"No Matter Where You're From, Your Dreams are Valid" - Lupita Nyong'o
My little one is not even three months old yet, but I am much more aware of the things that we watch and what she is exposed with hopes that the world that is growing and changing is changing for the better. I hope and pray that the things that I had to go through, she will never have to experience with prayers that the world we live in is truly becoming more inclusive and embracing and that its not just a trend. We all want that for our children. Not just the ones that we give birth to but for every child that we come across and hopefully impact with our "be better than us" messages.
Gracie is not yet able to communicate in language that is understandable but she is cooing up a storm. One day she will be able to truly tell me what her dreams and desires are. With parents that both have interest in the performing and visual arts, there will come a time where we will truly expose her to the arts. One day, she may even ask me if there are any persons that look like her that she can look up to as she figures out what she wants to do in life. It may not even be her searching for her life's career but something as simple as motivation to audition for the school play or to go out for the solo in dance class, motivation to finish a painting for an art exhibit for the school gallery or the courage to join the debate team. She can choose to do whatever it is that she wants to do.
I remember being in those same positions: that place between the desire to do something, the courage to dream that you can be the one to do it and the search for the support to get it done. Even at a young age, children seek for that support. I am so glad that at least in this season there are things that I can collect to save for Gracie for when those times come. Lupita's acceptance speech gave me just the quote in which my daughter can live by - if not all of us... [this is proof that] "no matter where you're from, your dreams are valid." Whether you are a dark skinned woman from Kenya or an Afro-Latina from the East Coast - your dreams are valid.
Until that ah-ha moment, it is my responsibility to nurture that dream so that she never gets discouraged or shy away from the gifts that are within her.
I remember the day that I discovered my moms arts and crafts closet. I think it was the one thing that I needed to confirm that I was actually gifted in visual arts. Knowing that my mother did it gave me the confidence I needed. You see, my mother used to have her own handbag line. One day, I discovered her vintage sewing machine made for sewing leather. Then I discovered trash cans and cups that she used to customize and package for clients. I discovered her sculptures and paintings signed with her maiden name. They were awesome pieces of work. I eventually discovered her modeling portfolio. I realized then that the woman I only knew then as a radio DJ, writer and preacher was also a visual artist and it was something that I too was interested in. Because of my mother's busy schedule, combined with our equally busy dance schedule, we didn't really have a lot of time to do arts and crafts. The great thing in discovering all of those hidden gems around the house at a young age, I realized that my mother had just about tried everything and in my mind did everything! It meant I did not have to choose and that I could literally be anything and EVERYTHING I wanted to be.
It's the message that I want to pass down to my daughter. That all the skills I have acquired in just trying to "make it" through life and all of the dreams that I once had, she too doesn't have to choose. She can be whatever she wants to be and Lupita's right - your dream is valid.
One mother doing just that for her daughter, is a mother that has recently blown up on the internet thanks to a quick little write up in the Huffington Post. @2sisters_angie on Instagram, was tucked away in a little corner of the internet. See she was beginning to find her dresses in her daughters toy box after she decided to play dress up. She then asked her daughter, whom she has nicknamed Mayhem if she wanted to make paper dresses.
What first started like this:
Has now turned into this:
The 4-year old had picked this dress out at the start of the Globes long before it was selected the next morning as one of the best dressed. It has truly peaked the interest of this Fashion Illustration & Merchandising minor student and gave me something to look forward to when my daughter prayerfully shows interest at that age. For more of this little cutie, you have to visit FashionbyMayhem.com or follow her mom on Instagram at @2sisters_angie. Mind you after her post on the Huffington, needless to say her whole world has exploded and she has gone from a few hundred followers to over 250K followers.
Simply, I have been inspired by the Oscars to embrace my own dreams and the dreams of my daughter and it has been confirmed by a little 4 year old named Mayhem, who looks forward to the time of day when she can construct dresses with her mother. It truly reminds me of the time where my whole creative world opened up by discovering my own mothers treasures.
Have a wonderful day!