Wednesday, June 15, 2011

When life is okay.

The ultimate fuel behind my feminism, behind writing and protesting and taking to the streets, is not anger. Certainly there are flashes of anger--when I'm told, in code or straight up, that as a woman I am less than a person or some other kind of person than the usual, I am angry. But though that's often what gets me talking, that's not what keeps me going. If life were nothing but a mountain of offenses, I'm not sure I'd bother to fight.

What keeps me going is the joy in life. It's the times when everything goes right--or even just most things go mostly okay--and it's wonderful.

Last night was not special. I went to a munch and talked with a bunch of other kinksters, had dinner with Sprite and Rowdy, and went home with Rowdy. At home we listened to music and talked and played around but didn't have sex and fell asleep. It wasn't amazing; it was simply an ordinary evening in which nothing bad happened. Nobody insulted me or kept me from doing anything or tried to hurt me. We rode on the bus looking at the lights of the city and we talked about bicycles as we walked home.

So what really motivates me is the wish that all my evenings, and everyone's evenings, could be this simple. Could be sharing a plate of cheap Chinese food and listening to Journey, safely and peacefully and without pain or obligation or self-doubt.

A lot of feminism is talk about ways in which the world is hard for women, and that's important talk--without exposing injustice, it's hard to fight it. But it's important to remember that this isn't an end in itself. Even fighting injustice is not the end of feminism.

The end is a world in which being a woman is okay, and all the days and evenings of all women are okay. The end is a quiet night in a quiet apartment, a place where I will not be harmed or shamed, am not hated or made to hate myself, am not any less nor more nor different of a person than the man by my side, quietly singing:

"Don't stop believing..."


  1. Beautiful. I just finished reading through the archives, and this blog just gets better and better. You've inspired me to start blogging myself. Thanks for being so awesome, and for sharing your awesome with the internet.

  2. Absolutely.

    Today, I had to fix the donate button on my blog. I am terrible when it comes to this sort of stuff, so I called my husband to ask for help.

    He helped me. Without judgment, without implying I don't know these things because I'm a girl, he just gave me the help I needed and a reminder to start learning it on my own.

    If only every conversation could be that judgment free. If only every time we go into a home improvement store, they didn't try talking to him and insist upon ignoring me.

    That's feminism to me. Don't imply my vagina is why I don't know things. Don't hand me the pink tools, hand me the right tools. Treat me like a person.

    I refuse to stop believing this world is possible.

  3. Holly, thank you! You really are wonderful.

    And reading what you are writing makes me feel a little less alone in a world of colleagues and other people around me who just do not seem to get it.
    Who do not seem to get, that we all are humans.. no differences except for those which make us individuals.

    Thank you!!

  4. You know, I was going to write a post about how feminism is about fun, but you kind of said everything I was going to say. :)

  5. That's really beautiful. All there is to it, really.

  6. Thank you for this lovely post...a much needed breath of fresh air after a week that seemed to be monopolized by the worst of human nature in the news and on the internet.

    I was having similar contented thoughts last night whilst cuddled up on the couch--in between yelling at the TV (thus scaring the dog) and getting up to pee and get more snacks--with my partner watching the Stanley Cup final last IS good.

    Congrats to the Bruins! :)

  7. YES - this is exactly what I think of when I think of my version of feminism.

    So beautifully noticed & written, Holly.