I have recently been reminded that I’ve reached my three year anniversary of blogging with WordPress. I have not regretted a moment, except maybe the times when I didn’t feel like I could post more than one a week. This first post was quite fitting, as it documents a turning point of inspiration, and why I bought that little notebook that helped me become confident enough to remember fleeting thoughts and piece them together. I was lucky to win tickets to a rare speaking engagement! Without further ado:
Reflections From July 16, 2015 (that I wrote in my little notebook): My inspiration comes from many people and places, but one that is quite memorable is the poet, Nikki Giovanni. I am fired up right now, because I got to hear her read at a luncheon today!
I love her smile here, and her lack of make-up or artifice. She is herself, at home and comfortable in her own skin. The first day I heard of her, I was not any of those things. I was 20 years old, unsure of myself, finding myself the only one of my peer group in college, and how I got in I wasn’t always sure; I certainly assumed for several years I would not be going. My self-esteem was hinging on some “boy” I was having some “sort of” relationship with while in college. I thought about it, and him, entirely too much. Should I keep it going? Should I forget it, tell him it wasn’t what I wanted or fulfilling me spiritually? Geesh. What a waste of time, mulling over such a wishy-washy situation. Had he wanted more, I probably wouldn’t have, so why wasn’t it that simple for me?
Fact is, I was in college, being challenged, and enjoying that greatly. I was working part-time, not always enjoying it, but I was paying bills, albeit barely. I was going home to an apartment that was partly mine and a roommate who, it turns out, was not as great a friend as I thought. I didn’t even always want to hang out with her. I was not a drunk or a partier, (maybe twice a month), but I was somehow just at an emotional low. Maybe I was short-changing myself? I wanted more emotional fulfillment. So, I had read something by Giovanni and then saw this quote from her, that somehow just really clicked with me; I even copied it down and put it somewhere safe to look at again and again. Here it is:
“There is always something to do. There are hungry people to feed, naked people to clothe, sick people to comfort and make well. And while I don’t expect you to save the world I do think it’s not asking too much for you to love those with whom you sleep, share the happiness of those whom you call friend, engage those among you who are visionary and remove from your life those who offer you depression, despair and disrespect.”
Nikki also mentioned how our language is changing. (Look at the definition of marriage. Just recently it was decided by the Supreme Court that two women or two men can now marry). Think of the definition of equality; she mentioned how a black man and white woman could not have married 60 years ago. The world is changing and so is our language. We need to observe and we need to write about it. So I am writing right now. She said, “Everyone go out and buy a notebook to write in today.” I already have one. I thought it was lost, but it has turned up again! And I also have this space here for writing. So I am inspired again! Indeed, there is so much to do. Life is good!