Welcome to our first review from our 4th anniversary celebration ‘Choose our next book’
Wow! I am excited! I enjoyed a book that I didn’t pick myself! LOL! Typically, I wouldn’t want to be saddled with the commitment of reading a book chosen by someone which may end up being drab but as I am finding out, life is a mixture of good and bad; and to get the good, you have to be willing to get some of the bad too.
Welcome to our first autobiography at Tosansreviews!
BECOMING | MICHELLE OBAMA | PENGUIN-VIKING | 2018 | 426 PAGES
BECOMING by Michelle Obama was chosen by our loyal follower and reader – Jesmine Onyeukwu, who is an enthusiastic fan of the Obamas. Note, I said Obamas because even though I asked for just one book, she offered two – both by Obama – Becoming by Michelle Obama and The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama! Of course, BECOMING Michelle Obama got chosen.
In the book, Michelle Obama is telling her own story. It’s a lot of stories in one. A story of self-awareness, a story about what it means to be different, a story of race, a story of love, a story of family, a story of motherhood, a story of overcoming, a story of finding herself, a story of finding her voice and a story of using it – her voice.
A story of finding purpose and meaning in her life – she calls it a swerve, a story of fighting for her own identity in the midst of everyone else’s expectation and her husband’s ambition. It’s a story of distinction in a distinction (an African-American in Africa still stands out!), a story of feminism, a story about what it means to be a FLOTUS – a First Lady, and also the first African-American First Lady; it is a story of change.
In all it’s her OWN story of love, family, career, and life in the public eye. A wonderful story of finding her voice, owning it and using it. It’s a story of her evolution.
The book is split into 3 parts;
BECOMING ME: This part talks of her life growing up with her family, finding herself through different people and different situations up until the moment when she met Obama and agreed to date him.
BECOMING US: This part talks about their relationship, marriage, children, politics and life in the full view of the public – till the end of their first term in government. This is the longest of the three parts.
BECOMING MORE: This part starts from their last term in government to her dislike for Trump and gun violence; to how she’s evolving to find herself over again now outside the White house, her lessons from non-verbal communication cues to the silent power of a First Lady and how to utilize that for a cause.
Tosan’s take: BECOMING by Michelle Obama is a must read for certain people;
For those who want the answer to the question – ‘Am I good enough?’
Women who would like to make impact not just because they are married to a man of wealth/influence or power
People who are minorities in one form or another – whether it be your skin color, women in business or just you being alone because of what you stand for.
For those that want to do meaningful work; work that means something to their souls not just their bank accounts and how to make the leap.
For those, who are reluctant to be drawn into the careers of our spouses but will be dragged in anyway – she wasn’t interested in politics and tried to stay out of it while her husband ran for senate, but when it was time to run for the presidency, she had to be in, not just in, but ALL in!
For those that want to know what it means to be married to someone in the position of power and influence and how to handle sharing their spouse’s love, presence and time with more people than they’d like.
For those that want to live life on their own terms, or at least most of their terms, as against the expectations of others.
For those that want to know what it feels like to be the First Lady of the United States of America.
I thoroughly enjoyed the book and I could relate with a lot of her stories; what struck me though is her strong sense of self-awareness, maybe it’s because it’s in retrospect, but many of us are going through or have gone through what she did in varying shades/degrees but still don’t get the message, still don’t learn something empowering about ourselves or the situation.
I could pick that out because of my heightened awareness brought to the surface by a recent certification on Emotional Intelligence, reminding me that a strong sense of self is key to understanding others. Like it’s said, you cannot give what you don’t have, if you don’t understand and value yourself, how will you expect others to value you or you be able to value others?
To help increase our awareness of who we are and our worth, I am committing to sharing my observations and other stories every fortnight to help us amplify our sense of worth and truly know our value. It is about identifying, owning and improving your OWN value.
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