Monday, May 6, 2013

Identity Crisis--my guest post on MAF's blog

It all took some sorting out. My Indonesian friend kept going on and on about some mutual friend of ours who is sick. I kept smiling, nodding, trying to figure it out, feeling stupid. But I didn’t recognize the name.

And then I realized she was calling our friend by one of the three different names she goes by.

I call my friend by the one her parents gave her. She also goes by her husband’s name. Or she could go by her firstborn child’s name.

In this culture, I’d be Ibu Rebecca, or Ibu Brad or Mama Evan. And that doesn’t include the many names I’ve been called when my American names aren’t understood. Ibu Radeka, Bule (white person), and even the all-too-often “Mister.” As in “Hello, Mister!” or “I love you, Mister!”

Those don’t include the identities I’ve experienced over the eight years of living in Indonesia.

Read more at MAF's blog where I'm guest posting today.


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