Speaking of my Oakland County days, a few months ago I came across this photo on Abagond’s blog:
When I saw this photo I saw myself in it. Kind of. For me, I could have been that speck of color in a group photo of friends going to a high school dance as easily as in posing for a family reunion photo. And I suppose that’s the difference. I don’t think I look much more awkward than the typical teenager in the photo below. Not that I don’t look awkward, good lord the dress, but I’ve got nothing on the guy in the picture above.
Perhaps that’s because when (half the time) you’re the only “black” kid in your family as well, there’s less propensity to be so fraught with anxiety in similar social situations.
Maybe there’s an extra layer of ease that comes with the inner-knowing that, no matter who recognizes it or doesn’t, you belong. Given, of course that one is able to hold on to the truth that she belongs amidst the many dissentient voices.