Our Children, Our Future
Why I’m glad Obama is a father and the next father of our country
” alt=”obama family” width=”303″ height=”236″ />Tuesday morning, as I watched the news coverage on Election Day, footage of Barack Obama and his family voting a mere 30 miles from my house struck me. I watched as two parents took their daughters to the polls to vote. I watched as parents explained the system to their children. I watched, thinking, I should take my kids with me to the polls today.
I watched feeling emotional, knowing I was going to vote for McCain, but thinking that what if I switched my vote at the last minute? Would it really matter all that much if I even voted on Election Day? I knew Obama would already be winning the state of Illinois. Would my vote even matter?
And my next thought as I watched Obama talk his daughter’s through the voting process: That man – that father of those two daughters – is quite possibly going to be our country’s next leader.
This was a surreal experience for me – as a parent, as a voter, as someone who was watching just a drive away from where Barack Obama was voting.
I thought of his daughters, Malia, 10, and Sasha, 7, and wondered how their lives would change. They would be moving. They would be leaving everything they knew for a whole new world. They’d be under the watchful eye of the secret service and the paparazzi. They’d go to a new school and meet new friends. Every day would be new changes and new experiences. Their whole lives would be changing.
Later that night, I watched on TV as the newly elected president gave his speech in Chicago’s Grant Park. I watched as hundreds of thousands of Americans gathered together, united as one, to listen to our country’s newest leader, as he talked of promise and of the future. I watched, and I smiled, as he told his daughters that he loved them more than they could ever imagine. And then, he also made a promise that even I, as a parent, cannot make to my own children. In front of the whole country, he promised his girls a puppy. Oh definitely, Malia and Sasha’s lives would be changing!
These words Obama spoke are ones that keep the promise of the new days ahead in our country hopeful for me:
“If our children should live to see the next century … what change will they see, what progress will we have made? This is our chance to answer that call. This is our moment. This is our time to put our people back to work and open doors of opportunity for our kids … that out of many, we are one.”
I thought to myself, Yes, Malia and Sasha’s lives would be changing.
But so will ours.
That is certain.
And I’m so good with that.