Posts for election

25 Ways I’ve Been Healing Since November 8th

Go Girl! - Allison Kenny - December 20, 2016

So many of us were traumatized by the election. For me, it started during the debates and culminated on election night. That’s when I noticed that I left my body completely. It’s taken me weeks to come on back. Remember that my body is home. And that if I’m not present, I can’t show up in the world the way I want to. So, for what feels like the millionth time, I’m pressing the re-set button. I’m taking good care and putting my own healing at the forefront so I can be the kind of mother I want to be. So I can show up as an artist, a writer, a participant in my life. For me, the slow and sometimes painful path back to myself looks like this…

1. Noticing my impulse to check out and numb with food and tv. “Wow, I must be really scared. It’s feeling super hard to stay in the moment.”
2. Allowing myself to check out a little bit with food and tv.
3. Setting up weekly hikes with a friend to feel my feet on the ground and remember how big the Universe is.
4. Scheduling regular bodywork to help me stay in my body.
5. Buying new sneakers to “train for the Revolution.” I’m quoting my friend Ed here.
6. Setting my alarm 45 minutes earlier so I can have quiet space to myself before my daughter wakes up. Doing whatever the hell I want in those 45 minutes.
7. Holding my dogs. A lot. And putting sweaters on them. ‘Cause cute heals.
8. Singing Christmas Carols at the top of my lungs.
9. Dancing with my daughter. In the kitchen. In our pajamas.
10. Letting myself cry. Or feel rage. Hopelessness. Confusion. Fear.
11. Limiting my media intake. Remembering I can “stay safe in my imagination” and manage triggers.
12. Making art. Like scribbly, messy, kid art.
13. Putting my hand on my heart in the shower. Being gentle with myself.
14. Interrupting my critical voice and talking sweetly instead. Calling myself “love.”
15. Using sweet orange essential oil.
16. Watching 13th – 15 minutes at a time.
17. Reading spiritual, feminist literature that inspires me.
18. Deep cleaning my house.
19. Praying. Meditating. Breathing.
20. Kissing my daughter more.
21. Kissing my wife more.
22. Making sure the people in my life know how grateful I am for them.
23. Making food that feels good.
24. Staying present for my wife and listen to her story, her grief, her rage as a woman of color without trying to fix.
25. Channeling my anger and fear about the state of the world into being a girl advocate.

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How We Explained Trump to Our Little Girl

Go Girl! - Allison Kenny - December 16, 2016

On November 8th, my wife made her famous mac & cheese. We put out wine and olives and opened our home to some of our favorite folks. Beloved teachers from our Go Girls! Camp squished up on the couch with our little girl, who grinned the biggest smile of her life. She was getting to stay up late and watch part of the election in her pajamas. We were making space to celebrate a historic moment…the moment we could show our little Go Girl that a woman could, in fact become President.

We all know what happened instead.

Neither my wife or I were huge Hilary fans. We were tracking her imperfections. But as mothers and girl advocates, we could not support putting a bully in power. That’s how we had to explain it to our little girl. When she climbed into our bed in the morning and noticed Mama Lynn’s eyes were almost swollen shut from weeping, we had to tell her that we were very surprised but Hilary had not won after all.

“Oh no,” she said. “Mama…is Hilary very sad this morning?” That was our daughter’s first response. Empathy. Oh, it killed me.

And after that, “Why can’t we just be happy for Mr. Trump and celebrate him for winning?” That’s what we teach her, after all. If you lose at Candyland, you congratulate the winner and play again. Why was this different? Because for our family- a queer, multi-racial, adoptive family- this election communicated something about our safety and security in the country we call home. Electing Trump means choosing to give a bully a lot of power, putting all vulnerable groups at risk.

“You’re right, baby,” I told her. “Usually, our job is to be happy for the winner and listen to their ideas, even if they are different from our own. The reason we are so upset about Trump winning is that he sometimes uses his power to hurt people.  He believes that people with white skin are better than people with brown skin. He thinks it’s okay to touch women’s bodies without asking. His ideas are not just different from ours, they are wrong. Our job now is to stand up for what we believe and speak out about what’s right. And in the future, the grown-ups will do everything we can to elect leaders who are fair and kind.”

“Mommy, can we make a poster about what we believe in and send it to Washington DC?” Of course.

So, we got writing. Here is what she made.

To: Trump

NO SLAVES

Be nice

Love: Heaven

That about sums it up.

 

How are you talking about election results with your kids?

 

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