Today was a very special day.
Today we were a part of something much bigger than just one of us.
Today we were a part of the Women's March in LA downtown.
It wasn't on my radar to be there but in the very last minute, I made a conscious choice to walk. To walk with Satchi.
Yesterday I wrote a very personal note on Instagram why I decided to take a part.
I did think for a while whether to take Satchi or not. It was going to be an incredibly large crowd and her experience of the day to be positive was the most important objective for me.
Last night we finished up the sign and I packed all the little things which I thought might help Satchi to feel comfortable just in case. Enough snack, water, toilet paper... phone number written on our wrists, emergency contact info around her neck, coins in case we needed to make phone calls from a public phone booth. We talked ahead about how there might be crowdedness, how we might have to wait for a while, how bathroom might not be as available as we would like. Most importantly we talked about why we decided to be a part of the March. Her sign read "Treat people equally, please." Mine was with "Be the Light". When I asked her what will be the most important thing to remember while we March, she answered confidently "to have fun and to stay together."
Trains were crowded even though we left earlier than we thought. It was also full of positive energy. To experience the feeling of everyone coming together from different places and joining as one was powerful. It was also such a joy to be able to meet up with our friends at Union Station before we entered the really really crowded Metro Red Line platform. From there, everything was in snail pace. It took a while to get through Red Line and arrive Pershing Square and for us to get out of the underground train station... and for the March to start. My goal was to continue framing the experience for our little activists so they can process what's going on. People around us started chanting. I told Satchi and her friend that they could listen and raise their voices with everyone around us "if" the message felt right to them but they never have to chant if they didn't agree with the message. Our favorites were "This is What Democracy Looks Like", "My Body. My Choice." and "The People United Will Never Be Divided." We had fun being loud. When there was a band playing, I told them that they are cheering us. I picked them up few times so they could see the crowd from adult eye level... and see the March happening. Their faces lit up when they were really able to see how many people were actually around us. We marched slowly... and had fun walking. I think Satchi wasn't really reading protest signs that were up above her since she is still a young reader but instead... taking the experience as a whole.
We decided not to stay for the speeches because we could feel that we were reaching the girls' limit and it was probably the right time for us to leave. On our train ride home, I asked her how she felt and she told me that it was the happiest day for her with a big smile. When we came home after a long day in the city, Satchi immediately shared her experience with Coco. In a few minutes, Coco was a master of the chants. (and here:) So excited to be a part of the experience in her way... and that's what is all about for me. I know something shifted and moved inside of Satchi and Coco today... and in myself and my connection to my strong soul sisters who took a part of the day in their unique ways.
I am exhausted tonight but my heart is full of gratitude, love and hope for the future.