When I look into a mirror, I do not see me. I see two extreme versions of myself. One is an African American girl- her hair is a kinky curly Afro crown upon her head, her eyes a deep dark, coffee brown. The other is a Caucasian girl- her hair pin straight and a fiery red, her eyes a grassy green.
These versions of myself are forever arguing. Always fighting for control.
It is difficult being both the slave and the slave master. Hard being both the oppressor and the oppressed. How do I make the most out of being biracial when half of me is fighting the other?
And I don’t think my parents even realize that they birthed a Civil War.
My body is the war zone. You can see dead slaves in my eyes and hear their cries for freedom in my heartbeat. You can feel the beatings given by slave owners in my hands and can taste the privilege on my lips.
But you wouldn’t notice the war. Only the red curls and the patches of freckles. You dream of having mixed children of your own- not because you love someone of another race but because mixed kids look aesthetically pleasing.
You spend all your time “hearting” images of mixed babies on Instagram and mix and matching features from all the races as to create the “perfect” mixed child.
It was you who created this war. You who asked me, “What are you?” You who told me, “You should have been born white.” You who said, “You act more black than white.”
You will deny your affiliation with the war. Because of course, you “don’t see race.” And you “aren’t racist.”
I never said you were. But the fact is- you formed a box around my race. Told me I have to act a certain way. Said that if I happened to enjoy basketball that must be the black side of me. Said that if I drank Starbucks then I’m more white.
I am so tired of the war- of my identity crisis.
Because whether or not you notice it, I am human.