This new year has potential. At least, these are the words I verbalize over and over each morning.
I watched the inauguration yesterday, and I exhaled. As a believer in words, rhetoric and tone, I have watched the past four years with hope that it was merely a blip or an oversight of those who chose to tear down the integrity of what I have spent my life upholding.
I believe in words and their power. Positive and constructive words have lifted and propelled me higher than I ever thought possible , while I have been broken and defeated by those delivered with hateful tone and devastating intent.
Words usually win, at least that's what I think. Every day, I fight to overcome a history of words that had me convinced of my inadequacies. As these little words swarm like bees in my brain, they attach to the others and grow, explode. It's a constant battle to shove them away, replacing them with my truths and positivity.
Whether you have a big audience or a social media platform or a private audience of two, words stick.
No matter for whom you voted, the new leader's calming tone was refreshing. Hope is refreshing.
And then you hear twenty-two-year-old Amanda Gorman voicing "The Hill We Climb" and we're moved`
"... And so we lift our gazes not to what stands between us, but what stands before us.
We close the divide because we know, to put our future first, we must first put our differences aside.
We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms to one another.
We seek harm to none and harmony for all.
Let the globe, if nothing else, say this is true:
That even as we grieved, we grew.
That even as we hurt, we hoped.
That even as we tired, we tried...
...We will rise from the golden hills of the west.
We will rise from the wind-swept north-east where our forefathers first realized revolution.
We will rise from the lake-rimmed cities of the Midwestern states.
We will rise from the sun-baked south.
We will rebuild, reconcile, and recover.
In every known nook of our nation, in every corner called our country,
our people, diverse and beautiful, will emerge, battered and beautiful.
When day comes, we step out of the shade, aflame and unafraid.
The new dawn blooms as we free it.
For there is always light,
if only we’re brave enough to see it.
If only we’re brave enough to be it."
As a lover of words, I'm overjoyed. As a human being, I'm empowered. As a woman, I'm proud. As a writer, I'm inspired.
Simple words and letters but when connected have the ability to uplift or tear down. No matter the platform, take a fresh look at the words you choose.
Whether it is exploring this amazing world or being content on my own piece of real estate near Athens, Georgia, I'm spinning stories and fashioning tales from a Southern perspective. As an editor and writer, I get to meet incredible people and share their stories. As a photographer, I get to cement these moments in time. As a wife and mother, I'm always excited to see what's around the next corner, For it's anything but ordinary.