Today this is what I watched,when I awoke in Berlin, Germany. It was 7:00am. I cried.
I had yet in my lifetime, until this moment, been sincerely moved to this extent by any living political figure. I am witnessing history, I thought to myself and my gut reassured my mind. Barack Obama is a leader who has already changed the face the nation, literally. He has brought down the notion that political power is only gained through the already weathly and powerful. He has reached out to the people – in their own comforts – and speaks to them in their own language & with their own tools. He has splashed color on our nation’s leaders.
He speaks to my generation. He stands for the things my friends and I take for granted. The things we always wish our parents would understand and often don’t. He believes in working from the ground up, in community collaboration, and communication technology. He is passionate, eloquent, and humble. He still believes in the power of humanity and works with those common traits, instead of masking their vulnerabilities.
He is a man of color, yet this somehow has made no difference in his campaign message. He speaks about the issues, tries to make them digestible enough for me to understand. And really… speaks of nothing else. He is confident, direct, and honest. And for the first time in my life, I am proud to call him MY president!
I watched about 20 seconds of the speech and then loudly exclaim, “I want to go home”. I want to be home to celebrate with my friends. I want to be home to rejoice in the spirit of change, acknowledge the hope I know have helped to create, and dance in the streets. I want to be home because I am an American and I am proud.
I celebrated in a champagne brunch and in the spirit of the same voice, I cried again. This time however, my tears were not externally motivated, but more internally derived. I remembered a moment living in Chicago, when I had come to a decision to stop “wasting my time” and progress my life. I was living on a block with drug dealers on each corner and section 8 housing next door to my own. Every night when I walked home I terrifyingly walked passed kids playing and groups of meandering teenagers, trying to find something to do with their life. One afternoon, I decided to set my own fears aside and look out at what I saw — people who may wish to have only a fraction of the opportunity and talent that I had sitting in front of me. I realized that if I didn’t try to create all the opportunity that I could, I would be doing nothing fair for those who never had the possibility of having any at all. It changed my life and I soon after moved to California to go back to grad school.
I feel now the same, that although I want to go home – I miss my friends and want to be celebrating in their company – that it’s this same spirit of progress that continues to change the world. It’s unfair to those who never have the opportunity to leave the states, who never know a wider perspective than that one corner in Humbolt Park (chicago), and who may never experience a different culture. I believe in this hope, in this progress, in opportunity, and exploration. And I believe in Barak Obama who has proven to grow this even more than I thought possible in one person. I feel as though he is my leader, but I also feel as though he is my voice. A man who has the power and opportunity to witness and experience things that I never will… but that he is not doing it for himself – he is doing it for me. For us!
Today has been emotional, [I also just got a call that one of best friends from when I was growing up is engaged (helllllls yeah!)]. It has elated me to see a world backing our nation’s decision, it’s been hard to experience this from a distance, and it has been hopeful and supportive in reminding me of the spirit of progress, growth, and courage.
Today, history has been made and I thank Barack Obama and all my friends and family for making it!!!
I love you all.