The Road to Ambassadorship
I have it all. I am a healthy wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a teacher striving to live as a Christian. I have a furbished, modest home on the edge of suburbia and a career in healthcare which takes me downtown five days a week by way of a modest car. I have a walk-in closet packed with clothes and shoes for all seasons including six pairs of black heels.
Yet, my restless spirit is estranged from the happiness that surrounds me. I smile outwardly in spite of the unrest which haunts my inner core and robs me of contentment.
My journey began my senior year in high school when my career aspiration listed in the yearbook was to become a U.S. Ambassador. College graduates did not exist in my family lineage. But with my stubborn mind and perseverance, I was undaunted by the challenge that lay before me. Three years later, I was pregnant and unmarried. My personal goals were suspended and my attention refocused on my new priority, a beautiful son.
I returned to the University of Louisville to finish the degree I had started some eighteen years earlier. In my studies, I came across the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, which prompted me to sign up for an International Student Learning Program. I worked with the University’s Communication department to establish a public speaking program at Bokamoso Secondary School in Botswana, Africa. During this trip, a buried flame was re-ignited and an awakening began.
An Oprah interview introduced me to Nicholas Kristof, a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author of “Half the Sky”. The reading of “Half the Sky” led me to both a revelation and a genesis. There was a revelation of unbelievable oppression and inhumane atrocities that women face every single day. The book prompted my deliberate career transition into a largely unknown world which beckoned my spirit. But the transition seemed, and still seems, almost impossible. Can I find a means to marry my love for writing with a cause so worthy and really make a difference in someone’s life?
The end of “Half the Sky” provided tangible ideas that anyone could realize to address the oppression of women. I immediately joined kiva.org and began my first microfinance loan. My family received Kiva gift cards for Christmas last year and I now have five loans which are repaid or still active.
Subsequently, I joined www.worldpulse.com because the organization promotes an assortment of causes which permits me to help in varied degrees. The opportunity to be a part of “Voices of the Future” was one more tug at my spirit, another step in realizing my passion. I believe I have come full circle and am on the road to becoming the U.S. Ambassador of my teenage aspirations, not in the traditional sense but in a new, fresh and innovative sense.