An Attitude of Gratitude

    I come from a family of six, living with both my parents (Shayo and Joshua) and my three siblings (Tobi, Elizabeth and Patience). Being a child of immigrants has shaped the person I am today. My parents courageously moved from Nigeria to London, England, which is why I strongly believe I am a risk-taker—something evident with my move to America.

    Growing up, I saw my mother deviate from gender norms by going to university, generating money for the family and fulfilling other domestic duties all at the same time. This spoke volumes to me as a young Black female, as I perceived the world to be genderless going forward. This experience allowed me to move with a different field of confidence.

    My family has ingrained in me the importance of education since I was young. Coming from such a background, education was always perceived to be a luxury and an escape from ignorance. As a result, my family’s emphasis on education has enabled me to be naturally inquisitive and grateful for information.

    As I am from a big family, I am exposed to a fast-paced environment that is filled with different personalities. I am very appreciative of the family structure that I have as it has taught me to be disciplined, self-sufficient and, most importantly, selfless. It has forced me to know that life is bigger than myself and that I have an extension of myself within a close environment that I can depend on.

    My family is a strong foundation to rely on because being Black British comes with many complexities that the outside world cannot answer for oneself and so my family provides a safe space where both identities are accepted in a loving manner.

    My family has a system of African beliefs that are instilled in the household that are practiced in our daily lives like religion, history and discipline. I am thankful for my faith because it has enabled me to move with love and rely on a greater source of comfort when in doubt, fear, and distress.

    Overall, I am thankful to have been raised in a big family that has a relationship with God because I know that I can rely on a higher source other than my family members. It has given me something to work towards that is bigger than myself.

    Essentially, family is everything to me, and without them, I would not possess all the qualities I have today. One of them which my family stresses every day is gratitude. Being grateful forces you to constantly look for the “silver lining” in challenges and issues. I believe that is why I have an optimistic lens on life that has brought me so far, and I am so appreciative for an upbringing where that was stressed.

    Precious Adediran is a producer/director and graduate of Georgian Court University in Lakewood, New Jersey. She lives on the South Side of Chicago.

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