Maybe I am a woman of color, but I am a human.

Being a human of color hasn’t made me fruitless or unambitious. I, too, would love to sunbathe, to go to the movies or maybe just be allowed to sit on a moving bus.

Does my color make me less of a human?

Space intrigued everyone. I loved it for the uncertainty. It has always been my dream to touch the stars.

But to be an official engineer at NASA, I would have to take certification courses from an all-white school.

All my life I have been turned down and I still am. Still, I went on, knocking at doors, covertly hoping that someone would let me in.

“Mae Jeminson. Petition for attending classes at Hampton High School,” a woman read from the record, her voice resonating across the hall filled with people and their murmurs.

“Good Morning, Your Honor.”

“Good Morning, Ms. Jeminson. You are well aware that Hampton is an all-white school?”

“Yes, Your Honor, I am well aware of that.”

“The law is the law, Ms. Jeminson.”

“But, Your Honor, I believe there are special circumstances to be considered.”

“And what are the circumstances?”

“We all have ambitions, Sir, no matter our color. Maybe I am chocolate-skinned, but I have a dream.”

“Is your dream achieving the impossible?”

“No, Sir, nothing is impossible. My dream is to become a NASA engineer. But I need to attend classes at Hampton to fulfill it.”

“Are you aware that the curriculum is only for men?”

“Yes, Sir. But both men and women have the same capacity, Sir. It all depends on how you utilize it.”

“What is your point, Ms. Jeminson?”

“My point, Sir, is I need to attend the classes at Hampton to fulfill my dream. And I cannot change the color of my skin.”

The judge sighed deeply, scrutinizing me.

“Only the night classes, Ms. Jeminson.”

Little did the judge know, I would go on to become the first black woman in space.

Sometimes, all it takes is a pinch of courage.

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Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo (@lotchie-carmelo)
1 year ago

A very inspiring story of yours. As I am reading your story, it makes me smile. You know what? Same as you, I dream to succeed as well, even in our situation, that we belong to the poorest among the poor in the Philippines. In our current situation, everything is impossible, because for now money is important. But I’m gonna make change – I will turn impossible to possible. Your courage, determination and dedication to succeed, inspires me more. Good job.

Eric Radcliffe
Eric Radcliffe (@eric-radcliffe)
1 year ago

I saw the movie too Afreen, wasn’t it called ‘Hidden Numbers’? (just in case the readers of your story have not seen it.) What an awe inspiring story.

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Bait

It takes a real talent to tell a story in so few words. What was…


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Endure and Sing

Inspirational piece. Am glad you picked the rat to be the protagonist in your story,…


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Endure and Sing

Such a sweet tale - and with a good moral to the story. I thought…


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Endure and Sing

Wow! This is a good story! Really good to read to little kids, the moral…


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Endure and Sing

Hi Katy, it really does add an extra dimension to hear your story read aloud…


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Endure and Sing

In my neighboring country Denmark, we have the classical storyteller Hans-Christian Andersen. Your sweet story…


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Endure and Sing

A really nice one with a wonderful story line. I can see why this was…


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Endure and Sing

A beautiful story! I was reminded of seeing Paul Potts and Susan Boyle on Britain's…


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Endure and Sing

Your story inspired me to keep going no matter how discouraging it gets. At times…


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Endure and Sing

Thank you so much for the feedback! I pray that the young readers will be…


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Endure and Sing

Thank you for taking the time to comment and convey your thoughts on the story.…


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Hi Katy, don't we all feel like the rat in your story at times! We…


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Between Belonging and Dying

Oh my gosh, Daniel. Your story really defines the word superb. You make me experience…


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Between Belonging and Dying

A horrendous situation, more so because so many people find themselves going through it. A…


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