Growing up coloured has come with a lot of pros; Diversity. Tolerance. Tradition. One that stood out for me is that I got to experience and see more than one culture due to my blood line; Cape Malay, Indian, German and African.
I was raised and taught tolerance and respect for all people, irrespective of race, colour, creed, religion and even physical appearance. I was raised to be loud and proud and to own who I am; to stand firm for the things I believe in; to love; to pray; to smile through adversities. I was raised to help the next person, offer my seat to the Aunty hopping onto the bus or taxi or helping her with her parcels. I was taught to respect people. To be gracious and laughter and happiness were norms.
But growing up coloured, wasn’t that much of an issue as is being coloured in this present day.
I, being a coloured women, get more compliments on my hair and skin tone by random strangers more than someone sincerely greeting just because it’s a nice gesture or out our courtesy. It’s pretty much the only time of day most people would give, to interact with me, both men and women.
I, being coloured, am not “allowed” to love for love’s sake. Apparently there’s an unwritten rule about who I’m allowed to love and who I’m not. I’m subjected to vile comments from women of other races or cultures should I fall in love with someone outside my own race or culture. “You coloured women steal our good black men” … is the common one I’ve been told.
I, being coloured, am labeled automatically. Drink, smoke, drug, party and often get asked how many kids I have, as if it’s something expected and normal. People get shocked when I tell them I don’t do any of the above and I think to myself, even if I did, it’s my prerogative… what does it have to do with race?
I, being coloured, am often labeled as lost, or a product of rape, stupid, ambition-less and “uncultured” I’m often noticed but only because of my big thighs, big hair, light skin tone or because I’m simply labeled as “easy”. I mean if I’m coloured I’m not human and feelings are things I don’t have right? I mean I am just a product of rape.
But what’s even more alarming, is that my own race and species of women… make my life that much more difficult. God forbid I be happy with someone… then it’s “I’m eating his money” or “I’ll never be happy” or ” I’m no different” or “they won’t last”.
Let me achieve a goal; buy a house, car or even get a promotion and first thoughts are things so ludacris, like people questioning whether I really bought a house or car or comments like “she slept her way to the top”… lol. I’m often left in awe when I over hear such.
Are coloured women not able to fend for themselves? Are we not able to excel in life? Are we not capable of setting goals and achieving them… ON OUR OWN? Are we not worthy of another human being, besides our family and friends’, loving? Are we not allowed to have healthy minds and souls?
We nag about how others label us but we label our own like this?
Well this is what I have to say.
Sisters, coloured or not! I am an independent woman, I know struggle and I’ve TKO’d pain, I work hard and study hard and do what I need to do to get where I need to be. I’m ambitious and goal driven and sure as hell make my own Mandela’s. I love people and that’s not on condition of colour, creed or race. My hair and skin tone does not and will never define who I am. I am a warrior, a product of God and him alone. I only bring the best and so I often expect the best.
Brothers, I’m no piece of meat. I will not stoop to levels of flings and affairs. I will be that women that will degrade if you even think of DM’ing me, asking for a picture or becoming frisky when I know you have a partner.
You may not like me, but you sure as hell will respect me because I earn mine and because I’m sound in knowing who I am and what I’m worth. Trust! God made no mistake when he made me.
Nobody will ever understand the extent to which this affects some of us. We either deal it with well or in most cases hide it very well. But it’s about time we have these discussions. It’s about time that we pave the way for further generations and teach love, respect, appreciation, tolerance and gratitude. It’s time that we teach our kids to have sound, open minds and warm hearts. Time that we teach them about God and the things, ways and attributes that he loves. Not about race BS and the things that oppressed our people.
I am a coloured woman and if that means that I’m a product of rape… well then a product of rape has never looked this good!
Love and light always fam
From just an ordinary girl