I didn’t march last week. I didn’t protest for the rights of women or scream horrid names at those opposing my views. Instead I donated clothes to a local family in need, I took leftovers from my fridge to a group of men who probably hadn’t had something homemade in years, I held the door for strangers, and even when I didn’t agree with somebody I still smiled and said “yes sir I hear ya on that, but I’ve got to go so have a great day”. I don’t like what the parents do with their free money instead of buying their kids clothes, I hope that one day those men will find their way and a better life, I found it rude when the elderly woman looked at me quizzically somewhat abrasive without a thank you for holding the door for her, and I didn’t agree with one thing that elderly man had to say about life, love, and politics. I didn’t judge those parents though and rant about how they are ruining their lives and their children’s, I didn’t look down on those men who live in a shack in the woods, I didn’t get an attitude or say something rude to the woman, and I didn’t roll my eyes and argue with a man who will never see things from my view. Last week when hate bombarded me from every angle in the news, on the radio, and in life, I chose love and my week and life was better for it.
My daughter will learn about last month in history class one day. She will learn about Donald Trump’s shocking presidential win, she will learn about his inauguration as the 45th president, and she will learn about the marches and protests, both for and against him and his presidency. And I am sure one day she will ask, “Momma, why didn’t you march for women’s rights in January 2017?” I will answer her in as honestly as I can and I will tell her “I didn’t march to change the world because I was busy changing the world”.
I didn’t march for her right to control her body, instead I continued that week working to raise her to be a strong, independent woman so that she will also know her worth as a human being and therefore have control of her body and emotions. I didn’t protest a man who won an election fair and square even if I didn’t agree and in that I taught my daughter that sometimes we don’t get our way, actually most of the time in life we don’t, but tolerance can help us grow together and find resolutions as a team.
My daughter might then ask me, as much as I love politics, why didn’t I march for President Trump or attend a pro-life rally supporting my personal beliefs. I will answer her in a similar way, “I didn’t march to show my love or beliefs because I was too busy living my beliefs and personifying love”. Instead of arguing or saying somebody else was wrong about their choices in life, I chose to give to the children who aren’t having a great life right now. Instead of looking down on people for not living the nice life I do, I chose to take them a piece of my home and heart in the form of food. Instead of huffing about the rudeness of the elderly woman or berating her, I smiled because I have no clue what she is battling in her life. And finally instead of arguing with somebody who I will never agree with, I just smiled and shook my head because not everybody is going to agree with me, but not everything is worth an argument. My beliefs are my own and I have decided instead of pushing them down others’ throats, I’m just going to live my beliefs and hopefully God will agree with me because in the end He is the only one who matters.
It’s been said that, “When you choose love over hate, faith over despair, and acceptance over intolerance, you are doing your part to change the world”. There are things I will never be able to change and there are people who will never change, but today I choose love over hate. Today I choose a smile over an argument, and today I choose to live my beliefs instead of shouting them on the streets. If we want to make the world a better place we have to start with us acting not shouting, not marching, and not speaking, but acting because it is only when we act for the good of others, that the world will become good, too.