I, of course, like many of you, am glued to the TV this morning. Every channel except Noggin (and I totally expect it to go there, too) is broadcasting the inauguration of President Barack Obama.
Of course, I have some stuff to say about this day.
I know. Shocker.
First, the crowds in Washington are simply mind boggling. I know MANY people who are there - both Republican and Democrat. And I can't help but feel a little jealous because it's so unbelievably historic. But I'm pretty sure that I'm glad to be here in my warm house since I just checked the weather forecast for DC and it's a balmy 23 degrees there. Mercy.
Second, Michelle Obama's gold dress is absolutely fabulous. And age appropriate. And First Lady-ish. And designed by a no name designer (which is my favorite part). No Vera Wang or Carolina Herrera for her. In fact, I don't even know the lady's name who designed her dress. But I DO know that her business just took off.
Third, did you see Michelle Obama give a gift to Laura Bush when the Obamas got to the White House this morning? This Southern Girl was impressed. Nice touch, Michelle. And then W held Michelle's hand as they walked inside. Presh.
Fourth, as much as I am intrigued with all the history that we are watching today, I still can't help but wish that we were celebrating another historical moment with the first ever female VP. However, we can't dwell on the past. Beth Moore so appropriately wrote a post on her blog this morning about where our hearts and attitudes should be regarding our new President. It's definitely worth reading.
Fifth, I am in the wonderful position of trying to keep Mary Emma from being overly jealous that the Obama girls got to go on stage with the Jonas Brothers. Sheesh.
Sixth, I grew up in Montgomery, AL. Which, if you'll refer back to 10th grade US History, was the epicenter of the Civil Rights Movement. Names like Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks and George Wallace (who was actually my NEIGHBOR) were commonly spoken. MLK's church was less than a mile from my church. I ate lunch at the table next to George Wallace many many times. I have driven the historic Highway 80 from Selma to Montgomery and crossed the Edmund Pettis Bridge more times than I can count. Believe me, I know the story. But I don't get it. I can't possibly REALLY get it. I am a white girl who was born in the 70s. I wasn't alive during the Civil Rights Movement. I've seen the symbols of it: the museums, the monuments, the statues. But I can't relate to it. However, this morning, as I watched the broadcast of the events in Washington, I saw an elderly black man, in a wheelchair, all bundled up with blankets and coats and a hat. And I realized the importance of today to that man. He gets it. This man has probably been a part of the history that I have only read about. He was most likely denied the right to vote at one point in his life. His parents and grandparents have probably endured more hardships than I will ever comprehend. I'll bet the fact that he is sitting in the cold to watch a black man sworn in as the 44th President of the United States is something he never thought he'd see in his lifetime. The history is overwhelming. And I am so glad to be a witness to it.