As January ramps up, Americans and indeed, people around the world, are experiencing a kind of deadening whiplash that feels deeply problematic. From pandemics to earth shattering social events, our planet seems to be pushing back in unprecedented ways. Are we going to listen?
Here at the Museum of Motherhood our aim is to inspire as well as to educate. How do we balance dire predictions, and unrelenting reality, with uplifting content? Do we pretend, making conscious decisions to ignore what is right in front of our faces, like the movie Don’t Look Up? Or, do we create small changes through everyday actions by staying vigilant, practicing tolerance, and also heeding the call to make amends, offer support, or reach out to someone in need?
What does change even look like anyway? How can we possibly have any affect on anything when everything feels bigger than us as individuals?
In my experience, it is the little things that count. It is the everyday actions of many people doing one brave, smart, or kind action that inspires connection, healing, and hope. I think our lives are made up of little moments. Those individual moments can be transformative: One football play can win a Super Bowl. One song can reach millions of ears with a message of encouragement (or laughter). One person, holding someone’s hand in a hospital can mean the difference between fear and comfort.
At MOM, we are comprised of the individual academics, artists, and students who gained insight during their time with us, the visitors who told us their secrets and asked for help, and the strangers who have connected through the years– who are not strangers anymore.
We are a small museum with big dreams. But, more than the big dreams, we aim to touch hearts and minds individually. We aim to offer a safe space of illumination and awe. I’m excited to introduce some new initiatives in the coming months that include an online community, our upcoming conference, and a newly launched storefront that will feature guest artists.
When a friend wrote me recently, and included a note (along with a check), that stated
my/ OUR museum was wonderful – I realized a simple dream of mine – the dream that others would want to take MOM on as their own. It was never intended to be ‘my’ museum, even though I have been nursing it along all these years.
As we look back, let us also look forward. Let us rally against the darkness by joining our individual lights into a collective of lights, each bright, each different, and all connected. Let us remember the souls we have lost, while lifting our own spirits in unity and appreciation of this brief, difficult, and tenuous life we share on this planet and try to ‘do better’.
I send you peace in the New Year.
Martha Joy Rose, Founder/Director