The book lay unopened on my coffee table for quite a long while after its purchase.
The 400 pages might have intimidated me, but there was also some deep-seated stubbornness in my heart, telling me that Mrs Obama would have nothing my-life-changing to tell me, because being a wife of a president is already having a gigantic platform for success laid out by the universe.
I do not have such platforms, your story will not manage much to inspire me, so you will remain unopened you big smiling book, I said.
But in the wake of the U.S. elections, the blurb started to appeal a bit more. The Trumps, the Bidens and the Americans were in my mind a lot more. Besides that , I wanted to watch Becoming, the movie, and reading something before watching it is always better for your imagination.
The day I started turning the pages, Michelle pleasantly surprised me. I had purposed to read a page a day, but pretty soon I found her un-put-down-able! Even knowing that they had obviously made it to The White House did not make me want to just gloss over the chapters leading to Obama’s win. I enjoyed every bit, I was there with her the night of the announcement, feeling her feels with her.
And yes, turns out I was wrong. She ended up being inspirational to me despite all the differences in the platforms that life has given me and her.
Her humble beginning was gentle reminder that anything is possible. Her firm hold on her personal academic and career success interwoven with her decision to put them aside to support her husband’s political career was quite a thought-stirrer. One might think that it’s easier, even automatic, to put personal ambitions aside to support a husband if he is becoming president, but not if he is just running another biashara over there. Think again.
Finished the book, watched the movie with a completely immersed 9 year old daughter, and it evoked a lot of helpful discussion between us.
I must warn you though; the movie has a part in which two men share a kiss. That might not be something you want your child watching, unless of course you are ready for that LGBTQ discussion (have I left a letter out?). That discussion starts from Rom 1:21-27.