November 4th, 2006
Today, someone (an American) who doesn’t even know me, told me that I’m delusional and ignorant to call myself Italo-American, and that no matter what I say or do I’ll always be just American. I didn’t take it to heart too much, as I don’t know this guy, and he certainly doesn’t know my story or my family. But it did get me on the defensive a little bit (little does he know). I shouldn’t even be spending any energy talking about this, but I need to get it out of my system.
I have suffered through some serious bureaucracy to claim the Italian citizenship that I was unknowingly born with (please let that process finish up soon…!!)
I was raised Italian-American. I’ve never been taught to call myself anything but Italian-American. It’s just part of my identity, it’s who I have always known myself to be, ever since I could talk. I don’t think I could ever feel natural using any other term to describe myself. It just wouldn’t be right.
I have passed through this land so many times in search of myself, and have been fortunate to have a grandmother who always stayed in touch with our relatives over here. I am so thankful to have been treated as a daughter and sister by my wonderful cousins (etc.) in Lucca and Pistoia when I’m passing through.
I’ve always known, in the deepest part of my soul, that this is where I belong. The vibration of the earth here calms me. When I am here there is a voice that says, “home”. This does not mean that I am negating my American-ness is any way. I feel very blessed and proud to have been born in the United States, particularly Seattle. I am American. It’s just that Italy is my country too. I’m sorry if anybody out there is too jealous or narrow-minded to accept the fact that I have found myself here and am very much Italian-American, in every sense of the term. Nothing makes me more proud than this.
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