FEMI Magazine's senior writer, Tashi Sade Thomas, shares a moving interview with Dr. Darrell Pone in an upcoming special issue which will honor inspirational and motivational men and women. Below you will find an excerpt from this article.
Motivation, as described by the Merriam Webster dictionary, is the act or process of giving someone a reason for doing something. It is a force, stimulus, or influence that propels one into action. Every day, thousands of Americans raid libraries, sift through blogs, and task friends and family for hours of conversation as they desperately struggle to find the motivation to live; for there is something in the human psyche that declares mere existence insufficient. It is not enough to eat, sleep, reproduce; to simply survive. Our souls demand that we live, that we discover a way to make the sum total of our minutes on earth count towards achieving some mysterious goal. If we do not live on purpose, it is as if we do not consider ourselves alive. Although this yearning is innate and universal, the motivation to propel one into action seems allusive. As human beings struggle to acquire the momentum necessary to live meaningful lives, we are often told to simply "have faith." Could this motivation, this propelling force, this influence we spend hour upon hour scouring the earth to find simply be sheer faith? What exactly is faith? Where does it come from? How does one acquire it?
It is with these questions in mind that I embarked on the journey of getting to know Dr. Darrell Pone. I strove to become more familiar with the African American man whose tumultuous birth in the 50s left him diagnosed with cerebral palsy at infancy, a man who would then journey on to become a practicing medical physician, writer, and public speaker. I interviewed Dr. Pone on his 10 Keys to Success outlined in his book entitled, "We've Come This Far By Faith." To say that I concluded this journey motivated would not be enough. Dr. Pone's story brought insight into my own challenges throughout the years. It brought clarity to my mind, allowing me to see beyond disappointments and for the first time accept that trial can truly be a blessing.
Tashi Sade Thomas
"Dr. Pone is a remarkable man. When I first met him I was extremely worried that if I could not understand his every word, I would insult him. I had never interacted with someone who had Cerebral Palsy, and I am embarrassed to say that, simply, I just did not know what to do or expect. Then I told myself to just relax. It would not be the first time that I have had to ask someone to repeat himself, especially if a person had a thick accent. I just don't have an ear for accents. I know that Dr. Pone has Cerebral Palsy, and not a foreign accent. However, I had to look at the two in a similar fashion. My approach and mindset had to be one which did not involve my constantly relying on his wife for translation. At any rate, once I took that pressure off of myself, to understand every single word he spoke, I began to understand and relate to nearly everything he said quite easily.
Dr. Pone is a very passionate speaker who captivates and inspires audiences of all ages. I have grown to consider him a friend in the purest form. One of my favorite things to do, when time allows, is to sit down with Dr. Darrell Pone and his lovely wife, Dr. Gloria Nixon-Pone, over breakfast to just talk about anything and everything. They both are wells of information, and the conversation is always stimulating. My favorite topics to discuss with them involve the Civil Rights era and their family lineages. I love our friendship and the respect that we share for one another. "
Sadanya S L Cuadra
The Pone's Marriage
I was seeing a patient in my office in Brooklyn, and on my desk was a photo of my wife, Gloria, and me. The patient, a twenty something African American male who wore his baseball cap turned to the side shouted, "Doc, is that you?"
I looked up from writing my progress note and said, "Yes, sir, that is a picture of my wife and me at a party."
"Nooo, Doc! Seriously, that's your wife!"