One of my favorite things to do is to create new words. Today I created the word Apolidity. It is the state of being a stateless person. I live my life in apolidity. Born in the United States but raised both in the States and in Europe, I belong to no nation. I am not American enough to feel American, not Italian enough to feel Italian. I have heard the term "Third Culture Kid" used but I do not belong to a third culture, I have enough experience from both Italy and the States to be able to criticize and appreciate both cultures but neither belong to me. My daughter, born and raised in Italy, feels neither Italian, nor American.
A few months ago we were looking for a flat to lease and we were turned down by a prospective landlord who used the flimsiest of reasons. Shocked, I tried to reason with the landlord, but my daughter advised me to stop. She said, "He didn't like us, because we're foreign."
I wish I understood, that I could internalize the phrase "Proud to be American". What does it mean, exactly? At this point, to dilineate myself, I must identify with something. Definitely, Modern Western Culture (I identify with human rights, hot showers, Western Literature); Definitely, Woman (subclass Mother)...I can identify with the saying "Proud to be a Woman". I like associating with women, I belong with that group. As much as I like Americans and I enjoy their company, I don't quite fit in. No more do I fit in with Italians or with men although I enjoy the company of both, consecutively and/or simultaneously.
Notwithstanding my apolidity, I have a niche "Human, Western Culture Woman, subclass Mother". It's a rather large, nebulous appellation but it's a start. Actually, I have just realized I belong to another subclass, a bit more "exclusive": catlady......but that's for another blog.
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