Sunday, November 23, 2008

Dear Diary 24

Dear Diary,

I met up with some friends yesterday and one of them was late. When she arrived and we had a chance to talk, she told me that she was late because she had just come from having an abortion. Just hearing the word brought back memories for me.

I became pregnant with my daughter when I was 16 years old. It was a total surprise, almost like an after school special. I was the girl who thought something like that would never happen to her. It never crossed my mind that my boyfriend (now husband) and I hardly ever used condoms.

When my boyfriend and I told my mother I was pregnant, she had an absolute fit. I can't really say I blamed her. The problem was, she was more worried about people would think of her than what was happening to me. She said people would think she was a bad mother if they say her 16 year old walking down the street with a big belly.

My mother proceeded to make a doctor's appointment for me, and even tried to sit in the room while the doctor examined me. I was ecstatic when the doctor told her she had to leave. Little did I know that she was at the main desk making an appointment for my abortion while my feet were in the stirrups.

As we walked home, she told me the date that my child would be sucked from my body against my will. Whenever I tried to tell her I wanted to have my child, she would ignore me. It was a really rough time. The only person I felt like I could talk to was the father of my child. Neither one of us wanted to abort our child, but we didn't know what to do.

The day of doom was approaching and my mother never really spoke to me. She had made the decision about what would be done to my child and with my body and that was all I needed to know. I wasn't about to let that happen, so I packed my clothes and left while she sat in the livingroom. There was no way I was going to have an abortion.

My mother eventually caught up with me after calling my father and most of our family and trying to make the father of my child look like satan. She blamed everything on him because he was 18 and I wasn't. She even tried to have him arrested for statutory rape. It was such a big mess. No matter what she tried he stood by me, and is still standing by me 25 years later.

Once she realized I was not going to do what she wanted, my mother gave in. She had no choice. She was the only person okay with what she was trying to do. When the smoke cleared, my family came over to my side and realized that forcing me to abort my child probably wasn't a good idea.

My daughter is a wonderful young woman. She just turned 24 the 20th of November. She graduated from the University of Virginia with a BS in psychology and an MS in early childhood development and teaches preschool. She has even studied in Morocco. I could not be any prouder of the woman she has become if I tried.

My mother loves to brag about all her grandchild has accomplished and I find that hilarious. If I had listened to her she would not be alive. My husband is also one of her favorite people in this world. I can remember when she told me he would be gone before our child was born. I understand that, in her mind, my mother was doing what she thought was best for me but the way she went about everything has left a sour taste in my mouth for 25 years. It still hurts. I wonder if she thinks about it.

I do not judge anyone who chooses to have an abortion. I think it is a woman's right to choose what to do with her body. It's just not something I would do. My friend is 42 years old with an established career and a ten year old son. She took every precaution and still became pregnant. She could not see a reason to have another child, and that is her prerogative.

It's funny how the simple word took me back to the time when I had to fight to bring my child into this world. I'm so glad I had someone in my life who was there for me and, together, we were able to make sure our child was born. I know a lot of girls in that position don't have that.

Until tomorrow....

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Dear Diary 23

Dear Diary 23,

Here's a tidbit of information on the strong black woman front that i'm sure no one has heard about. My girl, Serena Williams, will travel to Kenya this week to open the Serena Williams Secondary School in Matooni. In my opinion this is huge news. Did anyone know about this?

If Serena had gotten arrested for drunk driving or hitting her assistant in the head with her cell phone it would be all over the news. The priorities of our tabloid society disgust me sometimes.

During her visit to Kenya, Serena will officially open a secondary school put up in her name, to give chance to needy primary school students who want to pursue secondary school education. The school will allow hundreds of primary school students in the location to pursue secondary school education. The area suffers from high school drop out rate and most students are orphans due to the high HIV/Aids prevalence rate in the area.

I give Serena so much respect for doing this. It's obvious that she is doing it from her heart and not looking for publicity. To those who much is given, much is expected. I'm proud of this young woman for giving back to those less fortunate than her. It's what we all should do.

I wasn't able to find much information on the school, but I wanted to give her props for her efforts to do something great. How wonderful is it to give the gift of education? Much respect to Serena for giving this gift to chilren of the motherland.

Until Tomorrow....

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Dear Diary 22

Dear Diary,

Beside every great man walks a great woman. Michelle Obama is definitely that. She's the personification of a strong black woman. You can see it in her face. It's displayed in the way she walks, talks, and stands by her man. This woman is the bomb.

That's how we do. We're there for the men we love. When Barack's grandmother became ill, Michelle said do what you have to do baby, I got your back. She hit the campaign trail strong black woman style in her husband's absence and held it down until he returned.

It touched me when Barack described Michelle as his best friend and the backbone of their family. That is what a wife should be. It's what I try to be. The relationship these two black people have is wonderful and I am so thankful that black love will be on display for the world to see. People need to know it exists.

There is no doubt in my mind that Michelle Obama will be a remarkable first lady. I was listening to the radio this morning and they were joking about how American fashion is about to change. Michelle is a simple, dignified woman who can make a dress from H & M look like couture. I love that about her. That's how we do.

I have many memories and favorite moments from last night, but my favorite was after the speech was done and the family members left stage. Our President elect walked toward the crowd to say one final goodbye. Waiting for him, letting him have his moment, was Michelle. She had a look of pride on her face as she watched her man command the stage and prepare to begin the journey of his presidency. When he was done he walked to his best friend and they held hands and walked off the stage together. It was beautiful.

Michelle Obama, strong black woman and first lady. That's what i'm talking about!

Until tomorrow (which seems a little brighter)....

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Dear Diary 21

Dear Diary,

We did an interesting exercise at our couples meeting Monday that I was thinking about earlier. My husband and I had to pick two words from a list that described each other and give examples of how and when we demonstrated these qualities.

I chose brave, and hard working for my husband. I chose the words I did because my husband is such a warrior. He's not at all afraid to stand up for what he believes and always says he fears no man, only God. Whenever any of our family members need someone to stand up for them, he is the one they call. Whenever we're together I feel totally safe. I don't worry about anything because I know my warrior is there for me. It's one of the things I love most about him. He is always there for the ones he loves. He also has one of the most thankless, hard, and dangerous jobs there is. He's a New York City sanitation worker and works very hard, especially in the winter.

My husband chose the words creative and loving for me. Creative is a given. He knows that I love to write and i've finished my next novel. He also added the way I plan parties and outings and get our friends and family to come out. He chose loving because of the way I am with him, our children, and family. He always says I have a, "huge heart."

The most important parts of the exercise was choosing three words to describe our children. We chose ambitious, strong, and motivated. Our children are wonderful people. They always go for what they want. My daughter has both a Bachelors and Masters degree and my son graduated second in his class. She is a pre-school teacher and we are very proud. I attended the graduation of her first class in June and it was beautiful to get a glimpse of what a wonderful educator she is. My daughter is one of the most confident, self assured people I have ever met.

My son is a freshman in college. His goal was to make the basketball team at his school. We all have a passion and my son's is basketball. He loves it and is an excellent player. My baby boy worked his ass off and made that team. I'm so proud of him. As of freshman he probably won't get as much playing time as he did in high school, where he was BMOC. He understands that, but will continue to be the team player he has always been. My son has a remarkably gentle spirit and always has a calming influence on those around him.

Our children inspire my husband and I. We look at them and know that we have done well. Like I always say, we contributed two wonderful people to the universe. I love my family and feel that I am truly blessed. I couldn't ask for three better people to share my life with.

Until tomorrow....