Monday, October 22, 2007

What Really Grinds My Gears...

Clevelanders are walking around today moping because the beloved Indians lost to Boston Red Sox last night, essentially collasping in Game 7 despite leading the series 3-1. Everyone's talking about the sports curse that seems to be plaguing Cleveland. "The Shot," "The Fumble," "The Whatever."

People need to be thinking about a different problem going on in the city right now and it has nothing to do with the World Series.

It really pisses me off that everyone is so upset about the Indians losing when we are losing a battle everyday in our city. So the Indians won't get to the World Series. We've gone 50-plus years without a victory, another one won't kill us.

But you know what will? The senseless violence going on in our streets and in our community.

I waver between wanting to get involved, attend some rallies, listen to what the city leaders have to say about this epidemic. Then on the other hand I want to pack my daughter up and move away from Cleveland as fast as I can. The town I live in might be boring as all get out, but at least it's safe. I can push my daughter around in her stroller without worrying about a stray bullet hitting her.

Every single solitary day I check Cleveland's paper and there is another homicide reported. This is ri-damn-diculous. Enough already. If I see another headline reporting that someone under 25 has been gunned down I am going to scream. Black males are indeed dying. What can I do? What can I do?

Even if you don't live in Cleveland, but in other urban metro area, your city might be experiencing a crisis like this. It has got to stop.

I don't know what I'm going to do, if it's volunteer with some at-risk youth, or become a Big Sister. I don't know yet. But I need to do something. I only hope others feel the same way.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Funny How Much Things Change!

Dear Darling Daughter,
I can't believe it is almost November. Almost a year has passed since I gave birth to you, wonderful Ayanna. You changed my life in ways I could never have imagined.
Before I had you, I thought my life couldn't get any better. I had an amazing boyfriend, great friends, a bright future in the career field I had chosen. And then I found out I was pregnant.
I admit, I wasn't like the women you see in the movies or in the EPT commercials. I was so scared. Scared because I had never even held an infant before, and now I was going to be responsible for one. Scared because I wasn't fully out of my parent's house, yet I was going to be responsible with providing a house for you.
When I held you in my arms for the first time in the nursery, I thought you were the cutest, brightest baby I had ever seen. Also the sleepiest! I think I only saw your eyes for maybe 10 minutes that first day. I guess childbirth took a lot out of both of us.
Your father was amazing during this time. He was so kind and loving with you. He knew just how to hold you to get you to stop crying.
As the months went on and I learned more about you, I realize we have so much in common already. Even as an infant you are so curious about everything, not just about what things are, but how they work. You're always taking the batteries out of the remote, or pressing buttons on the DVD player, or trying to type on the keyboard when I put you in my lap.
There have been several moments of frustration where I felt like I wasn't the best mother. I admit I questioned God's decision to give you to me. Why couldn't I get it effortlessly? Why did I struggle with certain things, like putting you to sleep or getting you to eat solid foods? Shouldn't these things come naturally?
But as time wore on, those things got easier and I no longer worried whether I was doing a good job. Your smile said it all.

As the first year draws to a close, all I can say is that I'm sad it went by so fast. Now you're walking and beginning to talk and the little baby I held in the nursery is long gone. Now you're on a new stage of development, one that promises I'll be chasing you around.

Always remember that I love more than life itself. You are the most precious thing in the world to me. If ever you need anything, whether it's just someone to listen, or a hug, just ask and I will be there. I'm your mother, and I love you.