Standing Up For Hispanic Heritage Month
Being Latina in America is a funny thing. I am 100% Cuban born to immigrant parents, but feel like any other American does. I took English Honors in high school (although was almost forced to enroll in ESL when my parents told the school that Spanish was my first language). I graduated from college with a degree in Political Science. I am proud to be American and have decent political efficacy. But, after a lot of years of struggle, I am equally proud of my Cuban heritage. This month is dedicated to celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month as the Bicultural Latina that I am. After so much self doubt and fear of not being “Latino enough”, I am choosing to celebrate from exactly my current point of identity – my exact mix of Hispanic American.
How We Plan To Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
Either Alina’s Tia V or Tia Jess gave us this book some years ago and I am excited to finally crack it open and do some fun kids’ crafts. I am probably the least skilled craft person alive, but love this book for the history it teaches and the varying small motor skills it works on. The book is also broken into Hispanic countries, giving readers an understanding of the incredible variations of cultures and traditions within the Hispanic experience. From crafts to kid recipes and stories of historical Latino figures, this book is a wealth of information for Hispanic Heritage Month. You can check out A Kid’s Guide to Latino History on Amazon (I don’t do affiliate links, just fyi).
Cuban Food Series
You all know how much I love me some Cuban food (have you seen my yummy Cuban Arroz Con Pollo recipe?). I hope to reach out to some of my favorite Cuban food bloggers and share with you guys the food culture that exists in our family legacy, as well as recipes that my kids have not yet experienced.
Discussion on Bicultural Latino Life
At all the various publications that I write for, I want to talk about the bicultural Latino experience. I’ve already published a piece at BabyZone on Fun Ways to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with simple ways that even non-Latinos can enjoy to celebrate the cultural celebration. I have several pieces lined up at latinamom.me that explore the bicultural Latino experience, including tips and ways non-fluent Latinos can celebrate.
I also want to discuss personal identity as a bicultural Latina here on De Su Mama; issues such as language fluency identity, skin color and being Latino, the growing population of mixed Latinos and how the US Census pretty much ignores that families like mine exist. I love being Latino, but our community is not perfect. These topics are ones that I feel like my kids need to be aware of.
This year, I am standing up for these two mixed Latino babies of mine. I am standing up for my own personal identity as a Latina to say that I am Latino enough. Even with my less than stellar fluency, I can be proud of my heritage. And that even if she is less fluent, and even less Cuban and even more brown, Alina can be Latina enough too.
I want to invite all my friends to join in celebrating this awesome culture, the beautiful language and the history of so many Americans this year for Hispanic Heritage Month. Whether bicultural or not, the Latino experience is important to the makeup of this country. I am excited to teach my children about our Latino family legacy.