A ranty, funny, dead-serious intersectional feminist blog.

My Birthday Wish

Screen Shot 2014-12-16 at 11.57.25 AMIn a few days, I will celebrate my 50th year on this planet. I haven’t done as much as I guess I hoped I would by now. I have, on the other hand, survived a lot. And that’s why it’s especially important to me to make a big deal out of this nice, round number. It reminds me that I’ve reached an age my depression and anxiety made me fear I’d never see. It is a way of giving myself some credit for making it through and not giving up—for continuing to strive for wellness and to reach for a place where I will once again feel satisfaction with the way I am using the days I have on the earth. I’m not there yet, but I know that I deserve that, so I’m celebrating the fact that I can celebrate myself. And not insignificantly, I’m celebrating the fact that two years after a major trauma, I am able to celebrate my birthday again. This time of year will likely carry some weight of grief for some years, but I am taking this day back.

My birthday wish is honestly too big for words to encompass. The only word that remotely comes close to the thing I would most like to see in this world is LOVE. I have no wish for romantic love in my life—another thing to celebrate, I suppose, since every year up until age 41, I wished for that on every star and birthday candle and dandelion seed and though it was trauma that brought me to this place, I can focus my wishes elsewhere. The love I’m talking about is a more universal thing: THE thing that so many prophets and philosophers and poets have been trying to tell us all along. The thing that is very likely our only hope.


Big, right? It feels unattainable, but I don’t think it is. I believe that if we keep this word in our minds like a mantra, then it can’t help but make bad situations better. So my wish is that everyone reading this remember that word when anger and frustration flares up, not as a reminder to love your enemies necessarily, just as a reminder of what’s inside you that needs expressing out into the world and of what’s important—really important.

This is not the post I set out to write. I came here (inspired by a friend—thanks Britni!) to tell you about a few people and organizations I care about and suggest that you consider them in your holiday giving. But I asked myself what I truly wished for and wanted to answer authentically, so here we are, as close as I could come to putting my wish in a word: LOVE. A big wish, but a small ask. Keep it in your mind and in your heart.

AND if you could show some love to these people and organizations, I would be grateful. Let me know in the comments or on Facebook or Twitter, and I’ll thank you publicly. (Do let me know if you don’t want that!) Give whatever you can afford, though I do like the numbers $5 and $50, for some reason. And if you can’t give, please consider sharing this post.

egarnerfamilyEric Garner Family

Eric Garner’s family lost a father and a husband when a police officer used an illegal chokehold, killing Garner on video as he told officers again and again, “I can’t breathe.” The Garner family’s lives have been shattered.  You can help ease the financial burden on the family by donating to this fundraiser (I have committed to $5 a month for 2015):

Donate to Eric Garner Family

Ferguson Organizers Johnetta Elzie & DeRay McKesson

Johnetta and DeRay are Ferguson organizers, publishers of the Ferguson newsletter, and all-around badasses. You can help them stay fed and housed and support the work they do by donating to their PayPal account.

Donate to Ferguson Organizers

Brianna Wu is Making Games

Screen Shot 2014-12-19 at 9.28.42 AMBrianna Wu is one of several women in the video games industry that has been targeted for relentless harassment by the scum that is GamerGate (all together now: “Actually, it’s about ethics in video games journalism!”). From her Patreon page:

I got into videogames to make video games – but right now the majority of my workweek is wasted on fending off BS from people harassing me.

Wu goes on to describe some of this harassment, which continues to be brutal. These people used her dead dog as a prop with which to torture her and her husband, Frank Wu. Brianna Wu is asking for help:

If you appreciate what I do, please chip in so I can hire some help with the Women in Tech advocacy I do. I need someone to help me with the medial parts of dealing with my attackers so I can focus on my work, making and shipping games.

Donate to Brianna Wu

Joyful Heart Foundation

*Trigger Warning for discussion of rape and sexual assault*

As some of you know, I’m pursuing closure in a thirty-year-old rape case. I have contacted a number of organizations that purport to help people like me, and Joyful Heart Foundation is the only one that reached out and offered to speak with me, hear my story, and provide knowledge and assistance as I navigate the legal system. I’m so grateful for that support.

Joyful Heart began as a dream of helping sexual assault survivors heal and reclaim a sense of hope, possibility and joy in their lives. We have evolved into a national organization that is paving the way for integrating holistic approaches in treating trauma, transforming the way people think about, talk about and behave around the issues of sexual assault, domestic violence and child abuse, and advancing public policies to ensure justice for survivors.”

Donate to Joyful Heart Foundation

Thanks for reading and helping me celebrate my 50th birthday.



17 responses

  1. Joe

    I want to donate to Brianna Wu but I only see the option for monthly donations. Is there an option for a one time donation and I’m missing it?

    December 27, 2014 at 1:36 am

    • Yeah, I’m afraid Patreon is a monthly thing, like a subscription, but some workarounds are that you can a) give as little as $1 a month, or b) sign up for monthly and then cancel after 1 month.

      December 27, 2014 at 7:16 am

  2. Joe

    Happy Birthday Rosie.

    December 27, 2014 at 1:34 am

    • Thank you!

      December 27, 2014 at 7:14 am

  3. Happy Birthday Rosie.

    December 22, 2014 at 1:51 pm

    • Thank you!

      December 22, 2014 at 10:52 pm

  4. judithe49

    Happy Birthday, Rosie! Thank you for your encouragement!

    December 20, 2014 at 10:09 am

    • Thank you! <3

      December 20, 2014 at 10:18 am

  5. Samazon

    I just hit the big 5-0 myself! Congratulations, and I share your wishes. My love would be the best gift any of us, and all of us collectively, could receive.

    December 17, 2014 at 6:40 pm

    • Samazon

      *MORE* love. *facepalm*

      December 17, 2014 at 6:41 pm

  6. What a great post! Many happy returns to you! Thank you for sharing your thoughts here in web-world, in this post and previously.

    I read Netta and DeRay’s Ferguson newsletter too, but I didn’t realize that supporting them or the Garner family directly was an option.

    (Btw, though, your link to support Netta and DeRay doesn’t work… Could you repost?)

    December 16, 2014 at 9:35 pm

    • Oops! I think it’s fixed now. Let me know if it doesn’t work. Thank you!

      December 17, 2014 at 1:01 am

  7. Reblogged this on Note To Self and commented:
    We could definitely all use more LOVE in our lives. <3

    December 16, 2014 at 3:24 pm

  8. Best wish ever.

    December 16, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    • Thank you! <3

      December 16, 2014 at 2:11 pm

  9. Love is life’s antidote to death, and the only thing that will outlast it. Happy birthday, Rosie!

    December 16, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    • Thank you! <3

      December 16, 2014 at 1:47 pm

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