My daughters are 4 and 8. I feel like I’m a relatively mentally healthy person, who has a good life balance. I blog, workout, pray, keep the home in line, adore my husband, cherish my friends, and love my children. I have experienced many different types of relationships and loves in my 36 years of life. I desperately hope that my next statement does not diminish the importance, intensity, and value of the wide variety of relationships and loves available to humankind. However, at the risk of sounding incredibly cliché and possibly offending those adults without children, I have never encountered any type of love that is as deep and intense as the love that I feel for my children. I didn’t know this love would develop until these kids just popped into the world. I was completely unaware. But now I have two daughters, and the love that throbs inside of me for them is like none other.
And yet someday….
My girls might be shoving me into the closet.
Because I’m white, and they are brown.
As a parent, you know that you are going to embarrass your child someday. I always thought I would blurt something out of my big, fat mouth, which sometimes has difficulty shutting off and closing during key moments in life. Perhaps I would wear something atrocious to an event, cheer too loudly at a swim meet, or come downstairs at a sleepover without a bra under my faded 1998 high school t-shirt. Maybe, just maybe, I would bust a dance move that makes my girls cringe….wait…..no….that could never happen. I am literally the best mom dancer of all time.
Never did I ever think that the color of my skin would be the culprit. I’m white. I can’t control that. I can apologize for misspoken words. I can change my clothes. I can tone down my enthusiastic shouts and applause. I can slap on a bra (I guess….It’s my own house, right? Do I really have to freaking wear one?). I can slightly stifle my groove.
But I am white. Pasty white, to put it bluntly. There is no getting around that. And according to my biracial and multiracial friends, someday my white skin may cause my children distress, discomfort, awkwardness, and embarrassment. My precious little girls may want me to hang back, to not show up, and to downplay my significance in their lives. Then these sweet babies are going to shove me into a metaphorical closet all because of the color of my skin! Agony. My heart aches.
I don’t even know what to say about these facts. I’m thankful to be aware of the facts so that I am not blindsided someday; however, I dread these facts with every fiber of my being. All I can do is wait, build relationships, be open and available, and pray. I will pray that my mother-daughter relationships will somehow avoid these facts. I will pray that we will be able to rise above the problems that are caused by the fictitious concept of race. I will pray that our mother-daughter bonds are so strong that we will defy the odds (and we will dance with unicorns, giggle with fairies, and take naps on beds of pink glittery flowers).
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