A Mixed Experience in the United States of America

By Preggers Can Be Choosers

Kati Stanley is a powerhouse, We have known each other for several years in overlapping social circles, and then she tweaked her arm or something and came in for bodywork when I opened up my massage practice after I got my midwifery license.

It was love at first site.

We have the best convos, and then I saw that she had some words and a photo that made me gasp. I thought you would want to get in on this, so here she is, our guest blogger, Kati Stanley.

Guest Author
📸 and collaboration by Blue Fitzcarraldo

A Mixed Experience in the
United States of America

“Will you date black guys or white guys?”

“Your hair looks so much better straight!”

“Not all black people are n*****s.”

“Be careful who you associate with.”

Being told by a cop who previously checked “Hispanic” that I “have to choose one” when told that I am half Black, half White.

 

Being mixed invites comments from every angle. Being mixed means your appearance makes people just comfortable enough to voice watered down opinions. Being mixed comes with the weight of choices laced with disappointment.

 

This collection of photos has been decades in the making but came to full expression when sitting down to make a protest sign with “WE CAN’T BREATHE” painted in big, bold letters. A hesitancy rose up that I’ve felt my entire life. Am I enough of one thing or the other? Will I be judged for fighting for part of me that I’ve never been fully immersed in? What do I look like to them – the entire “them”, every shade of “them”.

 

Shannon Luders-Manuel beautifully stated:

“Blackness cannot be taken away from us. Biraciality cannot be taken away from us. They exist as tangibly as our skin, made from Europe and Africa. We are the colonizer and the colonized. We are the oppressor and the oppressed. We bleed for our brothers and sisters. We carry on our backs the weight of what one half of us did to the other. We slip easily into white spheres, taking notes and taking names while nodding our European heads.”

 

I know this…

I am powerful. I am here. I honor my journey and that of my ancestors.

 

 

 
 
Kati Stanley
  
 
 
 
📸  and collaboration by Blue Fitzcarraldo
 

Special thanks to Koryn, Tattiana, Paige, and Rachel, and my loving, supportive sister, Jalissa. Love to my parents, Shannon and James.

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