In Attire
Relationship: Child of im/migrant

A cramped closet in New York City houses a pink sari worn just once by my mother on her wedding day in Bangladesh. My mother grew up in a small village, believing that her future was already set for her: she would marry a well-off man, preferably one living in the capital city, and raise successful children. Her life was defined by her roles with respect to others, not by her individual desires: she was to be an obedient daughter, a dutiful wife, and a caring mother. When she turned 25, my mother married my father, a well-off man living in the capital city. Two years later, she had given birth to two daughters. It was at this point that my mother decided that she had to leave. Her life was already set because of the culture that she was born into, but she refused to allow her daughters to share that same fate. She had heard about America from those in her village ever since she could remember – it was the land of the free, the land of opportunity, the land that would allow her daughters to live their own lives, not the lives that society expected of them. Thus, she convinced my father and the two of them set off alone to a new country with two daughters and one dream – to secure a better future for their children. My mother’s immigration story is linked to her family, to her daughters, to her wedding, and to a pink wedding dress that’s tucked away inside a narrow closet in New York City.

Year: 2000

– NH

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