He let me be vulnerable and frail. He accepted me with my weaknesses. He let me cry and comforted me. And that gave me the courage to go on. Read More
Thank you Stephen. I love your blog concept - sharing your own personal stories to open the door for others to share. Your Dad's loving kindness certainly paid off. Take care. Satsuki
I look forward to seeing more of your writing too!
Such an uplifting story on some many dimensions. Thank you for sharing it here. Not only was your father wonderful, I now think your grandfather must have been quite a man as well.
I wonder. I never met either biological grandfather, just heard stories, but I wonder what I inherited from them.
Thank you Stephen!
Your story gives me hope for our two little boys my husband and I are raising with our different cultural but racial background.
As I am commenting to your post, they are at 'Bible school', invited by my husband's friends in the town of Grandview (over 96.27% White) in Bayfield County in WI. Monday was their first day and our 4 1/2 years old told his dad, as he picked them up, that it was it was the worst day of his 'life' for many kids were chasing them around and saying some things to them. They've asked them to stop, but they didn't. Our older son (6 1/2) perhaps felt compelled to show some bravado or courage, and decided that they must go back and not run but adopt their school's guidelines ("use your words, walk away or get help from an adult"). Whatever they did yesterday, seemed to have a good impact and a better outcome in resolving the issue.
I question though: was that novelty, curiosity coupled with the lack of relational skills, meanness or ignorance around our mixed children in this small White-predominant town? They went back yesterday and the issue wasn't prevalent anymore. It's amazing to notice that the world of children has not changed much to date. I witness what you put forth with my own mixed children, but also with children that I work with as a school teacher. Only we as adults, need to keep on entrusting them and bringing in and modeling goodness for them.
I worry sometimes but remain hopeful for my two boys, knowing from your story, that the outcome can be delightful, "You".
You're right; that gift that your dad gave you will remain in my repertoire as a mother, for my own little boys.
Thank you for writing. It touched my heart to hear your boy say it was the worst day of his life. It can be so hard for kids to be treated like that. But it's also heartening to hear how quickly the situation can improve. We certainly need to do as you say, "to keep on entrusting them and bringing in and modeling goodness for them." With our support many kids can be resilient and win over most of the other kids who are acting mean from their ignorance or because has been mean to them. I found that if I was kind to them they would reciprocate. I mostly find that our trust and acceptance has a big impact on our kids.
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Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu Ed.D., is co-founder of Stanford University's LifeWorks program in integrative learning.
It can take a radical reboot to get past old hurts and injustices.