Have you ever had a loved one so sick you wished that you could take their place and shoulder their pain for them? This is exactly how it feels when a life is lived with a loved one who carries the mark of his ancestors with a swarthy skin color. One grows up seeing the unfair suffering and jabs they must endure over such a trite circumstances dealing with only their complexion which actually, a thing of beauty, is made to have forced on them the thought that they are not equal in some way or another.

The story would end with on a happy note to say they overcome all and go on to be successful in their life and living. It is true they may become just that but as an observer it is often the duty of that person who is close to them to know the pain and insults never are not a part of sadness.

As a great-grandchild is brought to me who is also a swarthy beauty I am already seeing the pain in her eyes just as I saw that in my brother’s eyes so many times.

So, here I am, at the edge of frail living f rom the last siege of sickness but am given strength to once again take the sword in my hand and fight this child’s battles, rather to teach her to fight her own battles.

So, it was yesterday at the age of five my great grandchild has a total comprehension of the turning of a flat circle into a cone to use for “ice cream, a home in a tee-pee, or a clown’s party hat.”

She came to me with a shadow of pain in her eyes and left with the jaunty party hat on her head while holding a fancy dress we made out of the sleeve of one of my old party dresses for her new swarthy Barbie doll.

“Look!” She told her other grandmother. “Isn’t my dollie beautiful?”

“Indeed! Indeed! She is,” Both grandmothers chimed in at the same time.