As a young child of color growing up in an all-white neighborhood in the south, I felt ashamed of my thick, kinky and sometimes unmanageable hair and my semi dark chocolate skin tone. I wanted to be just like the blonde and blue eyed girls in the neighborhood. I wanted to feel the wind’s breath against my effortlessly flowing mane, I wanted to play in the rain without scurrying for shelter, I wanted to lay out on the deck and allow the sun to kiss my skin, I wanted to swim in the neighbor’s pool without wearing a shower cap (chlorine would wreak havoc on a sista’s kinky and coily coif), and I wanted the boys to kiss me behind the oak tree. I remember rummaging through my father’s drawer for an over-sized t-shirt (every little girl wanted a makeshift mini dress), putting my mother’s nude colored panty hose on my head (to mimic hair past my waist), sneaking in her Mary Kay make up kit (grabbing the brightest shade of red), and tip toeing in her closet to find a pair of “The Lady in Red” stilettos. Too bad “selfies” didn’t exist in the early 80’s. Now, let me take a selfie!
I had a major identity crisis during my elementary school years … gender confusion was more like it. I wanted a long penis (just for the sword effect) and not a flat and boring vagina. I used to stand up by the toilet to pee only to realize my lousy va-jay-jay didn’t really have aim. I would watch in anger as urine ran down my legs. During those hot, hazy (especially after a torrential shower), humid summer afternoons, I would walk outside with no shirt on and lounge on the white cast iron porch furniture. Thank God I only had nipples the size of raisinets and a bare chest like a prepubescent boy. Ha! I was “confuzled.”
As I type this, “If I Were a Boy” by Beyoncé is continuously playing in my head. If I were a man, would my dating life be any different? If I were a man, would I carry the heartbreak from my past on my back? If I were a man, would I F&*^ like a wild animal with no emotion? If I were a man, would I think with the horny “midget” between my thighs instead of the cranium behind my eyes? If I were a man, would I allow her to reach her sexual peak before I reached mine?
But, I stand as a Woman … the better half of a man. I say this with my stilettos and MAC Ruby Woo in my hand, I AM WOMAN! Hear me ROAR!