Saturday, 26 January 2013

I am, you are, we are Australian.

I love Australia, I really do. I am such a proud Aussie. Not the southern cross tattoo, made in Aus car sticker type of proud. Rather, the quietly humble Australian who knows how lucky she is.

I always get nervous around Australia Day each year. I hate racism, it terrifies me. I hate hearing and seeing people be judged because of the country they were born in, or even the country their parents were born in. Unfortunately, a lot of Aussie's think they have more right to be here because they were born here, or their parents were born here, even their grandparents.

My parents were born here, my grandparents were born here, my great grandparents were born here (well most of them) but this is no more my country than it is yours, or anyone's that calls Australia home.

My four best friends are first generation Australians. My husband is third generation.

My girlfriend Steff has a Scottish father and a Polish mother. Her father moved here with his parents when his Dad was offered a job here. Her mother came here and met her father, shortly after her entire family followed. Steff told me it was a snow ball effect, because of her father her mother moved here and therefore the rest of her family.

Cait's Mum is a ten pound pom. Her mother's family moved between New Zealand and Australia before settling here for the long haul.

James' Babcia came to Australia from Poland after their farm was invaded by the nazi's. As the story goes they thought the boat was headed to America, instead they arrived here. They call it fate.

Hannah's father is German. I'm not too sure of their story but I know they feel proud to call Australia home, and that my child hood was spent eating his delicious German cooking.

Rebecca's mother is Italian. In the 1950's many immigrants were encouraged to move to Australia to escape the war, and for better job opportunity.

In fact, when I think about it most of my friends are either first or second generation Australians.

They all fought to be here alongside my ancestors, hoping for a better life. You know, to live the dream.

I was always so jealous of their heritage. I thought it was so cool that they 'belonged' somewhere.

Now as a twenty something mother I realise we all belong in the same place. Australia is a young country, we are still building our own culture. Our culture is based on freedom, days at the beach, nights in the bush, acknowledging our countries origins and (my favourite) the culture of those who built our country- the British, Chinese, Polish, German, Vietnamese, Indian, Sri lankian, Thai, indigenous Australian, and the list goes on.

So instead of shying away from the racism that may exist I now reveal in the multiculturalism that builds this country. Weather you are born here or brought here, a visitor or a citizen, if you are in Australia at this moment you are an Aussie and we are lucky to have you.

I can't wait to pass this lesson and love on to Oliver, but I know he already appreciates the multiculturalism through his love of Thai and Indian food!

So Happy Australia Day everyone, thanks for being a part of this beautiful country that we are so lucky to have.

Mama J xx

No comments:

Post a Comment