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Tonight has been one of those nights…
Where you’ve held it together at work all day.
Didn’t eat a good lunch.
But kept your self-care appointments, involving hours at the doctor’s.
Then you get home…
See a video where children of color are treated poorly by law enforcement, reminding you of the profiling your family has experienced over the years because they look like a gang banger.
So, why not pick a fight over nothing with your ex (who happens to be your roommate), even after he made you dinner & handled the kids.
You scream, and cry, and rage. And he looks at you blankly, trying to understand why. And you respond: “It’s nothing”
Except it isn’t nothing – it’s deep down visceral fear
That POC are getting treated unfairly.
That your white passing children will have even more privilege because of his German last name, light skin, and their anglicized Spanish.
“¿Mamá? Cómo se dice ‘pancake’ en español?”
“Crepé, preciosa or bañuelos, depends on who you’re speaking to” the Spanish words falling freely from your tongue but hearing them say the words reminds you of ‘los gringos’ and secretly you’re thinking ‘good’.
But even with that privilege, school is no longer a safe space for them.
Because moving to rural America, 2000 miles from family, felt right 4 years ago because little Amy was throwing gang signs in every picture at your daughter’s 9th birthday party.
And here in Middle America, a boy in her class, who talks bomb threats and knows every weapon class in both hunting and military capacity, is told “better be careful who hears you talking like that in high school Michael, you could get suspended.” But no one takes him seriously today and you think “thank goodness they’re going to different schools next year” when she tells you about this.
And your heart hurts for the world but most especially for your cousin who lost her dad and stepmom in the Texas shooting last year. Who, at 34, younger than you are, is going to be a grandmother, but she’s so grateful for life in the face of death, she has no anger towards her daughter, only love.
So you apologize for taking your pain out on your ex.
Take your pills and drink some water.
Put a comedy on the TV.
Cuddle your babies close, all of them.
The woman sized one, taller than you but with so much to learn yet. The scrappy ‘baby’, age 8, who thinks she’s also 13, who loves her sister’s hand-me-downs and stuffs her shirt with toilet paper to mimic the breasts she doesn’t yet have. The furry one, and the scalely ones.
And wait for the meds to kick in and shove the fear and worry back into the abyss of your heart.
Hoping that with the morning you’ll put on your crown and press on for the day. Fingers crossed that your coworkers won’t notice that your eyes are puffy again.
Yup, it’s been one of those nights.