Afro-Latina & Beautifully Mixed; Michelle Lopez

m4

THE CONFUSING GAME

I’m tired of people telling me:

You’re not black..

Oh wait

You’re only black if a war breaks out.

You’re fat

No wait,

You’re thick in the right places.

You’re not really Mexican,

You’re Latina!

Brazilian

yes

because you got that hair

and

booty.

Umm… white and Spanish too right?

Samoan, Dominican & Puerto Rican even.

Let’s play the guessing game

Black and white right?

You’re racially ambiguous.

Doesn’t matter..

YOU’RE BEAUTIFUL.

Yes I am.

-M


CAN I TOUCH YOUR HAIR?

 

While at work the other day, 

A female interrupted my work to ask if she can touch my hair. 

 

Last Sunday while at the zoo with my nieces, a woman came up to me and said:

“Excuse me, I know this is a weird request, don’t think i’m weird, but can I touch your hair?” 

 

But that is weird.

Right?

Why do women feel the need to touch my hair?

Specifically white women.

Men simply comment on it.

Yes I get it;

I have curly hair,

Big curly hair.

But that’s not an open invitation to put your germs on it.

m1

 

I’m sorry.

Hair is a sensitive topic for me.

It shouldn’t be,

It’s just hair.

 

But MY hair represents me,

My identity,

My culture,

My heritage,

My parents,

My grandparents.

m5

 

Getting evil/envious stares by black women, 

Constantly being asked if my hair is real, and how do I get it so curly by white women,

daily compliments on my hair,

And secrets to controlling my hair…

Are all things I know how to deal with.

But when someone asks if they can touch my hair…

I’m dumbfounded.

Speechless.

 

Why?

Why do women feel the need to see with their hands,

Instead of their eyes?

 

Yes, I know

I may be a little bit sensitive,

OK overly sensitive,

emotional

and just weird.

But it’s my hair.

Mine.

 

I endure the painful sacrifice I make twice a week; 

Of cowashing, cleansing, de-tangling, combing, conditioner, deep conditioner,

leave-in conditioner,

Hair cream,

Argon oil,

Coconut oil,

air drying

hour probably two

of “controlling” 

My lionness

mane.

m2

 

I deal with the knots,

pins,

hair ties,

concrete jungle smells

that get entangled in my hair.

 

So I apologize,

if I refuse to let you touch my hair.

I already deal with enough as it is.

-M

m3

Michelle Lopez is an Oakland, California native. She has her B.A. from San Francisco State University in Cultural & Social Anthropology. Lopez currently is a preschool teacher in Oakland and aspires to further her career in education.

 

 


Advertisements

One thought on “Afro-Latina & Beautifully Mixed; Michelle Lopez

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s