Golden Lucy's Spiral Journal

Going on 87...Savoring and Surviving the Senior Years

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Darling Lily Ana

We took a drive this afternoon. The sounds of 4th of July family celebrations were everywhere. It was impossible to ignore the packs of pets and children running wild in yards, driveways and occasionally darting into the street to retrieve a ball or Frisbee. The adults lounging on the lawn or whacking volleyballs and softballs, raucously approved. Due to extreme fire conditions the din of fireworks was absent but neighborhoods seem to make up for it with good-natured noise. And then I saw something.

I was vicariously enjoying at all the excitement and I didn't notice it at first. However, as far as I could tell in passing, every "family" group was a combination of every race and color. When we got back to our townhouse we went to the clubhouse. The families swimming, playing tennis and socializing on the green also were also a complete racial mix.

I thought about how times have changed in my lifetime in regard to whom we consider "family." I lived for years in a "gentile" community where no one ever suspected I was Jewish---and believe me, I wanted it that way! Or how about a black man with a white woman? As Tevye exclaimed, "Unthinkable!"

Ditto for (among others) Mexicans, Asian and gay folks when it came to making them really part of our "family." However, this new generation of American society has progressed more than I could have dreamed---or dreaded. I'm not going to speculate on the cause for the cultural attitude adjustment---though I suspect, like most things, it has something to do with the internet and global economy. I just know about me and mine.

Every one of my precious and educated grandchildren has chosen a mate that is distinctly one of the "others." Today I count an brilliant Asian immigrant, a Nigerian/English Canadian expat, a beautiful Latina, and a Swedish/American African as part of my immediate family. The kids call it "hybrid vigor." And after some personal attitude adjustment I call it a beautiful mix.

Our family patois has produced two delicious grandchildren. An earlier blog introduced you to Cole, the 4 year old solo-flying sophisticate who knows how to hail a Manhattan taxi. Cole's 18 month old sister Lily Ana just returned from NYC last week---however she allowed her mother to go along. Here's photo of Lily and her Mama Mer taking a bite of the Big Apple.

I'll just let you guess what the "family" combination is!


  • At 8:20 PM, Anonymous momma said…

    My guess is happy and loving!!!

  • At 8:54 PM, Anonymous Maria said…

    Yes, Lucy, it is a wonderful new world, but to me, it has been so slow coming and there is still an element of hatred out there that I abhorr. Then there is the problem of Gay Rights which of course is dear to my heart. I do believe that one will change with the younger generation. Hopefully, my grand babies will not be harmed by that particular prejudice.

    By the way, we lived reversed lives. When I lived in Woodland Hills, I was the only gentile in the neighborhood and I felt so welcomed and loved. It has always been my very favorite neighborhood and I learned so much about life from my neighbors.

  • At 9:49 PM, Blogger Miss Cellania said…

    Have you seen my family portrait? We are definitely a rainbow! But we live in a town that vitually all white, where my kids must attend a private school to be around other minorities. Change is slow here in the hills. Just another reason I'm looking for a new place to live.

    All your kids and grandkids are lovely. I think its the happy smiles that make it so!

  • At 12:31 AM, Blogger OldOldLady Of The Hills said…

    I love the idea of people falling in love and getting together, weather it's a "marriage" or just a "union" and where we are all not defined by color, creed, religion or sexual orientation...THAT is the world living together and loving together yet retaining each one's individuality. You should post a Family Picture one day Lucy, with all the Grandbabies and Significant Others and Generations covered, too...(If you already have, do forgive me my dear...I either missed it or my memory is faulty, or both! lol)
    Glad you are back from your trip and I hope you had a wonderful time!

  • At 1:28 AM, Anonymous claude said…

    Your own wonderful family quilt, as momma said, must be happy and loving. And I would add loved.
    Good that you were able to take a trip to Santa Fé and had a good time!
    Great post again!

  • At 5:57 AM, Anonymous naomi dagen bloom said…

    lucy, what a thoughtful and important post. discovered you were back when i read your comment at claude's blog. how i wish that your comments were the july 4 messages from the scruffy white house in washington.

    "hybrid vigor" is a perfect phrase. it is a concept that our two children, raised as secular jews, have spoken about as important in their selection of mates. it's worked for them and for us, so now i have language for the idea that i can share.

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  • At 8:00 AM, Anonymous Terri said…

    So happy to see you're back, Lucy. (I've missed you)
    Mama is stunning and little Lily Ana is just gorgeous.
    I agree with everything said here...the definition of "family" has evolved over the years from the staunchy traditional to the essence of what "family" should be. Not the color, creed, sexual orientation or ethnic is simply LOVE. That's it...that's all it takes to make a family. And why so many people just don't seem to get "it" I fail to understand.

  • At 1:25 PM, Blogger Rain said…

    what a beautiful picture and I think it's a major improvement when people look past race, religion or culture to the person. That means if they are good or bad you don't have to deny it because of some preconceived opinion. More power to all such families (mine is also a mix *s*)

  • At 10:31 PM, Anonymous joared said…

    Your family sounds like a healthy mix, as evidenced in the beautiful picture you posted. Our family, our friends, the neighborhood, reflect a variety of differences which I always find fascinating, but we are all so much the same in so many ways.

    I am so grateful to not have had my mind cluttered up as a child with all those false perceptions about other people. I would like to believe had that been the case, I would have been intelligent enough to have rejected such ideas, as I would begin to see differently. What we teach our children by our example and our words is so critical.

    I think to have to keep such information that you were Jewish a secret, Lucy, instead of being able to be openly proud of such an ancient heritage is heartbreaking to say the least.

    No one should ever have to grow up and live in that manner. I wonder when you finally felt comfortable and trusting that you could be open about the fact?

    I find it so hard to understand how such attitudes develop and persist; basically ignorance, I guess.

    All I can think is, how much all our lives would be deprived if we did not have each other.

  • At 11:27 AM, Blogger kenju said…

    Joared, I think those attitudes develop in ignorance. No one who is well educated can still think that way, can they?

    Lucy, your family is so beautiful and is a wonderful tribute to the mom who taught them all.

  • At 1:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi LucyD, whatever you and yours may be, don't make a bit o' difference to me. Hmmm, did I just make a rhyme? If I did I'd better keep my day job, yikes!--a poet I definitely am not.

    Anyway, all I saw in the first picture on your blogpage was two very beautiful "girls". One was a grown-up and one was a child. And that's it. What else should there have been?

    It hasn't been very long since African-Americans and Caucasians were banned from getting married to each other, remember? It was---Oh Horror!---against the law. Why do hypocritical politicians still think LOVE between two people can be legislated?? So incredibly stupid, isn't it?

    Ditto to today and the flap about gay marriages. Politicians are still stupid, still hypocritical and still think Love and Commitment between two people can be legislated.

    Our Republic swings back and forth like a pendulum....silly causes always fall by the wayside sooner or later. Unless somehow the U.S. Constitution becomes completely irrelevant, there will be [legal] marriage between gay and lesbian people, there will NOT be a stupid amendment concerning the burning of the flag, and so on.

    All it takes to push the pendulum the correct way is to get rid of the Republican majority in both houses right now!

    Well, guess it will have to wait till this coming November....and then 2008, but you know what I mean, right?

  • At 8:35 AM, Blogger Joy Des Jardins said…

    Beautiful picture of Lily Ana and her Mama Mer.

    I'm so glad to be back Lucy....I really missed you all. What a wonderful time our family had together. I miss the babes already...

    Hope you're feeling well and wonderful. Take care...

  • At 9:20 AM, Blogger saz said…

    I don't know where I heard this but "if God didn't mean for the races to mix he wouldn't have made their children so beautiful".....seems very true for your lovely family.

  • At 5:06 PM, Blogger Suzann said…

    Lucy - hooray, you have returned - you and your family are beautiful - we still have a long way to go in eliminating many types of disparities but the diversity of our children's families does change attitudes and helps to move society forward. Glad you are back. Hugs

  • At 6:52 PM, Blogger Jamie Dawn said…

    The family combo in that photo is simply BEAUtiful!
    Red and Yellow, Black and White; they are precious in His sight...
    I'm so glad you enjoyed your holiday. Too bad there weren't fireworks. We had tons of fireworks... the kind that are illegal in CA. My son and his friends had Roman Candle fights. It was crazy!!

    Happy Weekend, dear Lucy.

  • At 10:16 PM, Blogger Savtadotty said…

    "Hybrid Vigor" is indeed a good phrase. I'm glad you enjoyed your holiday jaunt. I'm still on mine out here in sunny California.

  • At 5:25 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    My WiFi connection won't let me stay here's my brief comment...

    The world is not black and white.. it's in living color - as it should be.

    They are both beautiful Lucyd!

  • At 4:18 PM, Anonymous Mike (ex scientia) said…

    What a fitting tribute to the 4th! And I LOVED that darling photo!!!!

  • At 11:33 AM, Blogger Jamie Dawn said…

    Hello, Lucy.

  • At 7:40 PM, Blogger Cowtown Pattie said…

    What a sweet picture! Gorgeous girls indeed.

    Your outlook on life is always refreshing, Lucy. You're a jewel.

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