Activism, Parenting

Activist mummy

17 February, 2012

I have been blathering on about crafty shenanigans and vintage hauls for quite a few posts now. I would absolutely forgive you for thinking that I have forgotten that there are many ways to make the world a more beautiful place.

I get a feeling that when I post about political/socioeconomic/protest stuff readers roll their eyes and think “DULLLLLL”. They tend to be my least read and least commented posts. Is it because it is alienating? Or lacking creativity? Or bereft of cute Ramona photos and stories?

She lost a pompom. A pom?

Who knows. Let me try and remedy this by ticking ALL those boxes. Wish me luck!

This morning I woke up pretty stoked. We have had a brilliant few days having a sort out and beautifying our home with a few licks of paint (tick) and finally getting some of our lovely secondhand goodies on display (tick!) Ramona and I have been having so much fun chilling out together recently, her talking her little head off (it seems she tends to mostly talk about Gok Wan) me showing off all my moves as we crank the music and have dance parties, as we chase each other for HOURS around the living room, ending up rolling around in stitches.

The faces she pulls!

But as I tuned in to Twitter to find my timeline filled with the latest info on the UK’s corporate slave trade (Workfare in government lingo) and a link to a Suzanne Moore article about demonising poor people I became ANGRY. Like sweary angry.  Stomach crunchingly, teeth clenchingly mad.

What sort of a world are we putting up with? How can we be okay with increasing numbers of our neighbours being pushed further into poverty? Why is our government getting away with policies that consistently discriminate against vulnerable people? What am I going to do about it?

It has never been more easy for me to ignore these questions, to pat them down and say “Sit! … Stay..Stay” as if they are some persistent Jack Russel trying to get attention.  Being a mother is BUSY! It is physically exhausting all this running up and down the stairs, crawling around with a toddler clinging on, throwing a giggler into the air. But it is also meaningful. It is a wonderful and satisfying thing loving a new little person. It gives me a contentedness that makes my striving for other goodness in the world fade away just a little bit.

The truth is I do feel like being a loving parent is enough. I believe that children who have strong attachments and are loved and loved and loved are going to be the people who pour out more love later. By loving we create lovers. And the world definitely needs more lovers. We need lovers to run our countries, the IMF, the ECB. Lovers to paint and build. To organise our banks, to teach, and police the streets.

But still…

I do want Ramona to see me getting angry with the unfair status quo. I do want her to feel that individuals can be powerful, that action can change things. That letter writing, marching and tweeting can create a new mandate and a new story for our world.

I think I need to work on that balance, to make sure motherhood doesn’t ever blinker me to the reality of injustice and the power of fighting it.  Thank goodness for Twitter, where in those few chilled out moments as she drifts off to sleep I can get a little bit furious AND do something about it.

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  • Katy 17 February, 2012 at 7:26 pm

    I like this one Lucy – and am commenting to show it xxx

  • Katy 17 February, 2012 at 7:28 pm

    Although even I prefer the one about framing stuff (get me a frame – stat.)

    • lulastic 17 February, 2012 at 8:39 pm

      ha haha haha haha ha! outrageous x

  • Jo 17 February, 2012 at 8:19 pm

    I agree. The balence is hard. Actual protests are even tougher with 3 but I feel like such a loser for making them an excuse. On the upside, I’ve been trying to help Huds (nearly 5) make wise chocolate choices and explaining Nestlé bad, fairtrade good. I also try to talk about the jobs me and Steve do and why our work is important to us. I guess part of it is just letting them be part of your world and talk about that with them as well as being part of their batman/car/trumpet world.

    • lulastic 17 February, 2012 at 8:52 pm

      Yep so true Jo, I guess it is a bit of just living in an integral, joined up way – that will implicitly guide them. And within this there will be days where we ARE able to chain our while family to the gates of Tesco HQ (jokes) and other months where it is all we can do to just feed them, clean them and keep them joyful.

  • Bek 18 February, 2012 at 10:04 pm

    I like this post. You are being an activist mummy by the way that you are bringing Ramona up and the values you are teaching her. You’ll have already created one positive change in the world if you bring her up to want to make the world a better place too so don’t worry about spending time enjoying her. I do look forward to future posts of you all chained to the gates of Tesco HQ though 🙂 Sometimes it’s nice to read a post that makes you think.

    • lulastic 20 February, 2012 at 12:52 pm

      Hey thanks Bek 🙂
      I did once see a toddler march, protesting the closure of some child care services, very cute!

  • melwiggins 19 February, 2012 at 9:12 pm

    Yep yep and yep! Activists mummies tread a fine line sometimes in modelling love and justice (which in my opinion are one and the same). I like bringing Levi along to my trafficking awareness stuff (when it’s not night time because he doesn’t deal well) because I want him to grow up in that atmosphere – knowing that good people CAN make a difference and how important it is to ACT on these things in a bigger more collective way.

    I also think that it should roll into everyday life too – the smaller things (which aren’t usually small, but seem small). I loved how my folks raised us in a home where anyone was welcome – people who had nobody were always brought in and treated like somebody. There were always people going through tough times staying at our house – you never knew who would have been arriving at the dinner table that night and I totally think that stuff is as important to model as parents as the other big protesty stuff. In fact, I often find the smaller stuff harder to do. What do you think?

    • lulastic 20 February, 2012 at 12:44 pm

      I think that love and justice can be the same thing, but think that you can do one and not the other. Justice has something of the “dealing to the root cause” about it which sometimes with our loving acts we can forget.
      I also agree that the little things are vital and think it is a shame that we sometimes neglect the big stuff because we are busy with the little stuff, and vice versa!

  • Hollie A Hylands (@Holzo) 20 February, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    I just have to say as a mummy-to-be I am so grateful to have stumbled upon so many fantastic blogs from creative and inspiring mummys of late. Its my new favourite pastime and always provides me with plenty to ponder over and gives an interesting insight into parenthood. So…Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • lulastic 20 February, 2012 at 1:12 pm

      Thank you for popping by and visiting!
      How exciting for you having a baby on the way, and awesome that you are already getting involved with the online Mummyzone, I didn’t find it until a few months ago!

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