Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Parenthood: Week 178 Part 2 - Dream Deferred (The Post If She Won)

I wrote this post on Tuesday 11/8/2016, anticipating Secretary Clinton winning the Presidential Election. 

"This may not have been such a good idea."

I sat there in my driveway, with the chills, sweating and trembling, while the pain in my head throbbed and my throat felt tight. I had been sick for four days with a painful head cold. It felt like a hangover every morning and evening without the inconvenience of drinking. I decided after taking a sick day and a long weekend that I would head to school and go on the four day/three night fifth grade outdoor education trip.

I hesitated before turning the key in the ignition, and then I said to myself, "If Hillary had the strength to make it through this election and hold her head high while being the most sexually harassed woman in America, then I can rally and make this trip happen."

As I drove to school, I thought about my mom's struggles immigrating to America, facing racism and sexism and never letting these encounters effect her belief in herself and her dignity. I thought about the struggles of my wife trying to balance out expectations of parenthood and career that people often judge her about and rarely consider with me because I’m a man.

Then I thought about my son.

Before getting into my car, I walked into Ollie's room to say goodbye. I watched him sleep peacefully. Then I whispered to him, "Daddy is going to go now, he needs to say bye. You are my special little guy, I am very proud of you and I love you very much. You exist because you live in a country that values you, that loves that your mom and dad came from different places and through love brought you into this world. There are people around though who don't value who we are and tonight people are gong to vote and show us that those people are wrong. You are loved and important to our country and I'm never going to let anyone make you feel differently."

As the morning sun began to rise, I felt myself becoming overwhelmed by emotion when I remembered my mom’s words from the previous night. I asked my mom about the election and how she voted. She told me how excited she was to see that a woman of her generation could do something that she couldn't. She saw Hillary struggle and fight and deal with the worst society could throw at her and made it through.

I told my mom how excited I was that I was going tell Ollie that there was going to be a grandmother in the White House. I started feeling tears of joy as I explained how incredible it was that Ollie was born with a mixed-race American as President and will come to know a grandmother as President. Ollie will know that there is a little boy and girl, whose visit to Grandma's house will be a trip to the White House.

I walked into my school, with my wife, my mom and my son with me, determined to be strong. Feeling in my heart that they were with me and that we were stronger together.

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