At 11pm on the dot, when it was first announced that Barack Obama won the election, my mouth dropped and my mom and I looked at each other. I asked, "Is this for real?" and she said, "Yes!" I sat with my mouth open for a few seconds, and my phone immediately began ringing. I talked to my sister for awhile, and I continued to get calls. Eventually, I called Elaina because I remembered that she went to bed. I said, "Elaina, he won!" and she said sleepily "Oh, which state?" and I said, "No! He WON! The whole thing!" Haha. Right when I hung up with her, I burst into tears. Everyone who I talked to after that was subjected to my sobs of happiness.
I cried for somewhere around 58 minutes. Atleast, it had been 58 minutes when I realized that the tears had dried up.
The second part of this question is the hard one. It's hard for me to put my finger on exactly why this means so much to me. I'm actually struggling to come up with adequate words. I think it has something to do with the fact that when I saw Obama speak 2 and a half years ago, I thought to myself that he had to be president. I loved his ideas, the way he spoke, and how excited the crowd was. And this was just him as a senator!
I came back from Vermont that weekend and couldn't stop talking about him. No one else knew who he was, but I had a poster of him from the speech that I put up on my wall. Everyone asked who he was... when I first met Em, (which was around 6 months after I met him/attended his speech), I specifically remember her asking who "that guy on the poster" was. I explained who he was to anyone who asked, and always added on the end "And, he's going to be our first black president!" My confidence in that statement was often met with skepticism.
I guess, I'm mostly just happy because our nation finally voted a president into office who a majority of us actually WANTED. The last few years have been full of debacles and shenanigans. This year, Barack Obama beat Hillary Clinton in the primaries, fair and square. Then, he went on to beat John McCain fair and square. John McCain put it best in his speech last night, "America has spoken. Loudly, and clearly." That is right!
Vernon Jordan (black activist) was on The View this morning, and his response to someone saying "This is a miracle for black people" was ... "I don't think it's a miracle for black people. It's a miracle for all Americans." And this is what I truly believe as well. It's going to open up doors... change is a GOOD thing. If a minority of race can be voted into the White House, then it gives all minorities hope that anyone can be voted into the White House. If this happened now, it means that SOMEDAY minorities of gender can be voted in. Minorities of sexual orientation can be voted in. Barack Obama is a catalyst! Our leaders don't always have to be old, rich, white men.
My apologies for not writing the most coherent post... I am just so excited, and so blown away and almost speechless. I just can't believe that it happened. After this long... supporting him the whole way, before he even announced that he was running, supporting him during the primaries, supporting him and volunteering during the election. Watching him win last night and listening to his speech cemented my belief that if enough people come together for the same purpose, than something can be accomplished and achieved.
I can't wait to see what the next 4 years will bring...