One night President Obama and his wife Michelle decided to do something out of routine and go for a casual dinner at a restaurant that wasn’t too luxurious. When they were seated, the owner of the restaurant asked the President’s Secret Service if he could please speak to the First Lady in private. They obliged and Michelle had a conversation with the owner.

Following this conversation President Obama asked Michelle, “Why was he so interested in talking to you?” She mentioned that in her teenage years, he had been madly in love with her. President Obama then said, “So if you had married him, you would now be the owner of this lovely restaurant,” to which Michelle responded, “No. If I had married him, he would now be the President.”

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Janet Mock Inspires CeCe McDonald

“Janet, you know how much I love you. I look up to you as a big sister. And this book really, in my eyes, made me see myself as not just the one who went through my experience alone. Every time I would read a page in your book, it would be like a black and white scene of a movie in my head of my life, of something that you experienced that I’ve experienced in some way. It’s really hard for me to express myself to people when it comes to experiences that I had whether it be good or bad. And for you to have written a book about that is really a blessing. It’s like…this is like the ten commandments for us right now. Like literally. It speaks truth. And with truth comes freedom.” - CeCe McDonald

Part of what Cece McDonald said to Janet Mock in regards to her important, exquisitely written, groundbreaking book about being a trans woman of colour, Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More. Quote is from The Barnard Center For Research on Women annual salon that featured several panelists.