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Being Both

Updated: May 12, 2022

Have you ever felt torn when trying to make a decision?

Our current society is extremely supportive of making choices. You can choose to be a surgeon or an artist, to come out about your sexuality or not, whether or not to be friends with Sally or Sheila, anything you want. This is the beauty of our nation: the freedom to choose. But what happens when you are both? Like me, I am biracial. I chose to identify as black AND white, so then what?

Before you answer, let me make it a little more challenging for you. With all that is going on in the nation racially, where do I fit in?

Do I choose a side? Do I pick one side of my family over the other? If not, how do I make peace between the two? Not just the two sides of my family, but the two sides of my brain, my heart, my being. I don’t think I have any magical answers to this question, but I will take a shot at it.

My first thought is that not everything is simply black or white. Yes, the pun was intended. Keeping this in mind, I am given a little solace that I don’t have a concrete answer. While I do believe that it is wrong for police to shoot unarmed black men, I also believe that not all police have or would participate in such heinous acts. These statements are not meant to be contrasts, they simply are two statements that are both true. Each statement can stand on its own and hold the same power. So shouldn’t this be true for each of my “halves?”

The answer is yes. Yes I can be black AND white AND be at peace with who I am and where I stand in this world. I don’t have to choose my black side over my white side - I can choose my family from each side. I can settle the war within myself by evaluating my values and upholding them, regardless of which side they came from. Afterall, a puzzle is most beautiful when the unique pieces come together as one.

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