Wednesday, March 26, 2014

How I Learned to Stop Pretending I Was Someone I'm Not

Within my first semester at California State University, Dominguez Hills, I realized my friends fit into two different categories.

The majority of them understood that I was Afro-PanameƱa. And then there were some of my black friends who never grasped the concept of an Afro-Latina. 
At the time I couldn’t understand why it was so difficult for them to understand. But I figured it had something to do with them not understanding the difference between race and cultural background.  
I quickly learned that because they only saw my race, they expected me to have a similar background to theirs. But once they learned that wasn't the case, they started to view me as strange.
They thought I was weird because I listened to "Spanish music" like salsa, merengue, and reggaeton instead of only hip-hop and R&B. They were always stunned and shocked when I pronounced Spanish words correctly. And some of them couldn't get past the fact that I didn't grow up eating soul food.
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