SunV

India

she/her
ca alum!

it takes two to break a heart

est. 11/10/19

playing '22 break' by oh wonder
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Message to Readers

So, I need some questions answered:

1. Have any of you submitted and/or been published in Blue Marble Review?
2. Can we submit pieces we've published here? I'm thinking about submitting, but I'm not sure if we're allowed to....

I am Indian. (Footnotes + Message Box)

April 22, 2021

FREE WRITING

13
I am Indian.

I don't have much information about my history. I know my dad (and most of his family) are all Tamil. My mom is Half-Bengali, Half-Odia. What does that make me? Half-Tamil, Quarter-Odia, Quarter-Bengali? I don't know. Arithmetic isn't my favourite either way.

My grandad died when I was six. I don't know much about his family, my parents don't talk about him a lot. I met my great-grandfather too, before he died a year after. I've never actually attended a funeral. I do know they don't bury bodies here, they cremate.

What I do know, is very little. I know I was born in The United States, Washington to be exact. I know for six years, I lived in Bothell and went to school in Kirkland. I know my mom volunteered in the local King County library after work, and that I'd sit there and pass time. I know we moved to India when I was six to accompany my recently widowed Grandmother. It was supposed to be a three-year thing, and then we'd move back, but we didn't. Instead, we moved to another state in India, and I've lived there since the fifth grade. 

I don't know my ancestry, I don't know what's in my DNA, I don't know a lot. 

I do know I'm not from one place. I may not natively be American, but I find so many traits in myself that were influenced from there. My taste in food, music, to some extent clothing, everything has that touch of the rainy Washington.

I also do know I'm Indian. I love eating Biriyani and listening to the Flute and the Sitar.

I know I can bear the hot Chennai heat and the cold Seattle rain.

I do know I get made fun of because I'm not like everyone else. Because I, unlike most I know, am not a fan of dancing. Because I hate eating anything spicy, which proves to be a horrible trait during potlucks. I know I am judged because I hold my pen differently. I know people get irritated when I spell color without a u. My computer hates it too. So does my English teacher. But I can't help it.

When I say twenny, or when I slip into an accent while singing, because I can't help it.

But I try to take it in stride. I'm from everywhere? I will embrace it. I will love that fact that I can speak more than one language, that I can survive in more than one place, that I have a bigger range of music, because I can understand more lyrics? That's not a weakness, it's a strength.

There's a bit more I know. I know that after college, I want to move back to Washington, back to where I was born. I know that although I'd much rather take English in eleventh, I'd be better off taking Science, simply keeping my options open.

I don't know much, but I will keep my faith in what I do.
I had this in my portfolio for a long time, but never had the confidence to publish it. Then wisp came out with her voice, and I decided I would publish this be the end of this week.

I just read an Op-Ed entry, and I fell in love with it. 'The problem with 'where are you from?''. I related to it so much, and was writing a comment, when I finally realised what this piece was missing. 

My intention with this was to be able to embrace my identity, and not to hurt or insult anyone in any way. If I did offend you, please let me know. I will take this down immediately.

Now that you've managed to reach the end, please do share your opinion. Use your voice, because only when many speak can we make noise.

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  • April 22, 2021 - 10:10pm (Now Viewing)

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18 Comments
  • ArtisticCatbird2020

    "I'm from everywhere?" --> Awesome line! And overall, this is a great self-exploratory piece. You uncovered a diverse array of traits, effectively showcasing the mélange of cultures you embody (hopefully that makes sense lol). Nice work!


    5 months ago
  • beth r.

    re: nah you're right! >3=kiss, <3= heart


    5 months ago
  • beth r.

    re: lol those are some good choices I'll keep in mind. I'm good, how are you?


    5 months ago
  • Wisp

    Oh SunV, this is just striking. I'm so glad you posted this because it embraces the question of "Where are you from?" so beautifully and in such a poignant way. It's moving and it's just beyond words how you manage to convey who you are in such a piece. I can feel the pain that comes with being of two cultures in this, and I can feel the trial you feel. This is so powerful and gosh am I so so glad that you published this. Your voice matters, your trials matter, all you've written here matters and I stand by every single thing. Because this is not just pain, it's experiences and reality and it's your humanity showing. This is just breathtaking and SunV, it is such a lovely momentous piece.


    6 months ago
  • redDolphin1028

    Re: I was near the Kirkland/Bellevue area. And yes i'm a total potterhead and hamilton geek. Fav HP characters (there are so manyy, i cant choose one) are probably snape, neville, sirius, dumbledore, and hermione. My fav death eater is bellatrix. What bout u? Also what hogwarts house are u in (im hufflepuff)? In hamilton, I really liked the character of alexander hamilton himself and angelica schuyler (and ofc king george hehe). Any favourite lines from the show?


    6 months ago
  • redDolphin1028

    Re: Hey! I Yeah, ikr it is so cool! I lived on the outskirts, and I was really young at the time so I attended one of Montessori schools:) How crazy would it be if we actually have met before, I wonder if we'll ever know lol. Also thank you, its really great to be here on wtw!


    6 months ago
  • beth r.

    "I know I can bear the hot Chennai heat and the cold Seattle rain."
    Gorgeous contrast here. I adore hearing about other cultures, especially your beautiful one. Standing up for who you are is so utterly awe inspiring- and I'm proud! Love this, so well written, illustrating all the beauty of your roots.
    re: GURL i'm siked for you! good luck! you'll do great!


    6 months ago
  • Figwit [HIATUS]

    I love how you so openly share your experiences, feelings, and goals!! Thanks for having the courage to put it out there :) I can't say I relate -as a white American living in the U.S.- but I DEFINITELY empathize!!! Don't let anyone tell you who you can or can't be ;) <3
    Funny thing: I read so much British literature that I always wanted to spell things like that (grey, colour, centre, etc.) when I was homeschooled. Now I'm in public school and have been forced to change my ways... I still think grey looks SO much better than gray.


    6 months ago
  • Nyla

    I’m so sorry you’ve had to go through all this stuff (not sure there’s another word that can encompass it all) but i’m so happy you’re accepting all that you are. It really is a strength and will help you so much in the future (having different perspectives). The way you wrote this was so powerful and I loved reading it. Did it make you feel a bit better writing this? If so, I’m feeling a bit inspired myself to write something similar (Brown Muslim in Canada). But regardless, thanks so much for sharing this, I’m so happy to have had the pleasure of reading it!


    6 months ago
  • Deleted User

    this is lovely and powerful! I love that you are proud of your heritage, and proud of being different, as you should be.
    And also I would just like to say I read a lot of British literature so my first instinct is to spell things like "color" "colour" and "gray" "grey", even though I'm American. it's weird lol (especially "grey"--"gray" doesn't look right to me)


    6 months ago
  • Anne Blackwood

    Oops meant to say that I'd only succeeded once


    6 months ago
  • Anne Blackwood

    Re: Oh bb girl you've gotten yourself in quite the pickle. I have no idea why you think I'm an expert as I have only successfully gotten over one guy without it being because I'm falling for another... I know in the really long run it wouldn't matter too much, but you'd have to wait YEARS. I'm sure he's great, but I just don't see that working out in most situations. Dang idk what to say hehe. Unless you wanna try to become interested in a different guy, I honestly have no idea how to help. So sorry.


    6 months ago
  • _Delphiruns2theocean_

    Re: Yeah, there is definitely racism but it's like sexism in many places now, more quiet. I love where I live but I still see hate like every other place :/ And thanks for that, I need it rn, and don't EVER change for those ignorant people, wait for them to catch up, if they ever do, to someone as amazing as you :) <3


    6 months ago
  • _Delphiruns2theocean_

    I'm just so speechless rn. This took my breath away and I'm sorry people have been so ignorant. In California there's not as much racism, but my friends who are biracial when we're fooling around definitely get more looks than me. It annoys me so much but your heritage is so interesting to me. I've been called a generic white girl because I look more white than I actually am but your obstacles seem so much worse. But I can relate to the Science thing tho XD


    6 months ago
  • redDolphin1028

    omg! I love this, thank you SO much for sharing, because this is sooo relatable for me. It's kinda crazy how many details from your piece coincide with my own life. I am Indian, but I was born in Seattle, Washington too. I moved to India before first grade (so around the same age), and I totally understand everything you are talking about... i've never felt like I was from only one place even though I am originally Indian, because we've moved around back and forth my whole life. So, I SO get the smaller details you mention like how people looking at you funny for holding your pen differently (this happened ALL the time to me) or for spelling colo(u)r "wrong" (same!). And I know what you mean about the accent, and how science always seems like the go-to at school, even if you'd rather explore elsewhere. I never quite realized how similar people's experiences could be, so genuinely thank you so so much for putting your story out there:) *hugs*


    6 months ago
  • Zirong

    this is so well-crafted and actually relatable -- I'm also living in a place different from where I was born, and I also speak more than one language and really appreciate it coz I can read more books and understand more songs(high five here :)) I've also faced quite a lot of trouble, just for being special in a way. And I chose the science stream instead of arts about which I'm truly passionate simply because for me it's easier to get As. I don't know much either, and so I always doubt myself, my opinions, my choices. Your attitude in this piece really made some impact on me, and I thank you for that. Hopefully I will keep faith in whatever I do as I reflect more and learn more :)


    6 months ago
  • buddingauthor

    Wow, although we have different stories, like I've not been to the US at all yet, we are both Indian. And there are so many little things in this one piece that I relate to. I felt so...supported? I can't find the right word, but I just felt that I had more people my age who were going through the same things, and so many more. This was just amazing and I'm so glad you finally felt comfortable enough to put it out there.


    6 months ago
  • Yellow Sweater

    This is the most powerful piece I have read in a long time. your prose and poise are so strong.


    6 months ago