I think everyone has at least something in their lives where they feel is unfulfilled... incomplete.... unresolved.... and/or missing....
Mine is my name.
It's not so much of the name, itself, but WHY this name was given to me. The puzzling part is that there is NO reason. My name has NO quality and NO meaning and NO value to my parents. I'll tell you why:
Today, while having dinner with my parents, my mother and father boasted about how pretty my younger sister's Hmong name is. They went on about why and how they came up with that name. My mother even added how my sister's beautiful name represented her physical beauty and how so many other Hmong parents are interested in having her marry their sons... and how she's the prettiest child and bla bla bla. It was sort of funny and cute, I guess. ... NO.... I felt jealous.
It then hit me that my parents had NEVER EVER talked about my name in any nice way. They never told me how and why they chose my name. They never really cared about my name or spent a second to boast about it like how they do with my other siblings - not that I want them to. In a way, they've avoided my questions. In the past, I've asked them what do they think my name means. No answer. I asked them what do they like about my name. No answer. For every time they didn't answer, I got a shrug from them or a finger pointing at each other.
I am the only child in the family who does not have a Hmong name.. and I am the first born! Haven't they thought of a gosh damn Hmong name for me before I was born? Yeah, I sound like I'm being all dramatic about it. But hold your judgments, because I have more to say.
I interrupted my dad with a comment, "hmM.. that's nice about her name but.. what about my name? I don't have a Hmong name... Why wasn't I given one?" As usual, my dad pointed the blame at my mom. My mother sat there eating her food as if she didn't hear a thing. I pressed on, "Dad, you always blame mom.. But you two had 9 months to pick a good name. Of all names, why did you choose this name? I don't like it. I NEVER liked it. I just don't feel happy with it. And it's not just now.. I had never felt happy about it since I was a kid.... I just don't understand why didn't you give me a meaningful name, a name that meant something to you.. I'm your first born! If I had my first baby, I would think of a nice name and I'd imagine all sorts of things I would teach my child. I would be so excited. Weren't you two excited about having me?" Like always, my parents gave me their usual excuses and trailed off to a different subject.
I don't know why but this just feels important to me. Ever since I learned how to spell my name, I've wondered why was this name given to me and what does it mean to them. The manner in which my name was given to me didn't make sense and I just want them to give me a clear answer.. a better explanation other than blaming each other. Is it that difficult?
My name was supposed to be Nkauj See (Gao Shing)... but here I sit with the name Madie Ann. My name is as blank as their answers and my name is as empty as their feelings for it.
I am ....
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