Accepting My Heritage – Digging Deeper
When I grew up, I thought I was “white.” I had no idea that I was any different than every other kid in my all-Caucasian class, until the day when the racial slurs began. I don’t remember how old I was exactly, but I’m almost certain I was just in kindergarten, 5-6 years old. Then it continued everyday….
Every time I’d head down the halls I’d get a snide “Slant Eyes” comment. They’d start talking to me in “slang” Asian dialect through giggles. “Hey, Chinese!” “Where’s your chopsticks?” “Can you see like that?” “Yellow Skin!” “Go back overseas!” Trying to ignore the stares and the ugly comments, I didn’t realize then what damage those scars had on me.
I can recall so many days coming home and crying myself on my bed, begging God to make me quote-on-quote “white.” Moving to a high middle-class society area in Florida did not make my life any easier. Now in middle/high school when looks were a HUGE deal, I struggled with my self-esteem. By the time I reached college, I thought for sure that Asian = ugly. By the time I dated my Caucasian husband, he had a hard time convincing me I was beautiful and that he loved me BECAUSE I was Asian.
It took a long time to realize that God made me Asian for a reason. He beautifully made me this way, different from everyone else. I no longer hide behind dark sunglasses to cover my almond-shaped eyes.
Some things I learned recently:
Asian is one of the fastest growing ethnic groups in America.
Asians are the highest amount of users of the internet.
I hope someone out there in the marketing world is looking at this post. I do have a voice. I can make a difference. My goal of this blog is not only to embrace my Asian heritage with open arms (it has taken me many years to get to this point), but to use my Asian heritage to make a difference…in my community, in my blogging world, in my world.
Accepting who I am as a beautiful Korean-American person has been a long journey. But I’m proud to say that all of those years of snide remarks have only fueled my soul so that I may now persevere to showcase Asian as beautiful, right here, right now.
For those that have loved me, supported me and accepted me and my Asian heritage over the years, THANK YOU! And for those that haven’t met me yet (P&G, Neutrogena, Disney…), watch out! Asians are going to take the world by storm, and I’m going to be one of them! 🙂