By the time you read this we will be well into 2021 and, hopefully, the global state of things will be starting to improve’ because, lets face it, it hasn’t been exactly the start to the new year that we all hoped for; that is until the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th president of the United States of America, (although “united” is not the best adjective to define the states at that time!) when the stirring, motivational poem by Amanda Gorman, junior poet Laureate 2017, completely stole the whole ceremony and filled everyone of us with hope, at least it filled me and inspired me so much that I simply have to share the inspirational five minutes with you again.
I can’t remember a time when a recital captivated me so much. What poise, what eloquence, what passion and what perfect timing to deliver, in just five minutes, a defining moment in history that moved us all, not just in the US, but moved all of us forward; from a place of anxiety to a place of hope, filled with courage and optimism for the future. I honestly believe her brilliant poetry, that was perfect for that moment in time, will be the gift that keeps on giving, a light that keeps shining, keeping us, all focusing on the important things that matter, showing us the way especially when times are challenging ahead.
Aside from the uplifting rhetoric, Amanda’s confidence and delivery of her poem before, not just the distinguished guests at the inauguration, but the global audience, (imagine that, a message for the whole world!) is all the more sensational when I discovered, through researching “Who is Amanda Gorman?” that she was a premature twin, who had auditory and speech difficulties as a child, with both challenges significantly impacted on her learning. What an inspiration for parents currently on their NICU journey, for those with NICU graduates, now school aged children, struggling with seemingly insurmountable difficulties, to see and hear Amanda speak. Her presentation will continue to shine a light of hope for all parents anxious about the future for their own neonatal champion. How wonderful to know that all that encouragement, extra support is always worth it, helping your child to be the best they can be.
I could keep on waxing lyrical about the merits of the poem, but instead I encourage you to watch Amanda’s magnificent moment, but this time consider this stunning performance in the light of her own journey, recognising her as an ambassador for all premature infants.
“For there is always light, if only we’re brave enough to see it, if only we’re brave enough to be it.”
Judy Hitchcock RN COINN