Last night, I attended Awkward Black Girl: Race, Gender and Hollywood. A discussion about the amazing web series The MisAdventures of an Awkward Black Girl. I saw the discussion posted in an email listing of events that I get and it looked good about a month ago, so I decided that I would take Snap as a bonding activity. She wasn't interested, so I watched the webisodes and decided to go myself. So last night, I was discussing this very awesome show that provides an normal woman image for young people. There were lots of teachers in the room as well. They often spoke of wanting more of this type of influence rather than reality TV for their students. I could identify.
Then I realized - I was relating not as a fellow teacher of sorts, but as a mother.
I want Snap to see this show and see herself not believing that the music videos that she often watches are actually reality. I want Snap to see herself in media, but still on this day in 2011 - she may have to look to people that look more me and even more so Jim, before she sees herself on TV. I want her to have her own Tina Fey. (I probably over identify with Tina Fey.)
I also realized, sitting in the discussion last night, that I will need to be more and more open to be in discussions like these so that I can parent and grandparent Snap, Smart Guy, and Sloth in ways that are affirming to their culture and world understanding. I need to remember that too often my children will be judged based on their skin color. I need to remember that as much as I try - my color will not let me completely understand their experience. And yet, continuing to grasp at more understanding needs to be on my parenting goal sheet.