A Jamaican Tale From Poland – Part 2

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“Why do you want to date me?”

That was the question she asked after 10 minutes into the conversation. Normally she wouldn’t be here talking to him. But, she figured, why not? There weren’t many black men in these parts and the few she’d ran into held onto their non-black girlfriends like they had the secret to salvation. They definitely weren’t interested in dating black women. So, she entertained him. After all, he was brave enough to approach her. Plus, she found the fact that he was struggling to have a conversation in English — cute.

Half an hour later, she was still talking to him. Even laughing at his jokes. She laughed even harder when he said:

Only top half of me yellow. Bottom half black-black.”

He had lyrics for days. Words of endearments that were so turnt, she was sure he went to the ‘How to Get a Girl’ school in Jamaica. When he gave her his number and asked if they could meet again, she asked: “Why do you want to date me?”

New for me.” He said. “Different. I want to try it.”

That’s when the conversation changed. She didn’t feel she was something to try. Like a mere toy—something new and different. It unnerved her.

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Terry had the same disheartening feeling when she dated Dominik.

“He didn’t like me for something as stereotypical as the ass or boobs that black women are said to have because I am very petite. This guy was just in love with the novelty of my black skin—not me!”

Terry says looking back she can clearly see how she ended up with him. Living in a country where she went weeks, sometimes months at a time without seeing another black face didn’t help and the intense glares and stares described in A Jamaican Tale – Part One added to her distress. She explains:

“I didn’t notice I was black until I came to Poland. Colour was just never a thing of interest to me while growing up in Jamaica and then here it became almost traumatic. Here being different meant I was treated like a thing … like an alien.”

She felt out of place, alone, and it didn’t take long for self-doubt to creep in.

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Y’all know what happens when self-doubt shows up, right? You feel as though you’re not good enough. Your self-confidence wanes. Soon, you start looking to other people — or things — or substances to evoke feelings in you that you’re unable to feel for yourself. Terry was at that place. She says:

“I was somehow seeking validation for my skin colour and dating him was a form of reassurance.”

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As soon as she realized that he was more fascinated with having a black girlfriend as opposed to having a girlfriend, she broke it off. She decided to give the dating game a rest and focus on her studies. But that’s when she met a hot, handsome, Polish man who liked her way beyond race or skin colour. It didn’t take much for her to fall in love and soon he became father to her young son.

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“All was well with the world.” She says. “I was completing my degree, met a man who loved me for me, I had my son and a perfect Polish-Jamaican family.”

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Sadly, the relationship didn’t last. As Terry puts it:

“We grew apart because I had a lot more growing-up to do. Looking back, it may have been possible to do all my mental growing with him but at that time I didn’t know how to. A young mother meant having another person to pour myself into and I didn’t know how to make room for myself or him in that mix.”

Currently, Terry pours herself into her work and raising her son. When asked: ‘What’s the next chapter in the story of your life?’ She replied:

“I’m not sure and I’m okay with not being sure. I’m not the same naive, innocent little girl that left for Poland eight years ago. I’ve lived, I’ve learned and I will continue to do that. I am excited about life. I am excited about love. And whatever happens next, it will be fantastic.”

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5 thoughts on “A Jamaican Tale From Poland – Part 2

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