Monday, July 27, 2015

Unwrapping The Color Of Love

Gifts, I love to give them and I love to receive them, who doesn't?! When someone gives you a gift, do you look at the wrapping paper and say to yourself, "What kind of paper is that? No thanks, you can take your gift back." I don't think so.

We should look at love the same way. When I was growing up, in my most formative years I attended a predominately white Christian school. From fourth grade through my senior year, the majority of the guys that I was around where white. There were very few African Americans in our school, so the dating pool was REALLY small. The few of us that were there hung out and were really cool, but we really didn't date each other. Interracial dating was probably the single most unspoken taboo. It ranked right up there with premarital sex, and the devil's music (rock and roll). Let me be clear, I don't want to make it seem that it was only at school where I learned who I could and could not date. My father was and is a very old school black man. He is intelligent, strong, and a hard worker. He let it be known in no uncertain terms that in the event that I should even THINK about bringing ANYONE else home other than a black guy, that hell would open up and swallow me whole! But in my mind, that didn't mean that I couldn't look.

So all in all what did this mean to me? It meant that I spent the majority of my youth, when I should have been going out on dates, going to proms and dances with that high school crush, hanging out on the sidelines wishing that I looked different. I was the girl that was friends with all the cute white guys, I was the confidante/go between for my my white friends. All the while inside I was wishing, hoping that one of these very same white guys would ask me out, but I knew that it would never happen, so I had to learn to deal.

Then came college, predominately white college but a vastly larger African American population. For the first time in my life, I felt socially free. I was able to finally date. Then I took an African American studies class called The Black Man. The professor is incredible. One day in class we started talking about the lack of eligible black men. It is a fact that our men have the highest incarceration rate, are men are dating outside of the race more than we are. The professor looked at the Sisters in the class and said, "It's going to come to the point that if Sisters don't broaden their horizons and start opening themselves up to the possibility of dating men of other races, we may just find ourselves alone. This was in 1983.

Since then I have exclusively dated African American men. I was married to an African American man for 19 years. Now I'm single at 50 and wondering how am I supposed to go about finding love. Please don't misunderstand. I love my brothers. I think there is nothing hotter than beautiful brown skin and all that comes with it. But is that enough? I've had the opportunity of speaking with quite a few Sistas that are in the same situation as me, and we've all come to the same conclusion, we need to expand our horizons. After all, you can't turn on the television, or watch a movie and not see a BWWM couple or strong romantic interest. Scandal (Fritz and Olivia steamy), Vampire Diaries (You know you're all looking for that Damon and Bonnie hook up now that Elana is out of the picture). The short lived mini series Hawthorne my girl Jada had two alternate race hotties!!

Slowly but surely the world is changing, the color lines are dissolving, and it's a beautiful thing. God created a human race, the colors that we come in simply makes us all the more interesting. It was never meant to divide us. 

So where do I go from here? No where. It's about living my life, and what ever wrapping that my gift, love, comes in I'm going to take it.