This year is the third annual Women's March but it will also be the first time I'm going to DC for the march.

The first women's march was in 2017 after President Donald Trump's inauguration. Unfortunately, I didn't go to that one and I'm still mad at myself for not going. The first anything is always so electrifying, and I can't even begin to picture how it must've felt, especially the day after such a historically significant and controversial event. I think one of the reasons why I didn't go was because I was scared of expressing my political opinions in such a public and open way. The political tensions were already at an all-time high, not just inside the government but also inside my high school and my social circles. Both sides of the political spectrum were nervous about discussing topical issues because if we did, more often than not, the disagreements would turn into a battle royale and screaming matches.

But by the time the second women's march came around in 2018, I was ready and my perception of self-changed. I realized that fighting for what I believe was more important than the fear of social retribution. So, with a protest sign in one hand, firm beliefs in my mind, and a close friend by my side, I took on the NYC women's march with pride. It had to be one of the most inspiring things I've ever done. It was electrifying to be surrounded by so many people who all believed in the same end game.

This time around, I'm going to do the women's march a little bit differently. Instead of going to NYC, I'm going to DC. It was so empowering going to the march in NYC, so I can't even begin to imagine how it will feel to be in DC.

In the past, I have been asked "what's the point of marching" and "why are you marching, it doesn't do/change anything." Well, to address those questions, I'm not just marching for myself, I'm also marching for my friends, for my family, and for all the women and young girls around the globe. Despite being in the 21st century, women still aren't treated as equals in all aspects of life and I feel like it's time that changed.

This year, the march is focused on ending violence, reproductive rights, LGBTQIA rights, worker's rights, civil rights, disability rights, immigrant rights, and environmental justice. So not only am I marching for those, but also for a better future for me and the women in the present and future.