Hello Kitty

Relationship: Child of im/migrant
A Hello Kitty stuffed animal
A Hello Kitty stuffed animal

Items with much meaning can look unassuming to outsiders. What possible meaning can a Hello Kitty stuffed animal signify? For me, it symbolizes comfort on a tough day, unconditional love when I feel less than, and a reminder of who I come from and who I can look forward to. The Hello Kitty’s journey started with my mom’s mother and made its way from her to me. She was purchased because of my mom’s love for the character and was cared for for many years. When I was born, she bestowed Hello Kitty onto me because she could not part ways with it. Although the gift was given as a means to preserve her childhood, it also became a part of mine. This stuffed character is the oldest one that I have. With it, it carries memories from my mom’s past while taking on my own. For her, it was a source of comfort that reminded her of her mom. She kept it with her for many years because it was a part of her mother that she could keep while her mom was sent back to the Philippines. For me, it was the item that I slept with when I was sick in bed, the item I brought with me on long car rides, the item that shows my mom’s love for me from the very start, and the item I will keep until I have a daughter for it to do the same.  This item carries a story with it. The story of a Filipino family coming to America. The story of a family being torn and separated across oceans. The story that links a mother and daughter despite the distance. This item is a tie that connects me to my mother and her to her own. 

Place(s): Philippines, United States

– KM

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant