On Motherhood & Sanity


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Letter to the anonymous beneficiaries that I meet in my travels

shelter for women (and their children) victims of violence. Bangladesh


Sometimes you look at me like I'm a saviour. like I may actually make a difference,
and it makes me feel ashamed, because I know how limited the impact of my actions will be in your life.

Sometimes you look at me like a nuisance, another foreigner poking at your wounds,
and that makes me feel shame too.

Sometimes you look at me grateful. Grateful that I made time for you in my busy schedule, and it makes me happy to be with you.

Sometimes you look at me  in awe: I'm a woman, and in your eyes and of those around you, important, and that gives you hope that it is possible,  that you are right to believe that you can, that you deserve better, and then I know I might have a purpose.

***

What I do, my job, might have an impact on your life, but even  if does, it will be small. I hope at least  that what I do -what many of us try to do- will  go towards ensuring  that your daughter does not suffer the same fate.

Today I toast  to you and in the honour of the many brave women that fight every day to change the world, to make it a better place, to protect their children from pain, abuse and injustice. Not from a desk, like we do, but through risking  their own lives.

Today we celebrate you, on the International day for the elimination of violence against women.