I Won’t Choose to Pacify You

image3 (2)Amanda Whitman
Tampa, FL

All my life people have asked me what I am. I want to right away say American. My father is African-American and my mom is white. I grew up in a military family. In the military it is very common to meet people of multiple races. It was a shock for me the first time I went to a non military affiliated school. It was in the seventh grade and I will never forget some of the questions that I got asked. Are you white or black. Do you consider yourself white or black. Do you listen to white music or black music. Do you like white guys or black guys. The questions went on and on. I know that when people see me they mostly see an African American woman. What I see when I look at me is my grandma and moms nose. My dads personality. To pick one would be to me to deny the other. I won’t ever do that. I love both halves of me. I love all of my history. Oddly enough when I had children they are even more of a mixed then me. My oldest daughters father is Puerto Rican. My middle daughters father is black and white like me. My babies father is Japanese and white. We are I think like this great nation that I learned at my fathers knee to love. A giant melting pot. I will never choose between the to halves of me and neither will I make my children.

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