A mom of three in northern California has turned a feminist battle cry into a work of art that is speaking to many parents.
On Feb. 7, while the Senate considered Senator Jeff Sessions’ nomination for U.S. attorney general (which was later confirmed), Senator Elizabeth Warren attempted to read a letter Coretta Scott King wrote in 1986 that condemned Sessions. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell described Warren’s denied attempt with three sentences:
“She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.”
“Nevertheless, she persisted” quickly became a rallying cry in the form of a hashtag, tattoos and other acts of support for Warren. Like many others, Courtney Privett has turned the phrase into empowering works of art, and one of her latest pieces is dedicated to moms.
Privett, an artist and mom of three, has shared several pieces of artwork on Instagram that include the quote “Nevertheless, she persisted” along with word bubbles that include the many demeaning phrases women hear. On Monday, she posted her “mom edition” piece, which includes word bubbles that read, “You’re letting her eat that?!” and “You shouldn’t have time to be depressed.”
Privett told The Huffington Post all the questions and thoughts in the world bubbles are things that have been directed at her or toward her friends and family. She also made sure to include both sides of common questions aimed at parents like, “Don’t you miss being home with the baby?” and “Don’t you miss working?”
Privett told The Huffington Post she experienced perinatal depression while pregnant with her third child and postpartum depression after giving birth. During this, all of the hurtful remarks she’d heard over the years came flooding back to her.
“All of those little words I’d heard transitioned into invasive thoughts and it overwhelmed me as it became part of my depression,” she told HuffPost. “I felt disconnected from everything and had trouble working through the steps necessary to do even simple things like change a diaper or make a sandwich.”
With medication and individual and group therapy, Privett was able to recover. She said she is lucky because she knows many moms don’t have the resources to do the same. That personal experience (as well as some suggestions from her Instagram followers) sparked her motivation to create a work of art for moms who persisted, “nevertheless.” She hopes her work can be an encouragement for both moms and dads.
“I’m hoping to encourage parents that it’s OK to do what is right for their specific situations, and also for all people to be more aware of how they speak to others,” she said. “Words matter, especially when directed toward vulnerable people.”
She also stressed the importance of asking for help and practicing self-care.
“There is nothing wrong with asking for help, especially if our mental health is at stake,” she said. “Self-care is as important as caring for our families, and we won’t be able to do the latter without the former.”
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