Friday, January 20, 2017

An Ode to Love

America has been mesmerized by the display of love from the Obamas; not just from Barack to Michelle, but the entire family. It's almost as if there's an element of surprise that such a love exists because these bodies are wrapped in brown skin; as if love was the exclusive domain of those who are not brown.

Most of the images in mainstream media do not show or celebrate black couples in love. If they do, it's that we are oversexed or aggressive but nothing that's normal like the Obamas. In the mainstream view of a Black man - he is a thug, he is aggressive, he is a gangster, he is cocky. He is often vilified. He is never portrayed like Barack Obama - smart, confident, helpful and a family man with a smart woman by his side - Michelle. She was confident, yet not seeking out the spotlight. I distinctly remember when Barack told everyone, "you know, I have a wife." It implied - we're together, a team, a partnership, a package deal. It's so rare, this demonstration of "Black Love" that when they make it to the White House, you may think that seeing their expressions of love is a new thing; that it was unique to them.

But love will do that. If you love someone it is a natural progression to expressing that love - everyone does this. You love your husband - you're considerate of his feelings; you rub his back. You love your wife - you're considerate of her feelings and your hand has a special place in the small of her back. You love your kids - you play with them and you hold them. Affection leads to expression naturally. You make each other smile. You like each other's company. There's no pretense - it just is. It doesn't mean that every day is a good day but simply you're in a relationship with each other. Why hang around if you don't care, if it doesn't matter? It's not abnormal to love the one you're with.

My daughter is getting married later this year. Within the wedding industry, just looking at pictures for photographers, venues, dresses or accessories you would be hard pressed to believe that folks that look like me get married. I was searching for a flower girl dress. I have yet to find a picture of a little black girl in a flower girl dress. It is maddening yet a reality. These images shape a perception that black love looks different from the mainstream. It doesn't; the only difference is our skin color.

I have enjoyed watching the Obamas these past 8 years because though he occupied the highest position in the land the display of their love for each other was normal. They genuinely like each other and it shows. I hope they have dispelled the notion of "Black Love" or any color of love since love is universal; when you love someone, have seen them in good times and bad, support their dreams, have a common goal in seeing the best for your family - it will show. It may look different for each of us, but it will be on display as evidence of the relationship.

As they bade America farewell they were holding hands; then they looked at each other smiled and swung their hands with all the glee in the world, as if to say, "we did it!" That's love.

1 comment:

  1. Ahh, such a beautiful post. I want to read it over and over. And I am not yet ready to say goodbye to the Obamas! I truly grew to love them and will continue to pray for them and hold them in high regard.


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