I Wish I Could Be Every Little Thing You Wanted All The Time

Last night Z nearly broke my heart.

I was washing her hair, which could be considered a full time job, although we do it on average once a week if I’ve had enough coffee and sleep, when she made the comment that she doesn’t like her hair and wished it was like all her friends hair, which is in her words ‘smooth’.

Z has the most fantastic Afro, which I’ll admit at first I didn’t at first know the first thing about dealing with for obvious reasons, the main being I never had hair like that so why bother learning right? But over the years as her hair grew I realized it was getting more curly and thick and I would need more insight on how to care for her crowning glory to do it full justice, I started researching what the better quality products would be to use. I learned all about a wash n go and wet plopping and deep conditioning which to be honest were all very helpful for my hair as well since I also have curly hair, although not to the extent of Z’s 3c/4a curls. I learned not to use drug store brands that contain sulphates and other harmful chemicals that will further dry her hair out. I learned how to trim her hair myself to maintain it and get rid of dry, split ends on my own without spending a fortune on a hairdresser. I will admit though that I still cannot plait her hair, but I have learned twist outs and how to lay her edges so I’ll just take that as a win for now. One step at a time. 🤷🏻‍♀️

But when she was upset last night because her hair wasn’t ‘smooth’ like all her friends at school my heart fell into my gut. I can only be so much of a roll model for her in this area. I wear my hair as big, full and curly as possible, because I honestly feel the bigger the better, and I truly think natural hair is better. I’ve straightened my hair maybe once a year since finding out all this information about hair for Z. Little E wears his hair pretty close cut because he just has no interest in keeping a style and prefers it practically shaved, and even when he does grow it out, it’s not as curly as Z’s, it’s more of a thick bigger curl. Her dad maintains a bald head although they don’t see him often (as my regular readers know 3 visits when we went back at Christmas and before that it was February last year). So I guess my point with all these “examples ” is that she has no natural hair role models as far as her hair texture. I’ve shown her on places like instagram woman with beautiful hair like hers and how they wear it even bigger than hers. For reference, her fro averages between 6-10 inches but I don’t fluff it out on the bigger side often. She prefers to style it pushed back with a headband or with a few clips or two pigtail afropuffs. Which is for the best because those are the only ones I can pull off half decently.

Anyways this is a very roundabout way of saying I hurt for her. I want her to be proud of every part of her, but this is a way I can’t directly be a role model for her. Yes, I can wear my hair naturally and I do, but her hair is distinctively different, not only from mine, but from the streets of Kelowna and even where we were before and heck even in a Kenya because of the mix, and others notice. I think it’s fantastic and beautiful and many others do as well. We constantly receive compliments while out about how nice her hair is of which I reminded her last night. I told her that her hair is original and beautiful and she should never want to change who or how she is. I was detangling it and showed her how long it was while wet and stretched out and she was so impressed, since it reaches to her elbows. So after the bath, I did one long braid for her down her back and she was much happier and kept mentioning how long and smooth it looked. Albeit it only lasted about 15 minutes until it was completely dry and shrunk up to her neck but it made her happy in that moment.

I’m just wondering how to move forward from here. I’m WELL aware that my kids should have strong black role models in their life, but if there aren’t any around… I can’t just produce them out of thin air.

My in laws are not an option, her dad is out of the question. The black community in Kelowna is to be honest practically nonexistent (trust me, I’ve looked). But I know that it will be something they need to become the fullest version of themselves they can be.

I guess that’s the most frustrating aspect of this experience. Knowing I can be the best mom I can possibly be. I can make all the healthy lunches and arrange all the play dates and study up on all the hair care and do all the sex talks, to name a few examples, but facts are facts, and facts in my situation is that my kids are half black, there’s no denying that, and I would never want to. And that culture is not something I can provide them, and they desperately need it.

It makes me feel so inadequate.

Knowing no matter what, I’ll never be enough. And I can’t do it on my own.

And what’s worse it that the right people are not offering to help.

***update***

Just stopped at Walmart and saw this ironic and timely display showing Robert Munschs books on display

All had been picked through except the braids book (which Z owns). It’s a book about a girl with hair like Z’s and how she doesn’t like to have it braided since it takes a while and hurts. Etc. But anyways it’s literally just shows how no one in Kelowna has that culture in their life nor is trying to pass it on to future generations here and I’m on my own with my kids. 😑

*Z with morning bed head for reference*


-Dishwalla / Every Little Thing –

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Why Do I Give Valuable Time To People Who Don’t Care If I Live Or Die / In My Life Why Do I Smile At People Who I’d Much Rather Kick In The Eye?

Frustrated. I guess that would be the only way to suitably and simply describe how I’m feeling now.

I’m stuck when it comes to my divorce. I feel any move I attempt to make will only be detrimental to my case and I hate that feeling.

Last you heard, I had contacted my lawyer and he sent an email saying something along the lines of us being very close to completion, but I just had to update my Legal Aid file. But when I contacted Legal Aid, they informed my that there was in fact nothing wrong with my file, but while they had me on the phone, they decided to do an update on my file.

I knew that would only turn out bad for myself since I know I make more than the limit now allowed for coverage by them. Turns out I was right. The lady on the phone said they would contact my lawyer, informing him of the situation. If the case was near completion (which it technically was, as mentioned by my lawyer, but knowing E it could still take years) then they would allow him to finish it off under my files current ticket with the subsidized coverage. If my lawyer felt it still had a lot longer to go, then he would have to wrap up whatever had been done thus far, and I could choose to either proceed with him, at full cost, or find a new lawyer, again paying full price.

Fast forward to today… and I still haven’t heard from ANYONE. So I feel like if I make a move and reach out to anyone, it might shine light on circumstances that might be better left hidden ie how much I make. Maybe my lawyer is wrapping things up and we are almost done like his previous email said, although that was like Christmas time-ish if I’m not mistaken so I’m doubtful that’s the case.

Agh, I just hate my divorce being basically controlled by others who realllllly don’t give a fuck. No-one cares that I’ve been dealing with this shit for FOUR GOD DAMN MOTHER FUCKEN DRAWN OUT MESSED UP ANNOYING AS ALL HELL YEARS. 

Four years. I could’ve gotten a University degree. Shit I could’ve been over halfway to becoming my own Lawyer at this point. At least then I would’ve known that without a doubt my legal counsel had my best interests in mind at all times. But nope. I’m sitting here feeling like my hands are tied. My lawyer doesn’t care, and E is just playing his continuous games.

If I had wanted to remain married for 8.5 years, I would’ve just stayed with E in Kenya.

I don’t.

I didn’t

I want to be divorced from that man.

Now.

And forever.

I’m not waiting for death to part us.


-The Smiths/Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now-

I Was Wondering Maybe Could I Make You My Baby If We Do The Unthinkable Would It Make Us Look Crazy If You Ask Me I’m Ready

Oooooooh man. So it’s a holiday in my city today. Which in and of itself is good. Also happening today? Another house showing. Also a good thing right? Until I realized I had to be outta the house between 6:30-7:30 at night.

Seriously anytime my routine gets disturbed I’m flexible, yes. But not exactly happy lol. Especially when I arrived at the indoor playground to occupy my kids for a couple of hours and it’s PACKED in here because of the holiday.

There are so many things frustrating about it, but off the top of my head is how grammatically incorrect people are speaking. I’ll get to the point if my post in a minute but I can’t concentrate because all I can hear are all the parents around me, screaming at their children in sentences that would have any grade school teacher cringing. And it’s like no wonder kids nowadays barely speak proper English… they just repeat exactly what they’ve been taught, or not been taught in this case. It’s times like this I’m actually thankful my mom corrected every little error I made while speaking. It was theeeee most annoying thing at the time, but its made me thankful in times like now. Trust me. I’m well aware I’m far from speaking/writing perfectly, but I’m pretty sure I’m leaps and bounds above the majority of the people in here by the sounds of it.

Anyhoo. The reason I started this whole post today, was because as I was tidying up my house for the showing, a thought crossed my mind. As it has each time I’ve had other people in my house who don’t know me.

All these people will see, are the “artifacts” that represent our life now. And that’s it. They will see photos of my mixed race kids, which I have tastefully displayed around my house. They will also see evidence of only one parent. A mom. There is no trace of a man in my house at all. No shoes in the closet or coats in the door. No sports memorabilia. Not even a second adult toothbrush in the bathroom.

All that they’ll see are the items that belong to my kids, and I. No father. Which unfortunately because of so many stigmas, worries me that it will lead to one and only one impression in their minds, whether intentional or not. And that is, that this is the house of yet another single mom. Who probably got pregnant by some short-lived relationship where the dad didn’t want anything to do with the kid, or just pays his dues and moved on. Maybe takes the kids on weekends, but obviously by the lack of an imprint he has in their life, hasn’t stuck around.

And that bothers me.

Not because that’s not our story.

Not because that story does belong to so many others.

Not because I don’t wanna be judged as some gold digging hussy.

Not because I care how others judge me.

But because of the fact that I MYSELF THOUGHT IT. And if I thought it, who’s to say a stranger walking through my house won’t. Even just in passing. And even that itself shows what my kids will be subjected to throughout their life.

Because of my life decisions, my children will be lumped in with all the other kids in similar situations and judged the same, no matter if their history is different or not.

Society doesn’t give two shits about what happened between their dad and I, or how hard I tried even though I knew it wasn’t worth it to make my marriage work, and should’ve given up long before I did. They just see the results. The here and now. The leftovers. Which is another single mom with two kids whose black dad is not around.

And I hate it.

No one ever wants to be a part of a statistic, it’s never planned this way, but it’s even more depressing when it’s not one you believe in. I think black men have too many labels put on them in error in the first place. And I hate that my life contributes to that. Did my marriage fail? Yes. But does that mean every/any relationship with a black man will be unsuccessful? Absolutely not.

I still wholeheartedly trust them on the whole and have seen first hand MANY successful, thriving, long-term couples in mixed race, relationships, as well as white couples, black couples, and everything in between. People aren’t perfect. Relationships work because PEOPLE make them work.

No, we are not perfect. Yes, it can be more difficult to be in a relationship with someone from a different background than you, but I think that is exactly for the reasons I just mentioned above.

Stigma.

Society has grown to expect ‘certain things’ from ‘certain people’. Why? For what? Are we not all humans? Who made these decisions that certain races had to behave certain ways? And why?

I think love should just be love. And on the same hand, divorce should just be divorce. My marriage did not fall apart because of race. In fact that played no part in my decision, and never would (not that I hope to ever make a decision on divorce again). It was based on everything else that took place within the marriage because of us as people and our individual behaviors.

Therefore, in my ever so humble opinion, people, including myself, should just learn to take their opinions and shove ’em where the sun don’t shine.

Because let’s be honest. Those opinions are probably based on a stigma that should be eradicated anyway.

Also, wish me luck on the showing. They are repeat viewers so that’s a good sign 🤞🏼.


-Alicia Keys/Unthinkable-

Wake Me Up When It’s All Over. When I’m Wiser And I’m Older. 

As we were preparing to get married, E shared a “tradition” from back home that he wanted us to partake in. This might be difficult to explain as it’s regarding names and I try to avoid using real name here for anonymity sake, as well as the fact that the “tradition” turned out to be 100% fake, and we did something that I’m, to this day, trying to remedy because E felt like making up some random story just for shits and giggles.

Anyways the tradition he told me went something like this… and keep in mind at this point, I’d never yet been to Kenya, and I had no reason to doubt anything E was saying, because quite frankly I never thought anyone would be capable of making up stuff as extreme as this just… well just because I guess, normal people I’d met up until that point never lied like E did. I’ll never actually know why he did it.

So, he told me that when a man gets married, at least in his tribe, it was custom for him to drop his last/surname and have his middle name became his new last name. So from that point on, he’d only be known by his first and middle name=his new last name.

So if I was dating a Billy Frank Smith, when we got married he would still be known as Billy, but our new last/surname would be Frank, and Smith would be out of the picture making my new husband only Billy Frank, and me C Frank. He said then as a man, you would be starting your own family and be more removed from your Dads ‘tribe’. Also, to make it even more complex (as everything with E was), the middle names when choosing a baby’s name were to be chosen from a limited group of ‘family’ names. So that the man could still be recognized as part of this certain tribe. He said they do it this way so that as a man gets married it is his way of starting his own tribe/family.

I hope I’m explaining it well, because trust me it was confusing as heck to me. Probably because it’s not a tradition that his tribe had been following for centuries or has ever done. It was something E made up in his mind. But I trusted him, because this was the man I was going to marry so I figured he was telling the truth, and I had no reason not to believe in him. Plus it was so absurd, how could it not be true, right?

Therefore at our wedding we had to make it known during a speech to explain how we would be known as Mr and Mrs M. instead of the expected original Mr. and Mrs. S that everyone was expecting, being that it was the name everyone had known E by. Since E was still dealing with immigration issues though and both of our names were on so many of those documents at that time as our maiden names, neither of us changed our names at that point, which was for the best. The person it has affected most though, is Little E.

When I became pregnant with him, more about this whole name thing was ‘explained’ to me by E. About how the middle names should be chosen from selected tribe names etc. At this time, our plan was that we would be moving to Kenya and living there on a more permanent basis, and I really wanted my kids to fit in as much as possible and was counting on E’s advice to make that happen. So E supplied me with a list of about 5-7 male names from his family tree that we had to choose from for Little E’s middle name, that, according to E would one day be his last name once he married. We settled on a name that sounded good when said start to finish “Little E, then the chosen middle name (also started with M) then the last name M’ that we would all have one day once we finished our paperwork. So it was decided. I thought.

Until literally 5-10 minutes after I had given birth to Little E and I was drugged up and totally out of it and E decides to ask if we can change everything we had previously decided on.

Instead of the original E.M.M, for the newly born baby boy, he wanted Little E to be named E.S.M. So that little E’s middle name would be E’s current last name starting with S. So that when Little E gets married and drops the last name of M, he will have E’s family name of S remaining. Confused? I was too.  I said yes, because I just didn’t care at the time, I was just glad my baby was healthy and I had successfully brought forth life. Plus I had JUST given birth, and was in no position to argue.

So Little E now had the initials E. S. M. Not to bad eh? Well, it was fine, until we flew with our little boy to Kenya, where lo and behold, his family and pretty much everyone else in the entire country told me that E was full of crap. They’d never heard of that tradition before. I was mad. Now E has gone and messed with our kids names! And for what???

I confronted him about it and all he could say was that he must’ve been mistaken, and that oh ok, we’ll keep the original S last name like usual. I couldn’t believe it. Did he not realize that now Little E has the S middle name and now E says it should be his last name too!?!? Like are you kidding me? Your want our son to be called Little E then Smith Smith for example? No thanks.

So I bring it up today because Little E has finally chosen a new middle name. He understands that his middle name of S will now be his last name so he can match Z and Dad and Mom and all share the same last/surname and since I am too stubborn and did not want Little E to just have his middle name and last name switch place, mainly because I don’t want E to have that small pleasure of having his family name remain after all the chaos his lies caused. So we’ve been taking our time deciding on a brand new middle one. And Little E choose it today.

We’ve read through many names and meanings and Little E choose the name Theo. It means divine gift and he loves it and although there are others that I might prefer, I don’t mind giving him the lead on this choice as I can see the confidence it gives him. Plus it’s a step up from last summer when he wanted to change it to Tyrannosaurus. Plus if it was that awful I would always veto it. But I think he choose well and I’ll be working on the legal process to change it throughout the coming weeks. Oh and yes, it’s already been documented in the divorce that I can change his name without consent from E, because of the exact reasoning above. So we’re in the clear. Although I did inform E of Little E’s choice and he is fine with it.

So, I guess all I can say is I’m not a fan of fake tradition.


-Avicii/Wake Me Up-

Mama She Has Taught Me Well Told Me When I Was Young Son Your Life’s An Open Book Don’t Close It ‘Fore It’s Done

So I took the kids to the park yesterday and as Z went off on the slide, Little E and I had our “conversation”

The whole “Why doesn’t Dad live with us?” question that he had asked me earlier in the day… I thought I had mentally prepped my answer, thought it through, and I thought I was ready to handle it in a way a 6-year-old would understand, without many follow-up questions.

I thought wrong.

We sat on a park bench and I told him that dad used to live with us and asked him if he remembers living in Kenya with him. He said oh yeah. I went on explaining that something happened between mom and dad, where dads imagination/brain made him think he was in danger a lot and at that time, his mind told him that mom was a bad person, so he hurt mom. So I made the choice that even though at the time I loved dad, I had to make sure you and Z, plus myself, were going to be ok. Because I didn’t know if dads mind was going to think up any other silly things that might hurt anyone else. So I took you, and Z and we moved out of the house where dad was, and back to Canada to live with Nanna and Nonno.

I wanted to make sure everyone was safe. And now, like I’ve told you before, dad takes medicine to help his voices go away, so he’s not scared anymore. But the medicine also makes him very tired. Which is why when he visits you and Z, he just likes to sit there and doesn’t talk much or have the energy to play with you.

This whole time Little E was taking it all in and asking a few questions here and there, but then he asked this ‘how did you disobey?’

It occurred to me that Little E STILL remembers what happened to me (he was unfortunately in the room) and also still views it as a spanking. I do spank my kids very rarely, but I don’t beat them like E did me. I think because I closely monitor what my kids watch on TV or see online etc, this was the only ‘violence’ he’d really known. So the only word he had to describe one person hitting another in any fashion, was spanking. And therefore, since I obviously don’t spank my kids for fun, he associated it with the fact that I must’ve been being disciplined for something I’d done wrong in the eyes of E. Totally reasonable though process for a 6 year old.

So I explained that (please bear with my very basic explanation, he’s 6 not 16, I had to make sure I was on his level) husbands and wives don’t have to obey each other like kids should obey their parents. Parents have to teach kids because you’re still learning and we are there to guide you. But moms and dads should be a team. Not one the boss of the other. I’m still on your team Little E, but I’m coach. There’s a difference. Ok? He kinda nodded but I think he still wanted to know what I did wrong to warrant such a ‘spanking’. Probably so he could avoid that behavior in the future and not get in such “trouble” himself.

But I reassured him that dads medication made sure that when he’s with Little E and Z, he’s ok. Meanwhile my mind is screaming out a million ‘what if’s’  And reminded him that we’re doing great and having fun living in our house with just the 3 of us.

That’s when he pulled out “Maybe I’ll have another dad one day, that would live with us!” And I said yep. (and then of course the tears welled up, seriously what is wrong with me these days) One day mommy will maybe start dating a man and then get married and you and him can talk about him being your dad. Because Little E, E will always be your dad, but… and then he interrupted and said ‘but then I could have two dads!’ With a big smile on his face. I said ‘one day, maybe.’

And in my head simply thought how much I wanted that for him as he joined his sister in the park.


-Metallica/Mama Said-