My response to this brilliant article by Joel Leon on Medium
What kind of black am I?
I’m the kind of black who was born in Nigeria, grew up in multicultural London and now lives in Scotland. I’m the kind of black who since starting university is often the only black person in the room. I’m the kind of black who deals everyday with and loves the multi-facets of my Nigerian (Idoma and Igbo, Lagosian) and British (Londoner, Glaswegian) sides of my identity.
I’m the kind of black whose dark complexion and height brings a range of reactions. From the midwife who announced ‘its a shame a girl would look so much like her Dad,’ to the mixed race boy in school who told the class “she would be pretty if she was light skinned”, to growing up and being called beautiful or you look like a (insert African tribe) queen/ warrior, to going back to Nigeria where the majority of women bleach to be lighter and being told “you’re pretty but too dark” and confusion because my tribe isn’t evident in my features, to stop in your track wide-eyed stares in Cambodia where most women use skin lightning products from creams to deodorants, to grown men to literally jumping back or filming me in Austria, to teenagers in China wanting photos because they think I’m american, to Americans to thinking I’m from an Island. To deciding to feel beautiful and proud of my identity regardless of reaction….