“There are all kinds of courage,’ said Dumbledore, smiling. ‘It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”
J.K. Rowling, “Harry Potter And the Philosopher’s Stone”
This is a tough post to write. But, I think it is important.
I have thought recently about many battles that I have lost lately.
My beautiful, lovely, unique daughter told me today that the reason she cut her hair is because one of the many originators of classic ballet that I showed her, a woman I thought was easy to relate to, was Coco Chanel. Her heroine. The original creator of the angled bob. (And frankly, a lot of fashion we all adore.)
It would be easy for me to say: “Yes! Embrace that fashion icon!”
Whilst it is true that my own ancestors derive from Miles Standish, that original WASP, my husband’s ancestors do NOT. My husband went to the inner-most roads of rural Poland to track down his heritage. And he found the village where his great-uncle and many cousins were slaughtered. My college boyfriend, a beloved friend in the end, was named for one of the very worst towns associated with the Holocaust. And he deeply regretted that. And so, it greatly pains me to say this.
But the truth is:
My children are the great, great grandnieces and nephews of Holocaust survivors.
And I will never, ever forget. No matter how beguiling my daughter’s fashion role model is. No matter how WASP-y people tell me my son looks. They are the product of much suffering.
I will never forget.
And I hope: they won’t either.
I don’t really know what to say other than: differences matter. But not that much.