When I was at primary school, and all these kids would touch my hair and rub my skin to see if the colour would come off and I would think ‘It’s just skin … what do you expect?’
When being 'different' is your normal you wonderif a world could ever exist where you don't stand out. You contemplate how life would be if you looked like most others did?
Why make it harder for me to stay true to my culture and love my skin colour?
Why take my culture yet not me?
Why make my sisters so weak that they feel that they have to bleach their skin colour to belong and be excepted by the mainstream?
I say and asked these questions because if this was not the reason then why only show in the media that in order to be beautiful you need to be white.
I am proud to be black. When stereotypes arise, I remind myself way up the family tree, I am connected to a long line of strong and powerful independent black women.
Being black in Australia means a complete disregard for the right to ones personal space, having stranger come up to you and touch your hair swooning over this month’s hairstyle. Being black in Australia means you are never born a white canvas, instead you are marked with the stereotypes of a black person, people assume you are into hip-hop, play basketball or can sing.
I now choose to embody the resilience pride and Grace of my ancestors. For, I now know they were born free, advanced and civilised before colonisation and slavery.
I will no longer choose to see my coloured brothers and sisters as anything less than exceptional human beings who have had to overcome a system of oppression that has tried in all its might, for many generations, to wash all out all colour in this world.
Being a girl of colour in a society where the majority of the people are white I have to get used to all the different ways people approach me. From being asked what kind of rap music you listen to, to getting told “you don’t sound black”, “How do you wash your hair, “you’re pretty for a black girl” or “you’re not that black so that’s ok”. As if being black is such a bad thing.
The "colour" of my skin is the root of my history, my ancestors and most importantly my future. I will not let the pigments of my skin define me however, and I will not let it be defined by others.