Shock of Her Granddaughter Not Knowing Her Japanese Heritage

Transcripts available in the following languages:

And she said something about, “Your people,” and I shuddered inside – “your people?” and I had to kind of calm myself, and I had to tell myself, “There is no ‘your people’ or ‘my people,’ because you come – part of you comes from me.” And so I asked her mother for permission – because they were divorced at the time, my son and his wife, to take her to Japan. And I took her and introduced her to the relatives in Hiroshima. I thought it was important for her to know there is no “Your people, my—” you’re part Japanese. That was – that was a shock when she said that. You know, but I’m not with her all the time, she doesn’t see me all the time, but I – I thought, “Did she not…” I never asked her. Did she not notice I looked different from her?

Date: November 8, 2018
Location: California, US
Interviewer: June Berk
Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

granddaughter hapa identity Mixed

Kizuna 2020: Nikkei Kindness and Solidarity During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Read the stories and share your own!

More Than a Game: Nikkei Sports

Submissions accepted until October 31.

Read the Nikkei sports stories >>

Get updates

Sign up for email updates

Journal feed
Events feed
Comments feed

Support this project

Discover Nikkei

Discover Nikkei is a place to connect with others and share the Nikkei experience. To continue to sustain and grow this project, we need your help!

Ways to help >>

A project of the Japanese American National Museum

Major support by The Nippon Foundation