As I was getting prepared for an important trip, my mind wandered back to a time when I was at a church service where Deion Sanders (professional football player) was the speaker. He said when you look good you feel good. It was something I’d lived by for many years and his statement brought forth an amen from the depths of my soul. I know how to dress up many emotions, I’ve had years of experience in this area. It was a confidence booster for me and continues to be to this day.
On this trip, I was taking my baby girl and her baby along as a girdle. The purpose of a girdle is to support some of your flawed areas, it covers the parts you don’t want others to see. It accentuates the positive and camouflage the negative. These two girls are extensions of my accomplishments. My daughter can draw better than Picasso in my book. She’s making a name for herself in our community and I imagine her work becoming global! Her daughter’s gifts are shining early, her confidence exceeds that of people 10 times her age. When I look at them, I see possibilities and hope.
Knowing that I was about to be surrounded by many accomplished people (by academia standards) left me mentally ill-prepared to engage in conversations. While I am extremely happy for them, my insecurities were on the horizon. I brought these two vibrant personalities along to take the attention off me and directed to them.
While we were preparing for our early morning flight, I was ironing my grandkiss’ brand new top. It had a photo of two black girls on it and the photo represented two confident young girls; my daughter was in love with this shirt and was proud I’d bought it for her daughter. The day I purchased the shirt, I remember being amazed that this particular store sold such a lovely garment featuring young girls of color and in such a beautiful light. I wanted to purchase three for all my granddaughters. As I was ironing, I noticed my recently purchased iron was leaking brown water on it! I cleaned it immediately, however, it was wet, and the stain didn’t seem to be gone. We were pressed for time, so I chose another top for her to wear.
Long story about this trip right! Well my point is this: Why do we cover our flaws? Why are we concerned with whether others can see our flaws, the stains on the fabric of our lives? Do we need others to validate us? Everyone has their shortcomings, but it doesn’t change the fact that we have assignments to do and lives to live. As I hung the shirt up to dry, those girls on the shirt never stopped smiling or stopped being confident, despite the stain. They saw possibilities and abilities and they looked at each other with the sassy look that said to me, we are somebody! We matter! We can take on the world! There was a lesson in that stained shirt for me. Girl why are you tripping! I realize that my garment may be snagged and stained but I am confident that this garment was tailor made for me.