As many of you know, if not from the title of this blog, I am biracial. Half black, half white. As we have found out recently through a DNA test, 62.5% white (Irish and Eastern European) and 37.5% black (Nigerian, Somali, and Kenyan), to be more specific.
Growing up with essentially two backgrounds was, for lack of a better word, cool. I grew up with a mixed culture, learning about my black heritage from my father, and my Irish roots from my mother. That being said, I always seemed to be conflicted about my African American background. Was I Irish? Was I African American? We’re my plights as an African American woman valid even though I was only half? Was I truly black if I didn’t grow up in a black community?
I grew up in Wakefield, MA, a city that I like to lovingly refer to as “Whitefield,” due to the HIGH population of white people. Looking back, I was one of very few minorities at my high school. I’m not even talking just black people, I mean that I probably graduated with 10-15 people of color total, out of a class of over 200. So safe to say I grew up in a very white environment. Which, there is nothing wrong with. I always struggled with being “too white” or “not black enough.” Something that I have learned over the past couple years is that, at the end of the day, I will always be black. It does not matter where I grew up, how I grew up, or how I acted, I would always be African American. I shouldn’t feel bad about voicing my opinions on African American issues, they are relevant to me.
Happy Martin Luther King Jr Day, folks!