It’s women’s history month and let’s just say I’m exhausted. Women, some, can be our own enemies. Women, some, can derail anyone and anything they think they have power over. The past two days at work has been disheartening and to think that I start this month wondering why some women are our own worst enemies is my keep for the day. That and Toni Morrison’s essay on Cinderella and her stepsisters. The feeling she felt for urgency with Cinderella is how I feel now. What is unsettling still is that a workplace full of some women can still be like the story. We contribute to grief even when we ought to be releasing happiness for all. We go out of our way to make things difficult when only light should flow.
So I am going to spend the rest of this month not doing what some may have thought they gained by keeping me down and oppressed/deflated these past two days.
Rather I will focus on my nurturing side, things that move me in the direction of freedom, knowing that only free people can make a free world.
I will dream of what can be, possibilities beyond reach. I will nurture all sorts of pursuits, those that make me grow, and those that keep me joyful. Things of value to you in any workplace seldom are. It is not safe to guard over a place that will replace you in a heartbeat even as you pass your last breath.
So I will dream and uplift the safety and power of all those around me, including my step sisters. I will not enslave them mentally or use words to derail their life goals. I will uplift women, those that hate me and those that love me. I will uplift all those that choose to belittle me too. Those that would rather I clean or wipe their tables, those that would rather I pick their trash too.
Being black and woman in academia is a gift I will always cherish. It’s much more than work as it has enabled me to live beyond my dreams. My name is Isioma and if you know the meaning, then you will know why I choose peace this month as we celebrate women’s history.