I was pleasantly surprised to see an essay by Veronica Chambers about mistaken identity in the June issue of Essence. Chambers is the mother of a beautiful 2-year-old little girl, who looks a lot like her white father. As a result, Chambers has been mistaken as her nanny, not her mother. It’s not the typical essay for Essence, a black women’s magazine. Thank you, Essence, for realizing black mothers are raising biracial children. Thank you!
I am a fan of Chambers’ writing. I even have a copy of her memoir around here somewhere. I nodded my head as I read her essay, because I could have written it, with one exception. Chambers said she was “dressed in a Lanvin blouse, jeans and Jimmy Choo heels” when she took cupcakes to her daughter’s school.
Umm, what’s a Lanvin blouse? A quick search revealed blouses that cost upward of $780. Sheesh. I am all too familiar with jeans, and I have heard of Jimmy Choo shoes. The latter go for about the same as the Lanvin blouse. Thank goodness, I didn’t inherit the high-heels shoe gene, and we all know I couldn’t even bring myself to buy a BlackBerry that I need.
For the record, when I grow up, maybe when Simone is a heart surgeon and Nadia is a corporate attorney, I want a Lanvin blouse, jeans and some Jimmy Choo heels.
The essay does end with a bit of advice for mothers who may find themselves being mistaken for the nanny. Tracee Ellis Ross, daughter of the magnificent Diana Ross, told Chambers that when people say strange things to her, she thinks to herself, “How embarrassing–for you!” I’ll keep that in the back of my mind for the next time I find myself in a similar situation. In the meantime, I have a heart surgeon and corporate attorney to raise.