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I am excited to partner with MassMutual to share my family’s heritage in celebration of Black history month! It has shaped the person I am today, and empowered me to create my own legacy for the future.
Black history is world history. Truth be told, no matter your ethnicity, nationality or religion, you and your descendants have shaped and been involved in the history of the world, and, well, African Americans are part of it. When we’re taught about our history of America in school, the wars we’ve fought in, our past Presidents, the treaties, the Native Americans, the colonization, the Constitution, our Independence, slavery, civil rights, and politics, there is very little spoken about African Americans and our journey.
It wasn’t until college, when I took an African Studies course, that I got a real look at the way that the lives of blacks changed throughout history. From the days of slavery, until now, it seems that we’ve had the hardest time adjusting to a new life, that we’ve had little control over from the start. I do believe that things are much better in the 21st century, but we’ve still got a ways to go. There is so much to learn, so why not get started right away?
Teaching the kids: knowledge is power
I am of mixed race, so I’ve seen and learned about both sides of the coin. My father’s side of the family is African American, hailing from Oklahoma. My mother’s side of the family is Caucasian American and Japanese. As we live and grow as a family, I have been trying to teach my children about their heritage. At ages 7 and 4, they’ve heard about many different basics of black history; slavery, segregation, civil rights movements, and the ongoing quest for equality, and they’ve also learn about how to carry themselves in today’s society. They know that growing up as black children in America today, is much different than when our grandparents grew up in the 1950’s. Knowing this, means knowing how to move forward in a positive direction, protect those that matter in your life, and create your legacy for the future.
Black history is American history
I appreciate black history month, it is an inspirational time to teach the world about the history that African Americans lived, that is not commonly recognized. I do wish that we could integrate black history as a part of the complete American experience. As a black family in America, it is important that we discover our past, so that we can plan for a great future. The African American legacy is just as important as any other, it’s time that we recognize it and make sure our children know all about it, year round! No matter where you come from, celebrate the #JourneyofYou. Knowing your past is the stepping stone to knowing your future, which includes Building a Financial Legacy! Thanks to Mass Mutual for inspiring me to reflect and write about my family’s history. Join us, follow along and share your own story in the comments section below or MassMutual on Twitter and MassMutual on Facebook using #JourneyOfYou.
What is the story of your families history?