I was going to share a competition on the blog today (don’t worry – it will be up on Monday instead) and then I thought I cannot let this momentous historical occasion pass without acknowledging this remarkable couple.
I’m not going to talk about politics, but I am going to talk about love, hope and integrity.
A powerful moment in history, where many generations who experienced slavery never thought they would see a black president in their lifetime, did. A moment in history where younger generations saw no limitations by their race because one of the most powerful men in the world with a beautiful eloquent family by his side, is black.
Aside from The Obama’s messages of hope, humility, class and eloquence, aside from their race and all of the important meaning the colour of their skin bought to the White House, the thing I am most grateful to have lived to witness, is their pure unadulterated love for each other. WOW.
For the past 25 years, you have not only been my wife and mother of my children, you have been my best friend.
You took on a role you didn’t ask for and you made it your own, with grace and with grit and with style and good humour.
You made the White House a place that belongs to everybody and a new generation sets it sights higher because it has you as a role model.
The Obama’s absolutely re-defined how a man should love a woman and how a woman should love a man.
Career and powerful positions aside, it is evident they have firm values on love, compassion and family. First. Their constant Public Displays of Affection, their sense of humour, grace and integrity, even when challenged, has been utter joy to witness and a huge lesson for all of us.
There has definitely been a noticeable shift in the waters with tolerance around difference/ race, bubbling under the surface for a while and creeping to the top since our huge political shifts in the UK and US and as a blog that celebrates and encourages diversity, I cannot ignore it.
We all have a role to play in influencing our own communities, in having meaningful and open debates, to help change the discourse between race inequality and prejudices, by lessening, what at times can feel like a growing divide by better understanding and respecting each others differences. We can’t allow ourselves to contribute to making any divide greater. But be smarter. Advocate for what we believe in, and do it with compassion and grace.
Since I can’t quite seem to find the words. Let me leave you with this snippet from Mrs O’s final speech as First Lady.
Do not ever let anyone make you feel like you don’t matter, or like you don’t have a place —because you do… And you have a right to be exactly who you are.
Right now, you need to be preparing yourself to add your voice to our national conversation….
And that means getting the best education possible so you can think critically, so you can express yourself clearly, so you can get a good job and support yourself and your family, so you can be a positive force in your communities.
And when you encounter obstacles—because I guarantee you, you will, and many of you already have—when you are struggling and you start thinking about giving up, I want you to remember something that my husband and I have talked about since we first started this journey nearly a decade ago, something that has carried us through every moment in this White House and every moment of our lives, and that is the power of hope—the belief that something better is always possible if you’re willing to work for it and fight for it.
It is our fundamental belief in the power of hope that has allowed us to rise above the voices of doubt and division, of anger and fear that we have faced in our own lives and in the life of this country.
Our hope that if we work hard enough and believe in ourselves, then we can be whatever we dream, regardless of the limitations that others may place on us. The hope that when people see us for who we truly are, maybe, just maybe they, too, will be inspired to rise to their best possible selves.
Love will always lift you to the greatest of heights. With the right person by your side, you absolutely feel unstoppable and can achieve anything.
Thank you Mr and Mrs O for teaching us many things, but mostly about hope and the wonderful beauty of love.
I have just one thing left to say about this elegant couple; #relationshipgoals!