"One who is loved"
My name is like a clue at a crime scene, it can be traced back and explains the story as to how it got there. Betame is a unique and a one and only name that was created by my birth parents. It is my name but more importantly it is my connection to a world that has since left me. Betame is not just six chicken scratches on a piece of paper when writing but rather my story. A deep intricate story that can almost be wound up like a ball of yarn. Following this yarn you will come to see my story, and how my name has shaped me.
Betame means “One who is loved”. This beautiful definition is the sole purpose my parents chose this name for me. They wanted me to know that I am loved. That I am cared for and wanted. I never really truly understood why this would matter until they passed away when I was four.
I wasn't alone but I felt as though my world had been shattered. Glass flying everywhere as if a baseball had gone through a garage window. Little bits left lying everywhere. The glass reflecting in the cool autumn sun. They had left me.
But they had also given me an amazing family who loves me as well. My adopted family is much like an artists canvas, colors everywhere. The canvas is filled with chocolate brown splattered across and chalky white centered in the middle. It is unique much like I am.
In the U.S Betame is a name that is a needle in a haystack. It sticks out due to its uniqueness. Much like I do with my different features. I was taught that being unique is great. It allows for me to have people's attention if I am asking for it or not. My name is my ID tag stuck on me like a slug slowing slithering on a log. Betame is not just my name it is my story. That dates back from my birth parents creating it to me using it today.
My name isn’t something that people call me it's what defines me.
Different. That’s what color is for me. It's what paints how people view me. Almost as if I was an exhibit and I was the feature. Their gawking eyes, looking me over; thinking, judging who I am. They don't mean too. But that's how it goes.
Them staring at me with my dark chocolate skin and my charcoal dusted black hair. This is how they view me. Different but yet the same.
Being adopted is like being a sore thumb. Sticking out and breaking necks as people double back to get a second look. They usually are confused as if they were a child in a high school class. Dazed and looking for an explanation. I too would be confused if a black child introduced me to his white parents.
I too would be dazed trying to put this story together like a jigsaw puzzle. Putting the pieces into place but not getting the full picture.
This is the life of an adopted child with dark cocoa skin. Trying to fit into a society consisting of mostly ivory. A caucasian color which contrast with my black leather complexion. Dark and smooth.
I never saw my skin as a disadvantage. I love being different I loved my skin itself. I loved how I could not blush. My dark complexion blocking the rose red of a blush. I loved how when I wore certain colors such as navy or green it brought out my beautiful color. Shining and glistening in the sun. Humans are much like fingerprints, different but yet the same thing. Some are round as a ripe tomato in July while others are like a branch, thin and narrow.
Some are like the moon, pale and hollow which allows for one to see every definition on their face. While others are like freshly brewed coffee, brown but still foamy in the middle.
These difference are what make people; people. They are what define and set up all of us.
New Hampshire: The Disappointing State of America
The car ride to New Hampshire had been painful. Sitting in a sticky humid car for hours on end with kids screaming like birds at the beach. It was terrible but I had heard the stories. The long tales from family about how amazing it was. They told it as if it was a legend in the family. I could not wait. When we touched down like planes on the runway we all looked in awe. I turned and turned looking for this legendary New Hampshire. However the famous and legend like New Hampshire camping lodge was just plain old prosaic. Nothing interesting. I jumped from the car and tried to raise my spirits. There must be some fun in this place in the middle of nowhere.
I came to find that nowhere contained no swing or any toy a child would find exciting. Nowhere contained nothing. Just trees and more trees.
My parents flew from their seats, their bones aching as if they woke from a winter hibernation. Their bones creaking with every step. They whispered to one another, laughed and breathed in the “fresh” air. I however was not as entertained. I stomped like a wild gorilla lose in Africa and grabbed my bag. I tossed it aside like a rag doll and sat on the ground.
“This place stinks!” I huffed. My cheeks going in and out like bagpipes on St.Patrick's day. They filled and released each time a sigh or moan leaving my cave of a mouth.
All the build up and stories and this place was just plain old dull. The woods close around me and eight year old me hated it. No life no people no video games, just me against the world.