Drive-bys were a common place in St. Louis, Missouri. Life on the north side of St. Louis was flooded with crime, drugs, and gangs. Think about growing up in a neighborhood where if you wore the wrong color or your hat the wrong way, your life could vanish.
Commonly, gang signs were a way to communicate. You did not need to be the sharpest knife in the kitchen to understand if you saw the same car driving around your block more than once that usually ended with negative outcomes. Use your imagination.
Despite living near condemned buildings, liquor stores, and Chop Sueys, our grittiness moved us forward.
See, the twins are not above you or below you, but instead we are you! The both of us understand some of your living environments are rough which may make pursuing or attending college difficult. Just understand, you will have to push like you have never pushed before. If you hang on long enough, you can make your wildest dreams come true. The both of us are living proof.
Growing up, our parents worked their butts off every day. Our mom worked in a factory for over thirty years and never went higher than an elementary school education. Our father was an excellent chef. However, he did not attend a culinary arts school. Actually, our father is a high school dropout. To be real with you, if you check out stats on kids like us, we should have never made it out of St. Louis. Our parents had very little “book” education and we grew up in an unsafe neighborhood. You do the math.
Our parents were gritty, though. Watching them work hard, for thirty plus years ignited our fire. They taught us the true meaning of hard work and hustle. We bet if you looked hard enough, you have a gritty person in your life. Stand on the shoulder of a giant and let them show you how it is done. Why? Because, for us, watching our parents wake up at 4:00 a.m., hearing how physical their jobs were, and observing them go to bed tired and worn out, made college small potatoes. Our thought was, “If mom and dad can do this, we most certainly can do that!”
What does it mean to be gritty? Simple. Grit is having the strength and resilience to overcome your obstacles and reach your goals. Sounds simple, right? However, how will you respond to your long-time friends when they are enticing you to participate in activities, which will have you talking with the cops early and often? Will you be gritty enough to part ways with them? How gritty will you be when you receive your test back and your test grade is a 58%? Will you call the teacher an idiot and drop the class, give up, and accept your failing grade? Or push yourself to study like you have never studied before?
This is a sneak peek inside of the hard-hiting book, Gritty.