The news that you have a baby on the way should be a beautiful moment.
I shared my news recently. My first child is due on 11/11/22. As always the internet surprised me with unexpected reactions.
Massive email unsubscribes after sharing the news
I shared the story with my large email list. And I asked for any parenting tips so I could start to research my way through this new challenge.
Within minutes of me emailing it out, I got one of the largest spikes in email unsubscribes I’ve had from any email I’ve ever sent.
It came across as strange.
How could someone having a kid make you want to delete them from your life?
I shared the good news on my other channels too
That’s when the crazies flooded in.
Yes, my wife is asian. Yes, I’m Australian. So I guess we have to slap the useless label of mixed-race baby on my unborn child. A few people said “your baby is going to look weird.”
“Will the baby have black hair or blonde hair? Will the baby have white skin or asian colored skin?”
Honestly, I have no idea.
Right now I’m focused on my soon-to-be-born kid. It doesn’t matter what color the kid’s skin is to me. I’m just grateful to be having a daughter and will treat her like royalty either way.
Many couples try to fall pregnant and can’t. So I’m already extremely lucky.
A friend of mine has a son about my age.
His son was born with severe ADHD (I think that’s the correct term). The condition is so severe his kid requires round the clock care. Every morning he gets into the shower to help his son wash himself.
What struck me as beautiful was this line he said to me:
“When my son was born with this severe condition I thought it was a burden on me. I thought I was so unlucky. But now all these years later I see my son as a gift. I wouldn’t change anything about this experience.”
The government has been trying to put his son into a home for years. He has resisted every one of their requests.
“We can look after him just fine!”
Moral of the story: you love your child no matter what.
There’s nothing weird about mixed-race babies
I’ll say it loudly for the deaf people at the back of the room…
There is only one race: human.
Trying to work out the race of my unborn child is near-impossible. On my side the heritage is mixed between British, Australian, Irish and many other soon-to-be determined cultures that can be revealed with a DNA test.
(Fun fact: my last name is Cook if you go a few generations back. I’m a direct decedent of Captain Cook.)
On my wife’s side she has heritage from Australia, Asia, and even a bit of Russian as she grew up in a place right on the border.
If you mix all this goodness together I have no idea what you get. Human?
We all descend from one place
I’d like to offer a counterargument to the people who have issues with mixed-race babies — courtesy of a great thinker, writer and data analyst, Tim Urban.
If you pay close attention you’ll notice a crucial data point: your great grandmother (to the power of 497), no matter who she was, was a gather in a hunter-gather tribe.
In other words, we all descend from the same place.
I seriously don’t care
If you spend your time walking through life, trying not to walk on landmines, you still will. People can be strange. Internet culture makes ideas even stranger.
Sometimes I feel the mixed-race critics are serious.
Other times I think they’re just taking the piss for entertainment purposes. In the end I don’t care. I’m doing the best I can with the information I have.
Raising a kid isn’t going to be easy. Looking after my pregnant wife is already harder than I thought. Everyone’s experience is different. Judging others harshly seems like a waste of time to me.
There are better things in life than worrying about what someone’s unborn child might look like.
All I want is for my daughter to be born healthy. Everything else in this process is a miracle to me anyway.
Maybe you think a white Australian and an Asian woman having a child is weird. That says more about you, and less about me. If you think this way, I suggest you take a long, hard look at yourself in the mirror.
It all boils down to this
I will love my daughter no matter what. I’ll happily cop the mixed-race pies to the face if that’s what it takes.
They say when you become a parent, you become a warrior. Your focus changes and so much of the dumb stuff in life doesn’t matter anymore.
That’s how I feel.