Final Thoughts on President Obama’s Farewell Address

farewell address
AP PHOTO/PABLO MARTINEZ MONSIVAIS

I sat in the living room with my brother and parents while my niece and nephew ran around the house playing some version of tag that didn’t really make sense. They’re unaware of the magnitude of the transfer of power that is about to take place in the farewell address.

When Lester Holt said,

“In 10 days, President-Elect Trump will take office,”

my heart sank. Once again, I’m reminded that it actually happened.

When President Obama took the stage for his farewell address, so calm, so cool, so collected, I knew as well as the crowd did that this really was Farewell. He stood there, looking out into the audience, half-biting his lip, half-smiling, taking it all in, and in a moment’s time, a wave of “4 more years! 4 more years!” began to fill the room. I wanted to shout too. President Obama wasn’t perfect by any means, nor did he solve everything, but he cared about us and we felt it. At least, I know I did. The cameras panned over the audience and people were crying. A mixture of heartbreak and fear of what the future might hold.

In true Obama fashion, he took us on an emotional rollercoaster with his words for the next 30 minutes of his farewell address. He spoke of his time in the office over the past 8 years, the power of being open-minded, learning to be resilient, and hope for the future.

“It’s up to all of us to make sure our government continues to meet the challenges we all continue to face.”

He’s right. We the people, have the power to be the change we wish to see in the world. Whether your world is a rural town, a big city, or a little bit of everywhere, start by changing your surroundings for the  better. Inspire the people you meet and then maybe they’ll pass it along to someone in their own lives.

I used to be the person who wanted absolutely nothing to do with politics.

It frustrated me. Not because of the issues being debated but because it seemed to me that whenever politics were being discussed, people talked to talk not to listen, so what was the point in wasting my time with it? I figured I was better off living in ignorant bliss. Then this man came in and changed everything for me. I started to care, I read and researched and watched the news because I was inspired. That small spark in 2008 has since gone up in flames and this fire inside me won’t sleep. Even if I only change one person for the better, I have done my part. I am committed to being open-minded and embracing changes within myself and my own thinking when necessary because that’s how we become better. President Obama said,

“We will rise or fall as one.”

Be open, use your voice and understand that every person on this planet has a different perspective.

“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view, until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” -Atticus Finch, To Kill A Mockingbird

We don’t have to agree on everything and it is certain that we won’t but make a promise to yourself that you will listen, take in all of the facts and decide for yourself.

President Obama ended the night by saying thank you to everyone from his supporters and otherwise, to his staff and to the Biden family but the most touching part of his thank you’s was when he addressed Michelle with love, admiration and tears in his eyes.

The crowd all stood and honored this woman who has changed the role of FLOTUS and made it all her own. There are countless things I will miss about the Obama family but one thing I will miss for sure is the love they shared for each other so gracefully and their unending support through it all. Whether you like his politics or not, President Obama and his family were a class-act and I hope someday to have that.

I’m going to miss my President but I turned the TV off after his farewell address, knowing that he’ll continue to fight for us and that is what keeps me fighting.

Farewell, President Barack Obama but more fittingly, see you around.

About Alyssa Vega 5 Articles
Something like Maya...just trying to be phenomenal and empower you with my words.

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