Mentor Down, Mentee to the Rescue
🏥Hospital for the Holidays🎁
Dedicated to Sade.
ITHACA, N.Y. -- While I was back home in New York City for Thanksgiving Break, I found myself back in my high school hustle -- visiting my JFK Airport volunteer squad, hitting up The Fame School (my school, LaGuardia Arts! haha) and crossing a few streets next to Lincoln Center to make it into WABC-TV and ABC News. I was so excited to get to see a number of people who had welcomed me into their offices and newsrooms for over three years. I missed them dearly and the sight of them was warming.
One of my biggest champions, and fighters -- a true mentor, anchor, Sade Baderinwa was unfortunately in a freak car accident that, she wrote on FaceBook, gave her a concussion. Aside from trying to watch Eyewitness News every chance I could at Ithaca College to see if she'd be on-air you'd bet that when I got steps from her desk I was asking about her.
Who cares about the headlines?! who cares that i'm back?! Is Sade okay???
Unfortunately since she hasn't been back on the anchor desk since the crash, I found myself writing her a 'Get Well' card to go in an envelope that would be sent to her. We're not just talking about a raved about news anchor at the top station in America. We're talking about the woman who cheered me up after school, the anchor who made FaceBook posts about me, told other students about me, wrote me college recommendations, and let me speak at her annual program. She's my news mom!! It hurts out of this world to know that she's not on the air. You know when the doctor takes the needle out and subtly says "One more."? That's how it feels knowing she's hurt.
I met up with my great friend Levana who was also back home on break and she helped me pick the perfect card. We grabbed Starbucks, took some photos, and hugged "Have fun at college!" Already inside the Time Warner Center I sat at Bouchon Bakery and let my pen hit the paper. Although I knew what I wanted to say...I didn't necessarily know how to string together those words. I mean here's the lady who's program inspired me to get into this industry knocked off her feet for three months by things I didn't even know had names like photophobia and hyperacusis.
How do you inspire your inspiration? Seriously, howwww?
It's totally out of character for me to draft cards but, I decided to here because I really didn't want to screw up. The card was nearly $10! Papyrus, you're expensive...even on Black Friday. I wound up telling her something she truly instilled in me -- "I believe in you." Actually saying it makes me feel raw, and vulnerable but oh so genuine. I let her know that just as she rooted for me over the years, I'm doing the same for her. And I really mean it -- the inspa's on my nightly prayer list! This is when networking gets real. I never thought I'd have to find a mentor and then grapple between the happy person I knew them as and the hurt they must currently be experiencing. Networking is not about you -- it's a two-way relationship.
In the end, I think sometimes this is all you can do. You can send good vibes through the universe, you can write cards, and you can pray in the midst of a situation that reeks of helplessness. And then you must hope it is all received as well as your intent.
Thank you for reading.
With ❤️ & gratitude,