How long does it take for us to realise that we are all on a path, which one, now that’s the question we have to face one day or the other. Mine simply being an Indian mum of two kids who is constantly being judged, every day. Not that other mums don’t have the same thought, day in day out, my case is a bit different. I live in a country where I am a mum of the ethnic migrant group who is looked as a irritant- yes, you read it right. Apparently, we are usurping all the jobs, revenue, places, venues… you get the point. I never wanted to be bitter about the situation, but it does get to us after a while. Every day, day in and day out when you are looked at with those looks, you tend to feel small, even when you don’t have to.
I don’t live in a small or a conservative land, I live in one of the free, privileged country where the land is like a beautiful canvas painted with colors vibrant and grand. It’s Australia, and when things were tough, I always thought that its just a phase, things will be ok and people will accept the new cultures that we bring in. I still remember a conversation I had in a play ground 17 yrs ago, with a stranger, “how can you speak English like, you know- a westerner?” I never felt I should have been offended or otherwise, instead I patiently told her that we all do have English as our primary language in schools.
Years, months, days, it doesn’t matter, we work along with them, our kids go to the same schools and we live like how they do, but, just that we are different. I do get it that we eat different, talk some different languages and are still waiting to be accepted as one of their countrymen. Granted we don’t get jobs even if we are not residents or citizens, but, yet we are the aliens who are invading their space and home. We do exactly what they do, work hard, pay our taxes, obey the laws and rules and yet, we are different. But, underneath all this,our destination is the same. Home! I am home and my kids are home, we love our home, granted you don’t accept me or mine but, this is it!!!
The hardest part for me is trying to get my 18 yr old to accept that even though she considers herself an Aussie, people don’t see her as such. Her name is different and so is her color. We don’t see the same things, our opinions are different and she calls ‘me’ biased? Why because, apparently, I am not accepting the fact that today’s generation doesn’t see us as colored or otherwise. Hmm, how do I put this delicately, ehh no, they do!!! Everyone does, we do too. We are so conscious to see if we get the looks. Certain episodes have even hit the media, the amount of racial discrimination to not only us Indians, Asians, even the French!!! Weird isn’t it. Its not that I am running a campaign against what happened- but, just that how do I let my kids know that, it might take years and years for us to be accepted and not shunned. There are quite a lot of us who have taken on this battle regarding the circumstances more often than necessary. Its ok though, it has made us resilient and tolerant. We accept that we are on the short end of this particular stick, not everyone have these views and such but… yes this will be ongoing for a while at least, just for the fact that we are different. Well, aren’t we all!