Transracial Parenting: that time my boss used a racial slur

Did I ever tell you about that time I quit my job because my boss used a racial slur?

No? Probably because I was, in a way, trying to protect him. You see, I know ^he didn’t really mean it^. He was ^just joking^. He honestly thought he was being funny. Really. He was in a room full of white women, who knew that he was kidding, so no harm, right? Except….

Three years ago I wouldn’t have quit my job over it. It would have made me uncomfortable, but I would have ignored his behavior, as my co-workers did, because he was kidding. ^Obviously.^ And he was my boss. Three years ago, I probably wouldn’t haveTransracial parenting: that time my boss used a racial slur mentioned it to my husband that evening at home. Except….

Except….

Except the ^joke^ was that I should call my son this racial slur.

You know, to get him used to hearing it….

I couldn’t stop thinking about being at a company/family event and any of my boys hearing him say something like that. A co-worker assured me that he would never say anything like that in front of Squirm. As though that made it okay.

My white privilege (aided by my professional qualifications, tbh) allowed me to find a new job pretty quickly. And my white privilege allows me to tell people this story without being accused of Playing the Race Card.

Three years ago, I was one of those people who was offended by the concept of white privilege – how dare anyone suggest that I hadn’t worked hard and earned everything in my life?

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#AdoptionTalk: Small Hands

I’ve mentioned before that our family is conspicuous.

Whenever we’re out and about, I can almost feel people sizing up our family, doing the math, making guesses about our story….

Nah, my hands aren't full. It only looks that way because I have small hands.

I grew up in a very small town in the Texas Panhandle. Where I come from, you make eye contact with the people you pass, and you smile, whether you know them or not. You strike up conversations with complete strangers in checkout lines… Except I don’t anymore. Because I’m tired of the questions. You probably know the questions I mean – those questions…

What happened to his real parents?

Was he a drug baby?

He’s so cute! How much did he cost?

Is your husband black?

So I don’t make eye contact anymore. I don’t smile at people and I don’t speak to people in checkout lines. I don’t want to be rude, but really? I know that you think you’re just making conversation, but you’re probably the third person this week who has asked if I will tell my biracial son he’s adopted. (Hint: he’s a smart kid, I bet he could figure it out.)

Plus, I’m naturally a very sarcastic person. My natural reaction is normally pretty sharp. But because we are a conspicuous adoptive family, I am a spokesperson. Whether I’m having a good day or a terrible one.

More importantly, my kids are watching. I don’t want them to think that rudeness is ever the correct answer. So I’m working on graceful (but still witty) answers to most of those questions. Even when I’m so tired of hearing the same inane small-talky comments that I could literally scream. (Nah, my hands aren’t full. It only looks that way because I have small hands.)

But some questions don’t deserve a graceful response. I swear to you, I’m loaded for bear the next time someone in the checkout line asks if my husband is black:  (more…)

#AdoptionTalk Linkup: Foster Care Chaos

Since May in National Foster Care Month, we decided to add foster care as an optional topic for this week’s “Anything Goes!! #AdoptionTalk Linkup.

I had a great post planned for y’all – all the different ways (besides fostering) that you can support foster kids and foster families. I was going to have a roundup of great articles with different ideas, as well as my own thoughts….

And then Tuesday, I got a call…

Waiting for Baby SisterWe have a baby girl being released from the hospital today. She’s 11 days old and are you able to go pick her up? 

Long story short, I asked the twins if they would like a baby sister for their birthday (today), started dragging out the baby gear, and waited to hear when I could pick her up….

Which ended up being late yesterday afternoon, after sitting in the NICU watching her sleep for a couple of hours.

So as you can probably imagine, my life is just the tinest bit chaotic at the momFoster Care Chaosent….

 

 

I promise that you will get the roundup post this month, just not today.

 

But don’t let that stop you from joining and enjoying this week’s

#AdoptionTalk Link Up

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2015 Duffels for Kids Walk ~ Port Orange, FL

May is National Foster Care Month. Get to know the many faces of foster care. #FosterCareMonth

The 2015 Duffels for Kids Walk, to benefit Florida’s foster children,
will be held in Port Orange, FL on Saturday, May 16th @ 9am.

Every day, a child in care transitions into another home without proper luggage. Help the Florida State Foster/Adoptive Parent Association break the cycle! Support the 2015 Duffels for Kids Walk on Saturday, May 16th at the Kenneth Parker Amphitheater (2001 City Center Circle) in Port Orange, FL.

Every day, a child in care transitions into another home without proper luggage. Help the Florida State Foster/Adoptive Parent Association break the cycle! Support the 2015 Duffels for Kids Walk on Saturday, May 16th at the Kenneth Parker Amphitheater (2001 City Center Circle) in Port Orange, FL.

Through the Duffels for Kids program, every child in Florida foster care can receive a free duffel bag to call his or her own, even as they transition back to their biological parents or to another permanent family.Duffels for Kids distribution is coordinated by FSFAPA’s board, with the help and support of local foster parent associations, community-based care organizations and guardian ad litems. Caregivers are able to request a duffle bag for their youth in care through FSFAPA’s online request form or through FSFAPA’s regional vice presidents.

The 2015 Duffels for Kids Walk includes a FREE concert by the NEX GEN band, FSFAPA’s next generational band comprising foster, adoptive and biological children of FSFAPA members.

Registration is open now! Registration fees for the walk are $10 for foster parents, $5 for children, and $25 for non-foster-parent adults. Teams (of up to 5 people) can register for $100 and vendor registration is $50.

If you’re not in Central Florida, you can register to be a Virtual Walker for $25 and support the cause from wherever you are!

If you would like to sponsor the event, the event sponsor package is available here.

Every day, a child in care transitions into another home without proper luggage. Help the Florida State Foster/Adoptive Parent Association break the cycle! Support the 2015 Duffels for Kids Walk on Saturday, May 16th at the Kenneth Parker Amphitheater (2001 City Center Circle) in Port Orange, FL.

 

Book Review: Welcome to the Roller Coaster

May is National Foster Care Month. Get to know the many faces of foster care. #FosterCareMonth

To kick off National Foster Care Month, I have a treat for you! Have you ever wished for a secret window into the real lives of foster parents? Maybe just a little peephole into their inner thoughts and feelings? How about a no-holds-barred-tell-it-like-it-really-is account of the roller coaster that is foster parenting? I thought so, and you’re in luck!!

I received a complimentary copy of Welcome to the Roller Coaster to facilitate my review. All opinions are my own. 

Fourteen foster moms, who have fostered a combined total of over 135 children, decided it was time for the world to see a real picture of foster parenting - the joy, the heartbreak, the frustration, the fact that we don't live in a Lifetime Movie....Fourteen foster moms, who have fostered a combined total of over 135 children, decided it was time for the world to see a real picture of foster parenting – the joy, the heartbreak, the frustration, the fact that we don’t live in a Lifetime Movie….

I have the privilege of knowing a few of these women personally, and I have to say – they have really outdone themselves. Welcome to the Roller Coaster is a candid, unapologetic  collection of stories straight from the hearts of real foster moms.

If you are a foster parent, or know a foster parent, or have thought about becoming a foster parent, or even just wondered if Ms. Hannigan is the real-deal, this book is for you.

From the first call for placement, to reunification, to a child moving to an adoptive placement, Welcome to the Roller Coaster covers the gamut of foster care realities and of foster parents’ emotions.

I was astonished by the openness and honesty of these moms, who laid their triumphs and struggles bare in their quest to not only show non-foster parents what this life truly looks like, but also to assure other foster parents that they are not alone on this wild ride.

I’ve talked about the necessity of building your Foster Parenting Sisterhood, and Welcome to the Roller Coaster is a built-in sisterhood that you can have delivered immediately to your Kindle!