Just Jot it January 2022 – The Rules by Linda G. Hill – PROMPT WORD “CHOCOLATE”
It was my grandsons first day of kindergarten. I had acquired custody three years prior. He was determined to ride the bus the first day, which he did with glee. His smile so contagious and his energy so massively infectious, that I was bursting out of my own seams that afternoon waiting for him to come home and tell me all about it.
He stepped off the bus, smiling but way less enthusiastically than he had gotten on. I asked how it went and he said he had great fun but didn’t much think he was going to like mathematics. I asked which was his favorite subject so far to which he answered immediately, “Recess and lunch!”
That same night after dinner, bath, teeth brushing, a story and a song and his final kiss goodnight, I was nearly out of his bedroom door when his voice speared me through the darkness, landing a dagger in my heart.
“MeMe?” He asked quietly, “Am I chocolate or vanilla? You know, black or white?”
I assume he’d gotten questioned in school.
Although we have talked about his heritage at great length, I guess nothing says it’s real like peer pressure.
“What do you consider yourself to be my love?”
He held his arm up against mine, my summer tan fading while his luscious color stayed put.
He said, “I’m not black skinned, I’m not white skinned, I’m not pink skinned like you. I’m olive!”
“That you are!” I smiled and explained the meaning of an olive branch, he really liked that.
“But the color of your skin holds much deeper meaning than just the color. You hold so many different stories within that little body! A world history of cultures, struggles, triumphs, eons and eons of information we can explore together over the years. Then if you decide you want to follow one path over another when you are older, you can do so based on fact, research and what you feel in your heart.”
I looked down to see he was sound asleep. He will have a plethora of culture, genetic imprinting and family history to choose from. Here are his familial bloodlines; Black, White, Puerto Rican, Scotch/Irish, Celtic, Native American (Sauk & Fox Tribe, Tama, IA) and Swedish, to start.
Yes, he’s definitely our little Olive Branch!