I’m originally from the Detroit area, where diversity among minorities is not uncommon. About 2 years ago, I moved to Indianapolis. Since I’ve been here, the biggest question about my race has been “which one of your parents is white?”. Before, people back home would ask me what country my family was from, but never doubt my black ancestry. But here? I guess me taking care of my hair and being light skinned with strange undertones means I’m not all of the way black.

So for the purpose of defining my racial makeup, I do it as so: I am black mixed with black. I have a black islander (Afro-Cuban) parent, and a black indigenous (Native American) parent. Both are brown skinned (differing shades), and both are proudly black, just as my siblings. 

And when people question me propping up my Cuban background with the “I thought you were black” commentary, I simply reply “America is not the only place Black People can be born”.