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Dominica weekly is a personal weblog about the nature island of Dominica.


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The power of ordinary people has always been under-recognize, particularly by those who classify themselves as “elites” – think that they’re better than everyone else. Nowhere is this more evident than in the bizarre contempt elements of the so-called “privileged” class show towards ordinary folks.

I will never forget that feeling I got when my aunt, who is living the United States for the last 18 years told me off an instance where she was approached by a women who asked her “Did someone paint your skin?” Giving no response my aunt simply walked away. For many years I’ve tried to come up with the best logical explanation – maybe the woman at the time had never seen a coloured person before or was ignorant to the fact that black people skin pigment is different of that of white people.

This absurdity continues to this day, for while these hypocrites discriminate against regular folks, they depend on them for almost everything, including food. While they mock and scorn their culture and heritage, they dance to the rhythm and beat of their music. While they mock their intellect, they glow in the magnificence of their stardom. And while they exploit and marginalise them, they depend on their labour to build their wealth.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I love listening to the stories of ordinary people – everyday people – who wake up early to go to work and retire late at night just to provide food and better education for their children. It is easy to identify with their cause, feel their pain, and understand their troubles, because I too watch my mom – a single parent with 5 children who had to work two jobs just to make sure we always had food on the table and an opportunity to get a good education. That’s why I’m always fascinated by the details of their struggles and the joy that escorts their successes, however tiny.

To me, these are the real people. In them reside great reservoirs of determination (at 52 years my mom graduated from college), an unquenchable thirst for greatness, an indomitable spirit to triumph and an extraordinary capacity to achieve their rightful place in life. But there is something even more special about ordinary folks: it is their enduring faith and boundless patience that compel them to rise every day to face the trials and tribulation of a world in which all are created by the same God, but not treated equally – I love you Mom…always!

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Sometimes we can be so busy with our everyday jobs, and our personal goals, and changing the world, that we have very little to spend with our kids.

I can remember while attending Saint Mary’s Academy there was this very good friend of mine – who came from a wealthy family where his parents could buy him anything he wanted. But for some reason he always seemed down and sad. So, one day I asked him – why are you always looking to so sad? You know what he told me? He told me that the reason is so sad, is because the mother had gone off to the US to live. Confused, I asked him – what is his talking about? Because that same morning I saw his mother driving by? He said this is just my biological mom, but my real mom is our maid Jennifer.

I raised up in a relatively poor home, where my mom (a single parent) had to work two jobs in other for us to get by. But if one thing my mom made sure she did, is to have some quality time with each of us. She didn’t have a lot money to buy all the fancy things, but she showed us love in the little things she did, and thats what matters in life…trust me.

Well, just to clarify, I don’t kids. 🙂 But here are some ways I’ve found to connect with them on a regular basis:

Make a date. Set a weekly date with each child, so you are ensured some alone time with them. For example, I try to spend 2 hours every Saturday afternoon with my nephews.

Read with them. I’m a big fan of this. Read to them every day if possible. It’s great quality time, and one of the best things you can do to help them in life.

Play with them. Don’t be afraid to be a kid with them. Play video games, watch cartoons, play board games, have pillow fights, make a fort, play superheroes. Play at their level — don’t expect them to play at yours.

Talk to them after work. When you get home from work, instead of sitting down and watching TV, or taking a nap, or finding some other way to veg out after a long day at work … take the extra effort to sit down and talk with your kids about their day.

Just snuggle. Every now and then, just pull your child to you and hug them. Snuggle, be affectionate, and squeeze them tight. That kind of physical intimacy is important — and the day will come when they don’t want to snuggle with you anymore. Take advantage of it now.

What are your ways of connecting with your kids? Let us know in the comments.

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black_love.jpgPhoto by:*Seeding-Chaos*

Here is an interesting article in the commentary column of the CNN.com/US called “Black Men Must Reclaim Our Children”. Thanks to fellow blogger Dan Tanner, who gave me the heads up on this article. The problem of black men not stepping up to their responsibilities in society pertains to not only to black men in Dominica but all over the world. Dads do matter, and it’s ridiculous for us to act as if all it takes is a loving mom.

Now I’m not saying that moms cannot raise their kids to be respectable people, because I’m a perfect example. My dad died when I was only five years old, and he left my mom with five children to care for. Like many single mothers out there, she raised us to the best of her ability. But there were times when I just wished that my dad was around to share certain experiences with which I couldn’t share with my mom.

Bottom line: I can sit here today and celebrate and enjoy a wonderful life because my parents were hell-bent on raising their children to do right by them, especially my mom.

Black men, it’s time to man up to our responsibilities, enough with the sperm donors. We need real men to stand up and reclaim our Children. The future of our boys is on us, and no one else. Aren’t time black men step-up? Let’s hear your comments.

Black men must reclaim our children [CNN.com/us]

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