This is a time of year for making wishes. As a kid, my wintertime wishes frequently involved material things. And even wishing for toys and gifts meant believing in some kind of magic in the air. If I just hoped hard enough, I believed, I could will all my wishes to come true.
These days, life feels a little less magical. The realities of injustice and oppression are with me every day, and I know that no amount of wishing can miraculously manifest anything I want, whether that’s a material thing, like a new dress, or something more intangible, like an end to violence in queer and trans communities. I don’t know if I believe in magic anymore. But now I believe in something even better.
I believe in my own power.
At CUAV, we’ve been celebrating our ability to make requests, and to gather information based on how others respond to those requests. “I believe what I see, hear, and feel,” we say, meaning I can trust that a person’s response to my request gives me information about their willingness to respect my needs. It can also mean that each request I make demonstrates my power to pursue what’s best for me. I don’t have to wait on the possibility of magic to make my wish come true. Instead, I have the power to clearly and directly ask for what I want. This is an incredible realization, after doubting myself for so long. And now, I guess I have to admit that my power feels a little like magic after all.