Why the 2016 Election Matters So Much to Me

The 2016 election is something that I have been waiting eight years for. Back when I was sixteen my sister and I took a trip to San Francisco to hear Hillary Clinton speak at a rally. On that same day I picked up the sticker that still sits on my laptop, the one that sported the name of a woman who was was brave enough to not give up on a dream I did a long time ago.

When I was growing up I didn't want to be a princess, or a teacher, or a dancer. I didn't dream of riding horses or being a pop star. Somewhere along the way I decided I was going to be the President of the United States, and my ambition led me to run for student council in the fifth grade, then again throughout middle school, until the day I lost. 

I lost to a girl with no experience in student government. She like me was thirteen, except she was friends with a girl everyone had decided was popular. I think it's because she had figured out how to pluck her eyebrows long before any of us. Anyways, this popular through association girl beat me, despite my years of experience, days I spent making posters and the speech I spent hours reciting until it was just right. 

The day they announced over the loudspeakers that she had won was the day I realized life was one big popularity contest, so I gave up. I gave up on my dream of being U.S. President and I stopped caring what girls in school thought about me. My life didn't fall to pieces, I mean cmon, I was thirteen. I went on to do great in school, with my own group of friends, and actually ended up being student body president every year of high school. But despite all those big wins, that seemed very small back then, I majored in psychology and continued to ignore the fact that growing up I always wanted to lead this country.

Related Post: What To Do If You Haven't Registered to Vote

Somewhere in that time Hillary Clinton ran for president, and she too lost, which pulled up all the feelings of losing to someone who you at the time feel like you're so much more qualified than. But then she did what I couldn't, she tried again. 

And this is why this election matters so much to me. I've moved on to a career I love, but no day goes by in this city when I forget the reason why I fell in love with Washington DC. You see, I visited Washington DC the year I lost that silly election, and on that trip I fell in love with this city. So I may never live in the White House, but I can cast my vote so that the woman who has continued to inspire me can once again call it her home and workplace. 

For those that say because we are voting for her because she's a woman or we're uniformed, you're wrong. I'm voting for her because she did what I couldn't, faced rejection from an entire country, then had the courage to get up and do it again. 

So I'm not just casting my vote for Hillary Clinton, I'm casting it for every girl in this country who once lost something that made them want to give up. For little girls who have no one to look up to, and for thirteen year old me, who hid behind her Series of Unfortunate Events book unable to understand why no one chose me. 

If you haven't registered to vote, regardless of who you're voting for, click here to learn if your state allows same day registration. 

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