I was challenged to take a walk down memory lane – pregnancy, first time motherhood and preparing for a baby. Pregnant with my first child at age 25, there were so many thoughts running through my head.
As a woman, I worried about the birthing process.
Would it hurt as bad as it looks on TV?
As a pediatric nurse, I toiled endlessly with the hope that my child would be born healthy.
What if my child has a disability?
As a first time mom, I wondered if I would ever live up to my child’s expectations.
Would I be a good mom?
But as a multicultural mom, the selfish part of me couldn’t help but think…
Would my child look like me?
Today, I dive into the selfish part of me. It’s raw. It’s unedited. It’s a walk down memory lane. But maybe this post can help those other multicultural moms think through that same question.
As an adopted Korean mom with an American husband, I knew right away that our first child was going to be different. This child growing in my belly would be the first generation multiracial child in our family. And it scared me to pieces. Knowing nothing about my past – I honestly had no idea what I was bringing to the table.
What genes were in my family? What personality will my child inherit? What if I give my child something horrible from my past? But it was during these 9 months of pregnancy that one question kept coming back.
Would my child look like me?
It sounds so selfish. Why should it matter if my child looks more like me or more like my husband or a combo of the two? But there I sat, trying to find pictures on the internet for mixed Asian/American children – dreaming if my child would have my slanted eyes, my husband’s red curly hair, my olive skin, his freckles. I was scared that no one would know that he was mine. I was scared that no one would know that he came from my husband. I was scared that he would be different, too different.
By the time I gave birth and saw that little face peering up at me – almond shaped eyes, squishy pudgy nose and a head full of stubborn straight jet-black hair – I remember letting out a sigh of relief. “Yes.” And that question didn’t matter anymore. He was mine. I was his. He was ours. And being multiracial made him different, yes. But special. Oh so special.
8 years later, I realize that the question I was really asking myself so long ago was:
What struggles will my child face because he’s multiracial?
Would be teased like I was for his Asian features? Would he blend in? Would he be accepted? Would he check the “Asian” box on his college application? To say that the road since my first thoughts as a multicultural mom has been easy – it hasn’t. My son already had his first encounter with bullying. I expect that we will have to have so many more talks about being different.
But I can tell you now, that the joys of my son being a perfect blend of my husband and me outweigh the fears. He is beautiful. My daughter is beautiful. And even though my kids are 50% Korean and 50% American, God and the world around me keep reminding us that these two children are 100% beautiful.
As a multicultural mom, I want to let you know that I selfishly had these thoughts…all of them. And it’s ok. It’s normal, at least for me. But don’t let those fears stop you from blending a family and creating children that are so unique, so special. Blending cultures, blending features, blending an American family – it’s everything I could have wanted. And more.
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