Tuesday, August 14, 2007

I just read CarrieLouise's blog about sitting in waiting rooms with small children and it reminded me of an event that happened many years ago. In 1996 we were living in Suffolk, VA (near Virginia Beach) when Abbie skipped across the yard, tripped over her own dainty feet, and shattered her right arm. To shorten a very long story, it was repaired surgically, casted for 7 weeks, pinned and x-rayed several times, and is now good as new. During the ordeal though, we made many trips to the orthopaedic surgeon's office, which usually had a very full waiting room. On one particular day, I entered the office with five children and they all promptly found seats not too far away from me, all except Elijah who was 3 at the time. There was only one more empty chair available, between me and a black lady. So I patted the chair and said, "Come sit here, Elijah." Elijah looked at me, then at the black lady, then back at me and replied, "I don't want to sit by that black lady." I was horrified, but the woman was very kind and talked sweetly to him. I took him on my lap and moved over to sit next to the lady so we could get to know her and prove she wasn't an axe murderer. I apologized a million times, and she was very gracious about it, but after that we looked for opportunities to interact with people of other races. Just a few days later we were in line at K-mart with Elijah sitting in the command seat of the shopping cart, and he had gotten his foot stuck in the hole. A black gentleman behind us helped him get his foot unstuck and Elijah actually thanked him. God knows just what we need when we need it.

Be thankful ~



carrielouise said...

I know what you mean, Karen. Jackelope will say the weirdest things and that's one of the things that worries me about taking him anywhere!
Good story!

TC said...

Mm, we had a similar experience when BunHead was about 3. She didn't like a neighboring 12yo girl because "she has dark skin." The irony being, BunHead's older brother has "dark skin." :)