My dad is black and my mom is Japanese, so there is a lot of culture and history in my family, which gives us a lot to celebrate.
Black History Month was not something celebrated while I was growing up. The month is dedicated to remembering and honoring African American achievements. Growing up in a bi-racial home, I had a unique look at the impact minorities have had on our culture.
Both of my parents were cops, so we had a very disciplined home and there wasn't much I could get away with. I admire both of them for their hard work and support and still think about a valuable lesson my father taught me growing up. He said, "Don't look for someone to inspire you, inspire yourself."
There are a lot of people that believe the path is already set for them or they don't have options, but none of that is true. If you want something changed, change it yourself. Don't wait for someone else to come along. Only rely on yourself to get you to where you want to be.
That's exactly what the people we honor during Black History Month did. If they hadn't set their own path and fought for what they believed in, we would not be celebrating it.
It's also something that the WNBA is a perfect example of. There were previous professional basketball leagues for women that didn't succeed, but when the WNBA was formed, the players and coaches and executives didn't rely on someone else to make it happen. They each fought for it and we continue to fight for it. And thankfully, we have a lot of supporters that were in it from the beginning.
If the other leagues had not attempted to reach their dream, the WNBA wouldn't have known certain challenges to avoid or problems that could be resolved before they happened. We learned from the past and help it to pave our future.
Thanks to the support of our fans, the players are able to enjoy a game they love and younger girls playing sports are given the opportunity to dream big.
Be inspired by what you want to do, not by what others are doing.