Election Day, My Mother, and Women’s Suffrage

I meant to post this yesterday because, of course, it was election day.  This post is not about politics, it’s about my gratitude that I, my daughters, my mother, and every adult woman in the United States gets to vote.  It may seem ridiculous to some to still see this right from my perspective.  But, and this is a post for another day, I worry that some young women today don’t fully realize how far we’ve come in a relatively short period of time.  We tend to take things for granted. But, my own mother remembered the first time her mother got to vote.  She was a very young child, but her mother’s joy, excitement and celebration of this right to cast her vote as a woman was memorable.  My mother never took her own right to vote for granted, and the women in our family still value that right. Of course, so did my grandfather, father and so do my sons.

When she was almost eighty, she was a voracious reader and had a seeking mind. In the nineteen-thirties, she, like her own father, was a social worker until she married my father.  Her commitment to fairness and compassion were lifelong.  How does this relate to women’s rights and voting?  She shared her mother’s story of voting for the first time, and then talked of how far women have come, my generation and my girls’ generation.  From her perspective, she had seen the vote come in her lifetime, had seen progress for us, yet still saw that it had all occurred within the span of one lifetime and that it was therefore a relatively short time.  Perhaps we should not yet take things for granted.

I wrote a poem about the conversation and am sharing it in a separate post.  It is titled Precaution.


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