My fellow Brothers and Sisters,
Where ever in this world or what ever time you discovered this post, you were destined to read and hopefully inspired to part take in these few words of my humble opinion.
I’ve been very keenly observing our OBERLIN site over the last few weeks. I’ve reconnected with both friends and acquaintances, not listed on Hi5 or facebook. Friends who have contributed to my life, in their own little way, lasting memories from I was a itsy, bitsy, teeny boy in primary school.lol Some (if not most of us) have all been through the ranks of great challenges…… nooooooo … let me rephrase …. Great struggles, hardships, disappointments, grief, pain, sorrows, and the list could continue endlessly. At the same time, while experiencing these great challenges, the Lord made certain provisions to ease or yet, better control some of those adversities. He started with our parents, whom (now as adults and parents), we could probably criticize some on there past practices with us. Yes, rough times they were, but, the Lord provided them for us, as the first step, REGARDLESS! Funny enough, after all those years of
“Great struggles, hardships, disappointments, grief, pain, sorrows and laughter”
All we speak of now is our parents and how dem use to kill wi wid lick, and then wi LAUGH! Why, one might ask? Well, behind dem licks, the Lord also provided through them, our uniforms, books, transportation expenses (for those who were privileged....... Let mi correct miself…) BLESSED, to cover that need. Sometimes we were short of one thing or another, mostly lunch money. Nevertheless, short or not, they gave us what they could afford. The funny thing is that, come Saturday evening, we could always look forward to some a dem STRANG COW COD OR BEEF SOUP with our (now north American styled) ORGANIC YAM, BANANA, COCO and SPICE.lol The supposedly investigated banned substances, behind BOLTS dominance in the Olympics. Then comes Sunday evening, di aroma of seasoned rice an pease and deeep fried chicken and/or fish, was always a meal that tested our patience. Pleeaase do not forget di carrot juice, gratered, squeezed and mixed to our likeness. Brings back memories, doesn't it?
“Great struggles, hardships, disappointments, grief, pain, sorrows, laughter”
contributed to nurturing us, for these present days. GOD BLESS MAMA, because what we were short of in their parenting, or otherwise, back then; DEFINITELY taught us the survival, creative and educated HUSSLING skills, necessary in our present day. As children, we learnt the questionable teachings, from religion to personal practices, and found methods to GENUINLY control, improve and demonstrate with the highest decree of EXCELLENCE, our SUCCESS.
How successful are we (brothers and sisters), you may ask? Well, take a moment to look in the mirror and tell me if you aren’t looking at a SUCCESSFUL, GOD BLESSED (although some a wi still bad,….. Gods blessings nuh partial), SURVIVOR through creative or educational achievements. Mama bus wi A**, but fed us same way, made us laugh same way. And to think it was ova at home, not at all!
School, our blessed OBERLIN HIGH consisted of EXCELLENT, GREAT and GOOD teachers coupled with GOOD, BETTER and CHALLENGING students. Let’s be real for a moment! I’ve used the word challenging to cover the varying levels of student issues that existed then and now. As you’ve seen, I’ve neglected to use the word BAD in any description within our institution, because WE (teachers and students) were all fighting for the same cause… to reach that mountain of excellence. Our Teachers - OUR SECOND PARENTS, the ones whom we defied and again questioned their practices, views, methods of maintaining our focus on the subject at hand; but REGARDLESS, had to respect their stance. Have you begun to see a similarity with our biological parents yet? They taught many things for which we frowned upon, yet still their determination through various (again questionable) methods of punishment made us ANGRY and MAD, for the whole year, UNTIL you see your mark of improvement at our terms end. MAMA’s and PAPA’s.
At the same time, these were the same inspirers who made you smile at other times, who effortlessly consoled you in your moments of:
“Great struggles, hardships, disappointments, grief, pain, sorrows”, and might I add ……DESPERATION.
Honestly, we have seen or experienced it/some/all, at some point personally or with our friends (brothers and sisters).
Now, your favorite teacher(s) might not necessarily be mine or vise versa. However, it is IMPORTANT, to know that they’ve demonstrated the parental role for FIVE SOLID YEARS and who you may dislike, contributed to some other student(s), the same lesson / advise you’ve received from your favorite teacher. In a nutshell, our teachers, our second parents, picked up where our biological parents left off.
Long winded you may be saying at this time. Where is Leo going with this conversation? Well hear it comes!!!!!!!!!
What is the real difference between our parents at home or at school?
We experienced and questioned, if not, their every method, idea, reasoning. Took what we wanted then, and as we got older, began to identify with their undying passion / zeal, to learn the material, they were instructed to relay to us. Fact is, we never knew which part of that material would lead us into our future/current career. It may not be the material itself, but could have been the discipline required to become SUCCESSFUL, overcoming the past / present and future,
“Great struggles, hardships, disappointments, grief, pain, sorrows”, in this life time.
You have looked in the mirror and concluded that you are a SUCCESS, as a result of your PARENTS (home and school). We can be found in all ends of this earth HUSSLING on some project(s) (personal, creative or educational); a SOLID, DEVELOPED SKILL from your childhood.
HOW CAN WE NOT FIND THE TIME / ENERGY / MOTIVATION to contribute to a ONCE IN A YEAR REQUEST – MONETARY DONATION ($25US-$50US), from the HUGH SUCCESS you’ve achieved from your ROOTS/FOUNDATION - HOME/ PARENTS/ INSTITUTION – OBERLIN HIGH??????????????????
We are blessed with an opportunity to reconnect again after all these years, with a small contribution. An evening to treat and toast to our brothers and sisters. As our country Motto states - “OUT OF MANY WE ARE ONE” regardless of where we reside in this world.
OUR BLESSINGS AREN’T TRULY MANIFESTED OR BENEFICIAL UNLESS IT IS SHARED WITH OTHERS.
WHERE SOMEONE HAS HELPED YOU TO OVERCOME, YOU CAN NOW HELP SOMEONE ELSE TO OVERCOME.
With your permission, may I propose that you (my brothers and sisters) who reside in North America, please ensure that our support is rendered, and for those in Jamaica, pleaseeeeeeeeee also ensure that your support is rendered…it’s a small price to pay for the SUCCESS we’ve achieved through our PARENTS and INSTITUTION.
Sheldon needs financial support to get this ball rolling. Again, with your permission, may I imply, that even if you are unfortunately not able to attend (as well as those who plan on attending) please forward your minimum (or more if possible) monetary contribution, even if it’s through western union. Sheldon will make a list of each contributor, thus eliminating any future admission issues. This is in the benefits, as listed above.
As an example, I’ll be the first to make my donation via western union today.
Please let us feel your support BERLINITES.
TO OUR PARENTS AND INSTITUTION.!!!!!!!!!!!!!
one another note, I do believe we need to have another one in jamaica some time soon. I'll comment on that at a future date.