Yesterday, May 28, 2014, the African-American legendary, writer, right activist and poet Maya Angelou departed from this life.
Wow, how I admire her! Almost all her sayings go deep in my bones! What a loss for America especially for women writers! She was an icon and a real legendary!
Let me share with you one of her sayings which I gave too much thought today. Listen:
“When someone tells you who they are, believe them.”
I know, it sounds very straightforward, doesn’t it? But it is not; which is a typical way of her communicating the truth in one simple sentence. She leaves it as it is for the readers to dig deep.
Let me try, if I may, to describe the meaning of that saying.
Let’s take one example: A girl starts dating a man. She is thrilled that the handsome man is in love with her. He calls her at least three times a day just to say “hi sweetie”. She tells all her friends how romantic he is. All her friends seem to approve her man. People at the church start giving her a second look since she’s been seen with this tall handsome man for some time now.
Single girls in the church are looking at her with a look that says,
“Ugh! She took him.”
The thing is the man doesn’t have any respect to anyone. He thinks that he is the only man with a “working brain” while others are morons. This behavior of his is not something hidden from the girl or anyone. Many people see it. Some of her friends actually dared one day to say to her,
“He thinks very highly of himself.”
For which she replied, “His heart is as white as snow. He just doesn’t know how to live with people who are slow and annoying.”
He doesn’t like to ask anyone an apology. He talks about it as if it was the greatest value he is bringing to the relationship. His brothers told her about his stubbornness to ask apology even when the mistake is his.
He loves dressing up all those designers’ suits. There is nothing wrong with that but he loves to dress up even if he doesn’t have anywhere to go because he doesn’t do a thing in the house. He lives with his mom and one of his brothers.
“You better learn how to cook like my mom. Otherwise I won’t eat whatever you’re making,” he said to her one day after his mom invited her to dinner in their house.
The man doesn’t do a thing in the house except ironing his clothes and looking sharp when he goes out.
Hold on a second. Doesn’t the girl see these red flags?
Yes, she sees them all but she doesn’t believe their existence. The man has been genuinely telling her who he is since day one but she doesn’t seem to believe him.
That is why the prolific African-American writer and famous poet Maya Angelou said: “When someone tells you who they are, believe them,” because they are telling you the truth! ///