Monday, April 23, 2012

We are all the same

The girls and I went to Z Gallerie today.  Somehow we got there without a stroller so it was a bit of a nightmare.  It's definitely a "put your hands in your pockets" store.  Thing is...both the girls had their babies with them, so the hands were out and the girls were in heaven looking at or rather, touching all the shiny decor around the store. 

An African American male came over to me while pointing to B, and asked, "How did she decide on her doll?"  It's a little black baby.  It was kind of awkward knowing what he was insinuating but not coming right out and saying .  Then I just said, "She picked it out and she loves it."   He smiled and told me how cool that was.  (Meaning a white child carrying around her beloved black baby doll.)  I know I'm not being politically correct here, but that's not what this is about. He admitted that he is now 47 years old and that never would have been seen when he was a child.  He then told me of some story that has been in the news and the big question was, "How do your teach your children that?"  Then he said, "Just like that I guess."  Then he said how cool it was again.  

I remember when D and I submitted our adoption papers seven years ago.  That's crazy to think about!  How could it have been so long ago?  Anyway, on the paper work you can be very specific as to what ethnicity you're willing to go with.  D and I looked at each other and then began checking off each box.  We were fine with any baby.  It didn't matter to us.  We just wanted a baby girl.  

So when the man asked about B and her baby, I felt like he was asking me.  It was so simple.  I had just wanted a baby.  When B saw those dolls at Target, it was such a sweet and tender moment that I had to get it for her.  

We wandered into the mall this morning without thinking a thing about it.  It made that guys day.  I know that because after about our fourth time circling the store, he came over to B and asked her, "Where did your baby go?"  I had to tell him that she was in my purse because B was having a fit and wanted to leave the store, now.  It was very interesting.  He paid no attention to S and her baby, just B and her baby.  It made me feel like there has been some change in this country.  I haven't done some monumental thing.  Actually, yes I have.  Because actions speak louder than words.  It made me proud.  Actually, I'm crying right now.  Happy to know that I'm teaching good things and that I made that man's day.  

Tonight we discussed some things similar to this for FHE.  We talked about religion, ethnicity, nationality, race, income, sexual preference, and many other things and how it just doesn't matter.... We are all the same!


Angie said...

My kids, one son especially, delight in linguistic irony. So, the fact that I have a sister whose last name is Brown, but her children are pasty white and Chad has a brother who's adopted several multi-racial children who ARE brown even though their last name is Fears is of great delight to their little minds. Within our family we have cousins of African descent, Hispanic descent, Polynesian descent and pasty Northern European descent and it is deliciously normal for my children. But I remember the time when my cousin was marrying a beautiful second generation Japanese woman and my great aunt was aghast and very worried and then her granddaughter married a handsome Chinese man and she learned to shut her mouth and roll with the times. My great grandmother grew up in central Virginia and brought all her early 20th Century southern prejudices with her when she joined the church and moved to Utah. That's what she taught her daughters and because they lived in a place and time where no one really moved around and everyone looked like them, those daughters, including my grandmother, never really got loose of those prejudices. It has taken my mother's generation and my generation to think about what we think, to change what we teach so that my children and my sisters' children see nothing unusual or strange in cousins of every origin, with straight hair, thick, thin hair, curly, kinky hair, light hair, dark or flaming red hair (we have them all). I love the diversity. I love that all that difference is really the same.

Yeah for B and her black baby. Our children are the hope, in so many ways, for peace in the future and this is why.

Erika said...

That is very cool. How fun to have made that gentleman's day! I would have loved to have seen that. :) Good job!

Anonymous said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE!!! you both are raising your children so well. and what a GREAT topic for FHE!! everyone should teach this to their children.

same with us on choosing a baby. it doesn't matter to us their skin, we just want a baby. any race, they will be OUR baby.

and when being asked "what if you do have a child of a different race and they are made fun of for not "matching" your skin?" my biological child can be made fun of for "matching" my skin. we will stick up for our children no matter what. you are never safe from being made fun of. i was made fun of all my life and bullied in school and i came from my parents.