Friday, 17 July 2009

Pakoy

The word "Pakoi" was invented with the help of 6 other Pakoys one summer in Abbottabad. At one time, I thought I was the only Pakoy and knew that couldn't be true. Was I glad to come across someone just like me. And once I found one, I found a whole lot more!

A Pakoi is a half Pakistani-half Filipino (or Pinoy as the Filipinos call themselves). I'm even married to one. Growing up with two different cultures has been such a blessing. Both are so different and yet have some similarities. For the longest time, when I was much younger, my father always told me I was Pakistani. He didn't like it when I showed any interest in anything Filipino. I think for him, being Pakistani was synonymous with being a Muslim and being Filipino was not.

Because it was forced on me, I resisted for a while. I didn't want to be Pakistani. Why couldn't I be Filipino? If being Filipino was so bad, why did my dad marry one? It wasn't till I had lived in Pakistan for 6 years and was moving back to England that I came to terms with my Pakistani side. In effect, my son is a Pakoy too since both of us are. I want him to grow up learning about both cultures. The hubby is lucky in that he can speak both languages. I understand Urdu more that I do Tagalog and always wish Ammi had taught us her language too.

I was once asked by one of the 6 above mentioned Pakoys whether I felt more Pakistani or more Filipino. I think I told her I didn't feel like either. I was wrong. At one point I felt more Pakistani. I look Pakistani, I spent 6 years there and I was told I was. Now though, I feel like both.

15 comments:

  1. Assalamu alaikum

    I just happened upon your blog through your post on another. I found it interesting to see that you mentioned Abbottabad. One of my friends living in Cambs is from there.

    Now that I live in Singapore, I see so many combinations of people that I think it is easier to 'accept' a mixture in oneself or children. Many people here as so 'mixed' that it would be strange for them to identify with any of their ancestral countries.

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  2. Walaikum-salaam,

    I just saw your comment though you posted it a while ago. For a long time, I thought I was the only Pakistani-Filpino even though I knew that couldn't be the case. I'm also married to a Pakistani-Filipino but because he grew up in Pakistan he considers himself Pakistani.

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  3. Assalam-u-Akaikum,
    I am from Pakistan. I used to live in Rawalpindi( Neighboring of Islamabad) and is now shifted to Karachi.
    It felt so good to read all that.
    http://girlwhowalksintherain.blogspot.com/search/label/Islamabad I was reading this the other day, And i dont know why i feel so good about it. I think its because of 'Islamabad' and its beauties.
    Well, Have a good day
    Bye
    :)

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  4. Walaikum-salaam. THanks for your comment. I do miss Islamabad. I loved it there. It is what got me through my time in Pakistan. I'm glad you liked the post. It means a lot when someone takes the time out to make a comment. Thanks again.

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  5. Hey do you sti reply tto posts

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  6. Hi! I only just saw this! For some reason, I have not been getting email to notify me of comments. Sorry for the extremely late reply.

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  7. Assalam o alaikum. Hope you're good. I was reading your blog and thrilled to have known you and your hubby is a half mixed of Pakistani and Filipino. I am half chinese and half filipino married to a pakistani. I love being a filipino but I embrace my husband culture and tradition. He is a good man and from a good family. I have been to Pakistan and enjoyed my stay there. in case we will have baby then it will be mixed pakistani and filipino as well. I would love to hear some insight xoming from you and your husband.

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    1. Walaikum-salaam. I am very good, thanks. I didn't know my blog was still being read since it's been such a long time since I've posted anything. It's good to know that it is. Your baby is going to be quite the mix! Half Pakistani, quarter Filipino and quarter Chinese. I like it! My son is five now and is slowly beginning to understand what it means to be half Pakistani-Filipino. To him, people are people and he's only becoming aware of people coming from different places. I plan on bringing him up with both cultures-he eats both Pakistani and Filipino food and loves it. My dad tried to be bring me up to be more Pakistani, which I hated. The more he tried it the more I resisted. I hope you find a way to bring your child up in a truly multicultural way.

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    2. My one piece of advice would be to teach your child the languages you both speak. My husband can speak three: English, Urdu and Tagalog. Me, I only know the one though I can understand the other two.

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  8. Salaam/Hi! OMG!!!! I am so freakin glad and excited that I have come across to your blog, :) My boyfriend is a pakistani and Obviously I'm a filipina,we are in a LD relationship I am in u.s and he is in pakistan. he is a Muslim and I'm a Roman Catholic/christian, I just have a question if you don't mind answering them is your mom christian ? and if she is where did they get married, in church, islamic wedding or both? my mom is okay with me having a muslim guy as long as the guy is responsible and good but my dad ehh....I think he has some issues to some muslims due to what media is trying to potray about muslims

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    1. Hi Khan,

      My mum diverted before she got married because she thought she had no choice. She had two weddings, a traditional Islamic one as well as a civil one. She wasn't much of a practising Muslim when we were young though she made sure we learnt how to read the Quran. However, as I got older, she started learning more about Islam and is now a bonafide practising Muslim. Muslim men are allowed to marry women from the Jewish and Christian faiths as long as they believe only in one God. Also, the children are considered to born Muslims. Good luck with your guy. Thanks for dropping me a line. Happy holidays!

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    2. I meant converted not diverted. Auto correct makes me laugh.

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  9. @khan Hi omg I have the same situation except I am here in the Philippines. I'm just wondering how are you and your guy, I hope you are both doing good. also @girlwhowalksintherain, reading this is such a delight:)

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    1. @aprilalmalves thank you very much. I was surprised to see a comment. I'd almost forgotten this blog was still up.

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    2. @aprilalmalves thank you very much. I was surprised to see a comment. I'd almost forgotten this blog was still up.

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