I am sitting in my living room, gleeful at the fact that my husband and two little ones are sleeping through the FireworkGeddon outside while I can type under the glow of falling pyrotechnics. I couldn’t help but think of how the 4th of July smacks of that ol’ American spirit – showy, boisterous, repetitive, but so charming that you couldn’t turn away and ignore it if you tried.
I love this country. I really do. It has given me an interesting departure from my Canadian upbringing, a kickstart to a new direction in life, and a husband, two kids, and all the trimmings. And now that my sassier Canadian side has mellowed out and stopped judging Americans for saying Paw-sta instead of Paa-staa, I enjoy knowing a good crew of people that defeat all the stereotypes I had packed in my suitcase when I landed here ten years ago.
Stereotypes and cliches are misguided attempts to blanket a person or situation with assumptions based on a previous encounter, experience, or secondhand account. It feels like they can sum up something effectively enough…but then I think of my children and the knowledge have of how unique and independent they are. Yes, they are likely just like every other child their age in so many ways but there will be something subtle or strange that only I know about them. I wouldn’t want a stranger to think that he really understood my children without having talked or spent time with them.