In response to, “When did you first realize you were _____?”
I was 16, at my grandmother’s funeral. All these people that all looked alike were talking French, a language I didn’t understand. Me and my father were the only people there that didn’t speak the language; he was the only blond person in the bunch. The rainbow coalition of older sibs were all grown and out of the house, so it was just me and my father, and I inherited my mother’s dark mediterranean looks. It was surreal. I stood there in this sea of relatives, in a community I’d never been part of, and my whole sense of self just melted. All I could do was stand there and think “holy fuck, am I part of some … ‘minority’?!”
I’m in Texas now, and I explain to my Hispanic friends, it’s like finding out as a Junior in HIGH SCHOOL that you’re Mexican.