Seek Forgiveness and Find Strength
Chocolate moments are not always crazy, cute, or funny moments. Sometimes chocolate moments are out of sheer agony, frustration, and stress. As a mother there are times when things get to be difficult. Your heart reaches out to your child and your defenses run high. There are times when other moms need to hear success stories of people standing up for their children, or the other people they love. Sometimes, standing up for your child, or yourself, is not the easiest thing or the most politically correct thing to do, but it is necessary for the people you love. Good moms need to unite and fight for each other (notice I say “good moms? Not all moms fit this category.”), they need to protect the children and stand up for what’s right. This is an example of one of those moments.
I was walking through the grocery store with my mother. My three-month-old baby, my oldest child, was in the shopping cart. I was laughing and talking to my mom, not paying attention to my surroundings. I was 18-years-old and more mature than many parents, not to leave out other adults. As I was walking down the baking aisle, I felt a hand touch my shoulder. I turned to see an elderly woman looking right into my face. Her hand was on me still, and her other hand was on my shopping cart.
She looked at me, glanced at my daughter, looked back at me, and asked me if my child was a child of “color.” I glanced down at my daughter, I took in her beautiful tan skin, dark hair, and black eyes, looked up at the woman, and stated the obvious, “Yes, she is, why?”
“You need to pray for forgiveness.” The woman blatantly stated.
I stood shocked. I had nothing to say. I couldn’t respond. I was 18-years-old, she knew nothing about my pregnancy, nothing about the conception, nothing about the miracles I witnessed when having this baby, and she had the nerve to tell me I needed forgiveness? Leave my age out of the equation. This was not about age. It was about race. What business was it of hers that my child was bi-racial? I didn’t ask her to birth a baby of a specific culture. I was stunned with the nerve of this woman.
I was silent. Words didn’t come to my mind. I had nothing. Tears stung my eyes and I felt alone. The pain that I had endured in my past revisited at the moment of that wretched old lady. I knew to expect some people in the world not to accept my child, but never did I expect an elderly woman bringing God into the situation. I was still Speechless. Stunned. Shocked. And most of all, I was hurt.
The woman began to pray for my child. I am a Christian woman and believe in the power of prayer. I believe in forgiveness. I believe that Christ loved us all, and just like him, I believe in love for everybody. Her prayer was bitter. And still I was stunned. Helpless.
Finally I gained my bearings. I don’t know where the strength came from, but then again, I’m sure I do. Her prayer reached God, my heart was filled with hurt and God reached out to me. “Ma’am, thank-you, but I don’t need your forgiveness!”
My mother was already saying that. My mother was with me and she was strong. I didn’t hear everything she said, because my mind wasn’t focused on my mother. My mom was defending me when I felt defenseless. This time, I needed to defend myself and my child. I reached to my cart and moved the woman’s hands out of my way. I don’t know how old she was, but I pushed past her. I didn’t push her, but I wasn’t graceful with my movement. As I walked past, I said, “God loves this baby.”
I heard the woman gasp. I heard her say, “Well… I never.”
My response was, “Me either.”
My mother and I stood in the checkout line. My mother reached across me, grabbed a candy bar, and said, “Good job, kid.”
Even though I hurt on the inside, I felt kind of good too. I was strong enough to defend my child against an old lady. Typically we allow the elderly to think and feel a certain way because they are old. No, I’m not above hurting an elderly person’s feelings because they are old. They have no business hurting my child or me in any manner. After that day, I knew I could defend my child above all cost!