That time I was a big hypocrite.

Today at Big Apple Bagels, a black woman, (pertinant to the story) called over to our table while waiting for her bagel to ask if Isaac was adopted. My initial reaction was the same I experienced when a dad from Isaac’s preschool asked if he was my son, like my REAL son (pointing to his belly), which was to bug my eyes and tilt my head: “WHAAAAAAAAAT?” Then, I thought, well maybe she thinks we are fostering him. So she kept talking and explained how she used to work for an adoption agency and had dealt with lots of Caucasian families adopting black children and how they came to a play group for other, similarly created families so that the kids could get to know other people of the same race. (Once, in the YMCA locker room, I had an older black woman ask if Isaac had ever seen a black person before…)

After she left, I did a head check because I felt irritated at her, (despite her being incredibly well intentioned and speaking kindly), because- as Ryan can attest- I often read WAY the heck too far into things and then proceed to take them personally. (He thinks he knows me.) And THEN, I thought, “Welllllll, crap. I’m totally that woman I’m being all irritated with right now.”
Generally, I take my dad’s approach to conversations which is: If you’re well intentioned, people don’t really care what you ask them. (My dad has asked a man in Amish country what the best part of being Amish is; Ryan’s favorite story of late is when my dad asked a Lowe’s worker what happened to cause him to be working at Lowe’s after having shared that he used to own his own contracting business.) My dad’s side of the family generally all have this characteristic and, as my father’s child, I fall under this umbrella as well. Which is why I had to tell myself to get over feeling offended and judged because she was just making a connection and trying to be helpful in much the same way I feel permitted to address ANYONE with cochlear implants about how much I love my dad’s. My questioning isn’t limited to personal links, either. Once, when we were about 18, I asked a good friend’s preggo girlfriend- whom I had just met- if she was scared to give birth. *cringe* Not my finest moment. Although I DID want to know and she DID answer… I’ve also asked carnies how they got their jobs, why someone would get into the binkini waxing field (while getting a bikini wax), AND posed a French speaking taxi cab driver questions about his life in butchered French at 4am, (although that had as much to do with the events leading up to a 4am cab ride as it did my personality). So what? I like to know things about people and hear their stories and DAGGONE IT if that wasn’t exactly what that girl did today in BAB’s. You sneaky Jesus, you. *Removes large plank from own eye.*
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