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Half of my mother’s four sisters are married to white men.My cousins can be split into two groups: Ones who grew up with weaves and skin lighteners and ones who needed sunscreen and haircuts.
He supported my work and called me Butterfly; our relationship was nauseatingly blissful. I posted photos of black love on every social media account and considered myself as part of a larger revolution.It didn’t feel like love at first, more like companionship at our all-time lows.We were open with each other; he had been warned to stay away from black girls, and I was advised to not date men of color.I had hushed conversations in the corners of cafés about how important it was to keep feeding the black community with positive affirmations and how it began with loving black men.I wore Black Lives Matter buttons, attended marches, sported hoodies, vowed to date only black men, and prepared myself to raise a son who might be faced with a death in the same vein as Trayvon, a name I had spoken so often that it felt like that of a brother.
There was something about watching a black boy murdered from the comfort of my home that made me want to go out and love a black man as hard as I could, as though somehow it could resurrect the child in him.