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What I Learned From Moms With Coffee, “Ashley Chea on Culture” (VIDEO)
by Avione Lee
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February 21, 2019

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What I Learned From Moms With Coffee, “Ashley Chea on Culture” (VIDEO)

Identity, culture, and mixed households are the topic of conversation as Ashley Chea takes on “Culture” in this episode of Moms With Coffee hosted by Lizzy Mathis.  

Identity, culture, and mixed households are the topic of conversation in the “Culture” episode of Moms With Coffee hosted by Lizzy Mathis. Her guest was Ashley Chea who is a mixed-race mother, of Latin and African descent, raising two children of blended races, cultures, and religions.

This is a topic I am all on board for as a person who is in a blended relationship myself. I immediately identified with Ashley Chea’s quote, “Whoever’s family you are around is who you will identify with, and that is usually Black people, because we just like to bring everybody on board.” I completely agree because, in most Black households in America, it literally does not matter what a Black kid is mixed with, they are identified and welcomed as Black.

Though times, they are a-changin’. Many more people, Black included, are identifying as mixed heritage or mixed race. Though, it is not to the exclusion of any race; it is in celebration of both. That is something I can get behind so long as each culture is acknowledged and celebrated. This can be extra important when living in a society that often times feels like one must choose one or the other.

Many more people, Black included, are identifying as mixed heritage or mixed race. Though, it is not to the exclusion of any race; it is in celebration of both.

Ashley mentioned that in growing up she was raised in a blended household and decided to identify as Black because that is just how it went. However, she is not raising her children to identify as any one culture in particular. Instead, she is raising them with both cultures in mind and letting them know that they are a part of both. If you watch the video, it actually looks like there might be a bit of playful competitive banter with her and her husband, who is also mixed race, to see which culture they end up gravitating towards most.  

I remember listening to an interview by Maggie Q who is of mixed heritage (Irish, Polish, and Vietnamese descent) where she mentioned being raised in Hawaii where there are a lot of children around of mixed heritage, so it was normal. She actually did not realize it was anything out of the ordinary until she came to the lower 48 and her ethnicity was the topic of discussion wherever she went.

Though that is mind-blowing to me, after thinking about it, that is actually the kind of childhood every child in America should have — one where we look at multiculturalism as the norm. We are the melting pot, after all, so let’s do some melting. Let us celebrate each culture that we come from and let people identify with all of their heritage to the extent that they feel comfortable.  

Moms With Coffee Ashley Chea

But, as Lizzy Mathis mentioned, it really all comes back to self love. It is about teaching your children who they are, what makes them unique, and to celebrate what they bring to the table. Ashley agreed and took it one step further by creating a children’s novel titled Beautiful Me that celebrates the differences in all of us. She mentioned that she was happy that her daughter wished she was darker, in order to look like Mommy, because that is so often not the case. However, in her book, she wanted to illustrate how there are so many different ways to look in the world, and the way everyone looks is beautiful.

It really all comes back to self love. It is about teaching your children who they are, what makes them unique, and to celebrate what they bring to the table.

Ashley also acknowledged that in celebrating differences, it is okay to lean into your culture and what makes you unique. Which is why Ashley, along with several other influencers, created Moms in Color to speak to a growing motherhood community online to better address topics important to African-American women in regard to our culture and heritage. She hopes this community will give Black women a voice and a way to talk about issues that aren’t discussed enough.

Of course, along with conversations around culture, the moms had to mention “mom brain” (which, this momma can tell you, definitely is a thing!) as Ashley, pregnant during airing, completely forgot her Instagram account. I’ll share it with you now: @watermeloneggrolls. I love that Ashley is celebrating her families co-cultures even in her handle.

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