Just got back from the round table discussion on sexual assault prevention for children with disabilities and my head is swimming.
In a good way.
It was incredible to be around so many smart and dedicated people who care so much about this topic that I also care so much about.
And I found out that I DID belong at that table. I DID have something to offer. And I'm doing work that almost no one else in the country is.
It will be nice to see where tomorrow's discussion takes us but beyond that, I'm really excited about returning to work and trying harder to make it a priority to work on prevention. And let others know (including funders) how important prevention is.
And to pay more attention to the stories I let myself and my family be told. And the stories I make public to others.
The stories we're told about relationships and love
The stories we're told about marriage
The stories we're told about sex
The stories we're told about what will make us happy
All of these stories are leading us to go after unattainable things, things that just get a little out of our reach every time we think we're close---money, possessions, a better body, the perfect relationship, the American Dream.... And we're never satisfied.
We're all so isolated behind our little screens and from there we're isolated in our little family dynamics and then in our communities and neighborhoods and then in our religious or cultural beliefs and all the way up top divided nearly in half by our political party affiliations.
And when people are isolated and alone, they are more likely to reach out to the wrong people. Or reach back when the wrong people reach out to them. Because we all really do want to connect. And
that's how abuse is happening to children with disabilities. It's how abuse is happening at all.
I know it's not quite that simple. But our conversation today was profound. And it's hard to get my thoughts together. At any rate, I am going to work harder. I'm going to work harder at connecting with others, making people feel visible, having fun, and being in the moment...and making change one step at a time.
I want to connect with everyone in the world and tell a story about love and kindness and respect and forgiveness and recovery....
I feel like a freshman again. I'm going to go out there with my backpack on and my Walkman (well... ipod) and change the world! Or have dinner with a friend. Or both. Maybe just not in that order.