Contributed by Angel P-A
Growing up as a kid in a setting where most people had brown skin, black hair, and brown eyes made me feel out of place because my skin is white, my hair is light brown, and I have hazel eyes.
People would always look at me as if I was from another planet. Most people would also ask me, “Are you really Mexican?” or “Are your parents white/foreign?”
As a young boy, hearing these kinds of things made me feel weird and unhappy about myself. Even though most people didn’t say these things with malice, they still made me feel out of place.
To compensate, I would try to be outside as much as possible. I would play outside or just lie outside to catch the sun, to tan myself, and give my skin some color. I would also constantly ask my parents if I could dye my hair black to get rid of my natural light brown hair color.
My parents would always reply, “Why would you want to do that? You are good just the way you are. You may not have the same skin tone, hair color, or eye color as most people from our background, but God still made you perfect the way you are.”
After hearing these words many times, I started to become more accepting of myself and started to embrace the qualities that made me different from others. I also realized that sometimes it is good to be different from everybody else, because that is what makes people standout and be special in their own way.
Learning to accept who you are can help you be at peace with your inner self. Once you accept the fact that your physical traits make you unique from everybody else, you will learn that you don’t need to be the same as most people to be happy. All you need to be happy is to accept yourself for who you are.
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