Yesterday was one of those days that everything seemed to have hit me at once. When I opened the envelope and saw that the latest edition of Our Bodies, Ourselves was inside, I was giddy. I quickly found a shelf in the post office to flip to the back where contributors are listed. There I was. Fuck yeah!
It's a bit embarrassing at the same time as I know I didn't contribute a whole lot, but I did what I could.
Then it dawned on me that I've been at this women's health thing for over twenty years. I'm by far not an expert; I am a hobbyist. And it all started back when my mom use to tell me stories about working in the delivery room, from her nursing school classes and when she worked at a clinic. She would remark about the news as if talking to the TV (now I know where I get it!) or the newspaper. I would sometimes ask her to explain more. Sometimes she would just go on a rant and explain it whether I liked it or not.
By the time I got through college and working on women's health projects, I was sure in my love of the topic. One of the first websites I designed for work was for a women's health center. It was awesome to help be part of the amazing work the medical and research team was doing. Seeing as my coworkers carry on that work, I get to watch with pride.
And that is how I view my role in women's health advocacy, as a hobbyist who watches as others do the hard work, being their champion and amazed at what they accomplish. I love that I am so closely involved that I learn far more than others and consider it an honor to do so.
I showed the kid and my husband the copy at dinner. I let the kid know that just about any question she would have about her body would be in here. It will sit on the bookshelf in the living room where she has access to other books any growing girl should have access to from Beautiful, You, UnMarketable to The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series.
While I may have contributed just a few lines and thoughts to this edition, I am deeply blessed to have done so.
You can get yourself a copy at Powells or IndieBound. Look at out for the Our Bodies, Ourselves book tour too! And a reminder that if you purchase a book through those links, this blog gets a tiny slice of that purchase price.