Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Baby Steps.....


I'm a little behind the eight ball in my blogging.  Family, holiday festivities, and work don't leave much time for me to write during this busy season, but this one I had to share!  To my surprise the client who I have written about twice on my blog, you remember...the racist one, well she came in the other day, put her hand on my arm and informed me that she went to apologize to a woman she knows that is black for some hurtful, racist comments she had made to her.  I couldn't believe it!  She said our talks had helped some, and she was trying to be more open to change just a little bit at a time.  I told her I thought that was wonderful and I was so happy to see her trying to be more open minded.  I thought I was wasting my breath with her but apparently she really listened.  This makes my heart sing!  So even though she still has a long way to go, sometimes all it takes is baby steps.

7 comments:

HolyPoo! said...

Welcome back! I'm a long time reader first time commenter. Like you, I'm also in a bi-racial relationship too and I love reading you blog. It's nice to know that someone else has experienced some of the same situations that I'm just experiencing now! And I'm glad you continued to talk with the one lady, and it's nice to know that she might be changing her mind a little bit!

Amy said...

Awwww it's so nice to hear that you are a long time reader! Thank you. Keep commenting because I LOVE getting to know everyone on here. =)

People never cease to amaze me with their bigotry. It's insane and so uncalled for. Really why does it matter what color someone's skin is? It's soooo about what is on the inside!!! I too hope she continues to be more and more open minded. I am determined!

Thanks again for reading! Amy

Anonymous said...

I'm so happy to hear this woman has been listening to you after all. One step at a time, one person at a time. Kudos to your persistence with one who seemed to me to be a "hopeless case."

I had a new experience over the Thanksgiving holiday. The only family I have here in the town I live in is a Great Aunt and Great Uncle. I am almost always at their house for Thanksgiving and Christmas since my mother and sibs live out of state. Two of my second cousins (their kids) and their families are usually there as well. In the past, if I've been seeing someone for any length of time at all, my family will ask, "So, how is (name here) doing?" Even more than that, my Aunt and Uncle ALWAYS invite my significant other to any and all family gatherings that they invite me to. "(Name Here) is welcome to come with you, of course." Or, "(Name Here) is coming over with you, right?" "Well, of course he's welcome."
I'm sure you know where this is going.....this year was different. They know that Ray and I are together and have been for months. When my Mom came to visit a few months ago, we were over at my aunt and uncle's and I was showing my mom pictures of Ray and my Aunt and Uncle saw them and even asked where he worked and where he lived. What hurt me even more than the fact that they never invited him over for Thanksgiving was the fact that no one even asked about him. This is definitely not the norm for my family at all. So, its obvious to me why. Needless to say, I won't be going over there for Christmas. My family surprised me and disappointed me as well. They have pictures of some of their black church "friends" on their refrigerator, but I guess that's as far as it goes. And these are supposed to be "good Christian people." At least that's how they see themselves. I can't believe the level of their ignorance. After all, what are we ever really talking about when it comes to racism - skin color - nothing more. A soul has no color. If only they knew that he is the best human being I've ever had the pleasure of being partnered with. He is the best thing that's ever happened to me and treats me better than anyone else ever has. I am just grateful that my immediate family accepts him completely. Ray and I plan to spend Christmas together and unfortunately for my family, they won't have the privilege of getting to know the love of my life.

Anonymous said...

Oops. Forgot to sign my name. The last post was mine, of course.
-Heather in Missouri

Amy said...

Oh Heather your story sadly is far too familiar. I am sooooooo sorry to hear that your family reacted that way but not surprised at all. The older generation sometimes are very stuck in the old school thinking. The irony is they don't "think" they are being racist because they actually have black friends. But God forbid someone dates somebody who is black and oh you might as well move to China if you choose to marry someone who is black! It's a sad commentary on the human thought process. Like you said, does a soul have color? Like I always say, it's the heart that matters and what is on the inside that matters, end of story. I am sure there are many white men that you have dated that didn't treat you right or like they should, and yet here you have found the love of your life, and because of skin color alone, they are going to miss out on your joy. Sad sad sad. As I always say, it is their loss. It doesn't make it easy, but you must move on, be happy and treasure those around you that are happy for you. Things might change with your family and things might not, but the most important thing is you and your love with Ray. Remember I had many family members on my husband's side that didn't accept me at all and now we all love each other. Time, change, growth, and getting to know someone for who they really are....this is what can still happen with your family. Stay strong, stay true and most of all be happy!!!!

Amy

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much, Amy. And might I say thank you again for continuing this blog. It is a great comfort to have a friend here who understands what I am going through. I am pretty limited in my daily life who I can talk to about such things. We are still keeping things very discreet at work. I have one friend, Liz, who I work with at my part time job and I do talk with her about this type of thing. She is Caucasian/Hispanic and her boyfriend of two years, Tulani, is black from Swaziland. Her experiences sometimes mirror my own. Other than that, Amy you're all I've got! So thank you again so much for sharing your life on here and for being a source of support for me and those like me.
I have more stories from Thanksgiving even though I only stayed a couple of hours. One of their lifelong friends was there and he tried to tell me I should "help those here at home" before trying to help fight AIDS in Africa. (Which is a fundraiser/awareness campaign I have been working on for over 3months.) And my Aunt tried to tell me that a lot of "race related incidents/crimes" that are in the media aren't really race-related at all. Then she fell asleep while I was talking about hate groups I had learned about on the Southern Poverty Law Center Website! Oh, there is too much to go into detail on here. I'd love to have a phone conversation with you sometime. My outrage at what I went through over Thanksgiving will not soon be forgotten. The funny thing is, no one ever even asked about Ray,how he was, how we were doing or anything. Yet, yesterday, when my Mom talked with my Aunt on the phone, my Mom told her that I would not be over for Christmas. She just simply told her that I would be spending Christmas day with Ray. And my Aunt said, "well that's what I thought she'd do." Now, mind you I didn't argue while I was there or anything like that. Nothing got ugly. I didn't want to have a bad visit, so I bit my tongue many times and left quietly. But, it just cracks me up that my Aunt assumed I'd be with Ray on Christmas and she wasn't surprised. Shouldn't it be apparent how important he is to my life? I will not try to shove my ideals and relationship down their throat. On the other hand, if they can't invite him into their home, they won't be seeing me either. Maybe over time they might come around - but I'm not holding my breath. As always, my focus will be on my own happiness and the love we have found together - not someone else's opinions born out of ignorance.
-Heather

Amy said...

Heather,

Thank you so much for your kind words about my blog. Sometimes it's hard to keep up with because of everything that is going on in my life but it has kind of become a part of me and I really love the new connections! I never know who is reading and how much I am helping but your comment today just reiterated how important it is to keep this conversation alive. It truly makes me sad that race is an issue in anyone's mind. I just don't get it, never have, never will. My husband always tells me that I will never truly understand what it feels like, but when you have love that is so deep, and that person you love is being hurt by commments, ignorance etc., you still feel it pretty darn deep! Your Aunt could have said, they are welcome to come over for Christmas, and instead she chooses to lose out because of ignorance. Mind blowing, ridiculous, sad, and such a waste. Let's hope this changes as your happiness and relationship with Ray grows. If not, it is what is and you still have family that care and accept. =)

In regards to your charity that you are working on....to me anyone that helps anywhere is all that matters. We do have a LOT of people here that need help, and we have a LOT of people across the world that need help....help is help, and need is need. Your heart is helping where you feel is best or most needed at this time. You gotta "love" the judgement that is being put on you by your family when all you are doing is living your life, being happy, and doing the right thing. Irony at it's best.

I would LOVE to talk to you some time! Do you have a facebook? That is such a great way to communicate too!

Hang in and stay strong! I am soooo happy to be here for you and so happy that we have connected in friendship because of the blog! It's wonderful!!!

Hugs...Amy