After Hillary’s defeat, I searched for a way to comprehend what had just happened. I grieved the 2016 election’s betrayal of the working women’s movement’s promise. In 2016 misogyny defeated a woman leader poised to make history.
A few weeks after the election I stared at the dark TV screen too outraged to watch the news. An image came into my mind. A soaring eagle gliding across the sky bathed in sunshine.
The last time I’d seen that image was a week after my brother Glenn died in 2008. Then I thought it was a sign that he was ok. When his life was in transition, the eagle image inspired him. On this December night, I didn’t feel that anything was ok.
That night I dreamed that I was looking up at a glass ceiling. As I watched, the ceiling cracked. I heard a shattering sound and watched glass shards fly through the air. A line of women laughing and cheering rose up through the ceiling opening into the wide open blue sky.
The dream felt like a wish fulfillment illusion offered by my dream self. Women will shatter the glass ceiling and soar just like the eagle.
Six months later, a new idea emerged. What if I decide that the glass ceiling is just a social construct to block women from realizing our hopes and dreams. What if women shatter society’s limited construct.
Hillary’s courage, determination and leadership inspired many women to decide “If Hillary can go for it, so can I.” That new power is just beginning to rise.
When patriarchy’s misogyny defines a limitation, I’ve decided to ignore it. Instead, I connect with people of all genders who want to build a society that has no glass ceilings for anyone. Together we live and bring into the mainstream an alternative to patriarchy’s misogyny, racism and abuse.
Hillary’s stronger together message matches what I’ve experienced in the working women’s movement. As a survivor of physical and sexual abuse, I also know the strength that being together with other survivors brings.
Stronger together we build a society that honors, respects, values, loves and nurtures all people, nature and the Earth, our home.
Inspired by the eagle soaring in the sun, I’m moving forward now. Feet planted on the ground. Visionary ideas soaring. Walking forward step by step. Like nature that is both grounded in the Earth and creating in the sky. This is what living beyond the glass ceiling looks like.
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