This is my daughter and her family..
I can’t begin to tell you how much I love each and everyone in this picture. Did I always think I would feel this way….no.
I want to share my story with you because I would like to think that it might help someone else from making the same mistakes that I have made.
It all started when my daughter was in middle school…she came home from youth group and asked me if it’s ok to date a black guy. Since she was too young to date I wasn’t really concerned, but I was curious what sparked the question.
At the time I was really proud of my answer….I told her that it would be fine as long as he was an awesome Christian. I really thought at the time I believed that but of course I knew it was not something I would ever have to deal with. We live in a small town with a VERY small group of minorities. What were the chances?
The years went by from that question and her friendship grew with this boy that had caught her attention so long ago. They never really dated in high school…they didn’t even go to the same college yet know matter how many guys she dated none of them could come close to her black friend . By this time I knew that her heart was drawn to him and I did everything in my power to stop it. Was he a Christian like I had said…yes. He even came from an awesome Christian family.
The truth was I had lied to my daughter. It wasn’t ok.
Years of prejudice came up from areas that I didn’t know were in me. I don’t think I ever really thought of myself as better than a black person but I just really thought that it was best if we all married our own kind. What would people think? What would her children look like?
During this time my now son in law was patient. He loved my daughter but he was going to wait until he had our blessing before he married her. We are talking years.
We now love our son in law.
So what lessons can be learned from all this?
1. I still think my initial answer to my daughter was a good one….what matters above all is the man’s relationship with God.
2. If you are dating a person of a different color don’t hide him from your family. My daughter did this and so my mom radar went up. If she wasn’t bringing him around he must be bad. I would have thought that no matter what color he was. If she had brought him by sooner we would have been able to get to know him for who is …not “the black guy”
3. If someone you love is dating someone of a different race try to get to know them…and their family. When you do you might find out that you have a lot more in common than you think. You might find out that they aren’t too happy about the situation either…and then all of a sudden you will be upset about them judging your child for their color not for who they are…and then you might pause and be ashamed of yourself.
4. Pray….ask God to open your heart. I remember God telling me that this guy is going to take care of me in my old age…I just about screamed at God…NO…that was not the answer I wanted…yet He kept telling me the same thing. It’s funny because now I feel great comfort having him in the family because I know he would take great care of me if he had to.
I grew up in the 60 and 70′s…Did I call my brother the N word when I got mad at him? Yes…everyone I knew did. Did I have black friends at school? yes…Did I ever go to any of their houses…no.
I say dumb things…not because I want to hurt anyone…I just don’t always realize what I’m saying. I have asked my son in law to be patient with me but I guess he was been learning to be patient ever since my daughter flashed her big brown eyes his direction.
I now look at my grandchildren and I don’t see them as black or white…
They are the color of love…