July 2013, Indianapolis, Indiana
Mister E was our third Safe Families placement. His mama had daycare set up and wanted us to keep taking him every day, so we did.
Each morning, I would wake up E, he would eat his cereal, we would drive to daycare, and he would roll down the window and yell at people on the street.
E’s daycare was, by my observation, made up completely of black children, parents, and teachers. About a week into our time with E, we walked into daycare to find a professionally-dressed woman sitting at a booth set up inside the entrance.
“Hi,” she said. “We’re polling mothers about their use of daycare for their children. Would you be interested in participating?”
It took me a while to process, but once I did, I told her E was not actually my child, smiled to myself, and walked him to his room. It felt so nice to be assumed to be the mom of a little boy who did not look like me.