Raising a Black Man

(At Least) Eighteen Years To Go

Family, Featured, Love & Relationships

I’ve often thought of writing a series that chronicled my experiences as a new mom but figured nobody would be as interested in my child as me. This might be true but as a parent, I’m so drawn to hearing the experiences of other parents and enjoy anecdotal stories of what children have said and done. I figure I’m not the only one out there so here goes.

I’m calling this series “Raising a Black Man” because I am mother to a three-year old black boy going on 30. He is my buddy, a source of unconditional love, and my greatest achievement to date. I live in a constant state of wanting to protect him from all things bad and evil which I know is an uphill battle, but I’m giving it my all. Luckily, I am not parenting alone.

Raising a toddler is like having your own personal sketch comedy show. On any given day a myriad of things will come out of these little peoples’ mouths that you don’t expect and further, they will do things that will keep you in stitches. For instance, as I was showering this morning I came across a scratch on my body I didn’t know existed and murmured, “Ouch” in the shower. My son hears this and comes to inquire:

“Mommy, why you say ouch?”

“Because I found a scratch that hurts. I might need a band-aid.”

“You need a band-aid?”

“I think so.”

“I’ll get one for you mommy.”

He proceeds to the bathroom cabinet to look for band-aids, but I know they are out of his reach. He comes back to me with a pantyliner. “Here, mommy, use this big band-aid.”

Priceless. You can’t make stuff like this up. And it happens daily.

What I loved most about this particular scenario is that my son already feels a need to protect me. I think that’s great since one of my goals is to raise him having both an affinity for and a responsibility toward his family. Conversations about the future of Black men seem so bleak at times that I’d like to offset it with the manner in which I raise my son. So far, so good, but I’ve got at least 18 years to go.


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