November 4, 2008

Anything is Possible

It wouldn’t be a blog on November 4, 2008 without mention of the historic US Presidential Election. If you thought that reading a baby blog would give you some relief, hate to say it people but you came to the wrong place.

But I will spare you some political posturing and talk about my personal experience, as always.

I am a proud Canadian, born and raised. My parents both came to this country from the Caribbean. They met here, fell in love here, got married here and had me. I’m an only child. My boyfriend, father of my unborn baby, and often referenced in this blog as “dad-to-be” is a proud American. His family is from Ghana in western African. He was born there and came to the US as a child. We met and fell in love in Canada.

What I love about Canada, Toronto specifically is that it is such an open and multi-cultural place. I grew up in very diverse schools where people’s cultures were celebrated. One of my best elementary school memories was a world map with hundreds of pins, representing each child’s family origins. You could put as many pins as you wanted. When I was older I remember watching the Olympics with my dad, and in my basement, where we had a smaller world map on the wall with corresponding flags, trying to pinpoint the location of countries that I never heard of. As a teenager, going to downtown Chinatown, uptown Chinatown, Little Indiana on Gerrard St, Little Italy on College St, Greek town, watching Brazilian soccer with the Portuguese, picking up some West Indian food on Eglinton West. My friends were different religions and backgrounds, and we all loved each other.

This is what made it so interesting to grow up the way I did. My friends and family in the US though, didn’t seem to have an experience like mine. The black kids at school didn’t talk to the white kids. Neighbourhoods were segregated, for the most part. I was astonished when I learned about black colleges! Race seemed to a “bigger deal” south of the border than it was for me north of the border.

And here we are now. Without getting into the Democrat versus Republican debate, without analyzing the Obama-Biden and McCain-Palin platforms, and discussing the campaigns they have run, and without talking politics here, did anyone really see this happening a few years ago? Did anyone expect that the US would be this close to electing their first black President?

I have always been engaged in US politics, before I was even old enough to vote in Canada. I’d like to think that this election is much more than race, it was about the economy, the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is about family rights, about a number of issues. But it is still incredible to see how far we have come.

Dad-to-be is in Chicago right now, where he grew up. He will be at the Obama rally in Grant Park, while I am at work, watching CNN online, heavily distracted by the US election, so much so that I can’t get any work done. I am excited that he will have one hell of a story to tell our kids.

I started to get teary-eyed on the way to work this morning, listening to the news. And yeah, I’m 16 weeks pregnant so really people I get teary-eyed grocery shopping. But I couldn’t stop daydreaming about telling the baby that is growing inside me that mommy was carrying you during this exciting time. And maybe, just maybe that the year you were born, was the year that the US had their first black President.

Follow your dreams little one. Anything is possible.


DC Urban Dad on 2:25:00 PM said...

Great post. Absolutely great.

verygoodyear on 12:56:00 AM said...

Daddy-to-be is extraordinarily lucky to be in Grant Park tonight -- and you & I are extraordinarily lucky to be bringing our little American-Canadian babies into the world with President Obama to our south :]

humpsNbump on 9:31:00 AM said...

Thanks so much DC Urban for your comment. And VeryGoodYear we should definitely feel a great sense of pride that our little American-Canadians will be growing up in such an EXTRAORDINARY time!

XOXO humps

MBB Founder and Editor Denene Millner on 1:22:00 PM said...

Beautiful, beautiful post.

C on 10:56:00 AM said...

Great post! Isn't it amazing how Obama's history in the making has touched so many people? :) I was so excited when I heard the news!
What exciting times we live in!

Going on a little tangent here, but it was interesting to read that your parents are from the Caribbean! So is my Dad. Well, the West Indies, actually. My Dad is Trinidadian. I spent a lot of time traveling to Trinidad, Tobago, Barbados, etc while growing up.

The mom-to-be in the hospital bed next to me the other day was from Jamaica. We had a hoot talking about everything! We talked until 2AM!

Unfortunately, my new roomie at the hospital doesn't speak a word of English. She seems nice though.

Okay, have an excellent day! TGIF! XO

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