I came upon this site rather randomly, but thought; hey, why not contribute myself?
I was born on Jeju Island, but consider myself more of a Pusan person. I moved to New York when I was 4, but kept on moving back and forth till now. My life story is very long with constant moves (including a stint in Paris), but let’s just say I’ve forgotten Korean twice and English twice and had to relearn each one till they both stuck.
I can’t really say I’m completely American, just like I’m not completely Korean. I only got my citizenship two years ago, but grew up in New York and Chicago. Unlike many other Korean Americans I’ve met, I’m probably nearly equally fluent in both languages.
Sometimes it’s hard balancing the two cultures. I’m confident in myself and outgoing; which my Korean friends tell me shows off my American-ness. Apparently I walk differently, and I have no problems talking to strangers or men. At the same time, I don’t really like crude American humor; I much prefer the play-on-words Korean humor, and the Korean dating “process” really amuses me in how seriously they take going on a date (especially the first one!).
Until I graduated high school, I had maybe 1 Korean friend, and 2 Asian friends. In college, I made the effort to immerse myself more in the Asian community, and funnily enough, now I think I have more Asian friends. The activities, parties, and conversation topics are so different, and I wonder if there is any way to bridge the gap, especially between the International ‘FOBs’ and the Americans.
As I grow older, I’m appreciating my Korean heritage more and more (unlike when I was younger and I just wanted to get rid of it). I really thought I was totally American, but some days I realize how much my parents raised me differently. A friend once asked me if I would choose Love or Family, and to my surprise, I realized I would choose Family. If that’s not stereotypical Asian…. After all, romance films in America are giving up everything for love; until recently, romance films in Asia was giving up love for the “right” thing.
Anyway, I really enjoy volunteering (especially wildlife and children), I am learning Chinese and am a International Business major. And nope, knowing Korean does not help you in Chinese one bit.
I love outdoor activities, like kayaking, horseback riding, rock climbing, paintball, etc. On the flip side, I like cross stitching, good books, and sketching. Trying to break into photography, but we’ll see where that goes.
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