I’m excited about our new Wednesday challenge to share an image from our respective lives. These are interesting days and I have a lot to learn about Hong Kong and how place influences the way that Anna parents. A picture conjures up questions and comments where words fail to.
I plugged in the camera USB to my computer and was prompted to name the photo group. Okay, let’s keep it simple and non-fiction and go with “Rainbows and Presidents.”
The kids and I have seen a few extraordinary rainbows lately, and I managed to catch one on the camera as it was waning into non-existence. This lead to this week’s home study on rainbows and colors – essentially picking apart why rainbows happen. And it got me thinking about my dull-hued rainbow. Logically, I know that it is a phenomenon caused when water droplets bend the rays of light into a spectrum. But I still get entranced by the magic of one each and every time I see one. It is as much magic and wonder as it is science.
And then today there’s this little event happening in this part of the world called the United States Election. I found my local ballot drop-box so I could join the leagues of late voters. Washington has a postal voting system, so I took the kids to the mobile location where votes could be submitted in official boxes without the votes ever having entered the mail system. I have been rather detached from election coverage – we don’t have a television, I was preoccupied thinking of loved ones caught in the path of Hurricane Sandy, and honestly, I grow weary of all the mud-slinging.
You see, even the staunchest Obama supporters I know do not agree with all of his policies or decisions that he has made in the last four years. His presidency been much like the picture of my fading rainbow – still imbued with that magic but not always consistently vibrant and inspiring. We were seeing his light being bent by a political system too strong for him to tackle head on.
But walking up to the ballot box with my two small children, I was taken back four+ years ago when my newlywed husband and I attended the primaries. We had this rare opportunity to connect with neighbors (we never saw on a daily basis) about deep-seeded values and the possibility that a man with a vision could put a spark of hope in our hearts. I was pregnant and promptly vomited in a cement planter on the way out of the elementary school library. But it was glorious! Here was someone who was speaking to me and to America not just about national greatness but personal greatness. And I was (and still am) pretty big on the thought of creating a better world for this growing child in my belly.
By time November 2008 rolled around, I had a newborn in my arms. My daughter and I walked to the polling station and reveled in the energy. The optimism.
I felt it again as these two little beings under my love and care carried our votes to the ballot box. I voted for my children and the idea that they can have the liberties and freedoms to be who they are. And also to be under the leadership of someone who won’t stop trying to manifest his vision of a more just and equal society. I want my kids to always hold the same hope in their own hearts.