I refine my authentic voice alone and share it with others.

Two women of color smile at each other with open laptops.
Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

Asking where I’m ‘really’ from is about their baggage, not mine.

Two contrasting purses against contrasting backgrounds.
Photo by Icons8 Team on Unsplash

Why does my story matter, really?

Some say they don’t see…

I find myself in the world of immigrant stories.

Three distinct patches of a quilt stitched together.
Photo by Raul Cacho Oses on Unsplash

Who matters is about seeing humanity and inclusion.

Photo by Victoria Strukovskaya on Unsplash

I gave birth to my son, who teaches me about life.

Mother duck and baby duckling.
Photo by Hussain Badshah on Unsplash

My son taught his first lessons to me, his mother.

I first learned to love unconditionally from his brother, who was nearly five years old twenty-three years ago. Little Brother grew into a dreamy, chubby baby and toddler. By age three, he was ‘different,’ slow to speak, prone…

It comes from within and without.

Photo by Martin Brechtl on Unsplash

My Indian grandmother’s hand-spun hopes guide my path today.

Photo by Aditya Wardhana on Unsplash

My nostalgia inhabits a footstool, evoking unknowable stories.

Photo by Jazmin Quaynor on Unsplash

That cookbook on sale might not be the ambrosia you seek.

Photo by Starks Don Pablo on Unsplash

Over-spiced stereotypes lack substance and nuance.

Representational images collapse Hindu and Indian. The term Hindu refers to those who practice Hinduism or live in a culture influenced by it.

I shed nostalgia to see strength and wisdom in what’s broken.

Photo by Ekaterina Novitskaya on Unsplash

Nostalgia is a longing for simpler times to soothe pain in the present.

I’m thinking a lot about history these days. This summer is a backdrop to our fiery social and political strife — in the middle of a pandemic. Looking back at a time long ago feels like going to the beach for cool relief. If only beaches near me were open.


Punita shares her musings about midlife, her immigrant family, and life at the intersection of disability and diversity. She loves history, words, and culture.

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