Long ago, I fell in love with service. I fell for being a vessel for good. I fell for inspiring change in people, hence my career. Professionally I have chosen to work with children on the cusp of adulthood, those ages 18-24 in a college or university setting. This, however, leaves me partially unfulfilled.
You see because long ago I fell in love with myself, the black woman. Everything about me, my skin, my hair, my heritage, even the bad things-because I love to serve crow-is magnificent. And, there’s nothing that fulfills me than seeing a black woman realize her potential. Hence my service work. I work with adolescent girls as a mentor and have in many different capacities since high school. This is my giving back, which I think is important for any professional-we must invest in the youth.
Tying it all in…
Since I was in undergrad and really even before, I wanted to join a sorority. Back then, they were for reasons of inspiring girls and teens like I had been inspired in my youth. It was never about the social stuff for me, I’m not much of a socializer. At most, the sisterhood I found awe-inspiring because to see black women uplift one another in that way is sadly rare. I had recently become disenchanted with black greeks…for various reasons and could not convince myself of a stance on their utility-in my life or otherwise. WHY? That’s the question I had to answer.
I have found it. I researched every organization, nationally and locally. I looked at their programming. I looked at their goals and what they were doing to achieve them. I looked at how my own goals aligned. In one organization I found what I want, and I have honestly never felt as positive about pursuit before. Why am I interested? Because this org outlines the steps necessary to empower black women. And when black women become empowered, we inspire all women and even men to do the same. These guidelines are in alignment with my own personal beliefs as well. This org makes a vested point to work with the youth. This is a national effort. We have to educate our youth of their worth. Again…this theme of empowerment. This org has leaders and members who work. Plain and simple. I have seen them in the community, in the schools, in churches, on boards and committees-modeling is the best teacher. There are other more personal reasons as well…
Because the women that are apart of this org inspire me. Not that other women in other orgs don’t….but its different. Its undeniable. Its unshakable. Its inexplicable, but when I see the work of these women I feel childlike in marvel thinking, “I want to be like them.”
I have made it a point to begin to paint my life. The people in my life are reflective of how I see myself. I have begun to network with other Doctorate seekers and current candidates. I have weeded out negative people and envious leeches. I have invested in those who God sent. This choice is no different. These are women I would be proud to be affiliated with, because of their character and their work. The sum, however, is greater than the parts. And with such great parts…that’s a powerful sisterhood. I think, I’m ready.