Friday, May 15, 2009
Katie's BIG question....
I had to work another ball game today. I was gone about 7 hours, so dad had a long day of kids and laundry (I am so thankful he did that for me).
When I got home in the late afternoon Chad said he needed to talk to me. He was a little sad, so we sent the kids upstairs to talk in private. He began to tell me his story:
Katie was sitting on Daddy's lap and looked at him and said "Daddy, why am I like this?"
Chad- "like what Katie?"
Chad told her she was brown because that is the way God made her. She then wanted to know why Chad was not brown. He explained to her that everyone was different colors because God made us all this way.
This is where is gets really sad. Katie continued:
Katie- "I hate being brown"
Chad- "Katie you are beautiful. I love you brown!"
Katie- "I want to look like you Daddy"
I could see the hurt in Chad's eyes. I can feel the same pain right now. I knew that one day Katie would know she did not look like us. I really thought it would be much later. With the kids home with me and not in school (and uninfluenced by many kids)they are really color blind. We do not put and emphasis on peoples skin color EVER! It is just a non issue in this house. I can not figure out where she heard something like this. Maybe she is just becoming aware of it on her own?
I think it is so painful for us because it seemed to make Katie so sad. We have never wanted to do anything to hurt her. She is so precious to us. We never want her to feel the pain of racism or be tormented for being adopted by a white family. These are things we were aware could happen when we adopted her. Honestly we thought our love alone would be enough to protect her from heartache. We tell Katie daily that she is so beautiful, so smart, so funny, so cute, so adorable... as we do all of our children. We smoother them in hugs and kisses and tell them how much we love them all day. We never intended for her to feel badly because she was not "like" us. I am at a loss of what to do. Do I not make a bug deal over it? Do I talk to her about it? Do I wait until she brings it up again? I just want to make her feel better and protect her from all of the bad feelings she will have in the future. I know it is impossible to keep kids from being hurt as they grow up. It is a part of life, I get it. However, she should never have to feel bad because of the color of her skin. I thought things got easier as kids got older. I think it just gets harder in a much different way.