My Daughter Doesn’t Look Like Me

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My daughter is mixed-race.
So, who does she look like?

When a baby is on its way, there is usually quite a bit of excitement in the air. After all, who wouldn’t want to see a tiny version of themselves learning, blunderingly, how to be a human and to function – more or less – in the society we know?

At some point, talk will begin to circulate about potential characteristics the baby might inherit. “Will (s)he get my hair colour? Will (s)he get your eyes? I only pray (s)he doesn’t get your teeth!”

Or something like that. But I found that, considering I knew my husband’s darker features would probably overrule my own much fairer skin, hair, and eyes, I wasn’t really sure I should expect a baby that looked anything like me. Looking back, I am relieved to remember that it didn’t really bother me all that much. Besides the fact that I have seven siblings (yes, you read that right) who look MUCH too similar to me, I was much more interested in what her brain would be like. Yeah, lame, I know 🙄 But it’s true.

Did I care at all, though? Yes, I guess I did to a point, particularly because I had spent so long making her that I felt it was only fair that a trace of me should be left on her.

So, when the day came that I evicted her from my womb, I looked down at that scrunchy little baby that was placed on my chest… and she looked nothing like me. At all.

Truth be told, I’m not sure she looked like anyone at that point. New babies often look more like mushrooms than their parents for those first few days – at least in my experience 😄

Prior to that moment, I thought I might have been a little disappointed if I didn’t see a resemblance, but I wasn’t. To be honest, I didn’t feel much other than exhausted and relieved to be finished with labour. Can I get an amen? 🙌

Later on, when I got a better chance to inspect this new little person, I felt she looked quite a bit more like my husband, but I was content to see a couple traits from my side had forced their way through 👍🏻

What we found in the first year of her life was that which parent Valeria looked more like would go in cycles. Sometimes her skin appeared darker, her nose broader, and her face rounder, like her dad’s, and other times her skin lighter, her bottom lip bigger, and her eyes scrunchier when she smiled, like mine. Now that she’s over a year old, who is she starting to look more like?

The short answer to this question is… I have no clue. Both of us? Neither one of us? Who cares. In the end, what she is is a perfect mix of me and the man I love, and anything that is a product of love is bound to be beautiful.

-Jen

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