Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Salt & Pepper

Talia has been going to daycare with the same kids for over a year now - they started at JoJo's house, then JoJo went back to work and the whole crowd moved 2 houses down the street to Jody's house. We don't know the kids & other parents really well, but well enough to know almost everyone's names, who is connected to which child, etc.

One little girl, A, is always there in the morning before Talia gets there, so Rainer (who does the drop-0ff) has never met her parents. I am often picking Talia up at the same time as A's parents get there, so I'd met them several times. Since July, A has a new baby brother, so her mom is off on mat leave and we've gotten to know each other better at the local Playgroup.

Last week at pick-up time I told A's mom how Talia insists the little blonde girl down the street is A whenever we meet them at the park. A's mom laughed and said that A thinks the little girl on the Pampers box is Talia. We giggled away at the silliness of our 2 year olds.

Well, this morning at Playgroup A's mom brought it up again, and it led into a conversation about what a shame it is that our little town isn't very multi-cultural, and that Talia is the only black kid any of the kids in Playgroup know, and is it very hard for Talia to be the only black child in town? I was like "Yeah, we're not very multi-cultural, which is weird because Winnipeg is so multi-cultural..... wait, what? Talia's not the only black kid in town - she's not black."

I thought A's mom was going to fall over, she was so shocked. Then my friend jumped in and said "I was surprised when I met Rainer this weekend, he's totally white!" Then some of the moms I'm friends with on FB jumped in with what they had guessed Rainer's race to be, and how shocked they were when they saw him on FB. Comments varied from "I thought she was adopted but she looked so much like you.... I couldn't figure it out!" to "It's not my place to judge, but I was totally curious as to how you managed to get yourself together and find a new guy to be Declan's dad, since there wasn't much time between the two of them!" to "I just thought Declan would darken up. I thought it was weird his eyes were blue, though." I thought it was so funny that they thought we had some exciting, exotic, interesting story to our family, and they were SO disappointed to find out we were just 2 boring white people who got married and had a brown baby.

I am still laughing. Oh Talia, my little mystery baby. The conversation this morning brought me right back to Talia's birth - I shared a room with a couple of crazies over the course of our extended stay, but one mom was lovely - she was black, and the dad was white, and Talia was darker than their baby was. That led to all kinds of switched-at-birth jokes. We actually ran into them in the mall when the girls were about 13 months old, and Talia was still darker and her hair was curlier than the other little girl - her mom laughed and said "Damn! Maybe we really DID switch them!!"

In the months after Talia was born, I took a Stroller Fit class at the mall, and inevitably at least once during each class someone would stop me to comment on Talia's beautiful skin/colour/hair and would ask where her father was from. It took me a long time to realize why they seemed confused when I told them Kenora.

When Declan was born, he was so fair and red-headed that Rainer and I were like "THAT'S not what our babies look like!!" I've actually gotten used to my nothing-at-all-alike kiddos, so it really made me laugh today when 1/2 the Playgroup fessed up to assuming the kids had different fathers of different races. I wonder what # 3 is going to look like? Will he or she continue to make the tongues wag around town? I hope so!


Amanda said...

This is pretty much the funniest post ever. I'm glad you have such a sense of humour about it. I honestly thought that you and Rainer had adopted, because I knew you were both white.

shannon said...

Holy. Dinah.

primaDonna said...

Treen - this is a great story! Made me laugh so hard. Happy Thanksgiving! My mama and I are heading to San Francisco on Sunday - I am so excited! Talk soon!