Back on my feet: The story of me (activist, professional, activist)

by Allison Hargus, creator/writer

It’s true. It’s been TOO LONG since I posted last. Don’t judge, I can explain.

I am sure many of you are all too familiar with starting a project you are passionate about, but letting something get in the way and it falling to a backburner. This site still gnaws in the back of my mind- just waiting for updates of my work with nuclear nonproliferation. While my blog negligence does not totally reflect my activism- I will admit that I am guilty of letting the ebb and flow of every day life get in the way of some of my organizing.

Fresh out of college, I received a job offer to work in a legal office. Desperate in a poor job market, I plunged into the opportunity and barely had a moment to glance back. I marched straight into the office, adjusted my chair, hung up pictures of my loved ones and made the space my own. Grabbing my packed lunch from the fridge, I looked out the window and saw skyscrapers where mountains once stood. Yet, I found footing in my new role and clung to it.

This is my new reality.

That thought solidified in my brain and there was no bridge between my old and new life.

Where is the badass activist I once saw in the mirror? Is she gone forever?

Instead of fighting my way in front to demand answers and the opportunity to be heard, I began to shrink into corners, taking notes and answering calls; waiting for the next order.

Since most of you don’t know me, let me lay out this stark contrast.

Then:

Before, I was a bright eyed student ready to take on anything- yes, including a nuclear arsenal. My life consisted of classes and having a spare moment in between and late nights organizing my next big event or statement to really stick it to the proverbial “man”. I had responsibilities, but those mostly consisted of assignments being turned in on time and research. Nothing like the full impact of adult life.

Fast forward to now:

My 8am-5pm life took hold of all my free time and I became a part of the “Rat Race”.

I fight traffic an hour to and from work and by the time I get home, I’m so exhausted, it’s all I can do to eat and start bingeing the next Netflix hit. But – between the rhythm of work, drive, sleep – the cold fingers of reality in our current political climate grasp at me in desperation.

At this point, you may be thinking: “WHOA, this got way personal FAST.”

That’s the thing about activism- it’s HUMANitarian work. We don’t get into something like this and know all the answers.

Every single person you see working towards a cause like this is just a human. Humans come with personal problems, flaws, quirks- YOU NAME IT.

But on the other hand, that’s what makes every person working on these issues unique and important to a team. Without their life experience and perspective, we couldn’t come up with new ways for outreach and how to accomplish goals.

And, of course, we all have our excuses for why we don’t do this or that. ENJOY YOUR LIFE. This isn’t a post trying to guilt you into doing things.

But whatever cause you’re into- whether it be anti-Nuke campaigns or Black Lives Matter- it doesn’t just go away because we had a long day at work.

Even doing the bare minimum matters when enough people are doing it. Even if you’re not super knowledgeable on the issue; you don’t need a degree in rocket science to understand nuclear weapons are bad news.

So I suppose this “re-introduction” post is a call to action. If you, like me, want to do things but feel like you’re not sure how to start OR restart- you’re not alone. There is a solidarity in the uncertainty of how to do things sometimes. And it’s okay to admit that. I feel like although it was important for me to grow professionally, I wish that I would have stayed more involved. But now I’m back with a fresh perspective and I am so ready to get into action.

If you want to network, throw around ideas or find out how you can get involved, please message me. I don’t know all the answers and I may have been a little bit out of touch, but I promise I’m interested in reinvesting my time to finding the answers together. Together is the only way.