There are so many different ways to gage what kind of person you are from online quizzes to taking a look at the people you hang around. Identity is so multifaceted, and yet people constantly expect others to describe themselves in three words or less. To me this causes a lot of problems when you’re young and still trying to figure yourself out because you feel limited.

Identity should be a bit of a contradiction. It’s both fluid and constant all at once. What I mean is: a person is always themselves, but who that is, is always changing. Using myself as an example, when I was younger (based on family interactions) I identified as black without question. When I got into school and interacted with other people I realized that I didn’t look that way to other kids so I started to say I was biracial, which is also true, but it’s a bit complicated. Both my parents are somewhat biracial, as are their parents, and both of them identify as black. Now that I’m a bit older I still use the term biracial, but I’ve also started to go back to identifying as black as well. I was always all of those things, but my environment shaped the way I saw myself.

Some aspects of identity are meant to be played around with and even shared, my race is something that I’m not embarrassed by, and can’t really hide so I’m generally open with it. Other parts of myself I feel are my personal business and I think that’s okay too. You don’t need to walk around with a shirt that lists all the aspects of who you are, unless you want to of course, because part of the fun in meeting new people is discovering them.

Essentially what I’m trying to say is that everybody is more then just three adjectives on a piece of paper. If you feel like you’re stuck, or are surrounded by people who expect you to stay the same forever, branch out and find people that will appreciate you for all your contradictions and personal journey’s. Keeping in mind of course that those people are just as free to change and grow as well.

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