Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Are we being selfish?

Last week during dinner, P asked, "When is she going to stop being so irresistibly cute?" I knew what he meant, because we had spent some time out and about with SS. The whole strangers coming up to us is beginning to get on his nerves. We have been a conspicuous family for well over a decade, so we are used to people looking at us, trying to figure out what the heck we are to each other. And that is my experience with conspicuous families. Lots of stares, but not that many people who come up to talk.

I told P that most kids lose their baby face, pinch me look by age four. But since SS will always appear younger (due to her size), who knows, maybe until she reaches school age. P dropped his fork and stated, "What? We have years of this, because I am done, I won't be able to take it. I want some peace and quiet, to just be." This is where the harsh part of me wanted to say tough, you should have thought about that when you were adamant about having a multiracial family. But there's that other part of me that totally understood where he's coming from.

SS really enjoys our morning walks, and so do I. When we are done walking, we usually spend time under the bridge where the ducks, geese and the precious shade hang out. Sometimes I just want to spend my time there just hanging out with SS. Watching my daughter play with her echo, watching my daughter's enthusiasm every freaking time she sees a duck, a goose, or her shadow. But every single time, someone ends up coming up to us and striking a conversation. And of course, they are well meaning individuals, so telling them to go away is out of the question. How did this social magnet of a child end up with the two dullest, shyest parents is a conundrum.

This morning an elderly lady came up to SS with a caterpillar. SS had been spotting them for me during our walk, but that is as close as she was willing to get. The lady wanted SS to touch the caterpillar, but SS was not biting. He husband came to "help" her out, and that landed SS in my arms. My social little girl even turned her face away from them. So instead of relaxing with SS, I had to get her out of the situation. It really annoyed me, because I know they meant well. However, they were interested in "filling their tank," in P's so eloquent words. So I had to pack it in early and cut her fun short.

Last night we went out for dinner, and were seated next to a couple with three children. From their conversation, it appeared that they were a blended family. Their little boy was taken with SS and they kept smiling and waving at each other. Unbeknown to me, the father had asked P about SS's nationality, and P said that she was Chinese. As we were getting ready to leave, the father stood up abruptly, and stated, "So, did you adopt her?" To me totally out of the blue, and let me tell you that I wanted to respond, "No, I cheated on my husband with a Chinese man, so thanks for bringing it up." Don't be appalled, P thinks is hilarious. :) An older man sitting across from us did not like the question and glared at the curious father. I smiled and said that yes, we proudly adopted our daughter. Then we got the hell out of there.

We are indeed very proud that SS is Chinese, and we never considered any other programs. And now that she does not understand it is more about the intrusive nature of the questions. We do not want SS to be defined by her status as an adopted child. She IS our daughter, just like JJ is our son. They DO NOT need freaking qualifiers, they are JJ and SS. When we think about them, we can come up with dozens of adjectives, all positive (except when they try our patience, we are human); but biological, step or adopted never cross our minds. If it does not matter to us, why do people give a rat's a$$?

We also know that SS is going to take her cues from us. It's important that we do not let our annoyance give her the impression that there is something wrong with how she joined our family. She could not fit better had she come from us. The bottom line is that we do not feel like sharing with everyone why and how we decided to grow our family.

Hi goose!

Observing a caterpillar. This is close enough for her comfort.

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