i really do belong to my mama

it’s been an interesting ride being a mixed chick. i’m darker than my pop and lighter than my mama so there’s always a bit of confusion going on as far as exactly who i am to these two folks.

for instance, while my mama was sitting in the hospital bed after giving birth to me she was waiting for the nurse to bring me back from the nursery when she noticed that the nurse stopped right at her door with a newborn in tow. the nurse then slowly moved on after taking one look at my brown mama, and then one look at little white ol’ me. my mama yelled for the nurse to come back and after a few wristband checks, it was determined that this little white baby, did indeed belong to this brown woman.

the second case of confusion happened when my pop decided to take a crew of 8- and 9-year-old girls (me, my cousins and girlfriends) to an amusement park called king’s dominion that’s located right outside of the dc metropolitan area. just imagine a cool white guy with a band of brown little girls in every hue. i’m sure all kinds of assumptions were made that day. my pop told me years later that when we stopped for a quick bathroom break a woman walked over to him and said how wonderful she thought it was that he would pick up children from an orphanage and take them out for a day at king’s dominion. oh, the nerve… well, naturally my pop set her straight on that one.

then there was the time when i was 11 or 12 and i entered a community beauty pageant. my pop and uncle jay (my pop’s best buddy who’s also white) came through to show their support. but of course, the pageant’s organizers didn’t assume that one of them could actually be a parent of one of the girls. oh no. the organizers thought my pop and uncle jay were there to report on the event for a local newspaper.

as if.

when i was in my late teens my pop and i were at the mall when we were mistaken by a coworker of his as being a couple. the comment to my pop was along the lines of, “hey, nice going…”

then there was the time my pop went with me to get my car repaired (you know, to make sure i didn’t get ganked and taken for every little penny i owned) and the mechanic thought we were married.

my mother and i have even been mistaken as a lesbian couple. twice!

i find all of this stuff pretty interesting and funny to say the least. people always jump to conclusions about other people, but you never really know what’s going on in people’s lives unless you know them.

but i’m not going to sit here and play innocent when it comes to guessing about folks. i remember when my son was about five or six months old and my husband and i heard an unexpected knock at the door. my husband went to the door and after i asked him who it was he responded, “i dunno…some white chick.”

indeed, it was our blond, light eyed neighbor who lives in the next building. after i went over to open the door for her she laughed and said, “i heard him say, ‘some white chick.'” i kinda cringed from embarrassment, but she took it all in stride as she handed us a few things for our new baby that had been gently used by her own son who is just a few months older than dutch.

over time my neighbor and i have become closer. our sons play together while our husbands sit back and talk smack about which football team is the best. one day my son and i were visiting their place when she pulled out a picture of her dad and i was in total shock.

her dad was a full-blood native american with warm brown skin.

so hey, you just never really know, do you?

i gave birth to bam bam

you see this bed?



my husband edell and i have one very, very similar. you know why i decided to post a picture of a bed similar to ours? because i wanted you to have an idea of what it looked like before dutch (aka bam bam the iron bar breaker) broke it. now how does a 2.5 year old break a freakin’ iron bed, you ask? well, apparently i gave birth to a child with extraordinary strength. i’m talking so extraordinary that he was able to detach four iron posts from their support. can i just mention here that these parts were welded together??

yes, i said welded.

see, our bed sits a little high off of the floor so it’s not the easiest thing in the world for our boy to climb on top so he uses the bars on the back of canopy for support. i noticed a few days ago that the bars were slowly moving further and further away from our mattress and i kindly asked dutch to stop mounting the bed that way and told him to use his step stool instead.

funny thing about toddlers. they don’t always remember things that they should do. now they always remember things they want to do (like gather 13 toys for bath time), but things they need to do (you know, to avoid injury, timeout, or a good ol’ butt whooppin’) they never seem to remember. like don’t stand on your push car to reach the television that sits all the way on top of your dresser to try to put shrek in the dvd player because you’re tired of watching the humpback of notre dame.

so basically what i’m saying is i had forgotten to warn him about climbing on our bed using the bottom rails on that particular evening and he did and now it’s broken. i mean, the bed is usable but it looks a little retarded with this huge iron piece missing.

not that i’m sweating the whole thing too much. i actually hate that bed. i’m talking absolute hate. it squeaks, it shakes… and my husband and i can be a little ghet sometimes with it by doing things like hanging our clothes on it when they’re fresh out of the dryer. or letting semi-wet clothing air dry on it. my husband uses it to hang his towel on after his morning shower. my hat collection adorns each of the four posts.

it’s a mess, it truly is. but i just wasn’t expecting the bed to go out like that. you know, piece by piece.

but of course, my boy knows how to give a great apology and i’m sure his sad little remorseful face will get him out of heaps of trouble (as a child and a grown man, i’m sure). as i was unscrewing the final two parts that sorta held the iron bar together, dutch said, “sorry i broke your bed, mama…”

i know, son, i know.

i’m just bracing myself for the next piece of furniture he eyes for destruction.

the deadly nectarine

last week i bought all kinds of fruit: canteloupe, grapes, grapefruit, apples, oranges, nectarines… just all kinds of stuff to keep me snacking at work in a healthy way ’cause remember i’m on my way to fly-i-vity!! and not only that, i also like to send dutch fresh fruit to daycare instead of always packing those half-dead looking fruit cups. so friday, along with dutch’s lunch, i packed a nectarine. i figured it would be a challenge for his daycare provider eva to actually get him to eat the thing because my boy isn’t really into that new new type of fruit. he basically only likes things that he knows and he doesn’t know nectarines.

i packed the thing anyway.

then ten minutes before it was time for me to leave work for the day i got a call from eva’s home. my first thought was that something had happened to dutch because it was unusual for me to get a call from eva that close to the time i’m scheduled to pick him up, but it was eva’s oldest daughter calling to say that there had been an emergency. her mother had choked on something she had eaten, she couldn’t breathe and she was acting really strange. her daughter said that she and her brother had called 911 and they needed me to come get dutch as soon as possible.

needless to say, i was on my way.

i sped the entire way, praying the whole time that this woman would be okay. eva has a husband and three children, “and Lord, aside from her lovely family, it’d really be nice to have the same healthy daycare provider on monday that i dropped my son off to on friday.”

is it terrible that i was also praying nothing would terrible would happen to her because my son absolutely adores her, her family and the other kids that attend the daycare and i’d hate to find another place to take him? welp, if it is…too bad.

anyway, i pulled onto eva’s street and there was a rescue squad vehicle and a fire truck in front of her home. (why do fire trucks always arrive for stuff like this?) eva’s two daughters, her best friend, another parent and her child, and dutch were all standing in the doorway when i arrived and boy, was dutch excited. his eyes were gleaming with joy as he pointed out the big red fire truck to me.

i asked eva’s oldest daughter what was going on and she told me that eva had eaten a “nectar” and then she began choking. she said that the rescue folks thought that maybe she had had an allergic reaction…

to dutch’s nectarine.

eva’s best friend wasn’t buying it though. she said that she had seen eva eating a nectarine many times before so she knew for a fact that it couldn’t be that. she said she knew that eva was allergic to apples and bananas, but not nectarines. but the paramedics weren’t say much. so we all stood there just watching the truck until eva’s son jumped out of it and ran towards the house to give us an update. he said that she seemed to be doing okay, but that she had been given an iv because of her reaction to the nectarine. then right when dutch and i were getting in the car to head home, the rescue squad truck was pulling off to take eva to the hospital with her 16-year-old son sitting right in the front seat.

the next morning eva called to tell me she was fine. then she explained how she had cut a small piece of the nectarine and held it up to her mouth to show dutch that he should try some. she said she didn’t even eat a piece of the fruit, but that a small bit of juice from the nectarine went down her throat and when it did her throat started itching. she drank some water, but it didn’t help at all. next thing she knew, her throat was closing up and she could barely breathe. and not only that, her neck began to swell. she first told her children that she could drive herself to the hospital, but it’s a really good thing (i mean, praise the Lord) that her children called 911 instead because she probably would’ve died on the way there.

the doctor referred eva to an allergist to find out exactly what foods she’s allergic to, but one thing’s for sure, i’m leaving the deadly nectarines at home from now on.

i’m so sick of “no one”

for the past several months my 2 and a half year old son dutch has belted out alicia keys’ big hit “no one” numerous times. i mean, numerous times. and he doesn’t just sing it, he sing-yells it.


of course those aren’t all the actual lyrics, but try telling that to a 2-year-old. they basically do and say what they want and who am i to correct him? trust me, i’ve tried. but it’s his song and he sings it just like he wants.

he’s seen alicia perform the song a couple times, but the funny thing is he never sings along when she’s on television. i guess he’s too busy watching her. ’cause you know, not only is my boy into good music, but he likes to ogle a pretty lady from time-to-time as well. up until this point i had no idea that men’s fascination with beautiful women started so young. silly naive little me.

but don’t get me wrong, i happen to love the song too and i have always respected alicia’s music. plus, i’m always down to support my biracial sistren (is that a word? i don’t think so, but i figured since there was a “brethren” we should have a sistren). but you know, after listening to the song 8,472 times i’m just, well, kinda over it.

yesterday dutch and i were on our way to see my mother. ya ya to dutch. yes, i know ya ya is the greek word for grandmother and no, my mother isn’t greek, but so what that’s what he calls her and that’s that. anyway, the entire way to her place he wanted to hear the song.

dutch: mommy, play that “no one”!!! play that “no one”.

so on and on and on and on and on it played. i even tried popping in another cd and i got fussed at, but i had to set the kid straight.

dutch: [yelling at me like he had lost his daggone mind…] mommy, play that “no one”!! i wanna hear that “no one”!!

mommy: first of all, who are you yelling at? look, i’m the mommy. i tell you what to do. it doesn’t work the other way around. now we’ve listened to “no one” like 10 times!! it’s time to listen to something else.

then i popped in my amy winehouse frank cd and right after the first song ended…

dutch: can you play that “no one” now?

and what did i do? i obliged. and it didn’t help that as soon as we got to my mama’s house we turned right back around and got right back in the car to find something to eat. and there it went again…

dutch: mommy, play that “no one”.

only this time he had back-up.

my mama: oh, play the song for him. you know that’s his song.

i now hear the song in my sleep.

it’s the background music to all of my thoughts.

i’m humming it right now as i type.

no one, no one, no onnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnneeeee, can get in the way of what i’m feeling…

it is a great song.