I’m always looking for ways to connect the kids to their “blackness.” All the studies and articles written by super smart people say it’s super important. And people who grew up in a transracial family say how they felt like they didn’t belong. (Although, I think in our immediate family, the fact that Brian and I are the minority probably helps.)
So when I found out about the African American Homeschool group that I mentioned before, I was super excited. I promptly signed us up for an outing. I spent the majority of the time obsessively wondering if it was making a difference, if my kids felt connected finally and if it would make them feel less alone. I know that I felt more connected, oddly enough. But, really, they didn’t seem to care at all. They enjoyed the field trip and Antwan played with some of the kids. But, beyond that, it didn’t seem to make a difference. But, I was still glad that I did it.
When I found out that the same homeschool group also ran a co-op, I was all excited and signed us up for an orientation. Antwan was apathetic and Lizzie didn’t want to do it because she knows that we have a different co-op the day before and she doesn’t want to get up early two days in a row. haha. But, I registered them for classes anyway. Yay for playing the mom card!
Then Black Panther came out. A month or so prior, one of the ladies set up an event for it and reserved a theatre. I was all over that. I thought it would be so cool to see such an important film with a group of African Americans. Lizzie wasn’t thrilled when she heard. This is because, much to my dismay, she’s not into superhero movies. (She used to be but something changed.) Anyway, I tried to explain to her how she should be excited about this movie. How it is the first mainstream predominately black film (not marketed as a “black” movie) and how it’s a big deal. She remained unimpressed so I finally just promised to get her some popcorn. (She really likes popcorn.)
The day of the movie, there were so many homeschoolers in the theatre. And more to the point, there were so many black homeschoolers in the theatre. Several were dressed up in thematic costumes and many of the women were wearing African type shirts and head wraps. It was so awesome!
Then the movie started. And, wow, the movie was amazing. And, Lizzie loved it! They both loved it. Lizzie was surprisingly excited and said it was the best Marvel movie ever. By the end of it, she was making sure that we stayed for the extra scenes (as if I wouldn’t) and asking if she could have a Black Panther shirt.
Antwan liked the movie but wasn’t as over the moon for it as Lizzie was. On the way home, I heard her explaining to him that he should really like it because it was the first African American Marvel movie. Turns out she was listening.
I don’t know if her enthusiasm was because she felt connected to the characters and the fact that they looked more like her than me. Or if it was just the fact that the movie was really good and the fight scenes were epic. Hopefully, it was a bit of both.
I will do my best but it could be a challenge to make sure my kids don’t feel alienated from their race. But, if it continues to involve watching hotties like Chadwick Boseman kick butt on the big screen, I will persevere.
Because I love my children. 😉