…I’m Black and I’m Proud.
This week I’m jumping back into the blog game with Stasha’s prompt about what makes me proud.
I really do like these top ten list.
1. Despite my reputation for being hard-headed (yes at almost 40 someone has labeled me this way. The nerve!) I still find myself fighting for not what’s popular, but what’s right. Susan Elizabeth Phillips says it best: Anything worth having is worth fighting for. Hardheadedness aside, I will continue to fight the battles until I win the war.
2. One war I’m fighting is the battle of the bulge. I went back to the gym recently and I swear it feels like I’m punishing myself for the cookies, cakes, and this new craving for fried anything. I’m proud that despite my sedentary lifestyle, I’ve been chugging along working muscles I forgot I had, fitting back into my favorite suits. Closet Lotto* is ALMOST a thing of the past.
3. My job. This photo is one of the flash cards that comes in a set for residents who wish to become citizens. There’s a ring of truth when I say I can go around the world without leaving Upper Darby! This past week a resident shared pictures from his five week visit to Peru, another resident showed me letters of commendation he received from the German government as well as the New York Bar Association for his work as a translator. A woman from Liberia visits me weekly to talk international politics, show pictures of “home” and has promised a room and tour if I ever get to Africa. Not to mention the food! I consider myself just doing my job when I assist a resident. As thanks, I have received dishes from Haiti, Liberia, Pakistan, Morocco, and Vietnam. Spicy and filling!
4. I’m proud of my maturity in my walk with God. There was a time when I turned my back from God because it all seemed too hard. Ephesians 4:22-24 says “you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, 23 and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.” Let me clarify: I still have my doubts. There are days I have to reach for the SMALLEST thing to keep my faith strong. As I evolve, I realize that the relationship I have with God is a personal one. My walk will be different than the next person’s but I’m still walking and growing everyday.
5. My knitting. Even though that jealous louse carpel tunnel has decided to take up residence in my right hand, I still love that two sticks and strings can become a thing of beauty.
6. My unique sense of humor. For a change my socks match. Most days I find the pair that are the cleanest and keep it moving. When The Teen had a recent Saturday detention (for fricking tardiness?!) I was able to crack Breakfast Club** jokes all day, rather than get upset.
7a. This guy. I’m proud that I raised a kid who despite the times he pesters his sister, is loving, quick to smile, and maturing (fart jokes aside).
7b. This girl. I raised a girl who was once a pain in my neck to a mature young lady. She is respectful, polite, smart, and just as lovely as her mom.
8a. This guy. After spending most of the day with five to eleven year olds, meeting with the pastor of his church, and assisting with the Men’s Day Committee, The Mister donned a Santa suit and spent three hours making kids smile. I heart this guy!
8b. My second best friend. My original WOMB mate, my confidant, my laugh buddy, my wing man (when you work with the public, sometimes they don’t know the difference between personal and public) my sister is great at extracting me from persistent pontificators.
9. That I still write. When I was in fourth grade, I wanted to be a poet like Emily Dickinson. Then I fell in love with Judy Blume. I wanted to create stories that would keep a reader as captivated as I was when I hid under my covers reading Tiger Eyes or Deenie. Years later I spin nonfiction tales about daily life, but every once in a while a character strolls across my keyboard and I find myself wondering how to flesh him or her out.
10. That I’m a voracious reader. My Kindle is the best purchase I made in quite some time. I read everywhere I find a free moment. I’m on a Hispanic and Asian women writers kick now, re reading Julia Alvarez “Yo” and Julie Otsuka’s “When The Emporer was Divine.”
* Closet Lotto is a daily battle trying to find an outfit that’s clean, in decent condition, matches, and fits.
** Excellent John Hughes movie about high school.