Being Little Sister

Nadia is keenly aware she is a little sister and she’s had more than a few questions about it.

Her latest: “Why was Simone born first?”

I don’t have a good answer. “Oh, my. I don’t know. Because she was. We made Simone first and then we made you. You know, we didn’t really decide who would be born first.”

She didn’t press the matter any further.

Best I can tell, Nadia wants to make sure she didn’t miss anything when she was not here and often asks about what happened before she was born. If she did miss something — and no one’s saying she did — she wants to know about it.

I cleaned out a closet the other day and sent the last of the small clothes packing. I’ve held onto a few items, and Nadia saw one of them. It’s a doll-sized pink dress that seemed so very large all those years ago. Simone and Nadia were photographed in it when they were each 6 months old.

“Look Simone,” Nadia said. “We both wore this dress when we were little.” Simone wasn’t interested, but Nadia acted like she’d found  a historical artifact and held it up to her-much-bigger-self for comparison.

It’s like she’s piecing her history together, figuring out what came first. At the same time, she is testing us, making sure we’ll tell her everything, just in case she needs to call us on it later.

  • Breanna

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  • I just wanted to drop you a note to tell you how much I love your writing. I picked up your blog trail from someone’s blogroll whose name I can’t even remember now. Anyway, I am the mother of two bi-racial children who are now 27 and 29. The youngest is the color of cream and the oldest is the color of honey. Now that they are grown, the youngest strongly demands to be considered “bi-racial” and the oldest identifies herself as African-American. This comment section doesn’t have enough space to get into the psychology of why they’ve chosen what they have but I think a lot of it had to do with school encounters along the way (hurts and missteps). It hasn’t interferred with their love for each other or for their parents. I’ve written about them in my humorous story “Yo’ Momma Don’t Have to Know!” on my blog http://www.howthehelldidienduphere.wordpress.com

    As I read the many stories about your girls, I see things I wish I’d done differently. If anything, they are colorblind to a fault. The youngest is furious that our president has listed himself as African-American on the Census and both of them think we’re living in a post racial era. Consequently, they are constantly surprised when their racial identity or lack of it becomes an issue. Anyway, your writing churns up a lot of contemplation. All the best on your book — I’ll definitely read it! Eleanor T.

    • Thank you so much for dropping by. I will definitely check out your blog.

  • Blanc2

    It’s amazing how different they can be from one another, no?

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