Country Pride. Probably one of the newer concepts learned by some Bermudians, recently. Not that folks were not happy to be from Bermuda because she is an island like no other. But I know personally, there was nothing about Bermuda besides her landscape and scenery that even remotely ignited any type of passion in my spirit. For me, as a young girl I was so caught up in the hype of life overseas in America. It was all so glamourous, there was so much opportunity for personal growth and professionally anything was possible – the American Dream. I’m sure I wasn’t the only Bermudian who didn’t have much pride in his/her country. But there comes a time in one’s life when change occurs and your spirit grows to a new overstanding of life. It occurred for me just before I matriculated into Spelman College. I realized that I was about to be on my own for about 3 months and I would have to make certain decisions based on where I came from. I knew people would judge me based on where I came from, so my decisions would have a different reaction being from an island than being from the US. Not that I was ashamed of being from Bermuda, I just realized that if I am not proud of the place that afforded me all the opportunities I have thus far – why should I have been given life in the first place?
Sounds kind of extreme but that’s exactly how I felt. Sure Bermuda isn’t as big as Jamaica, nor do we have a resort such as the Atlantis in the Bahamas. But we are a prideful bunch nonetheless, with what we do have. We have some of the most brilliant minds on the planet. I have been privy to conversations with the future doctors, politicians, coaches, and teachers of my country sitting on the Courtyard of the new Berkeley Institute campus plotting our Senior skip day, which never happened and have laughed about the funny moments in Mr. Laylor’s mathematics class with my fellow classmates. I have seen music artists, DJs, and radio personalities take their careers from “Who does he/she think she is” to “That’s my girl/boy right there, I love her/him”. There are doubters no matter which country you are from, people can generally be skeptical if something has never been done before. I have been included in that group at one point in my life.
Now that I find myself trying to navigate my career, doing some things that are not particularly “money earning” for myself – I am passionate about what I am doing. That is something I can relate to with the young boy or girl trying to rap or sing back home. To the young girl or guy doing fashion shows to practice their walk. To the DJ hustling at Bermuda College parties, playing for free just trying to get his name out there. I’ve been one of those people at some point in my life and I am currently trying to develop my brand as a Radio Personality/Music Fanatic here in Atlanta. I am proud to support #teamBDA in any way that I can.
This post was inspired by a story featured on Bernews.com – many Bermudians overseas go to Bernews for their updates on violence or crime on the island because Bernews STAYS on top of the mix. However, the particular story I am referring to featured Bermudian Model – Lillian Lightbourn (@LillyLightbourn)- who is following her dream, her passion and mastering her modeling skills in New York City. Lillian was recently featured in Elle Magazine’s June edition as a photo of her appeared from New York’s Fashion Week. Knowing Lillian from our Berkeley days and modeling while back home in Bermuda, I am EXTREMELY proud of her. She is one of many Bermudians following their dreams; hometown hero Collie Buddz would be the most recognizable public figure. But there are so many more, I will attempt to name them all and list their twitter/facebook fan pages if I can. Please make sure you follow this friends/colleagues of mines and continue to support #teamBDA, whether you are Bermudian or not!
I’m sure there are a SLEW of other folks that I could have listed, to whom I apologize, I can only remember so many people when I’m blogging. LOL. But if there is someone you feel is doing something positive back home or overseas in ANY form: be it music, fashion, sports, academics – do let me know. I will most definitely work on something much bigger than this post to get the word out and bring light to those Bermudians who are doing amazing things on the rock and abroad!
Until next time…