January 21, 2013
Dr. Jan Prewitt
We were 12 in Mrs. White’s six grade class. We had so much in common, we were the only brown skinned among a sea of white skinned, blonde hair, and blue eyes. We were at the top of the class with straight A’s, and we shared an unspoken familiarity that neither of us understood, but accepted. She was my “bestie” and I her “bosom buddy”, and we shared our worlds, ideas, thoughts, and aspirations. The environment in Mrs. White’s six grade class increased our bond and created a common experience I will always remember. We were the only culturally different people our other classmates knew. To the other classmates, we were different and new, much like a toy after Christmas that would grow old. To one another we were comrades representing diversity. Our cultures could not be more different, she came to America when she was 3, and although she vaguely remembered India her parents were determined to keep their Indian Culture and ways. I was born in America, but lived in a subculture and occasionally felt as though I too was visiting or passing through. My Mother taught me the importance of the struggle our people endured to guarantee the freedoms I enjoy. The history of Black America is a validation of my existence, and even as a young girl I cherished it. However, we shared a common bond; we both wanted happiness, peace, success, and love. We would talk for hours sharing our dreams and plans for the future. We had visions, aspirations, and dreams. We were bound for college and would form successful careers. She would become the doctor who would discover the cure for cancer, and I the businesswoman who would solve world hunger. We worked as hard as two six graders could to ensure a successful future. We had it planned; college, careers, lifestyles, and yes, love. Love, the one dream we did not share. I remember the conversation as we strolled along our...