The Other Side

Where Do I Fit In

“What are you?” It’s a question I got a lot growing up, even from strangers. First of all, I’m a daughter of God and a human being, but if you must know – no, I’m not mixed. I could be a Latina; I could be Jewish; I could even be white, but I’m just a light-skinned black girl.

In school, I was usually one of two or three black kids in class. I played tennis – a historically white sport – with other black kids. My church’s youth group was quite diverse. My circles growing up and even now usually had some degree of variety, but in the back of my mind I find myself always thinking do I fit in. Sometimes white people don’t even know I’m black, and sometimes I’m not black enough for black people. I would either overcompensate to prove my blackness or downplay it to blend in.

When you’re obviously different, it can feel hard to find your place in the world, but that uniqueness is just what this world needs. I may sometimes feel like an anomaly, but I’m learning to be comfortable in my own skin. My uniqueness actually allows me to connect with many people.

At the end of the day, yes I am a black woman, but I am also a woman of faith, a creative, a thinker, an athlete, and so much more. I have to embrace every part of me to truly be myself. Even when I feel uncomfortable, I must believe that it’s okay to be me. I am learning to be authentically me with all people, in all situations. It is then that I am most free.

Have you ever felt out of place? Remember there’s only one you, and only you can be you. The world needs who you are.

4 replies on “Where Do I Fit In”

“Just” is not a modifier you can ever apply to who yourself. (I can say that because I know you.) What I love about this is that any one of us can decide to show up as our full selves, and every time we do, we free others to do the same.

Those thoughts are both so powerful when you really think about it. “Just” not only diminishes who you are, but it leaves out all the other aspects.

One of my spiritual leaders once told me that my very freedom causes other people to be free. That is exactly it – when we show up as our authentic selves, we empower others to do the same.

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