37 years. That is the amount of time it has been since an African-American woman had the lead role in an hour-long primetime dramatic series on network television. Kerry Washington just put that losing streak to rest with her incredible performance on the hit ABC show, Scandal.
As one's life progresses, you begin to realize that finding happiness is an ongoing process. With every step, one in front of the other, you sometimes get good results, and most of the time the results are small. It is the ongoing work that brings happiness. There is never, I need, I need, I need. The satisfaction has to come from the work. That is the place I found Kerry in when I called her yesterday to congratulate her on the show. She seemed completely engaged in the moment and happy about where she was. For her as an African-American woman, for her as a woman, to watch her grow since I met her many years ago when she was a waitress at the vegan restaurant, Angelika's Kitchen, it hit me ... all of the work she has done has always been about loving the moment. That is what makes me so proud and inspired by her success.
And as I was praising her on the phone, I was not surprised how she flipped the conversation to be about me ... that is the kind of person she is, incredibly gracious and humble. She said, "You used to come after yoga and would sit at Angelica's Kitchen, and I was a young waitress there, at the time and I would serve you and I would look at you and think, 'Anything is possible, look what he has accomplished.'" That is nice Kerry, but look at what you have accomplished. Amazing!
Any step forward in life is a success story. But, we tend to find moments that really define that success. And being the first African-American woman to be THE first lead of a network television show in thirty-seven years is remarkable. Can't wait to watch episode two tonight!