My father is Ethiopian and his mother is a Egyptian but I was raised by my mother who is African American. So I was raised to not know the language in which my dad was raised to speak, which is Arabic. And now at 23, I spend a lot more time with my dad and I have been around my grandmother a lot lately. Often times they speak Arabic around me and I don't understand anything. Because of the culture difference between me growing up as an African America here I am seen as an outsider from my own family from Egypt and Ethiopia. It is pretty tough for me.
My family doesn't feel as if I care for them as much as I do. I don't know exactly how they feel but it just comes to the point where like, I will say, "hey, I love you", things like that, and they won't say it back and they just laugh, and say "OK, have a good day, things like that.
It is something that I have learned and how it has empowered me is I actually do work for a nonprofit organization that does help and supply aid to Egypt and Ethiopia. It drives me to come out here and makes me feel more cultured in a way, even if my own family doesn't accept the fact that I have the culture inside of me. I have been able to see people from Ethiopia that have looked me in my eyes and have known where I come from and know that I have heritage there in their home country even if I don't speak the language to them. I still proudly tell people that I have Ethiopian blood and Egyptian blood. It allows me to connect in a way that I am not able to with my family.
I did have a stuffed animal when I was younger. It was before build a bear. I remember getting a specific teddy bear that was only sold at JC Penny's and I lost it once as a kid and I was able to go with my godmother and she was able to buy me another one. that probably was the only stuffed animal I ever owned and do remember it even now at 23 years old and it was a friend of mine. It supplied me with companionship.
Thanks for stopping by. To read more stories go to my Instagram or my website.
~ Be the X tra in Ordinary ~ Perfect Reject Stories ~ Celebrate Difference
#photojournalism #photography #stories #portrait @ellophotography @ellophotographer @ello #documentary #teddybear #WilsonTheBear #perfectlyImperfect #ellophoto #family #interview