She called me a bastard and said my mother and I will never amount to anything. Of course I told her that if I was a bastard then her children were equally bastards and many other horrid things ensued.
She then started crying and left my aunt’s house for my other aunt’s house.
When she called me a bastard I could have easily burst into tears but I didn’t. Why? Because I’ve been called worse before.
In Loyola, in JS1, when asked about my family, I happily and naively told everyone that my Mom was a single parent. What ensued was relentless bullying where people called me a bastard and made cruel barbs about the fact that I lived with only my mother and my father didn’t care about me. So, as you can see, this “bastard” thing has been following me around for a very long time. At the time, it hurt me terribly but I’ve experienced and learned many things since.
I’ve not only been called a bastard but a slut, stupid, a freak, ugly, fat, etc. In fact, if it’s in the book, I’ve probably heard it once or twice, but in my twenty-two years of life on this planet, I’ve come to understand that the labels that other people put on you externally have nothing to do with who you are inside.
Whether my personal circumstances fit the description of the English definition of ‘bastard’ or not, it doesn’t change the fact that I like to draw, or that I’m not good at math, that I flap my arms up and down when I’m bored, and I love McVities Shortbread and Peak milk. It doesn’t remove my love of Korean historical dramas, Inuyasha, or my hatred of custard.
A rose by any other name is still a rose. The things that people call me are just that – names and labels.
I’m not going to halt my life or stop doing what I want to do because of a name that someone called me. I’m still going to try my best to achieve my dreams, I’m still going to sing badly, be Igbo, and cook terrible food.
And I’m sure as hell still going to fucking draw.
So, a person who thinks that I am going to fall down and my life will grind to a halt simply because they said so obviously doesn’t know the first thing about me.
I am who I am.
Bastard and proud.