Black History Month: A season of celebration and self-acceptance


Regina Ivy, Editor-in-Chief

A writer, a musician, an actress, and even a comedian for a brief period of time. These are all career paths that I wanted to take in the past. These are all people who are recognized, celebrated and heard.  

That was all I wanted to be when I grew up. 

But it’s hard to be heard when you’re surrounded by voices that speak much louder than your own.  

Growing up I made friends with girls with prettier hair, prettier eyes and whiter skin. To me, they ruled the world. They were asked out to dances before I was, they met their first boyfriendsthey got the roles and solos and had their first kisses all before me. 

What did all of this mean for me, that every boy or casting director seemed to skip over me in favor of someone more “conventional?” Was I not smart, talented or pretty enough? That is what I was led to believe. I thought that I was undesirablethat I should resent the skin I was born with and the hair that sat on my head. All the traits that made up my identity. People would never appreciate me as long as I looked like me.  

This is not only my story, but the story of other people who are like me wanting to be seen and heard. 

This is why we need Black History Month. the month that insists that we celebrate who we are and our heritage. A month where we are seen. A month that we don’t have to be a bestselling author, record-breaking musician, or an award-winning actress to be appreciated. Who we are is enough, and it always should be.  

In high school, I was a part of a group of young black girls who have had a similar experience to mine. Girls who have been told the same things and have had that same relationship with their own race as I have. We reminded each other of our worth and cared for each other in ways that no one else really could. 

Why wait for high school to introduce this kind of inclusivity? Why wait for one month to promote the strengths and accomplishments of African-AmericansIn today’s world, being yourself is more widely received than it’s ever been. I rejoice in this fact, and I encourage other students who are like me to do the same. Embrace your skin, features, and heritage. Because there has never been a better time to be you.