Lakia Shavon Lightner, age 36
WHAT MIX ARE YOU?
Native American (Chowanog, Poteskeet and Pasquotank Native Tribe)
European (German, Austrian and Irish)
WHERE DO YOU CURRENTLY LIVE?
IS THE COMMUNITY YOU LIVE IN NOW DIVERSE?
WHERE DID YOU GROW UP?
Connecticut, East Hartford, Manchester. No these communities were not diverse. My only friends, Sharis Fuller and Nyschelle Brown, were both mixed race like me.
HAS YOUR EXTENDED FAMILY ALWAYS BEEN SUPPORTIVE OF YOU BEING MULTIRACIAL?
Yes, because we are all mixed race.
DID YOU CELEBRATE TRADITIONS FROM BOTH SIDES OF YOUR FAMILY?
I celebrated holidays and so on from my mother's side. My biological father did not raise me, instead he denied being a father.
WERE THERE MULTIPLE LANGUAGES SPOKEN IN YOUR HOUSEHOLD?
Yes my mother taught me different languages. My mother taught me the languages of, Native and European. As an adult I'm working on learning the African language.
WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT YOUR CULTURAL BACKGROUND?
I love everything about my cultural background. The history, languages, food, holidays, music and customs.
WHAT ACTIONS DID YOUR PARENTS TAKE TO TEACH YOU ABOUT YOUR DIFFERENT BACKGROUNDS?
Never change who you are for society. Mother told me this once and it stuck.
DID YOU TALK ABOUT RACE A LOT IN YOUR HOUSEHOLD WHEN YOU WERE GROWING UP?
Yes, my mother talked to me about how people are in society. With judgment and prejudice.
DO YOU IDENTIFY AS MIXED OR SOMETHING ELSE?
DOES RACE WEIGH INTO WHO YOU CHOOSE TO DATE?
Yes, I love mixed race and African American men.
WHAT DOES BEING MIXED MEAN TO YOU?
Being mixed race means a lot to me. I treasure my mix race.
DO YOU HAVE A LOT OF FRIENDS WHO ARE MIXED?
Yes, I have even more mixed race friends than growing up. I get along way better with other mixed race women. One thing for sure, they haven't been jealous or started drama. Like other races of women. I learned true friendship with my mixed race buddies.
ARE THERE ANY COMMENTS YOU ARE REALLY TIRED OF HEARING FROM PEOPLE IN REGARDS TO RACE/CULTURE?
Yes, you should only identify with one race.
You are ashamed of who you are.
You're just confused to who you are.
You think you're better than us.
WHAT IS YOUR DREAM FOR THE FUTURE OF AMERICA IN REGARDS TO RACE?
I want America to continue producing mixed race people and to stop being critical with mixed race people. Also allow a mixed race person to be who they were born to be.
ANYTHING ELSE YOU WANT TO SHARE?
I love being a mixed race woman!
You can go to Lakia's website to learn more.