Sunday, August 15, 2010
I'm with her...no, really, I am.
Had a semi-awkward moment yesterday. My mom and I went to Walmart together to pick up some groceries and a few other random items. We came to the register together, but paid for our own items separately. I went last and my mom put my bag in the cart with hers while I paid. This caused the customer behind me to say in a panicked voice to the cashier, "That woman is taking her bag!". Yeah. He didn't think my mom and I were together, so he thought she was stealing my purchases. Whoops. The cashier, however, knew we were together and told him so. Good to know that some people get it! We don't have little experiences like this every day, but more often than one might think. It started around maybe my senior year of high school. I don't look like a child anymore and it throws people. Why would a young Asian woman be with an older caucasian woman (my mom's hair is white now)? People won't question a child with an adult of a different race because it is assumed the child would be accompanied by some kind of caregiver anyhow. Unless they live under a rock (and, to be fair, some people's lives do fit that metaphor), people must be aware of transracial adoption. It's not really a topic at the forefront, though. People who do not adopt, are not adoptees or do not have a close relationship with an adoptee could understandably be outsiders and careless to the reality their entire lives. Still, it doesn't change the fact that we exist..and there are a lot of us. We may be our own subgroup in a way, but we're still a part of society doing things that everyone else does. A little more recognition wouldn't hurt, simply so I could stop having to explain myself to people. I told my mom I'm just going to get a plain t-shirt and write on it "I'm with her" with a pointing arrow for emphasis. I'll throw it on every time we are in public together for the slow people who don't notice all the cues I throw out there for their convenience. Even calling my mom "Mom" very distinctly, talking to her, touching her arm, are sometimes not enough hints for the clerk at the store who still asks, "Are you together?". YES. For the 500th time, yes. Oy.