“Courage is not the lack of fear but the ability to face it.” John B. Putnam Jr.
I was born Whitney Wendy Witter to Sonia Witter & Selvin Witter on February 11, 1990. I was born in Brooklyn Hospital in Brooklyn, New York. Even though I am a born American I was raised in a Jamaican household. Both of my parents were born and raised in St. Elizabeth, Jamaica. My parents met after traveling to the states, they were married for ten years by the time I came along. My father is what they call a “Chinese Jamaican” and my mother is full black. After I was born my parents went back to Jamaica for a little and I went with them. It was very different from the states but I didn’t realize the big change until I was old enough to understand.
Growing up in Jamaica helped to shape me into the woman I am today. It helped my parents instill strong values and morals in me. I remember the first day I came in close contact with a “green lizard” I was 6 years old. My mother often warned me about this lizard because they were known for biting people especially children. The green lizard has yellow eyes, a long tail, and a really big saw on his back. It was early one morning and I was getting ready for school and as I was just leaving the bathroom there was a tiny green lizard at the top of the doorway.
After hearing all those horror stories my first instinct was to use the closest thing to me to kill it or at least scare it away. I bent down to grab my slipper the lizard seemed to be crawling towards, I froze in place making certain not to make any sudden movements. I took my time as I stood up to my original position the lizard didn’t move an each his big yellow eyes seemed to follow every move I made.
My mother yelled “Whitney don mek me haffi come in deh and tek you out, mi case and get ready fi school. The lizard ran back to the top of the door way, I was relieved but still very terrified not of the lizard but of my mother. “Mommy mi wan come but mi fraid a di green lizard” I replied. “Who you more fraid a me or one likkle lizard” she answered, knowing where this conversation who end up I ran through the door as fast as I could. As I ran into my room my mother was already there waiting for me. “The one thing you may fear the most, may just fear you” that saying has always stuck with me and from that day forward, my fear of lizards has seem to disappear. Its taught me that fear is just another word for can’t. It is a philosophy that I plan to one day teach my son when he is old enough to understand.
I enjoy reading your story! I also like the quote that you chose. I thought it was well organize and descriptive it was easy for me to imagine everything that you mention in your story. I agree with you when you said " fear is just another word for can’t". good story Whitney