The sunlight shines down brightly on me, warming my body from the inside out. The path around the lake is littered with leaves and crunches underneath my feet. I take a moment to breathe in deeply and look around. I spy a bee lazily buzzing around to the remaining flowers, enjoying the last few drops of sweetness before the cold sets in. The wind whips the trees, as a colorful shower of leaves flutters down to the ground at their own pace. A butterfly catches a gust of wind and rides the wave purposefully to her next destination. I breathe in again, smelling the decay of the fallen leaves, thankful for this moment in my day. My life. My season.
The fall season is a perfect analogy for life. Trees lose their leaves, but still manage to survive…and eventually thrive once again. Bees, butterflies, and birds migrate to where life suits them best. The sun doesn’t shine every day, but we know that even on cloudy, rainy, or snowy days, we will emerge and see the sunshine once again. Seasons change, but do not last forever. Things come to an end. Releasing, darkness and rest gives birth to new beginnings.
Today is a pristine fall day for which I am enormously grateful.
Seeing my newsfeed and Tiktok flooded with the leaked decision of the Supreme Court to overturn Roe vs. Wade, I feel like screaming this from the rooftops: “WE ARE NOT GOING BACK!” This applies to that situation as well as many others in my life at the moment. I am not alone when I say I will make DAMN sure the women of this country have bodily autonomy for their own healthcare decisions. Women are not breeding livestock you can legislate to just keep pushing out babies. We are humans and we have rights too. I refuse to be silent when my daughter’s (and daughters everywhere) future is at stake. We are not going back to the time in our country when the only person considered in our laws and our society is a white man. Mediocre white man: your time is up!
I’m overwhelmed with rage about the state of things. This is on top of the ludicrous cries of corporate America everywhere to “return to the office” and we “need to collaborate in person”. Really?!? Working remotely worked just fine during the past two years of the pandemic, but suddenly it no longer works? We all watched as millions of people around the world lost their lives as a result of this pandemic. The world is not the same as it was before. We, collectively and individually, are not the same as we were before. The pandemic enabled me (and countless others!) to see through the capitalistic, hustle, and work-until-you-die grind culture, and I am no longer here for it. I refuse to give my mental or physical health to a company that would cut me in a heartbeat in order to make the numbers look better for their shareholders.
And I have recently left a marriage that drained me of my time, mental energy, money, health, and self-confidence. Studies have shown that women’s health suffers during the marriage, while men thrive. And when divorce does happen? The reverse is true…women THRIVE while men take a hit. Is anyone surprised by that? I am most certainly not. We are the supporters, the cheerleaders, the taskmasters, the organizers, the soothers, the doers, the love, the glue. We hold families together. All I can think now, having time to heal and repair some of the damage from my marriage is, what took you so long to decide to leave? And that is even without being 100% done with the divorce process itself!
I am fucking DONE. I am not going back to the way things were before. I’m not nostalgic for old times. I am here, along with women everywhere, forging a better, more inclusive, more empathetic path forward. Not just for women, but for all people. If you are longing for the past, watch out, because we are about to mow you down. Burn the whole damn system down to the ground.