But I'm back! At least for a brief blog. Part of my struggle in the past few weeks has been the lovely assessments I have had to administer to my students. Not only do they LOVE taking long assessments, but I LOVE losing class time, focus, and the slight semblance of normalcy that I have tried desperately to establish in the midst of pure, unadulterated middle school craziness.
I found her candor and openness refreshing. It's not often that people open themselves up to the world and say, "Take me or leave me, this is what I like. And don't you dare judge me for it." Okay, so she didn't actually say that, but that's what I took from her talk. Though I haven't yet jumped into the book itself (it's waiting patiently on my coffee table), I loved hearing her read excepts and talk about how her own life experiences have shaped her view of feminism. I couldn't help remember a situation a few years back when I met the younger sister of a friend of mine for the first time. We were chatting at a party, when all of the sudden, a peppy/pop/hip-hop song came on. She immediately started dancing - clearly enjoying the song. But then she suddenly stop, looked at me, and apologized saying, "I'm sorry. I swear, I am a feminist." I felt bad for her then, and as I look back, I feel even worse. I should have said something. I should have told her what I thought about feminism, and that she could shake her booty as much as she wanted and still be a feminist. But I looked at her in sheer disbelief (and a little sadness).
I hope my girls, and boys, at school realize they can be feminists and still dance when their favorite (possibly even misogynistic) song comes on the radio. That they can be straight, gay, bisexual, or totally confused, and still be a feminist. That they the can want to be a stay at home parent, or kill it in the business world, and still be a feminist. That they can watch "Bachelor in Paradise" (who watches that???) and still be a kick a** feminist! Much like enforcing the human rights declaration, being a feminist is about finding your own path, your own connection, your own voice. Because if it's not about you, it's not going to be real.