This Old Mom - Happy Interdependence Day

Happy Interdependence Day

Posted: July 3, 2017

Just this morning Grace passionately apologized to her Olaf crayon when she broke his tip off. (She tends to color hard.) GRACE: Olaf. I am sorry I broke you because I love you Olaf. (Whispers to her Olaf crayon) You are my favorite. More than that reindeer. ME: Why do you like Olaf so much? GRACE: Because he’s white. And because the one thing he…

This Old Mom - But He Doesn't Like Brown Skin

But He Doesn’t Like Brown Skin

Posted: November 22, 2016

Grace is the only one able to speak as the adults watch Florida sink from a pale hopeful pink into Shark Week red in it’s haste to elect the reality star of White Male Privilege. Grace: But Donald Trump doesn’t like brown people. While Canada (my husband, personal salvation and possible new address) tries to soothe Grace about her skin color being wrong for our…

This Old Mom - Three Days of Labor

Three Days of Labor

Posted: October 10, 2016

I’m unpregnant, but my labor will last 72 hours. “All you can do is wait”, Nurse Trish advises. When waiting in a 6 by 8 foot Maternity Ward bonding room, with your husband, mother, sister, another woman’s newborn and a rotation of cheerfully Republican nurses, while BabyMama has three days to decide if she can give her newborn up, one might like to advise waiting…

This Old Mom - A Hopeful Citizen of Color

A Hopeful Citizen of Color

Posted: July 28, 2016

This post was an email response to my last post- I Don’t Look Like This Place– by an acquaintance who asked to remain anonymous. Dear This Old Mom, It is a tough reality check when your child begins to learn that their brown skin may not be as good as the kid with the yellow hair. The memories came flooding back as you were describing…

This Old Mom - I Don't Look Like This Place

I Don’t Look Like This Place

Posted: July 22, 2016

Despite my well intentioned white ignorance, Grace’s hair is growing in beautifully. For a year we’ve been dutifully massaging Jamaican Black Castor Oil and Oyin Hair Dew into Grace’s hair every morning. Also, Grace has been taking castor oil vitamins without complaint, which is mighty brave of her. I am more proud of Grace’s five inches of curly resilient hair than my marriage. Even better,…

This Old Man - The Long Game

The Long Game (of Parenting)

Posted: June 28, 2016

What we’ve taught our four year old (so far): We don’t clean rocks in our mouth (even pretty rocks). We don’t blow our noses in our shirts, unless Mom forgot Kleenex (which is often). We don’t NOT wipe our butts because we need to resume playing. How to snap (her fingers). What I’ve learned? Kids teach us much more. If we let them. Filled with…

This Old Mom - Lost and Foundling

Lost and Foundling

Posted: May 31, 2016

Since I’m old and sometimes lose the plot of my own stories, let’s start with the end of this story: When you turn fifty, don’t hide anything. Because you will never ever find it again. Upon turning 50, I bought myself a simple gold bar earring made by the exquisite minimalist, Kathleen Whitaker. I was content to buy only one, not only because it was…

This Old Mom - I made a Black Friend

I Made A Black Friend! (trigger warning: irony)

Posted: May 19, 2016

Words cannot fully convey the embarrassment, shame and helplessness one feels when adoption lawyers, social workers and even one’s own mother urges one to ‘make black friends’. Of course, one does know black people and consider them friends, or friend-ish… and one has phone numbers and emails and Instagram and Twitter accounts to back this assertion up, but when one examines one’s soul, especially after…

This Old Mom Kneeling in Ethnic

Kneeling in Ethnic

Posted: April 27, 2016

It’s the aisle I’ve never been in before. Actually it’s not even a whole aisle. Somewhere after the Do-Rags, one is suddenly intently staring at replacement wiper blades. Odd how abruptly Ethnic morphs into Automotive. I’m kneeling in the Ethnic Aisle because my mother cursed me, long ago. As a kid, I begged my mom to let my limp, fine hair grow long like the…

This Old Mom - When Your Black Child Whitefaces

When Your Black Child Whitefaces

Posted: March 2, 2016

When the conversation in the car (why does all the serious shit-shat (before Grace it was chit-chat) always happen when I’m driving the car?) starts with- GRACE: No one in my school likes black. Everyone doesn’t like black. ME: (freaking out, eying my daughter in the rear view mirror, which makes me narrowly avoid t-boning a There-Will-Be-Blood-mustachioed-hipster-in-an-ombre ’93 Allante) What do you mean? What does…