Don’t Be Fooled By the Rocks that I Got (365 Days of Spirited Living – DAY 24)
“Don’t be fooled by the rocks that I got
I’m still, I’m still Jenny from the block
Used to have a little, now I have a lot
No matter where I go, I know where I came from.”
— Jennifer Lopez
Never forget where you come from. This is the simple, yet powerful message that Jennifer Lopez raps about in her 2002 song “Jenny from the Block”. Essentially, this song is about Lopez’s difficult upbringing, how she has not changed despite her fame, and never forgets who she is and where she came from (The Bronx). This song is also a testament to how our struggles make us into the people we are today. Without our struggles, who would we be?
I have enormous respect for people who are real. People who are authentic are proud of their family and their roots. No matter how high they go, how much fame they receive, or how much money they make, they remember where they came from. No matter how dysfunctional it was, they celebrate who they are, the people who helped them, and the situations that made them.
One of the saddest things to see is how quickly people forget their background. They feel embarrassed to talk about their past — however it was. This not only shows inauthenticity, but it is a gross disservice to other people. Your story can serve as a worthy tool of empowerment and inspiration to other people who are trying to get to where you are now. They need to know that it won’t be easy. They need to know that pain and heartbreak and difficulty are part of the process — part of the journey.
Sometimes, when people go through misfortune and adversity in life, they become angry or resentful. Even when their big break comes, they carry a stick of bitterness, arrogance, and even in entitlement in their attitude and actions. It seems as though on the way to the top, they failed to learn that hardship is a necessary part of the journey.
Life is hard. That’s a fact. No one ever goes straight to the top. Those who are committed to working hard, making sacrifices, helping others, and loving and living along the journey ultimately reach their goals. Remembering where you come from will keep you grounded in reality. It is where we come from that inspires us on our journey to where we’re going.
“From In Living Color and movie scripts
To On the 6 to J. Lo to this headline clips
I stayed grounded as the amounts roll in
I’m real, I thought I told you
I really been on Oprah
That’s just me
Nothin phony, don’t hate on me
What you get is what you see.”
— Jennifer Lopez