Finding me, Viola Davis
“When you haven’t had enough to eat, when your electricity and heat are cut off, you’re not afraid when someone says life is going to be hard. The fear factor was minimised for me. I already knew fear. My dreams were bigger than the fear.“
Born and growing up in Rhode Island in poverty, with parents and grand and great grandparents who also lived in poverty, with her ancestors who were slaves, what was a chance for the little girl to run away, overcome trauma and succeed in life? Well, impossible or minor She was living with siblings in constant fear that her abusive father, an alcoholic, would have killed their mother.
Fighting, with almost deadly outcomes with lots of blood, was an everyday scene. No electricity, no water, or only cold water, dirty apartments infected with rats which jump on kids’ beds. No hygiene. No dignity. Constant fear that children would have catched her, and constant running, as she was black, some shade more black than her fellow friends from school. Surrounded with a worst kind of racism, it even manifested in behavior of black teachers. Abused from bad men from a neighbour, witnessed sexual abuse towards her sisters, and abused herself from her own brother. When she was two years old, she was taken to jail with her mother after she was arrested during a civil rights protest. She wetted bed until 14.
Horror of Living in Racism
I dare to say, as someone who witnessed racism, however not in that horror form, Finding me is a memoir not only of racism. It is a novel about all the consequences that racism may cause. It is all about dishonor, disrespect, hater age, on one, and dignity, appreciation, respect, and love on the other side. There are many books that really deeply touched my heart in my lifetime. However, the novel differs, not that it’s my favourite amongst others, but reading it and facing a real horror of living left me very often speechless. I need to make some break between reading as it deeply shocked me as a human being.
Horror is not a proper word. Constantly stocked ball in my throat. The only light thing to run away from the horror of her horror scene is school. Her exceptional academic achievements throughout primary school, gaining college scholarship and passing exam for Juilliard University drama course. Her believes that she could more than she has ever believed, and that lite voice whispering you can do that. Her guardian like angels, in the form of a wonderful teacher who always helped her and her siblings, and in the form of an older sister, wove deep inside her strength, that she will succeed.
Today, Viola Davis is the only African American to achieve the Triple Crown of Acting. She has been acting for over two decades, with one of the most impressive filmographies of our time, From her Oscar-winning role in Fences to her Emmy-winning portrayal of Annalise Keating in How to Get Away with Murder.
Watching this wonderful lady in her interviews, whose story may inspire every person on Earth, we must say that not only is her impressive career her main success, but she remains such a decent and rational person.
“Success is absolutely wonderful, but it’s not who you are. Who you are is measured by something way more abstract and emotional, ethereal, than outward success.”