Dimelo: The Hispanic Heritage Month Virgin

Getty Images

But because no one in our family stopped to recognize an entire month dedicated to our culture, I never stopped to really see what it was about.

Now, I'm stopping. And I'm looking. Are you looking, too?

I'm learning that Hispanic Heritage Month started as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded in 1988 by President Ronald Reagan. I'm learning that Sept. 15 is hugely significant because it's the anniversary of independence for many Latin American countries such as Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. And I'm learning that Mexico and Chile's Independence days, as well as Columbus Day (Dia de la Raza) also fall within the 30 day period set aside to honor where we came from and recognize we we are headed.

For the duration of Hispanic Heritage month, I'd like to dedicate this space to honoring the 30 days we as a cultural group have together, and to be grateful for them. And I want to recognize the contributions of inspiring Latinos in social media who have worked to change not only our own perspectives, but the world's as well.

Like this group of Aztec dancers who kicked off this year's United Tribes event in North Dakota. Before watching the video of their performance, I had never had the opportunity to see with my own eyes what I have imagined in my mind. It's breathtaking.