Being black is the most beautiful thing to be, I can't image myself not ever being black. Unfortunately, it was not always that way. As a child I remember running around the house with a towel on my head because I wanted long straight hair, I remember wanting lighter skin. I remember going to a predominately white high school and Hollister was in fashion. I would save my allowances just to purchase a shirt and skirt from the clearance section (their jeans would never fit my thighs or hips). I remember so much of myself wanting to be different because that different meant I would be better.
I can't recall the catalyst that encouraged me to begin to embrace myself as myself outside of going natural. I just remember on a random night in the middle of the night, I literally wrote in my journal I wanted to stop chemically treating my hair. This all took place during my junior year in high school in 2007 before "going natural" became popular and encouraged. I won't say I was bullied possibly because it didn't actually bother me, yes comments were made about my hair being nappy and edges not being laid. Regardless of comments and temptation to relax my hair, I wasn't pressed; unconsciously I must have known this journey was encompassing more than just hair and I wanted to see it through.
I grateful that I am living my young adult life in an era where Black Women are creating there own standards of beauty that better reflect our reality and more accepting of our diversity as women. We can all find comfort in the skin we are in, and take pride in it. To be proud and unapologetic.