As the year comes to a close, we tend to reflect on where we have been and where we are going. There is no question that the world is changing. The 2010 Census demographic results will not be available until February, but I am sure that they will show a marked increase in individuals claiming two or more races. This population has remained invisible for much too long. Many individuals with a mixed race background have not fit neatly into traditionally defined identity boxes and now there is at least a way to honor one's heritage without simply being labeled as 'other'.
I am thankful to be surrounded by the positive examples of awareness and acceptance of the highbred nation. Last year my family moved from Brooklyn, NY to Atlanta, GA. Brooklyn is a city rich with diversity; in many ways it celebrates diversity and multiculturalism. I had some concerns about what we would find in Georgia. Thus far I have been inspired and encouraged. We moved to a wonderfully diverse neighborhood. Tonight we will be gathering with other neighbors at the home of a couple who have an adopted son who is biracial. Other guests include a single mother with a beautiful adopted girl from Guatemala and a White couple with a Mexican adopted daughter as well as a biological daughter (the one with brown skin, hair and eyes; the other with fair skin, blond hair and blue eyes). Our neighbors are White, Black, Asian, Latino and every other hybrid in between with children who are just as diverse in their racial and cultural makeup. Our neighbors are gay, straight, christian, agnostic, atheist, democrats, republicans, single income, dual income... you get the picture.
In addition to the move, I was one of 28 fortunate enough to be accepted into a competitive clinical mental health counseling program. Diversity is so important in this program that it is infused into the curriculum. We even have a class that is completely devoted to social and cultural issues. I see a commitment to diversity in my workplace. There are intentional conversations about ensuring that our community successfully engage in intercultural activities which promote competence in their lives. I look at my wonderful network of friends and marvel at the range of diversity.
As 2010 comes to a close, I feel thankful. And I feel hope. I feel hope that my sweet highbred daughter will grow up in a world that embraces her and celebrates her and does not try to confine her to a box with a label. I wish you all many blessings and look forward to sharing with you in the coming year. Happy New Year and God bless you!