“How is your mom white but you're not?”
“I thought you were adopted?!”
“Do you even get sunburned?”
“Is your hair real or is it a weave?”
“Have you ever had corn rows?”
“How do you feel about the N-Word?”


I have been Black my entire life. But I have been surrounded by white people my entire life. Surprisingly enough I’m not adopted, my mom is white and my dad is black which is somehow still hard for people to believe. In all honesty, I never payed that much attention to my race until recently. I have always been the darkest out of all my friends. Living in Ventura has sheltered me off to a very select diversity of people. I mean, at Foothill alone I’m pretty sure you can count the amount of black people with your hands, and for some reason some people think that all black people are related. It could be because we call each other “cuz” or “brother” but like seriously, we aren’t related it’s just what we say.
Being black has in some way or another affected me since birth. Whether it be because I always had to have specific lighting for pictures so you were able to see me, or having to answer the oh so fun question of “Are you mixed?!” from random white moms at the water park once they saw my hair wet. I just answered questions and stood facing the sun in order to solve any problems my melanin produced. But once I started to realize that my skin color really defined me in societies eye, I would like to say that I became sort of “shook”. When my brother and I walked into Channel on Rodeo Drive and the security guard that was originally at the entrance somehow ended up always being around where me and my brother were… things became obvious to me. It didn't matter what my personality was, or what I wore, or how much money was in the $150 purse was that I was carrying that day. That man already “knew” the type of person I “was”. And it took me a few years of kind of growing into my skin- literally- to realize this.
I think that the color of my skin has really become so vital to me because within the past few months I have really learned to love and accept it. I do say months because this acceptance was extremely recent, There was times- many of them- when I wished for a different skin tone. I wished to look like my mom because maybe it would make me prettier or more attractive. I wished for pale skin because then I wouldn't stand out in my classroom of predominantly white people that are all expected to be in AP and I’m just there. But now, now I’m on the other end of the spectrum. I love my skin and I know that it makes me beautiful. I love that when I go to makeup stores I see colors that are darker than my skin tone (because there are most definitely people WAY darker than me) and I know that the makeup industry is realizing that there doesn’t exactly need to be 20+ shades of eggshell and that people are darker than tan. Something as simple as the pigment of my skin has molded me into the person I am today. And now it’s funny to look back at the old white woman that was so incredibly shocked when I was “polite” (I was literally just using basic common courtesy with her) to her and I wasn’t a “thug”. My skin doesn’t change me, it enhances me. I'm still Alaina Hooks. I have a white mom and I wasn't adopted. Yes I am mixed. I am capable of getting sunburned. My hair is 100% natural. I have never had cornrows. And I don't see a real use for the N word unless it's in a song, but I do know that WHITE PEOPLE SHOULD NOT USE THAT WORD OR ANY VARIATION OF IT WHETHER IT BE A JOKE OR NOT IN ANY CONTEXT WHATSOEVER. I will automatically think that you are racist and that may sound harsh or whatever but there is legit no circumstance when you would need to say it. It's not funny, it's not your culture to poke fun at or do anything to. And if you continue using it, at one point you will get punched in the face and it will be funny as hell and I won't help you because I warned you. So just stop, now.But yeah. If you have any other questions just let me know, also make sure they aren’t dumb ones like the sunburning one. Like seriously I’m not an alien I’m black.

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Yeah I put selfies on this because I think I'm really cute and you should admire my melanin.