I once was in a creativity workshop where our facilitator, Jim Ware, asked all of us to write down the name of a role model. I’ve never been one to consciously keep a role model, so I was surprised at the name I recorded … Mama Dot. As I thought of my response, I became less surprised and more touched. I was moved that my own logic had quickly processed the name of this particular individual.
Mama Dot was the name given to my maternal grandmother. As a little guy, I was the ‘apple of her eye’ and she was my best friend. At the time of that workshop, she had been gone 12 years. As I write this, it’s been 24 years … and I still feel her unconditional love.
This unconditional exhibition was key in building the esteem required to live through the teen years and, as I discovered being a man, to get beyond my late twenties. Being able to experience, on the receiving end, unconditional love and acceptance went a long way in providing an understanding of how I was put together. I refer to this as ‘wiring.’
Like a PC ordered online, there are similarities among all of us while we each come with special ordered uniqueness. That uniqueness has a special purpose … this is wiring.
For me, Mama Dot’s unconditional love has been a guiding light all my life. The word unconditional denotes power, and the power of my grandmother’s love for me reinforced part of my wiring that she understood from the very beginning. For instance, she understood, appreciated, and validated my need for freedom.
My value for freedom is superseded by only one other value in my life – love. And thanks to the model I had in my Mama Dot, this value is my voice.
Freedom demands that this voice be heard. And right now I feel the demand in ways like never before.