Last week while I was on a play date, a friend asked me a simple question: What do you want out of MORE?
And I gave her the most authentic answer that I could. I said I want MORE for me.
I didn't have a chance to go into details because we were with our toddlers, but I wanted to. I wanted to tell her that I, just like her, was in pursuit of MORE.
More time to nurture my relationship with my husband and opportunities to look beyond the shadow that I see during our baby handoffs. I want more chances to talk with him. To tell him I love him and to hug him until I decide to let go. I want to make sure he knows every minute of the day that we are in this thing together.
I want to be able to enjoy my son's stages instead of wishing pieces of them away. I want to be there, every time, present and engaged. I want to be the one who instills in him the confidence he's going to need to navigate through the rocky path that's in front of him. I want to hear him say out loud that he is beautiful, smart, special and loved and then know deep down that he believes it. I want to give him the very best — the best education, the best experiences and the best of me. I want to be able to say YES at 11 a.m. on a Tuesday if he asks me to play Spider-Man.
I want more creative freedom to figure out what I'm capable of doing. For the majority of my life, I've spent my time helping other people build their dreams. I want the opportunity to build mine. I want to be able to step out on my own and release something into the world without my imposter syndrome holding me back.
I want more genuine friends. People who refer to me as passionate instead of aggressive. I want to find more people who, just like me, are trying to be the good in the world that they want to see. I want to find my tribe.
I want to be around to see others find their MORE. Like Stephanie, who is one of the most brilliant, genuine and kind-hearted people I've ever known. I want her to find her happy place, and I want to see her thrive. I want to see her create the space to cook with her son, write freely and share her wits with the world. And when I tell her that I love her and will always be here to support her; I want her to know that I mean it.
I want Joy, who lost her daughter Elli several years ago, to find solace knowing that Elli lives on. I want to be around when she finds the space to tell her story. And I want to be the first person in line at her book release party, waiting patiently, with a smile, a few tears and a big hug.
I want Nailah, who's so incredibly beautiful and strong to feel supported as she creates more safe spaces for women of color — black girls, in particular — to be free and vulnerable and to grow. The work she is doing is so important. So needed and so brave. I don't want her ever to feel like she's doing it alone.
But most of all, what I want is MORE Spaces. MORE Spaces where we can be authentic, vulnerable, feel safe and be supported. Space to be the husbands, wives, mothers, business owners, working professionals, family members, friends and humans we want to be. MORE Spaces is what I want out of MORE. MORE Spaces for you and for me.