Looking in the mirror I see my scars, messy curls, and oversized shirt, as I try to fix myself up for the day. Sometimes I don’t want to pick up my phone because society is just depressing. Over the summer, social media was filled with constant Black deaths, which made this pandemic even harder to go through as a Black woman. Every day it was another child missing, another Black life lost, another Black Trans woman killed, another white woman abusing a Black person. After all this pain, I’d still see people online maintaining their disrespect of Black women.
Being a Black woman not surrounded by Black women is tiring.
And here I was still, in the mirror, starting the day. Changing myself to appeal to everyone, stretching myself thin. When will I be desired?
The evolution of media representation for a Black woman is limited. The choices: an animated daughter, the psychic fashionista, a dancing sensation, a multi-talented musician, or a singer. So who was I supposed to identify with, as a Black girl, way back when? Each family is different, but every girl creates a new personality, to try to adapt, to fit in with what a Black girl/woman was supposed to be. And here I was still, in the mirror, starting the day. Changing myself to appeal to everyone, stretching myself thin. When will I be desired?
For who I am. A Black woman. Seeing herself reflected back at her.
Which identity do we choose: being Black or being a woman? Shall I be the angry Black girl, the caring Black girl, or the sexual Black girl?
Black love is only given if you pass a test. Every trend is from us yet it is not acceptable for us. We were taken as entertainment, exposed to a multitude who prod and poke our features. Never able to return to our true selves; what is our identity? Which identity do we choose: being Black or being a woman? Shall I be the angry Black girl, the caring Black girl, or the sexual Black girl if I want to be desired? While I admire love in relationships, they all look the same. The colors are the same, ignoring the dominant shade. Watching her get looked over by everyone because she’s rude, aggressive, loud, angry, and controlling.
Black women were forced into a personality that we did not create.
I use all of the stereotypes when I am alone owing to the fact that even alone I stigmatize myself. Absorbing all of the thoughts into my reflection, making out a vision of myself which I do not recognize. After all these years of having a false reality, I could start to see Black women dominate. One day Black women will not be depreciated to an adjective. One day trends will not be questioned when a Black woman does it. One day I will stop erasing my personality.
Thank you, Black women, for being unapologetically you.