We cry for what we know but discover later

Malia Obama Cried For Reasons That She Will Comprehend

Malia Obama’s father is the 44th President of the United States of America. Her mother, Michelle Obama is the First Lady, and Sasha is the sassy younger sister that totally gets why her sister cried on the night that their father thanked the American people for hosting his dream and ours.

Karma is a bitch.

I know this because I spent the night of the final presidential address lost in frustration.

I abruptly abandoned one job for another — a couple of weeks ago — and I’m convinced that my actions reduced me into a overgrown rodent — shuttling between the inconsistencies of the cursed LA Metro.

But, even through the maddening chaos and the droplets from the sky baptizing my rattled mood — I managed to catch our Commander-In-Chief in full regalia — as he bid us all adieu with the authority of a leader who did the best he could — even when it wasn’t quite sufficient enough for those of us with darker hues — under the microscope of the pale and abhorrent.

The speech was just what I imagined.

I am getting good at expecting the best and the worst. 2009 was a long ass time ago. It was the year I jumped up and down to the beats of some chick called Lady Gaga with my partner-in-crime who I dragged to a last minute trip to Puerto Rico. It was the year that I was immersed in an ill-fated love affair that swaddled me with proof that being the girl with the winning smile can make you moist — down there. It was the year that my skills as an artist protruded beyond my rhetoric and rendered me blissfully engulfed in what was to come and what it took to get me to that place of expectancy.

It was the year that a Black man with a White mother and African father swore that he would uphold the constitution and remain in place for as long as it took to make everything right.

Everything is right.

Obama’s address to the nation is not his first or last. It’s just the continuation of why his presence will never be erased. It also symbolizes why those who love him more weep along with us.

Malia Obama wept softly while her father passionately poured his heart out. My tears were safely tucked away until I saw the gentle face of a girl swimming in a whirlpool of emotions. My torrential flood finally released down my face and into the wet sidewalks — threatening my every step as I ran for the 210 bus with an umbrella that was too weak to hold.

Into the trash she goes. Not me! The damn umbrella.

And back to life it is. Back to the memories of being drunk enough to recognize that the highlighted numbers on the gigantic screen correspond with hope and the new beginning that we all demanded with each stroke of our vote. Back to boogie nights and the pizza shop on the corner that tolerated our video montage of why we loved the man in charge even though we didn’t have enough money to buy that extra slice.

Back to why Malia’s tears — captured on film — will fill a basin that won’t overflow because she will look back years from now and still analyze how she felt and why feeling that way meant so much.

It means a shitload to me and I don’t know her. I just comprehend my accumulated years and the maternal instinct I felt for a girl that mirrored my tendencies when I was a teenager.

When I left Nigeria for America — I was exactly Malia’s age. The future was bright and my emotions intact with the knowledge of what was mine from second to second. I had the reassurance of the shifts that aid the maturity that grows with tears and fears.

I can’t wait for Malia to finally comprehend why her tears demanded attention — and when she does — I hope I was right.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store