is my life now.

Fun fact: The people I heard cheering me on when I said “where are the laws governing men’s reproductive rights?” at this meeting recognized me at the League of Women Voters meeting three weeks later. I’ve found my tribe.

Extra hours made available on days I work from home and don’t have to suffer the long commute used to be spent doing yoga or hitting the gym. Now? I’m going on a supply run for material to make signs at protests I’m going to attend over the weekend – This is my life now.

With the Chair of the ACLU Central Florida Women’s Rights Task Force. aka my new bestie.

Instead of chatting on Facebook Messenger with friends who want to grab dinner or share memes, I’m on Slack organizing groups of women and asking for time off to attend weekday protests, symposiums, and even trips to Tallahassee.

The ACLUCF’s Women’s Rights Task Force has 31 members and is the largest task force they have; on the only Florida chapter that has task forces. I’ve agreed to become the co-chair and am LOVING it – This is my life now.

Our first meeting. More of a group therapy sesh, but still a great meeting!

I used to read news from whatever source happened to be linked on Facebook, or whatever article I clicked on Twitter. Because it’s The Internet and nothing will be 100% true and I should be able to do my own research, right?

But then “Fake News” came along and the less educated / most gullible constituents in this country actually fell for it all.

And then a man was elected president who is literally threatening the freedom of our press.

And that man has declared valid, credible, 3rd party news sources to be “the enemy” but has said NOTHING about Russia being our enemy despite being biggest political foe with a horrible history of partnership, led by one of the world’s most sketchy dictators… so now I pay for not only The New York Times but The Washington Post – This is my life now.

#thefuture?

I used to run my errands in whatever outfit I happened to grab and put on. Now I have a selection of feminist t-shirts to choose from! I have a crop top that says “Don’t tell us to smile.” A comfy t-shirt that rocks “The Future is Female,” and a fitted t-shirt that says “Nasty Women Unite.”

I can pair that with a necklace that says “Smash the Patriarchy” and my jean jacket covered in pins that say “Women’s Rights are Human Rights,” “Still We Rise,” and a symbol for The Iron Front, an anti-fascism group that fought the Nazi’s in WWII.

In case that wasn’t enough, Vince AND my sister got shirts that say “Feminist As Fuck” for their Christmas gifts – This is my life now.

Also: I have three pairs of pussy ears because those hats are hot and I live in Florida. And sparkly options are always in style. 🙂

I used to take for granted my right as a woman to make a choice about my body with the private consultation of my doctor.

I assumed that because the country had made progress, we could move on and keep making progress.

I appreciated the fact that my family immigrated from Austria two generations ago with 7 kids to live in a 2-bedroom apartment in Brooklyn.  And I assumed that if any other family from any other country were brave enough to leave everything they knew for just the hope and a prayer that they could make something of themselves, well, that America would be cool with that, like they were cool with my family doing so.

I was wrong to take those rights for granted, to make those assumptions, to appreciate the opportunities granted to my family without doubting those opportunities would be taken from others merely for the sake of religion.

I was wrong but fool me once, shame on you. America and the Radical Right Wing Extremists will NOT fool me twice.

I always wondered what kind of woman I would have been during the Suffrage movement, or during the times of Roe v. Wade, or during The Civil Rights era or Jim Crow laws and segregation.

Well, now I know.

It turns out I’m a fighter, an organizer, a protester, an activist willing to use any and every skill set I have to make my voice heard. I will call and show up and march wherever and however I can.

This is my life now.



3 thoughts on “This is my life now”

  • The thing That needs to be done for women in this country today is domestic violence safety. Too many innocent women are killed by husbands or boyfriends. They are trapped into staying because divorce with kids means he’s got the ex by the hair for years to come. Makes me sick to see the woman aka the freaking victim bashed because she stays. She fine leaves and she’s hunted, haunted and in worse shape than had she stayed. Go into a shelter, yeah right!!! For a few months safe only to come out and have the ex get rights to see the kids AND her!
    No one cares about women’s rights to safety, judge thinks she’s faking it, family doesn’t want to be involved and tells her just to leave. Hillary wasn’t going to fix that. Trump neither. I’ve witnessed my mom be talked down too, ignored, rejected, and blamed for his behavior. She is so damn low, her car doesn’t run half the time cause of him. No friends and if she has one then that friend is a f–k up.
    It’s ok for my dad to treat her as he does, but not ok for her to try and stand up for herself. Go read the news, every day a wife or girlfriend is dead and the spouse, ex or boyfriend did it.
    We are living in the dark ages for women. My brother thinks mom asks for it and deserves it, he treats mom like mud. Makes me sick.
    Abortion should be private, Bill Clinton sighed the private health info. Get that out of our government after you get women safe. You never saw you mom pushed, shoved, called names. You can’t understand

  • I totally understand and agree with you – I’m literally reading your comment while watching The People vs. OJ Simpson on Netflix, and it’s tragic how clearly Nicole Brown Simpson was abused, the history of abuse that was their marriage, and how women still found OJ “charming” despite knowing this history.

    We have to start changing perceptions and minds and systemic beliefs on a woman’s strengths and capabilities. I’m sure your mom is the rock of your family – holding everyone together and making sure the house is a home. And yet what credit does she get?

    I agree that the right to choose should be a private one between a woman and her physician – and the laws attempting to be passed today in other states, that require a man’s consent, put women in danger if they are seeking to exercise their right to choose while hiding from an abusive husband, and if they already have children at risk.

  • My mom? A rock? Um no. All her kids hate her because we believe what we see. Dad saying she’s bad. I got into therapy for myself and in talking came to know mom was abused. Honest, I thought she was evil, but in therapy and talking I realized, she did all the cooking, cleaning, caring of us, dad rarely was home.

    You should hear how my brother talks to her. My sister too. Just like Dad. She can’t do anything right. I guess I had an awakening where my mom was at. In church one Sunday, Nana wouldn’t sit with us because she didn’t like her shoes. Nana wasn’t nice to mom. Her dad, he’s like mine, mom doesn’t matter to him, he won’t he visit with her.

    I saw no one cares about my mom. I don’t feel sorry for her, she is the one that won’t leave dad, but she’s so hurt. And my brother treats her horribly, he causes her and calls her names just like dad. In therapy I’ve learned kids like me go one of two ways, we protect mom or we hate her.

    She gave me everything, anything I wanted. It was her way of showing love, with Nana and grand dad, I get it, why she’s like she is.

    She’s the common woman of her generation. And the way she was raised. Dad told me that she was uneducated and stupid, I believed him. But the therapist had me research my mom and she has an AA degree. Dad said she never worked and was fat and lazy, his mom said the same thing, but that wasn’t true.

    Mom has a low self esteem, little wonder. I could write a novel about her and how messed up she is. She’s no rock! A pond you can drown in, yes. Anyway, I gave her something no one gave her, understanding.

    She’s not bad. I see her watching the news and women movements. How do you think I knew about abused women having no rights? Yeah, mom aborted a baby, she couldn’t allow dad to control that kids thoughts of her too. We all hate her for the wimp she is and for staying with him.

    But she’s my mom. There are way worse moms than her. Sometimes I wish she’d run away from us all, we treat her bad. I’m trying to do better, no one deserves what she takes. She’s tried to off herself, her only way out.

    The future won’t see women like my mom. Men like my dad are a dying breed. I’m not saying my dad is dirt, he has a good job, respected in the community. But we can’t get mom, she grew up beat down, worthless. I’ve seen women like her leave and not come back, gotta give her credit for sticking around while we yelled at her, cussed her and treated her like she didn’t matter. Infant even remember buying her a gift.

    Anyway, keep up the fight, you’re fighting to free our moms generation and get them out of the dark ages! Going to call my mom, take her out to lunch. Thanks for this post, lot of s–t I have penned up from the past.

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