Hello loves, I woke up this morning and wanted to write you a letter about advocacy. What is advocacy all about anyway? Why should we even do it? What does it matter? And where in the crap do we find daily motivation to keep going in 2018?
Merriam-Webster defines mayhem as, “willful, permanent, crippling mutilation”. I for one super love the idea of permanently mutilating the patriarchy. It sounds so delicious. It is the perfect reason to engage in advocacy.
Advocacy is about engaging in acts that bring about sustainable social justice to improve communities for future generations. It isn’t just about reaching out to elected officials. It is a state of being present while you listen to the stories of others. When you do that you can connect to your own resources, which you can connect to others, who can then connect to people to make change in their lives and their communities.
We are the web of change. We are the movement that helps women reclaim our voices & our rights to bodily autonomy in public spaces & in politics. I remember how scared I was to start my FB lives, to write consistently, to engage in public activism.
What if I say something bad? (I have) What if I sound stupid? (I have) What if someone reads my words and it makes them mad? (They have)
I didn’t listen to that little insecure voice and I am glad about it.
Sure, I have had my missteps and they are all out there for the world to see. And I am ok with that. I know that there is power in my word and as long as I am ok with being imperfect and I approach my work from a space of vulnerability and grace then I will be able to help and inspire.
Sure, I have moved through my own moments of doubt. And I am ok with that. I want to use my voice & release my own personal genius into the world. I am willing to give gentleness & patience when dealing with people that may not get it.
The patriarchy depends on our silence to keep the shit going. The patriarchy depends on women attacking women to keep the shit going.
Use your strength and passion to make changes in your community. It is ok to embrace your power and be unapologetic. You don’t have to filter just because someone is uncomfortable. BE imperfect. That is where I find my deepest motivation in 2018. Every day I find a way to cause just a little bit of trouble.
Cause some mayhem…raise some hell y’all, Dr. Melissa Bird
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