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Nikkei Names: Writing Workshop in Los Angeles

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Patricia Miye Wakida

Three years ago, I was married here in Los Angeles- at Zenshuji Soto Temple in Little Tokyo, to a wonderful man of Mexican American descent. Three weeks prior to the big day, I was confronted with a [something] choice: do I remain a Wakida or do I become a Arbizo?

It wasn’t an easy decision; I was truly conflicted. I asked women all around me for their opinion. I carefully discussed it with my fiancé for his feelings on the subject.

It was a matter of identity to me. Part of me had always been Patricia Wakida and felt loyal to that. I adore my family and love my Nikkei identity. Professionally, I didn’t want to lose my identity either.

I questioned the tradition of changing names and why marriage had the power to transform me. 

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Patricia Miye Wakida
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Photo taken and name story provided on June 28, 2014 at the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy as a part of Discover Nikkei’s workshop warm-up excercise in conjunction with the More »


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