I love Fort Worth.
But, I'm not sure Fort Worth is going to love us back.
Why? Well, because of our daughter.
During the Presidential Inauguration, I simply sat her 22-month self down in front of the television with a craft and told her, "This is an important day. That is our president. His name is Obama."
"OOOOBAMA!" She explained.
"Yes, exactly," I said.
"OOOOBAMA!" She said again. And again. And again. And every time the camera zoomed to his face, which was, of course, a lot.
I didn't think anything of it until she noticed him again during the evening news that night.
"OOOOBAMA" She said with her tiny pointer finger extended.
"Wow." B and I looked at each other. I laughed. "Well, she's certainly a little patriot."
The next day we visited the library for story time. A woman sitting behind us with her children was wearing an Obama shirt. "OOOBAMA!" She screamed, disrupting the story time and leaving the woman with the t-shirt rethinking her whole ensemble for that day.
"Yes, that's him." I smiled at the woman, and then to the woman sitting next to her with her children. I didn't want to create any preconceptions about us. Whether we voted for him or not was not a make or break it point I wanted to bring up with any of Ava's potential story time friends' moms. But suddenly, I felt a little exposed. I mentioned patriotism again and they laughed politely. Whew. That was a close one.
Leaving the library thirty minutes later, I held Ava's hand and walked to the door. I suddenly saw her little finger extended again.
No. I wanted to whisper. Because I saw where she was looking.
"OOOBAMA!" She screamed. And there, sitting in the cozy library was a woman typing along on the computer, who was also African American.
I think Ava's feet may have left the ground then. Because we were almost running out the door and my eyes were glued onto the car. I didn't look to see if the woman noticed my tiny girl's yells, and I couldn't bear to see if anyone else noticed either. We just had to leave.
On our way to lunch, I thought, Maybe it was a fluke. Maybe she thought that was the same woman wearing the Obama shirt.
"OOBAMA!" I heard again from the backseat.
I turned my head to see two Middle Eastern men walking by the car.
Nope, it wasn't a fluke.