Well it’ been a great trip back to where I grew up. I had my 102nd family reunion and I’m marrying off a good friend. That being said I’ve had lots of time with family and working locally in the community. It’s reminded me really who I am and where I’m truly from. As we get older we view our past through the lens of our memory, which is corrupted so to speak by emotion and nostalgia. I walk through my local square and see the memorial to Confederate soldiers erected in 1906 literally right beside tiles in the sidewalk dedicated to “famous” Television shows and movies that were filmed here including “The Dukes of Hazard” television series. Such a bizarre sight of history and unique sense of pride.
Spending time with my family was great. My aunt just turned 85 and for the first time in years we all got together to celebrate and reminisce. Where I’m going with this is to say for the first time I think in my life I was able to embrace my entire upbringing through adult eyes. From the racism that most obviously happened here to my family growing up in that era and not passing hate on to me and letting me make my mind up on how the town and community would challenge and inspire me. We all come from places that have it’s own opportunities and challenges that we either spend time embracing or spend time denying. The reality is that all of that makes us who we are. The good and the bad. I guess you have to be comfortable with your life to be able to see all of that but it is very liberating to be able to understand it all and how it molded you.
I would like to challenge everyone to truly soak in everything that is who you are and where you are from. The bad is probably more impactful than the good but all are part of our DNA. As a people we have become very entitled and righteous but at some point we have lost our pride of self. I think that is because we are denying who we really are and how that affects our decisions and we spend so much time wanting to showcase the parts we have worked so hard to create. The problem is you can build a beautiful house but if the foundation isn’t solid all is for naught.