05 February 2008

Give Peace a Chance

Today I had one of those conversations...

This lady walked up to me and the babies at the market and blurted out "What... do you have two husbands or somethin'? How'd you get a dark one?"
So I explained, "No, of my five kids, two are through adoption and three by birth. The big sister was born from me and this little one was born in Ethiopia."

"Isn't it sad that she can't be with her mother?"

At first blush (and literally the blood rose to my cheeks), I felt irritated that she could say such a thing to me. But, just that fast that feeling went away and I just felt sad for this lady that she was so rude.

I responded, "I agree. I wish that adoption wasn't necessary. I wish every child could stay with their birth mother and father and grow up happy, and healthy, and well-fed in the home of their biological family. But, since that isn't always the case, we're committed to blessing of adoption." (Thanks, Brianna!)

Then, we had a nice chat about her trip to Haiti where she saw a lot of "dark people" and I didn't even BITE her! YEA!

I walked away with a real calm instead of having my heart banging around in my chest. Wow, maybe I'm growing up a little bit!
So, if you ever run across Rude Lady like I did today, remember...

Give peace a chance!


TedTracie said...

Ok... this is probably where I am a little cruel. I would have been like "Yea, I had an affair and the funny thing is.. My husband hasn't even noticed".

I am proud of you!!!

Hey... I didn't realize two of your chldren were adopted...

Thanks for sharing this story. Though it brought blood to your cheecks, it made me laugh. TOO CUTE!

be_a_Mary said...

Hey, way to model self-control!!

I wonder, does she even REALIZE how she sounds? does she know anyone 'dark' or know anyone whose been adopted?

makes me think how SMALL her circles must be and how SMALL her worldview must be. She is someone that would have voted for JFK because he is 'cute.'

Amy said...

You handled this SO well. Seroiusly. Wowo. People say such CRAZY things!

I haven't had one of "those" conversations for awhile now....ahh.

emily said...

Are you kidding me? That is hilarious and sad all at the same time! I am proud of you for holding your tongue.

Love the pictures you used, they greatly added to the story:)

Lori said...

I'm angry for you! It's easy to get all mad inside, but if you're a nice, decent person (such as you are) you're not going to react with the same ignorance that MANY people seem to show without notice!

I've had to experience a few "off color/insulting" remarks lately that were actually from relatives. It was not directed to me or our new child, rather it was a racial comment made in front of me that I thought was very tacky and showed pure ignorance! I think they just don't get it!

Bravo Laurie, bravo!

ErinOrtlund said...

You really handled that so well, Laurie. I would have been very irritated--but now, hopefully, that woman has been educated and inspired and will therefore be more understanding in the future.

Keva said...

Love the pictures and your comment. I think I would have been so flustered I would have blurted out some incoherent answer.

We are to be educators. We find ourselves so many times surrounded by educated (in the world of adoption) that when you come across someone like Rude Lady, it an awesome opportunity to broaden her mind and her heart. Although, like I mentioned I don't work well under pressure.

Jesi and Joe said...

Go girl! I am sure I would have behaved much less calmly than you did, I'm so proud of you! Your eloquence in a difficult situation is definitely admirable... and I'm taking notes. Mine aren't home yet, but when people say stupid things about our adoption, I'm always at a loss for a good response.

Teabo Chica said...

You are awesome, I make me LOL all the time, and I dont even know you....well actually I read about you and I know so much :) But darlin I will have to remeber to Give peace a chance!

Deanna said...

Good response. I had a similar situation at the grocery store today. Thankfully, the lady was not quite as rude -- or didn't put it this rude, anyway.

After, I was thinking about how the question really was an innocent one, just poorly worded and sometime invasive... It is great that you did not jump down her throat and actually paused. I forget to pause as often as I should sometimes :)

By the way, you are a blogging machine these days!

Tish said...

great post! thanks for sharing...and the photos really made me laugh!

Ray Ortlund said...

You guys inspire me. Way to go!