I just got back from work. I did not have the best of days, but yet, I trudged on. When I returned home, my kids’ nanny let me know that she had to leave the park yet again. A little background on us. My husband and I are Black Africans- Nigerians to be specific. When we were looking for a nanny, the only criteria we had was someone who had prior experience and someone who would be able to take care of our kids with love. Race was not an issue. I can give two flying petunias if our kids’ nanny is White, Black, Yellow, Purple or Teal. I REALLY DON’T CARE!!!!!!!!!! But this poor lady(our nanny) who is White and Mexican, but looks more White than Mexican is constantly being harassed and questioned when she takes our kids out and about our little neighborhood. Now my city is pretty mixed. I say we have a good mix of races and backgrounds. Actually almost everyone on my street is in an interracial marriage, so I assume the city is progressive. But it gets on my nerves and I feel really ashamed whenever our kids’ nanny comes home with a story about yet another Black woman walking up to her to question her about the kids she is watching. “Are they yours? So how long have you worked for their parents? Their mother is comfortable with you watching them? Do you watch them all the time? Do you plan to do something to her hair? Where are their parents from?” GET OVER IT!!! Yes our kids are Black Africans and their nanny is Hispanic/White. It’s really not a big deal. It is 2014 and I refuse to have my kids be scared of people of a different race. If she’s qualified to watch my kids, I will hire her in a heart beat regardless of her lack of Blackness.
Another thing that irks me is the issue of hair. White people let their kids run around all the time with their hair flowing down, so why is it that when my daughter walks around with an afro (the natural way her hair grows out of her scalp) Black women gasp and look at her like she’s dirty or malnourished? My daughter is a year old and she HATES getting her hair done. My daughter is also not a beauty queen, a model or any kind of brand ambassador. I refuse to sit my child between my legs and pull on her hair as she screams and snot runs down her nose. I am not a barbarian and I will not partake in such. I’m pretty sure that if she had a huge head of curls, Black women would think that letting her hair down was cute. I refuse to have to brush and pull at my child’s hair on a daily basis. I wash her hair, put in all necessary hair products and I do what she lets me do to it. If during the week her hair gets “rough” I just let her be. She is a child and has nothing to prove. Her hair is always well moisturized might I add. Yes my daughter’s hair is not curly. Yes that is the hair God gave her. I will not burn her scalp with harmful relaxers and no I will not put a hot comb to her hair. SHE IS A YEAR OLD. So I suggest that if you are at the park one day and you see my daughter happily playing with her Hispanic/Mexican nanny with her non-curly afro, you keep moving or close your eyes if you do not like her hair texture. Let my child be a one year old, and let our nanny do her job. It is an absolute shame that one would think it is okay to walk up to a complete stranger and grill her about her job and a child’s hair.
GET OVER It!!!! I choose to raise my child to believe she is beautiful no matter what texture her hair is and no I will not pull my child’s hair out as she screams because society says that 1 year olds have to have relaxed or braided hair. I think she is gorgeous, so move over and let us be.
Irritated Thinking Momma