AHEAD 2017 Reflections, part 2

Lisa’s reflections on her experiences during AHEAD’s first year, included below, are from the outside in. Sometimes wearing the clothes that are specific to a cause can make that cause all the more real, and your impact all the more powerful, internally and externally!

I was thinking today as I was making my sign for our Women’s March about what has changed for me over the last year since AHEAD was founded.

I was thinking of how my clothes have changed! I am now the proud possessor of:

  • thermal boots, purchased for winter protests. Their first use was at our protest of the ACA repeal in January 2016 in Bluffton.
  • winter and summer pussy hats. The winter hat was knitted on Amtrak as I traveled to the DC Women’s March–in a train packed with bobbing pink pussy hats in every shape, size, trim, and shade. Hurray!
  • my AHEAD T-shirt and button, of course. I carry the button in my purse so I am ready if I have to go from work directly to an event. I wear both proudly and I am so proud of us being so active–I realize every time I put the button or T-shirt on how active we are!
  • an Indivisible T-shirt in 100% cotton for summer protests. Also evenings at home–it’s so comfy!
  • These aren’t clothes, but I now have a supply of pasteboard and colored pens at home for making protest signs. Last summer I just kept a sign that said “Portman to 700,000 Ohioans: No Health Care for you!” in my car all summer just in case!

I have developed a new possible career path: political forum moderator. Have done three this year–Jim Jordan’s Town Hall, Janet Garrett’s candidate Forum, and Bluffton Village Council forum.

Most important reflections: 1) I always felt so alone and isolated as a liberal in this area–but I have learned there are way more of us than I thought and that we are determined; 2) I have gotten to know a whole, new, wonderful group of people in Western Ohio House Districts 4 and 5 that I love socializing with and working with and who I think are beautiful people; 3) how beautiful it is to see individuals who are passionate about one piece of the fight–an anti-racism protest, an organized set of social events, candidate forums, Fair Districts petitions, a run for office, etc.–take leadership and then the group pitches in.

We are on the move in 2018 and we’re not going to stop until our country has chosen a better way!

What have you learned in the last year of activism? Please share your thoughts – write to ahead.oh@gmail.com.

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