Becoming More

For me, becoming isn’t about arriving somewhere or achieving a certain aim. I see it instead as forward motion, a means of evolving, a way to reach continuously toward a better self. The journey doesn’t end.
— Michelle Obama, Becoming

After reading my forever FLOTUS Michelle Obama’s memoir Becoming, I’ve realized I’ve been wasting my time being despondent and hard on myself for experiencing natural growing pains. I’m becoming everything God has destined me to be and I have to experience the lows to get to the highs. I needed to find ways to take control and embrace this crazy journey called life and find the roadmap back to myself.

In December 2018, I attended the Becoming book tour at Little Caesars Arena. I even caught a glimpse of myself on the news standing in line outside in the cold. Her story brought me to tears because sometimes we get so caught up in the story we tell ourselves that we don’t see the growth, the bigger picture, and where our “failures” can take us. She discussed her decision to attend law school at Harvard University and realizing later that law wasn’t her passion. She chose law because it sounded good and she received positive feedback. After her stint in law, she had to find herself all over again. I could relate. I changed my major over and over again. I wanted to study business, journalism, law, public health, and everything in between. I had horrible jobs throughout my twenties and I felt like I was failing because I haven't found my niche. I was trying to reach a vague destination. I didn’t know where this destination would take me, but I was racing. Racing against other people and comparing my chapter 1 to their chapter 7. This didn’t do anyone any good.

I now tried out a new hypothesis: It was possible that I was more in charge of my happiness than I was allowing myself to be.
— Michelle Obama

One of my favorite quotes in her memoir was in the section Becoming Us. She discussed her relationship with Barack Obama and the struggle to create balance with his hectic Senate schedule. She had to create boundaries for herself, her daughters, and for the betterment of her family. Therapy helped her come to this conclusion and see the gaps in their communication. On page 207 she said, “It went back to my wishes for them to grow up strong and centered and also un-accommodating to any form of old-school patriarchy: I didn’t want them ever to believe that life began when the man of the house arrived home. We didn’t wait for Dad. It was his job now to catch up with us.”

This resonated deeply. Women don’t have to wait for life to begin when a man arrives. Women need to create our own boundaries and let men get in where they fit in, regardless of who they are. I am guilty of loosening my boundaries and being too accommodating, but if Michelle Obama can create boundaries and stick to it, I’m more than capable in my own life.

I like who I am becoming. An icon and our forever FLOTUS, Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama started off as a little girl raised on the Southside of Chicago who had to stumble and learn the hard lessons and her life turned into something beautiful. I’m still in my twenties, learning the hard lessons, failing and learning so beautifully. I’m forever in my season of becoming, forever evolving. I have the right to change my mind and take control of the redirection of my journey.

My becoming mantra: I am becoming a fully-realized woman. I am becoming everything God has destined me to be. I forgive myself and I leave the past behind me so I can become more. Kierra, you are worthy of everything good that comes your way. Be patient and become everything you’re destined to be in life.