A letter to the POC Community

I got uncomfortable writing that title down. I never thought I would have to look at people in categories based off their skin color. I'm the type of person that sees everyone as brothers and sisters, not mattering what their differences are, or what they believe. I love everyone, I accept everyone, and I treat everyone the same. But it's also not fair to do that entirely, because not everyone is the same. Everyone goes through different struggles, and colored people have horrible and indescribable struggles and obstacles they have to go through every day, that I could never understand.

I've always been around colored people. Family members, friends, boyfriends in the past, and now my fiancé and half of his family. I love them because they are my people, but I never sat down to realize that I would have to worry about them encountering cops, or ask them what do they go through with the racist people in the world on a daily basis. It literally just slipped my mind because I am one of them. I'm a part of their family. But I was naive to realize that the color of our skin actually does matter. I can be apart of a family and love everyone equally, but not being knowledgable can do more harm than good. Some people think love is enough to conquer all, but some think love isn't enough. When it comes to this topic of discussion, I think love is enough, but you need more too. You need to hurt, you need to be angry, you need to feel uncomfortable in order for a change to occur. I love these people so much that I want to be knowledgeable over their every day hardships and battles. I am hurting for these people. I am angry that a man died a cruel cruel death. I am uncomfortable that I didn't know better.

My fiancé is half African American and I am half Puerto Rican. He's had encounters that I could never understand. When he went to pick up our puppy in Alabama, the man saw him and he told him to wait by his car and you just knew he felt scared of my fiancé. My fiancé told his African American friend to stay in the car because he didn't want him to experience anything racist related, and it was a shock to me that they couldn't have a full experience of going to see our puppy's home, family, and parents because of their skin color. I knew if I went and got out of the car, they wouldn't of cared. I may be Puerto Rican but I look pretty dang white if I do say so myself. My Puerto Rican side of the family is very dark and come across as African American, so they deal with struggles of being a minority as well. But I still didn't understand fully because I'm lighter skinned. The things that make me different are my curly hair, my freckles, and my eyes. That's what makes people question my ethnicity. That's the only main encounter I get related to race. Well that, and being stared at because I always dated colored men.

We've both been asked "What are you?"

What Am I? I'm a human. I'm a human with a good heart, a kind soul and someone who wants to love others and serve others. The color of my skin and the ethnicity in my genes shouldn't change that outlook, but it does. I HATE when I'm asked that question. I can't even IMAGINE the list of things colored people have to go through that they hate as well. it's NOT FAIR. No one deserves that. Absolutely no one.

I'm in the Wedding Industry, and my goal was to serve anyone who came across my platform the best I knew how to. I never questioned that or had a doubt in my mind about it. I want you to feel comfortable, be open, trust me, relate to me, and be friends with me. I want to genuinely serve you. So, when I got an inquiry from a couple who is having a vow renewal in Tennessee, and one of the questions in the emails said "Do you work with African American couples? We've been shut down so much by wedding vendors because of where we are having our vow renewal."....

It broke me.

It opened my eyes to realize the hate in the wedding industry. It opened my eyes to realize that these struggles are so evidently real. It opened my eyes that people aren't always in the wedding industry to serve others. They just want to make money.

From here on out, I promise to open my eyes more and stop being so dang naive to the worldly issues. I thought that not watching the news, and not having toxic social media would help my mental state of mind by not consuming life with negativity, but dang that hurt me more than it helped me. I did not know how bad things were. I didn't know; I hate that I didn't know until something so traumatic and horrible happened to get the world's attention. I feel like I failed my fiancé's family, my family, my friend's families, my clients, by not being more aware.

My heart was kind and meant well, but I should've known more than I did so I didn't walk around every day not understanding my own privileges that others don't have.

2020 was something that everyone looked forward to because of the roarrrring 20's and how amazing this new start was supposed to be, and although it has honestly sucked, between COVID, Businesses being downhill, postponing weddings, traumatic deaths with racism, and so much more... I think that this year was OUR year to get our heads on straight and fix our priorities in the world.

I think many people are more aware, more honest, more loving and more united than ever. I know that God knew what his plan was all along. I always say, "even though we can't see the good in the world right now, just know that you will see it at some point." Bad things happen to good people, and it's not fair. But good always comes out of it. May our world change for the better and work 1000000x as harder to make racism end, to give equal opportunities, and to fight for what's right in our government systems.

If you believe in God then you know what his love feels like. Unconditional, fully and patiently always loving. That's what we need to walk around spreading. To ALL of our brothers and sisters. AND IT STARTS BY UNDERSTANDING EVERYONE AND THEIR PAIN, THEIR LIVES, THEIR STRUGGLES, THEIR GOOD DAYS AND THE BAD DAYS.

That's love. unconditional, knowledge filled, love. I'm sorry for not doing my part completely, that changes now.



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