These New Insanely Flawless Photos of Michelle Obama Will Blow Your Mind, Plus Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Bawse Ode
As President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama‘s time in the White House comes to a close, many media outlets are doing their own tributes to the First Family that shaped history. You’ll notice the First Lady was on the cover of several magazines these past few months.
Today, T Magazine, The New York Times Style Magazine, posted their piece, ‘To the First Lady, With Love,’ which features four thank-you notes to the First Lady written by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Gloria Steinem, Rashida Jones and Jon Meacham.
Along with the letters, the accompanying photos of the First Lady are flawless!
In Adichie’s letter, she reflects back to seeing Obama give her speech at the 2008 Democratic National Convention.
“She had the air of a woman who could balance a checkbook, and who knew a good deal when she saw it, and who would tell off whomever needed telling off. She was tall and sure and stylish. She was reluctant to be first lady, and did not hide her reluctance beneath platitudes. She seemed not so much unique as true. She sharpened her husband’s then-hazy form, made him solid, more than just a dream,” wrote Adichie.
Adichie also touches on how Obama was given the the “angry Black woman” label early on in her dealings with the public.
“Because she said what she thought, and because she smiled only when she felt like smiling, and not constantly and vacuously, America’s cheapest caricature was cast on her: the Angry Black Woman. Women, in general, are not permitted anger — but from black American women, there is an added expectation of interminable gratitude, the closer to groveling the better, as though their citizenship is a phenomenon that they cannot take for granted.”
Fast forward to this year’s Democratic National Convention, and Obama was able to use terms she may not have a few years ago.
“It was the 2016 Democratic Convention. Michelle Obama was speaking. She said “black boy” and “slaves,” words she would not have said eight years ago because eight years ago any concrete gesturing to blackness would have had real consequences.”
In Steinem’s letter, of how Obama didn’t let her public life as First Lady cause her to sacrifice her “authenticity.”
“After a decade under a public microscope, she has managed what no other first lady — and few people in any public position — have succeeded in doing: She has lived a public life without sacrificing her privacy and authenticity. She made her husband both more human and effective as a president by being his interpreter and defender, but also someone we knew was capable of being his critic.”
Steinem also wrote how she’s never seen such a balance of parenting, love and respect in the White House since the Obama family.
“Though I’m old enough to remember Eleanor and Franklin D. Roosevelt in the White House — and all the couples and families since — I have never seen such balance and equal parenting, such love, respect, mutuality and pleasure in each other’s company. We will never have a democracy until we have democratic families and a society without the invented categories of both race and gender. Michelle Obama may have changed history in the most powerful way — by example.”
We don’t know what the First Lady will do once she leaves the White House, but we do know she’ll have our support.
Photo Credit: NY Times