GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 17

“Each of us is a divine original.” ers are functionally illiterate. In some cities, only 18 percent of black males are graduating from high school. Homicide is the number-one cause of death among young African-American males. I grew weary of writing about the problems, of attending—and hosting—conferences about these critical issues. I decided it was time to act,” says Taylor. Taylor shares the gift of giving back to the community—while passing on other important lessons—with Amina. “We grands play a critical role in instilling wisdom and values in our young ones when we open our minds and hearts to listening to them and their thoughts. We can be the counterbalance to the impact of popular culture that teaches them to value the superficial and encourages mindless and endless spending. We can show them through examples in our own lives that material things don’t bring us lasting pleasure or happiness, and that lasting joy comes from helping those in need. Our family makes sure that Amina gives away to less fortunate children the books, clothing and playthings she’s outgrown. I just love it when she’s offered something she doesn’t need and she says so. “The essential lesson that I want all young people to learn is that who they are—what they have within them—is enough. And that the challenge in all of our lives is taking the time and having the willingness to do the work of discovering the greatness that lies within all of us. So especially for girls—and most especially for girls of color—because they’re always comparing themselves to the celebrities and the images of beauty that they see in the media. I learned at Essence as the beauty and fashion editor to see the beauty in every face, in every body type, and to know that each of us—and this is what I want my granddaughter and all of our children to know—is a divine original. That we are not deficient in any way.” But learning goes both ways, and Taylor admits to having learned patience from her granddaughter. “With Amina, I get to practice the things that I wasn’t aware of or didn’t have the patience and the wisdom to practice when I was mothering my own daughter, Shana. With Amina, I’m infinitely patient. I can’t think of anything that Amina could possibly do or say that would make me raise my voice or lose my temper. With “I grew weary of writing about the problems…” Amina, I value the importance of time spent and deep connections made. I’ve created a space for her in which she knows she can tell the truth, and in which she knows she can ask me about anything. She’s taught me not to rush conversation, which is what I did as a mother. I would rush a conversation with my daughter to finish the one I was having on the telephone, or stay at work when I should have been at home mothering her and bringing my work home so we could do our work together. But with Amina, finally you grow up. And grandchildren are the beneficiaries of our maturity.” When asked how her relationship with Amina differs from the one she had with daughter Shana at that age, FEBRUARY 2009 GRAND 17

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GRAND Magazine - February 2009

GRAND Magazine - February 2009
GRAND View
Contents
GRAND Central
On the Cover: Susan L. Taylor, One in a Million
Get a Job!
The Healthy Crib
Movin’ to the G’Kids
Closing In
10 Disney Secrets
Ask GRAND
Just the Family We Are
Grand Prix: 0-3
Left Behind
Cycle Safe
Resources
GRAND Finale
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - GRAND Magazine - February 2009
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Cover2
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 3
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - GRAND View
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 5
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Contents
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 7
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 8
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 9
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 10
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - GRAND Central
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 12
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 13
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 14
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 15
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - On the Cover: Susan L. Taylor, One in a Million
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 17
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 18
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 19
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Get a Job!
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 21
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - The Healthy Crib
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 23
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 24
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 25
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Movin’ to the G’Kids
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Closing In
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 28
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 29
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 10 Disney Secrets
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 31
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Ask GRAND
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Just the Family We Are
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 34
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 35
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Grand Prix: 0-3
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 37
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Left Behind
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 39
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Cycle Safe
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 41
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 42
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Resources
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 44
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 45
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - GRAND Finale
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Cover3
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Cover4
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