Sometimes in life we all start to doubt ourselves. I believe this is natural.
You fall into a routine: wake-up, drive to work, eat your ham and cheese sandwich, pick-up the kids, eat dinner, watch Netflix, go to sleep, repeat.
But if you wait long enough, you start to question that routine. Things like . . . what am I doing? How did I get here? Am I really doing this? Why? The same thing happens when you say a simple word over and over. Eventually it sounds strange. That's life.
But I also believe the universe, invariably, provides us with moments of clarity - some kind of event to either confirm or refute our own self-doubt. A moment that says, in a loud, unmistakable voice that what you're doing matters.
I had my moment yesterday.
A video has been going around the internet where a mother and daughter take away every children's book without a female character, a female character who speaks, and/or female characters who are princesses (I'll include the video below). As you can imagine, once they were done, there weren't many books left on the shelf.
A Facebook friend tagged me in the video, and wrote a very complimentary line, "It looks like Jason James has some writing to do."
Now, I never consciously wrote Kira the Rainbow Princess to be feminist literature, but I consciously chose to make Kira the hero of her own story. She is the one who chooses and acts and saves the day through her intelligence, kindness, and bravery. I never expected that kind of writing to be the exception rather than the rule. Needless to say, when my friend mentioned me in this post, I was flattered.
But then someone else chose to comment on the post. They wrote, "I dunno - a lack of children's books featuring females who *do* speak doesn't seem to have stifled the gabbiness of the average broad - just sayin'..."
I asked this person if they were joking. They assured me they weren't.
I then pointed out how important it is that young girls be presented with a variety of female protagonists who can reflect their dreams and aspirations, and I also pointed out the ignorance and hate lying under the surface in this man's post.
He responded by saying, "Carry-on, amazing Princess!"
I imagine he intended this as an insult. I took it as an affirmation.
It confirmed my belief that we need more books like Kira because our daughters (and our sons) are growing up in a world where people still comment on the "gabbiness of the average broad."
If Kira the Rainbow Princess can affect that even the slightest, than what choice do I have? It's time to carry-on.