We only think time heals all wounds

I’m OK — The letters OK highlighted in the word, “BROKEN”
I’m OK — The letters OK highlighted in the word, “BROKEN”

It was a warm, crisp fall day. The sun was out, the air smelled of burning leaves and the days were just starting to feel shorter. Like many, I took advantage of the day to get some mulch down before winter blanketed everything in cold, snow and misery. It was a great workout carrying the 25lb bags from the garage to the side yard over and over again — sixteen times to be exact, and raking it across the area I’d previously covered with layers of cardboard boxes to prevent the greenery —…


Colorism was an issue but I am more than just melanin.

I’ve been following the ire against Lin Manuel Miranda’s 2021 movie, IN THE HEIGHTS that centers around the erasure of Afro-Latinx people in the film because all the prominent characters are lighter skinned. I was among the thousands of Latinx people who anticipated the movie for over a year and who watched it opening weekend. As an Afro-Latina, I did not feel erased. In fact, I felt the exact opposite. It was the first time that I felt seen and celebrated on the big screen.

I get that the…


My simple response after years of microaggressions.

“You talk like a white girl,” was a taunt I heard a lot growing up. It usually came from my peers, other inner-city Brown kids who said it with disgust and annoyance in their voice. It was code for, “You think you’re better than us so we don’t want you around.” I heard, “You’re not Latina enough to be one of us.” As a child, those were complicated messages to process. On one hand, I worked hard to expand my vocabulary and pronounce words as they were meant to be said. Starting in…


When a Storm Threatened to Stop the Celebration, Everyone Pitched In to Party as Planned

When my husband died, a group of us got together to celebrate his life through a concert. We thought it would be a one-time thing but it was one of the few concerts in my city that featured an entire line-up of Latin music and before the night was over, we were asked when we would have the next one. Eight years later, that concert grew into the only Latin music festival in my state. …


Falling In Love with Myself is a Form of Rebellion

Throughout my life, I have had a love/hate relationship with myself. Early on, it was almost always hate and most of it was physical. I hated my curly hair that set me apart from the beauty standards I saw. I hated my nose and the beauty mark under my lip, and I especially loathed my weight and being called gordita. While it was said as a nickname and with cariño, being “the little fat girl” led to some of the darkest moments of self-hatred of my life.

I even hated…


How the pandemic helped me let go of all that wasn’t for me

As a child, when I pictured my future, I was a teacher; a flight attendant; a businesswoman with a corner office among the clouds, far above the streets of New York. I wore heels and the latest fashions and owned a modern, minimalist condo that I shared with my husband and cute little dog. My weekends were full of cocktails, dining out and the latest Broadway shows.

RECORD SCRATCH

My life looks nothing like that and it has taken me over two decades to come to terms with how…


Girl, wearing jean jacket carries books in left arm, while wearing a backpack and holding headphone wires in her right hand.
Girl, wearing jean jacket carries books in left arm, while wearing a backpack and holding headphone wires in her right hand.

I am a college professor and former foster mom with experience with high school students. I consider myself hands-on but I try to allow independence for both my students and at home. However, the longer I teach college-level courses, the more I encounter students in my class who are entirely unprepared for college. When I look at my foster daughter’s k-12 education thus far, it’s easy to see how our constant accommodations to help kids feel special is ultimately hurting them.

In my seven years as a college-level educator, I’ve worked with undergraduate students and graduate students. Sadly, the amount…


Survival Isn’t Limited to Making it Out Alive

This pandemic has not only changed the way I live my life, but also the way I think about risk. As a reader, I spend a lot of time reading articles about the virus, specifically about how it’s spread and how to prevent transmission. It’s mind boggling to get into the roots of the virus because of the layers of effects it’s had in the short time it’s been spreading around the globe. …


How White Tears Cost Me My Corporate Career

In light of the protests highlighting the multitude of ways systemic racism impacts the lives of people of color, memories of a particular instance of how it was blatantly in my face keeps popping up.

Throughout my career in corporate America, I was often overlooked, underestimated and not offered a place at the table simply for being a woman of color. This was abundantly clear when I worked as an assistant manager of multicultural marketing at a multi-million dollar global Fortune 500 company. It was an exciting opportunity to be the second…


Black and Brown Kids Don’t Get to Celebrate Becoming Adults the Way White Kids Do

My nephew celebrated his fourteenth birthday this week. It came on the heels of the “liberal” white woman in Central Park who called the cops on a Black man when he asked her to leash her dog in an area of the park where leashing dogs is required. She donned her best frantic voice and lied to the dispatcher about him attacking her as he calmly recorded her antics. That same week, four police officers in Minneapolis used undue force to asphyxiate a Black man…

Christina Fernandez-Morrow

Seen on CNN, WHO TV, heard on IPR. Published on HolaAmericaNews.com and in the book: When Your Soulmate Dies: A Guide to Healing through Heroic Mourning.

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