Self and collective care
For girls, self and collective care are political strategies critically linked to how they are in the work and central to their resistance.
Practices often emerge from and are nourished within the autonomous and self defined spaces girls themselves co-create. This could be as simple as taking time and space to share what they are experiencing and feeling, seeking solidarity from their peers, and a place to process the harshness of what they experience daily. Care manifests in many ways, through the arts, through sport, through movement, in reclaiming the right to play, and drawing from and reinterpreting ancestral practices passed down across generations, as a birth right and expression of their existence and identity.
I think that the activist people should probably start focusing not only on having money and resources for the projects but the activists, so the resources for the projects for the activists to rest and to learn to take care of themselves better – because you cannot do activism without the people behind it. So they should also be a focus.
I am committed to healing justice, to a return of the ways in which our ancestors healed. Through circles, through sacred plants, through medicine, through sacred sexuality; and developing deep connections with myself, with my community, and with nature.
So I have been journaling for the past seven years and it is a part of my practice for my personal wellbeing and my practice as a writer and my practice as a feminist because for me the journal is an archive of everything that is going on and everything that is changing and the language that I am discovering along the way as well. So my journal takes on different roles and meanings in my life and it is the space where I go with myself, have that solid attitudes as a woman in a way that I am not allowed in my very cramped house. The journal became the space and journaling didn’t distract me it became a little pocket that I have created for myself and it is just for myself.
Then there is a part of me that feels that writing is resistance and has been a part of my resistance as well because writing is also how I practice my politics so put that act of setting experience into language, setting thought into language, making it exist, giving it a face, giving it memory and defining it – I see that as political as well.
And one of the reasons I formed my foundation was to bring these skills to shelters free of charge so that at least we could begin to teach some of the people who wanted to listen, some skills. How to say no. Boundaries. What shame looks like and how to be resilient to shame. Self care. But taking a break and saying, “You know for the next five minutes I belong to me,” that that is not selfish. That is actually the most brilliant thing that anyone can do.