of an interview I did with Maya Angelou
in the mid ’90s.
I didn’t have children then,
but I do now.
So her words and wisdom
are even more meaningful to me today.
Here’s an excerpt:
“Children need to see themselves as quite valuable.
But sometimes they find it hard to do
when people in this society
are not complimentary.
Find a story.
Find a story for yourself, about yourself,
and make yourself the star of the story.
I would encourage every child
to make up a story about yourself.
And then put yourself into some other place
like China, like Japan, like West Africa,
like Israel, like Saudi Arabia, like Egypt.
Make this story about yourself
as the valuable boy wonder,
the valuable girl wonder
And continue to write your story
in your own head
and in your own heart.
(Children) see themselves
as triumphant, as surviving.
Then they see themselves
among other people who may not look like them.
And they begin to understand
that human beings are more alike
than we are un-alike.
And that’s something that will take them
throughout this world.
That is good information for them
so that they will be able to say,
‘I am one with the global population.'”