My brother from another mother
My family is a hotchpotch of different races. Blue eyes swept me off my feet, and I became the proud mum of three when I remarried. My son from a previous marriage and my husband's two children get on well. We have a great time hanging out as a family.
I would love to say that I treat my boys the same. The truth is that I don't. My Caucasian son (oldest) does not get special instructions when we go to shows and events. As we walked to the entrance of a country fair in Suffolk, I told my coloured son (youngest): 'Stay close, and when you look around the stalls, keep your hands behind your back'. It is sad, but I do this every time we go out to places where there is a lack of diversity.
I am not a stranger to being followed around a shop and being treated like I am a thief. No matter how well-groomed and well-dressed I was, I have even been refused service in shops. It will always come as a painful shock, and it always takes a while to recover. I always knew that my child would encounter it as well. As a mum, you want to protect your children. As a coloured mum, you must also teach your child resilience and how to deal with the adversity inextricably linked with being coloured.
I wonder what it would be like to walk in the shoes of a Caucasian person and freely admire things without funny attitudes or remarks. I wonder if my boys will ever live in a world where everyone is genuinely treated equally. For now, all I know for sure is that my youngest has enough resilience and kindness to deal with bigotry. I am proud of my children and how they appreciate and value the differences in people. I love and learn from them how not to see colour because I am sad to admit, I do.