Sunday, June 28, 2009

She's Just a Fad.....

Me at Seaport Village June '09
Jamie's Birthday April '09
When Jamie and I started dating in 1992, one of the many things that people told Jamie was, "It's the thing to date white women right now, but you'll get over it, it won't last, she's just a fad." Well, 17 years later here we are! Hmmm, I think it has lasted, and I would venture a guess that I am definitely not a fad! =) Why is it that just because I am white and Jamie is black people assumed I was a fad? They thought I was "something" he had to "get out of his system" so to speak. We were, and still are together because of the love we have for each other. What people seem to forget is, we are all "trying each other out" when we first meet and start dating. It doesn't matter what your race is......everyone is getting to know everyone at first. It was no different for us. We met, we became friends, we enjoyed each other's company, we fell in love, we realized we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together, we got married, and we had a family. Sound familiar? That is what we all go through right? We didn't take that path because I am white and he is black....we took it because that is the natural progression of two people in love. People.....that's us....just two people in love. =)

Friday, June 26, 2009


Today it seems appropriate to write about music since we just lost one of the most amazing talents of our time....Michael Jackson. My last post, being about identity crisis might have actually been a fitting one for him. Somewhere along the way, in the madness of uber celebrity, MJ got lost, and it seems, just didn't know who he truly was anymore. But even with all of the change and metamorphosis the music always remained. "The Many Shades of Love" rings so true when it came to MJ's music. Whether we were raised in the 70's, 80's, 90's or even the 2000's we all knew him and listened to his music. Is there anyone out there that didn't? It didn't matter if we were black, white, brown, listened to country, rap, rock, or r & b, he crossed all racial lines, all age lines, all religious lines, and all musical genre lines, simply because of his talent. How amazing that one man could bring so much to so many just through music. If we can all come together through music, why then can't we just come together in life. Think about it.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Identity Crisis...Not!!!

Today when I woke up I was trying to decide what I was going to write about. I actually have a journal with a list of all sorts of events that have happened throughout the time that my husband and I have been together and I refer to that frequently when I need ideas for my blog. However, lately it seems that I don't need to look at the journal at all because something always comes up that I can write about, as was the case earlier today. This morning Tatiana and her cousin Alonzo were in the kitchen making breakfast. As teenagers do, they were making fun of each other. Back and forth with the "digs" they went, I just listened and laughed and enjoyed my cup of coffee. =) One of the comments that her cousin made was, "Whatever, you have an identity crisis, you don't know what you are, are you black, are you white, neither, you are yellow like that piece of paper over there." Seriously, this was actually what he said! Let me clarify before I go on....the conversation and the tone were truly all in fun because you know if it wasn't I would have stopped it then and there. However as it turned out I didn't need to worry at all because Tatiana stopped him and said, "Not even, you have got the wroooong person, I am the last person with an identity crisis, I know exactly who I am!" Once again I just listened and then I told her I was proud of her. She DOES know exactly who she is, and she is so strong in that conviction, I just love it! We have raised her to love ALL of who she is, and to embrace her diversity. Teenagers have enough issues on their minds that the last thing I want Tat to have deal with is an identity crisis. Thank goodness there is NO question in her mind as to who she is! We all want that for our children don't we? Know matter what "mix" they are, we all just want them to be happy, strong, loving, kind, independent individuals.....well, so far, so good. =)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

My Two Favorite Men...Happy Father's Day!

To my Dad and to my is dedicated to you! Two men that couldn't be more different if they tried. =) Dad, my amazing Dad, thank you for giving me my strength, my work ethic, and all of your support throughout the years, especially the last two!! Jamie, what can I say....thank you for your love, your friendship, your amazing support and understanding and most of all, for being such a wonderful Father to our beautiful daughter! You two men rock!!! Happy Father's Day! I love you both with all my heart!! Amy

Friday, June 19, 2009

Oh, You're Together?

It's funny, when my husband and I are together, whether in a restaurant, standing in line somewhere, even at a hospital, people aren't quite sure if we are a couple. Most recently I was in the emergency room (that's another crazy story for another day) and we were waiting for the doctor. When he finally came in and introduced himself he shook my hand and then looked at Jamie, shook his hand and said, "You are?".......long pause.......I finally finished his sentence and said, "Husband." He said, "You just never know these days." Yeah right! We all know if Jamie had been white the doctor would have automatically assumed he was my husband, but since he was black he just didn't go there. Funny don't you think!? The same thing happens to us in restaurants when we are waiting for a table. Unless we are holding hands or wrapped around each other, which we try not to do in public, =) it's always, "Oh, you're together?" Really, is this such a shock....this is southern Cali for goodness sake! One of the more comical "Oh, you're together" moments was when I was having surgery years ago. I was waking up post surgery and was asking for my husband. I wanted him by my side, and he also had my glasses and I couldn't see a darn thing! No contact lenses during surgery. =( The nurse said she checked the family waiting room and he wasn't there. I knew he was because he would make sure he was there when I woke up. That is just the kind of guy he is. I asked her to check again. She did, and she then went on to describe who was in the room and once again she was determined that he was not there. Well guess what "nurse ratchet," the black man in the waiting room is my husband! She didn't even ask him if he was with me! Imagine!? I finally had my hubby back by my side AND I could see again too! Let's hope the nurse's eyes were opened just a little wider that day as well!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Melting Pot.....

Sis, Mom and Me
Nephew and Sis n Law
Hubby and Nephew cookin'
Great Nephew and Daughter hangin' out
Family, our beautiful, wonderful, melting pot of a family. Blending two backgrounds can be as easy as 1, 2, 3 or there can be many challenges. One of the hurdles to overcome when two people from different races decide to get married is family acceptance, or actually lack thereof. There is the old school generation that just doesn't believe in interracial marriage, and there is the new school generation that thinks it's selling out. Unfortunately we had to deal with both. However, instead of dwelling on what other people thought about us we just moved forward and lived our lives in love. If they wanted to take the ride with us, fantastic, come along, but if not, we had to keep on "riding!" As our love and commitment grew so did the acceptance from everyone else. When people see that you are truly with someone because of the love you have for that person and not for the color of their skin, or anything else for that matter, all of the other "stuff" just seems to float away. I feel so blessed to be in a family that is so diverse. We are all unique and we continue to learn from each other every single day. I am happy to say that today we are an amazing group of very different people that all love each other very much. It didn't happen overnight and it wasn't always easy, but with a lot of work and understanding, we did it! So here's to family....our differences, our similarities, and our love for each other!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Family Barbecues..........

It's that time of year again.....barbecue time! Yesterday we had our first family barbecue of the Summer. Barbecues with my husband and his family have always been such a fun production, and so different from the barbecues I grew up with! One of Tatiana's friends that was joining us was so excited to be coming over, she said, "Oh I can't wait, my first "black" barbecue!" She happens to be Hispanic. I thought that was so funny that she categorized our barbecue as a "black barbecue." She just knew the food and the experience would be totally different than the barbecues she has with her family and she was genuinely excited. One of our other guests made the comment, "How many people are coming over, you have enough food for an army?" Tatiana then proceeded to tell her, "We're black, we always cook way too much food!" I said, "Hello, what about me?!" Then my daughter says, "Mama, you are the blackest white person I know. You must have been black in a former life." I just laughed because it truly doesn't matter and that is what I love! We are a melting pot of a family and a melting pot of friends and I treasure that more each day. Okay, I got off track, sorry....back to the barbecue........the food, ooohhh the food! There is always a never-ending flow of food, and delicious is an understatement! Ribs, steaks, burgers, hot links, hot dogs, chicken, hamburgers, baked mac n cheese, potato salad, baked beans, greens, cheese pie, and more! The cooking goes on and on and on, and people come and go all day long! Then when the eating is done, it's game time. Cards, domino's, board games, sometimes all of them are going at once.....a group here, a group there. After all is said and done, day has gone into night, and it is time for everyone to go home, then it's make a plate time! Everyone takes a little bit of everything and some people even bring their own Tupperware to take food home in! It's not rude, it's just the way it is! That was one of the many things for me that took some getting used to! Who brings Tupperware to someone else's barbecue? Apparently everyone! Family is share in the eating, the fun AND the leftovers! Good times always had by all and stomachs always waayyy too full! Until next time. =)

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Rollin' on Dubs! =)

Back in 2000 Jamie and I bought a nice little convertible for me to drive. I loved it when we bought it, and felt it was just perfect the way it was. However, Jamie said it wasn't complete until it had rims on it. I told him, "Really, what do I need with rims!?" I could care less whether my car had rims, in fact I thought it was pretty silly and a total waste of money. I told him whatever, as long as it didn't look "pimped" out. =) He laughed! Well, one weekend Jamie took my car out and about and low and behold my car came home accessorized.....with rims! This time, I laughed! He said he just couldn't have me driving around without them on the car! You would have thought I was driving around naked! =) For some reason rims on a car are a staple in a black man's repertoire. It's a must! Well, the following Monday I went to work and was sitting at my desk and one of the guys that worked at the company came in to say hi. I think his exact words were, "Oooh, Amy is rollin' on dubs, nice!" Okay, first of all the fact that comment was even directed at me is comedy, and second of all the fact I knew what he meant is even funnier! This co-worker just so happened to be a black male as well, so of course he truly appreciated the rims! I never thought I would see the day when I would be told I was "rollin' on dubs!!! Now the funny thing is, when I am looking at cars I notice whether or not they have "pimped out" rims, and if they don't, now I think they look naked! Maybe my next car will be rollin' on 24's! =) Who knows!?

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The Big Surprise!

Okay, you carry someone for nine months, you have 20+ hours of labor, and you raise them their entire life (14 1/2 years so far)......but nobody thinks you are that child's Mother!? What's up with that?! Where is this coming from you ask? Once again someone is shocked to find out Tatiana is half white and that I am her Mom. We were driving to school the other day and one of her schoolmates was walking down the street. I waved even though I didn't know her, because of course it's my job to embarrass my child...oh, it's not.....don't tell her that! Well, anyway, when Tatiana ran into that same classmate later in the day she asked Tat who she was in the car with on the way to school. Tatiana said, "My Mom, silly." The girl said, "What?! You are white?!! Oh my God, I had no idea!" You would have thought she found out Tatiana had two heads or something...shock and awe! When Tatiana was telling me the story she said, "Sorry Mama, once again you are left out!" It's so funny to me that this keeps coming up, and even funnier that people are continually shocked to find out Tatiana is half white. It's like I am this big surprise when they meet me for the first time! Now, on the other hand, when she is out and about with her Dad and I'm not there, nobody ever questions whether or not she is black. Never, ever, have I heard someone say, "What!? You are black!? I had no idea!" OMG! It doesn't even phase me anymore because I am so used to it, but sometimes I do get a little irritated by it and I have to say something. The other day we were at the community pool and I had to go sign in Tatiana and her friends so they could go swimming. The security guard asked which of the kids was my child. I pointed to Tatiana, and then he looked at me with an attitude like I was lying to him! He said, "She is your daughter?" I just looked at him and said, "Yes, her Dad is black!" Well then he said, "Oh, oh, well you didn't have to tell me that." Well apparently I did because he didn't believe I was signing my own child in. So after that the kids went off to swim, and the guard went off to sensitivity training. Okay, not really, but maybe he should have! So, it's no surprise that I will continue to be, "the big surprise," but as long as you are kind about it, I will just smile and say, "Yes, I really am her Mom!"

Monday, June 1, 2009

Through Good Times and Bad and Why I Write This Blog...

Why do I write this blog? There are many reasons, and they have become ever more apparent as the days go on. When I started thinking about writing I had no intention of writing about interracial marriage. My husband knew I wanted to write and he suggested that I start a blog about that topic. My mind was elsewhere. I was going to write a book about all of the things that we have gone through as a family in the last two years. We were living a very different life just two short years ago. We were running a two family business and living the American Dream. We had a beautiful Candy Bouquet/Gift Store for four wonderful years. Two years ago we found out that instead of our building receiving drinking water we were actually receiving reclaimed sewer water! Needless to say the media onslaught began and the customers ran far, far away. We finally figured out why we were all sick, and our store sadly had to close because customers just did not want to come back. Who can blame them? We are now living in the mess of the legal system and the destruction of our dream that we worked so hard to build. However, while everything else has fallen apart around us, our marriage has continued to grow. It has not been easy and each day in this legal nightmare we are living we struggle to make sense of it all. Without going into all of the negative detail, I was going to write about the injustice that the innocent parties go through, but instead here I am writing about my experiences in an interracial marriage. I am happy to be focused on something else and thrilled to see what is transpiring from this blog. I have had so much wonderful feedback from family, friends, and even strangers who are now becoming friends because of this blog. So from bad, comes a little good, from lemons, comes a little lemonade. I don't know where this will lead, but for now I am just enjoying the writing and all it is bringing. It's funny because when you take the vows that say, "through good times and bad" and "for better or worse" it's easy to say, but not always easy to live. It's a piece of cake to make it through the good times, but if you can make it through the bad, and I mean really, really can make it through anything! That is what the core of this blog is about. Some days my stories will be fun and silly, and some days my stories will be deep and inspirational, just like life. I don't profess to be an expert on interracial marriage or marriage in general, but after sixteen years I have a lot to share and a lot to give. =) So whether you are reading this blog because you too are in a mixed race marriage and can totally relate, or you're reading it because marriage is marriage, I hope each of you gets something from this little piece of me that inspires you. Enjoy, and thank you for taking the time to stop by and read The Many Shades of Love, and remember you can get through most anything if you work together!