Someday, I may look at this moment as when she made her first feminist statements. Them again, I suppose there is the possibility they will be her last as well.
Feminism in action #1:
Me: “Oh boy! That is a pretty large slide to concur!
Little elephant: Mommy! Don’t say “oh boy”. You need to say “oh girl”. “Oh boy” is silly.
Feminism in action #2:
We love this old Sesame Street song and she knows all the words. Recently, however, I realized she doesn’t know what the word voice means. So… She thought they were singing “we all sing with the same boys, the same song, the same boys” as opposed to “same voice”.
I realized this because she announced that we should sing “we all sing with the same girls, the same song, the same girls…”
Already reconquering linguistic space! That is my little feminist.
Bedtime routine includes skyping Daddy, pulling together all the things needed to get into PJs (pjs, pillow, cream, diaper), changing, and then watching a few videos on youtube. Usually, the videos are Sesame Street. Tonight she asked for this:
Clearly, I am doing something right.
Happy Mother’s Day!
The truth is that I have no knowledge of these producers or any connection to this film. I saw a mention of their crowd sourcing campaign last week and was touched by the content and some of the scenes. But, then, I did nothing with it.
The idea, however, of having increased representation of cross-racial, international, queer families, has stuck with me. So, I decided to share.
Baby Steps is a global, cross-cultural film about building a non-traditional family with the most traditional of values.
Plot Outline: Danny, a Taiwanese-American man, and his partner Tate long to have a baby, but the complex world of surrogacy is further complicated by Danny’s well-meaning but extremely meddlesome Ma who wants to control every aspect of the process all the way from Taipei…
Please find the indiegogo crowd-sourcing site with more info on the movie here.
This has already been on upworthy, but I want to make sure I can find it again. Enjoy.
Little Elephant doesn’t get to watch a lot of TV. Okay, I will revise that statement, she watches almost none. Until she was 2, she pretty much thought that TV was one of a few videos all in Russian. She can, in fact, sing along with this:
I am not going to get in to all the reason for so little TV time here (at least not right now). I don’t look down on people who let their kids watch TV and, frankly, I agree that at times it would be easier. It simply isn’t a choice we have made yet. Perhaps I should write something at some point; I am always amazed by the reactions I get when I say Little Elephant never watches TV.
She has very recently learned of Elmo and even watched several Elmo videos online. It has been fun for us too to see all the stars who make appearances on Sesame Street. Basically everyone who is anyone from what I can tell. That is pretty cool.
To date, Little Elephant has two favorite videos. She asks for each by name!
Andrea Bocelli’s Lullabye To Elmo
Sing with Me
On the best of day and on the worst of days, my father’s advice was always the same: “Don’t worry. They are peaking. You are going to go on to do great things in your life and they (whoever it happened to be that was bothering me or making me glum) are peaking. Once they leave high school, they won’t make anything of themseves. You, however, are a late bloomer and college and beyond will be amazing.”
Over the years, my Dad must have told me this 4 dozen times or more. Sometimes he would embellish on how this was true for him and how it was true for my Mom. He would encourage me. He believed in me. For that matter, my Mom did too. She gave the same messages with examples of how she has exceeded expectations.
Sometimes I believed them. Sometimes I didn’t. Somtimes life just hurt. Sometimes others in my life hurt me. Many times, my school failed to stop the bullying.
I grew up before the It Get’s Better video series. I also, luckily, grew up before internet bullying became so popular. I love that the video series exists. I love that television shows are starting to address both bullying and diversity in a more holistic way. Still, there is so much more to be done.
If you haven’t seen It Get’s Better videos, do. Here is one by Google Employees:
PS Turns out my parents were right. The bullies from my school, for the most part, haven’t made much of themselves and I love my life. What words were of comfort to you growing up?
***This is part of a series on bullying. Check out the other posts: Intro, Friends vs. Bullies, Physical Violence, and researching LGBT teen suicide..
Messy Nessy did a great piece on What Model Posses Would Look Like in Real Life. The above video is from that piece and shows reactions of public as average size women standing in public places in these awkward positions. Check out the piece for the pictures and commentary by the artist who pulled these together.
As I look at magazines on plane trips or in doctors offices, I am routinely surprised by how everything is sexualized, women are made to look powerless or childlike, and bodies that are anorexic are contorted even further. This is not something I want to aspire to be. This is something, which now I can say, I am accepting not being. This is something that when I was younger, I did secretly want. This is something that I can now analyze and understand as wrong. Why do we, as a society, accept this as beauty? Even make it the standard?
Who stands like this? It is awkward and uncomfortable.
School girl fantasies. Why do we promote them? What does this teach our girls? Honestly, what does it teach our boys?