It seems like many moons ago since I first met Maria, my namesake. We met at a blog event and have been following each ever since. I enjoy seeing what she gets up to with her family, when they are out and about. It became clear to me that we enjoy doing similar activities. Like myself, she as Chinese mixed race children. However, as a she’s Chinese mum, I was curious; would Maria’s motherhood journey bear any similarities to mine, as black mother. This is Maria’s interview, where she talks about her mixed heritage family life.
The Motherhood Journey
TTT: Tell us a bit about yourself?
M: My name’s Maria, and I live in Surrey with my husband and two boys. I was born and raised here in the UK, but my parents both emigrated from Hong Kong to England. I’m the eldest of three children, so I’ve always been the “responsible” one.
Since I’ve had children, I enjoy exploring and finding new places to visit on days out. Taking photos is a big passion of mine, and I am always snapping something or other.
TTT: How has your motherhood journey been so far?
M: Motherhood certainly has had its challenges, but overall, I have loved it. I will never forget those first two weeks after bringing my eldest home from hospital. My husband and I were literally like rabbits in headlights; we didn’t have a clue what we were doing and didn’t understand how other parents coped with having a newborn.
I think we were in shock! My boys are 7 and 10 now, and so many people have told us that parenting only gets harder as they get older and I can well believe that! I am not looking forward to the moody teenage years.
Mixed Heritage Family Life
M: What is the racial mix of your children?
My boys are 50% Chinese, 25% English, 25% Dutch.
TTT: Do your children speak about being mixed race? If so, what does being mixed race mean to them?
M: We have had conversations about being mixed race before and it’s something they have been brought up to be proud of. I would say being mixed race is a positive for them as they get to experience two different cultures.
TTT: Do you think they identifies with one part of their heritage more? If yes/no why do you think that is?
M: At aged 7 and 10, I don’t think it’s something my boys have thought about really.
Celebrating Cultural Heritage
TTT: How do you ‘celebrate’ your family’s heritage in your daily life?
M: Certain things do creep in on a daily basis. Such as my youngest sons love of eating rice and my eldest son’s love of eating meat on the bone. They also love using chopsticks whenever they can too.
We celebrate things like Chinese New Year, where the boys will be given Red Envelopes, and we will have a huge Chinese dinner.
TTT: Are any of your fears for their future due to their ethnicity? How do you manage with your fears?
M: Fears for them as they grow up and become more and more independent are natural and certainly will be the same for any parent. With regards to their ethnicity, I do worry that they will experience prejudice. I did when I was growing up in the UK, and while things have moved on since then, there is still so much that needs to be done to combat racism and fight for equality.
TTT: What is your biggest wish for your children?
M: To grow up to be caring young individuals who will stand up for what’s right, to follow their dreams – no matter how big or small. And above all, for them to be healthy and happy.
If you have missed the previous interviews from the Mixed Heritage Family series, click here to read more.