Silver ring

In Attire
Relationship: Child of im/migrant

This is an old silver ring that my maternal grandmother passed down to my parents when I was born, a family heirloom that has been in the family for a few generations. It is used for a baby's teething and the inscription wishes good fortune. I keep this ring on my nightstand, and it serves as a daily physical reminder of my grandmother, who, like most of my family, lives in China. As immigrants to America, I think my family and I have personally assimilated very well, but it is also extremely important to never forget one's family, culture, and heritage, no matter how far apart one is from their place of origin. This ring is especially significant to me because it signifies how my Chinese heritage has been with me from birth. Growing up in a city as culturally rich as New York has given me an abundance of exposure various cultures and ideas, but my personal heritage remains as a tether in a rapidly altering modern world. To my parents, I think the presence of Chinese traditions and culture when raising me also helped signify their ability to find a balance between two cultures. While a huge stereotypical part of the American dream is starting and raising a family, this presents another interesting dilemma for immigrant parents in balancing American and foreign cultures. This ring, to everybody in my family, serves as a reminder of where we came from.

Place(s): China
Year: 1994

– Brian

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