Last Thursday not only did Serena William’s engagement break the internet, but it also broke my heart. Now before you think this is another post bashing Serena for finding love with a man who isn’t black, in my Kevin Hart voice, let me explain. At first, I too, like many black women across the globe, rejoiced that another sistah had finally found a man who would honor and cherish the love that she had to give. And in that moment I sent up a heartfelt prayer that her fiance not only basks in all of her glory, but showers her with the love that she deserves. Not just because she’s pro athlete Serena Williams, but because she is also a black woman. And the media has selected her to be an example of why black women are not “lovable”. Her full lips, dark skin, mixed with her athletic and statuesque physique has caused her to be ridiculed time and time again by the media, who had the audacity to call Serena unfeminine! However, Caitlyn Jenner, who was born a man, can be named as woman of the year. But I digress.
As people of all genders and races took the internet to express their congratulations, as well hatred, towards the happy couple, I was too busy processing my own thoughts and emotions about the plight of my own love life. To put it plainly, Serena’s engagement was a reminder that my search for love may not end with the black king that I long for. It made me ask myself the hard question of what’s more important: finding love, or finding love with a black man?
I’ve noticed a shift in society where more black women are finding love with men of different races. We’re encouraged by family, friends, and even strangers to be more open minded when it comes to finding a suitable mate. Interracial couples pop up often in my timeline on social media expressing their undying love for one another. Which is all well and good because love is a beautiful thing, but again, I can’t help but wonder what that means for me, and women like me, who desire to experience love and marriage with a black man.
The rational part of me knows that Serena’s decision, along with all the happy couples splashed across my timeline, should have little to do with my love life. But the other part of me, the irrational part that I keep buried deep down inside, clawed its way to the surface last week and spilled over onto the page before you. So often I hear black women and men say that we don’t owe each other anything and that we definitely have no claim to one another. I may one day birth a black son who will grow up to be a black man. For me, that reason alone justifies my loyalty to black men, and surpasses any reason one can come up with to not have a deep and undying love and desire to marry one. Plus, what if we did feel that we belonged to one another? Would we treat each other better and not play with each other’s hearts? Would we fight harder to make our relationships work? Would we become each other’s keepers? Our fates are tied together whether we acknowledge it or not.
In theory, I know that love should be color blind, but I want my spouse to see the color of my skin. I want him to be as fascinated with my different hues, as much as I revel in his chocolaty goodness. I want him to know that we share a common experience that only he and I will ever truly understand. On a daily basis, this world reminds us that no matter how much money a black person makes, they are still black. Yet somehow we are supposed to be color blind when it comes to love.
So, to answer the question that’s plagued me for the past week: there is nothing wrong with my desire to marry a black man and that the swirl just isn’t my cup of tea. I will stay in my lane and I will always celebrate when a sistah finds love, even if it’s not with a brotha. Most importanty, I will keep my irrational side at bay, knowing that somewhere out there my husband is making his way to me and that he will be every bit as chocolaty as my heart desires.
From my heart to yours,