Monday, March 7, 2016

Part of a Set

I’m the oldest of four girls, and we’re all Asian. Have you ever heard the phrase that all Asians look alike? By the way, it goes both ways. There are times when I think all white people look the same.

But I’m digressing…

We do look pretty similar. When I was getting my senior pictures taken, I ended up borrowing clothes from my sister and wearing my hair a little bit differently than normal. When my mom excitedly showed me the final, framed copy, I was confused. I asked her why she framed a picture of my sister.

So if I have a hard time telling us apart, I guess it makes sense that other people can’t see a difference either.

The Sisters, ready for a performance

One of my neighbors once told us: “If you were all the same height and width, you’d be twins!”

We’ve joked about that for a long time, mostly because he couldn’t even remember how many of us there were, and also because we wanted to know why he mentioned the widths.

I’m used to being one of a set. Growing up, I was just one of the sisters. No one really bothered to know our names unless they were close friends. People would call my mom and ask if one of us could babysit. No specific girl, really, we’re interchangeable, just as long as it’s one of the sisters.

When I left home and struck out on my own, it was a little disconcerting to be the only Asian. I wasn’t part of the set anymore, I was a unique individual. I wasn’t quite sure what to do with that.

Over time, I changed my appearance, finding my own look. I cut bangs and reverted back to glasses. It took me several years, but I finally feel like Krista Quintana. I’m me, and I’m unique, no longer one of a set.