This is a good article…My Brown Baby
It is not something I had to “deal” with yet because Em is only 8 months old.
Husband is from West Africa and I’m…well…American.
I say it like that because I grew up all over this country.
Because of my complexion I’ve been asked, “What are you?” since I was in the 5th grade.
I remember the first time somebody asked me.
We were living in Hawaii and I was on the school playground during recess. One of the girls asked me,“What’s your nationality?”
I didn’t understand the question.
I didn’t know how to answer.
I think I said something like, “American” or “I don’t know.”
In Hawaii, most people are very proud of their heritage or nationality.
I remember girls saying, “I’m Filipino.” “I’m Samoan” “I’m Japanese” or “I’m from the Big Island”
Well, between then, 1989, and 2011 I’ve been asked that question about 100 billion times.
Maybe it is me, but I can’t help but think that people are a little disappointed when I tell them “I’m Caucasian”.
I’m sure its just me.
Maybe I’m disappointed that I’m “just white.”
So I spin it a little and say, “I’m a white girl with brown skin”
People seem to get a kick out of that.
It is funny. I can almost ALWAYS tell when someone is about to ask me…ALMOST.
They look at me…sort of sideways, but almost always with a smile but usually a little nervous. Like they are afraid of what I might tell them.
“Soooooo, I know it’s a weird question, buuuttttt, what are you?’
“WHAT, HOW DARE YOU ASK ME THAT!!!!!! YOU ARE SO RACIST!”
Nah. I just say what I always say…”Oh I get asked that a lot, I’m just a white girl with brown skin”
I think Em is headed down the same road.