Saturday, August 28, 2010
Can of Worms
I had to process this experience before I could write about it. It's a hot topic in the adoption world and beyond... A couple weeks ago my mom and I were walking out of a diner, with the entourage in tow. As we passed by an attractive African American couple, the man gave a "tisk-tisk," shook his head and frowned at us. Totally, clearly directed at my family. I kept on walking, loaded the kids in the van, then pulled into the handicap stall in front, with every intention of saying something to him. Then I remembered what Jesus commanded: "love your enemy and pray for those who persecute you (Matthew 5:44)." To be honest, I couldn't pray for him. I did pray for Etienne and Zeke, that somehow their little hearts would be protected from this. I really didn't have a plan for what I'd say. So my awesome husband and I talked about it and decided "You can go to the orphanage and see 115 kids and love one too" would be the best response. The thing is, we thought and talked about the subject of judgement by other African Americans llloooonnngggg before we'd even completed our dossier. I don't know any biracial family that didn't give a whole lot of thought and prayer to becoming so. I've been told that some African Americans feel that a black child should be raised by other African Americans because they need to know their culture, roots, pride, etc. Every Rwanda mama that I love makes so many efforts to learn and respect AA hair care, to expose their family to black culture, searches high and low for any and everything Rwanda related. So I know that this will happen to our entourage for the rest of our lives. I knew when Ryan and I prayed about becoming parents to a black child(ren). The truth is, no conversation, book or expert could have prepared my heart for the hurt I felt to be judged so hatefully. It isn't about race. It's about love.