Writing at the intersection of motherhood, feminism and my Latinidad

20 September 2009

Be still my feminist mama heart...My daughter and the Emmys

It's Sunday and homework is all done (actually, she didn't have any since she won Star Student of the Week. *gloating*), the kid is in her PJs, teeth have been brushed and tomorrow's clothes are picked up. Yup, it's a rare night when it's 8 pm and not much is left to do in our household. We're curled up in a heap on the couch flipping between the 2009 Emmy Awards and Sunday Night Football.

Our precocious daughter watches men and women pick up separate acting awards. Then one of the writing award nominations are being announced. "So, is this the men's writing awards?" "Um, no mija. Just the writing awards. But GOOD observation!"

As much as I feel that I am raising her in what I would call a feminist manner, I wouldn't say that I point out all of life's injustices like say an awards category where there are only men or only white women. That is for much later in life when I feel like she could handle such a conversation. Only at the age of 6 she makes that observation herself.

This is the same girl who around the age of 2 or 3 let it be known that it's OK for the baby rubber ducky to have two mommies and at the age of 4 stated that restrooms with sinks and soap dispensers too high for her to reach were bad because little kids couldn't reach them on their own and that is just unfair. Seriously? You think I taught her that last one? Last month we were in a restroom when she took a step back from the sink and proudly told me that "Mom, now this is a good  kid sink!" Two years later she's still on the look out for kid-friendly rest room sinks.

I tweeted her Emmy comment and got a lot of retweets. A sign that others not only agreed with her, but a sign to her that she's seeing it right. She's got the right lens on her two perfect eyes.

I will always say first and foremost, she was born with an innate sense of fairness. I merely support her and guide her in that fairness. Yes, she takes it too literal in that she believes a 6-year-old deserves the exact same amount of dinner and dessert as her 34-year-old mother. But on the whole she's usually dead on.

What I find is feminist in this mothering moment is that I knew exactly what she was talking about. I didn't need to rewind the DVR to see that yes, it was an all dude category. And I affirmed her observation and stressed that it was a GOOD one. I didn't ignore her, I didn't make excuses and I didn't wave her off as being silly.

I affirmed her voice.

And I think that is one of the most feminist things I can do for her as I help her find her way in this world.


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