As a youngster, I went to my mother’s job just about every day. Her office was only a couple of blocks from my school, so once my ex-curricular activities wrapped up, I would walk to her office and sit and wait for her until it was time to go home. All of her staff and employees knew me. I was a constant fixture at her office and at the many meetings she attended during the week and come to find out, her reasoning for having me around was two-fold.
One reason I was a constant fixture was because she was a single mother of two children and time and resources were scarce as we had no immediate family members in the city we resided in. The other reason, as she wrote in my fifth grade yearbook was to teach me the value of hard work:
To my 10 year old daughter, Rashida:
Well, you made it through another school year successfully ! You are a very
talented child. Your challenge is to recognize that talent and make the best
use of it. School is sometimes a drag, going with me to meetings seems a bore,
but believe me, it will help you prepare for your future. You are a beautiful child
in many ways – and I hope you recognize your beauty. Please know that I love
you and will help you in every way possible.
It definitely took me a while to appreciate the lessons I learned while being a constant side-kick with her to business meetings, receptions and galas. I would have preferred to be at home talking on the phone and watching MTV, but what she wanted to show me was the tenacity and dedication it took to be successful, despite your circumstances. There were simply no excuses for not being where you needed to be and when you needed to be there.