Growing up, I felt I wasn’t enough. Not white enough. Not Latina enough. I’ve tried to look to my mother’s story as my own missing piece. I’ve made her story into a key that will unlock a feeling of place and belonging. As a writer, I look to stories to guide me.
I grew up in a conservative family so I never really knew the words to describe who I was but when I saw Walter Mercado in his finery and elegance, I knew I was like him.
In Ifa, a Yoruba-based religion, we believe that when we die, we are reincarnated into our same family lineage. I’ve imagined all the ways in which it would be possible that my grandmother was once my sister, or my aunt, a friend in a past life or even a version of me. We depended on each other in so many ways.
In the U.S., mass graves have been uncovered as developers unearth land for future projects. People claim we are experiencing the pandemic collectively — but economically, politically, and geographically, we are not. Look where we get buried. Look at who gets buried.
This Latinx Heritage Month, I’m calling for non-Black Latinxs to reflect on the ways in which we’re aiding white supremacy and how we can instead be accomplices for the liberation of Black people.