Julia wasn’t always my name. When I was adopted, my birth name was Yoshi, yes, like the big green dinosaur from Mario Kart.
Growing up, I was so glad my parents saved me from the teasing and bullying Yoshi would have received during grade school. When I was younger, I would try my best to hide my Asian-ness in order to fit in with my predominantly white peers.
However, as a young adult, I have learned to embrace my ethnicity and become more curious about my feelings and how I identify. This led me to dive deeper into my experience during grade school and how I shared my parent’s ethnic history during show and tell in lack of knowing my own. In elementary school when we had to share our family tree and tell all of our classmates where we were from, I would receive odd looks as I told them I was related to Clara Barton and my ancestors were from Germany and Great Britain.
Lin is actually my middle name, as is my mom’s. But she spells it as Lynn, not Lin. She told me that was the Asian way to spell it. My grandma’s first name is also Linda, so I think that had something to do with it.
Other than that, I just like the way it rolls off the tongue. Julia Lin is just short and to the point. It has sort of an upward inflection compared to Barton.
As someone who plans to break into the broadcast journalism scene, introducing yourself at the beginning and end of a segment is routine. Having a name that is easy and quick to say will make transitions easier and more efficient. I think of it as almost a stage name.
Our names are such a big part of our identity. Each name has a backstory of how they got it, and what it means. I always enjoy talking to my friends about what their names could have been. In my case, my parents were between Julia and Paige. I definitely do not see myself as Paige so I am happy they went with Julia.
Write to Julia Lin at firstname.lastname@example.org