With the launch of our inaugural issue, I’m thinking about firsts this week. Here are five things on my mind, all related to firsts.
Our first issue
Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for all the compliments and praise. We’ve worked our tails off (and have the bags under our eyes to prove it), and it really means a lot. And an extra special thank you to those who reached out to share their ideas and suggestions for future content. We made this magazine for our community, and we genuinely want our readers to enjoy it. Keep the feedback coming!
First Black woman to…
There have been some incredible firsts for Black women recently, and they’re worth mentioning. On May 2, in my hometown of New Orleans, Susan Hutson became the first Black woman (and the first woman) to serve as Orleans Parish Sherrif. On April 27, Jessica Watkins became the first Black woman launched into space for an extended mission. Just one month ago, Ketanji Brown Jackson became the first Black woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. It makes my heart happy to see women breaking glass ceilings, and even more so when they’re women of color.
A life of firsts
We collect firsts throughout our lives. Our first memory, first kiss, first job, first house, first child, etc. They are a meaningful way to mark the passage of time. But I also remember my first impression of others because I know first impressions are often just that – a judgement based on little to no knowledge about the person. Personally, I challenge myself to create a first impression that isn’t just my first thought about someone, it’s my first experience with them. I ask a lot of questions when I first meet someone (it’s that journalism training – it never goes away), and I almost always walk away with an appreciation for who they are, not just who they appear to be. If your first impression is confined to your first opinion, I challenge you to expand it.
First Mother’s Day without my mom
While the disappointment of my first Mother’s Day as a mom is probably not that relatable to most of you, I think my first Mother’s Day without my mom is, if you’ve lost your mom. That experience shocked me. I couldn’t handle the barrage of social media posts – friends having lunch with their moms, sharing stories of their recent memory-making experience together, saying they couldn’t wait to do this or that with them. It was just too painful. This year will be my eighth Mother’s Day without my mom, and I still avoid social media on this day. I know I’m not the only one.
First annual is never, ever a thing – ever!
And finally, allow me a minute to step up on my soap box… Please, everyone, I beg of you – don’t call your new event a first annual. It’s just wrong. By definition, annual means that something occurs once every year. If it’s only happened one time, then it can’t possibly occur once every year. Sure, it may be your intent for it to occur every year, but it hasn’t yet. In fact, if you do it again in year two, it’s still not an annual event. It’s simply the second. Once you’ve hit three years, then you can begin to call it an annual event. Thank you for coming to my TED talk. ☺