Welcome to The 13:13 Series, a blog series that focuses on faith, hope and love for the first 13 days of February. Today is Day 3. Catch up on past posts here.
Do you have a favorite clothing item or accessory that you turn to when you need an infusion of courage? For many years of my life, my red pumps were a symbol of leadership, community and vision. I rocked them proudly for almost ten years as the co-founder of The Red Pump Project, a nonprofit educating Black women and girls about HIV/AIDS. When I hung up my pumps in 2018, it was such a bittersweet moment. I never got a chance to reflect on the power of those red heels until I pulled them out for a photoshoot for this year’s 13:13 Series. I realized that I couldn’t reflect on faith, hope, and love without finally taking a pause to think about all the times that I wore these shoes and took actual steps of faith.
Here’s the note that all of my favorite red pumps deserve. Sorry, I couldn’t find the words sooner.
Hey, fabulous ladies –
Some people think it’s weird to publicly express love to inanimate objects, but they’ve never met you before. The second that I laid eyes on you, I knew that we were designed to make a statement together. Over the years, you have given me great confidence and helped me show up in rooms with a powerful stride.
Together, we stood tall and delivered important infomation that still resonates today. I have worn you in meetings with political leaders, community activists and precocious high schoolers. Each time, we drew them in with the fashion first. Then, an important message later. It was not easy leading a national organization while building my career and a family. But, it was so worth it. When I rocked you, I was taking actual steps of faith and creating something that had not previously existed.
To my favorite red pumps, you brought me community. You connected me with purpose. You made me feel bolder than I truly was.
It’s been awhile since I’ve worn you, but I’ll never forget the memories. Here’s hoping that we can create new ones moving forward.