Confession #4:  

“I grew up telling everyone that I was mixed with Puerto Rican just because other people assumed I was. A lot of them seem to be fascinated by my features that were different from the average ‘black girl’so I just rolled with it because I would always wonder why my hair was so different from all my black friends.  I was starting to believe it, not really knowing the truth.”

I was hired to work as a promotional model at the Neighborhood Award Expo here in Atlanta, GA. I was contacted by a sweet woman who lives in Philly and was looking for models to promote her natural hair care product. I was excited, not only because it was paid but because I wanted to start breaking into the promotions and brand ambassador industry and I thought this was a great start, and plus who doesn’t want to get their hair done for free just to be on display. So I agreed to work for her that weekend. I won’t lie, it was a longggg day of seeing hundreds of women walk by the booth asking questions about the product, asking to touch our hair and trying to pursuade people to purchase the product. I was a little annoyed because a lot of women actually frowned their face up at the fact that my hair wasn’t ‘natural’ or course enough for them to believe in the effectiveness of the product because it didn’t look like there’s. Just because I wasn’t born with course thick hair doesn’t mean that I don’t have ‘natural’ hair. Why is it that when you have, fine, wavy, curly long hair as a black woman that you have to be ‘mixed’ and that my hair technically isn’t ‘natural’ because of my supposing mixed race.

Honestly, I don’t have a clue what I could be ‘mixed’ with I grew up telling everyone that I was mixed with Puerto Rican just because other people assumed I was. A lot of them seem to be fascinated by my features that were different from the average ‘black girl’ so I just rolled with it because I would always wonder why my hair was so different from all my black friends.  I was starting to believe it, not really knowing the truth. My mom and dad never really talked much about our family history so from what I know, my mom is all black and my dad is black with the same texture hair as me.

So when people ask “Are you mixed with something?” I simply reply, I’m black. And every time I get the ‘yea right’ or ‘are you sure’ look I continue to stand in confidence because hair should never estimate how ‘black’ we are. And if I ever take a test that may reveal that I am mixed with something I will still continue to embrace my blackness. Yes my baby hair is poppin, I have no problems with getting my hair wet, I sleep without a scarf sometimes and it may only take me 5 minutes to do my hair in the morning. So while others may think that I am ‘privileged’ to have it so easy, I’m unapologetic about whom God has created me to be and understand that he made black women in many different shades and features.  So while I continue to blast ‘I Am Not My Hair’ by India Arie, I will always embrace the skin I’m in.

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