This weekend while millions marched for equality around the globe, someone with a can of spray paint snuck onto the campus of a high school in my own neighborhood and scrawled messages of hate and intolerance.
Lately, I have been worried that I brought my daughter into a world that might succumb to it’s own darkness, a world guided by fear instead of light. I have been worried that those terrible words written in spray paint may take hold, that the vision I had for the world when I decided to bring my daughter here may be lost forever.
Last year, when the world was still reeling from the results of the election and 2016 kept taking the lives of so many of our artists, the people who gave voice to our sorrow and our hope, I found myself thinking, maybe they know something we don’t? Maybe they’re jumping ship before it all gets too unbearable?
But yesterday morning as I stood in the spitting rain at Withrow High with a hundred other members of our community to show the students that we are stronger than one asshole with a can of spray paint, I had a different thought. Maybe those old artists left to make way for a new generation of artists? Maybe somewhere, the next Leonard Cohen is composing a new Hallelujah and a new Carrie Fisher is preparing, perhaps unknowingly, to be the next leader in the fight against darkness.
Each student filed past me, head held high in defiance and beauty, slapping my outstretched hand as they passed. It occurred to me that I may have just high-fived the future President of the United States. Or, maybe she is the one I held on my hip, shifting her weight as she took in the scene, the synapses of her brain connecting and firing, her power already growing like a red-hot fire.
There have been so many days when I have feared that I may leave my daughter a world worse than the one that was given to me. In the moments of my deepest despair I have even felt guilty about bringing her here.
But as I looked from the faces of the students streaming past me yesterday morning into own child’s face, I realized that I have been wrong. Though I birthed her, I am not the only force that brought her here. She was born for these times.
One of the amazing signs I saw at the Women’s March in D.C. last weekend