Hello, my name is Sonni and I am Chinese and Puerto Rican. I was born and raised in Northern California and haven’t moved since. I love it here — it’s a very beautiful place to call home.
My father is Chinese, he was born in Hong Kong and his family is native to the Guangdong/Hong Kong areas. He moved to the U.S. when he was about five years old and basically grew up here.
On the other hand my Puerto Rican mother was born and raised on the island until she was 14. She moved to New York for about three years then to California.
I’ve never been to Hong Kong/China or Puerto Rico but I’ve always wanted to go and visit relatives and just be immersed in both cultures. I always wanted to trace my genealogy — I only know that my great grandfather (Dad’s side) went to Canada to be a lumberjack temporarily. I also just know that my mother’s great grandmother was from Spain and that she was really fair skinned and had blonde hair with blue eyes.
My parents met in my uncle’s business (Father’s side) where my mother started working at as one of her first jobs. And so their relationship started to blossom until my mother went to college in L.A. My father would drive all the way down there nonstop just to see her and bring her some flowers. (Talk about romantic! ha) Boy were they crazy for each other — it almost seemed like they were soulmates from different parts of the world. After college my parents had my sister, then three years later, me :-).
When I’m with my family on the Chinese side I celebrate Chinese New Year along with many other Chinese traditions and customs. When I am with my Puerto Rican family I always greet them with a hug and a kiss on the cheek, they usually like to party and dance and celebrate life (but I’m not a huge dancer, ha).
When I was growing up, there weren’t many ethnic children around that I knew of. All I knew was recess and tether ball with my friends, hah. Once I grew older I became more comfortable being ethnically diverse and embracing other cultures as well because I really just found people fascinating.
I am now very proud of being Hapa. I love the uniqueness of it. I also love that there is a site like this where I can come and share my story and learn about others’ experiences. Thank you.
Some trivia: Hong Kong means “fragrant harbor” in Cantonese and Puerto Rico means “rich port” in Spanish. I find this ironic since both my parents were born in these places that have similar meanings hah.