The holidays can be such a difficult time for so many of us. When gathering around the cozy, perfectly set dining table, for some, the absence of a loved one is painfully clear. Others of us rarely experience healthy family dynamics throughout the year, let alone on occasions when the boundaries of even the happiest families are stretched.
Here are five way to show up in a kind, compassionate way for your loved ones this season.
Yesterday marked the beginning of 16 Days of Activism to end violence against women — and one of the keys ways to cultivate a nonviolent future is by celebrating consent. With Blurred Lines at the top of the charts we would do well to scour our playlists for tracks promoting consent … to make sure they do, in fact, exist.
I live in Barrancabermeja, Colombia where my partner is a human rights solidarity worker with the Christian Peacemaker Teams; he accompanies communities under threat of violence.
Despite the volatile nature of his work, my partner is undoubtedly safer than most Colombians; it’s much more dangerous to be a Colombian in Colombia than a foreigner. Much of the violence in our region is driven by multinational interests and is directed at small farmers, union organizers and local community activists.
That being said, I still worry. A lot.
When I think back on the day we found out my Love’s first US residency visa was denied, it plays in my mind like a slow motion, melodramatic montage. The scene is a grocery store, an unfortunately impersonal place for life altering news: florescent lights, pre-packaged meat, metal shopping carts, out-of-season strawberries, a freshly buffed floor.
I used to live on a block you wouldn’t believe was real unless I took you by the hand and introduced you to all my neighbors. They weren’t heroes, geniuses or thought leaders; they were everyday people who knew how to be good to one another.