by Mia Cabrera

My name has always been a tick on the back of my neck. Everyone else around me had exotic names and those who didn’t have elegant known names I would have loved to receive as a child. In Spanish, my name is, Mia Luna, but in English, my name is, My Moon. I speak both English and Spanish and think both languages are beautiful and the pronunciation can be like chunky peanut butter. I just never enjoyed my name because it feels like having your foot in both countries and sounds dull. But whenever I hear someone get my name wrong or change in any way, I get angry. It feels uncomfortable and I get defensive around it because it’s a small fragile puppy that I must protect even if I don’t love them the way I should.

My siblings have such wonderful names that I am jealous of. Christian and Xitlaly. Both had something to do with astrology, my brother being the sun and my sister being the stars which would make me their moon. In a way, I enjoy the way it all fits together, but if it hadn’t been for my mother’s friend having her child before her, I wouldn’t have enjoyed it at all, in fact, I would have hated my name. Instead of Mia Luna, it would have been, Mia Esperanza, Spanish for My Hope. My father being the stubborn man that he is didn’t want my name to be a copy of someone else so he thought about my siblings and my name and how it would work together.  That is how he came up with the astrological idea.

I enjoy my middle name more than I enjoy my first name just for the astrological side to it. Luna to Moon, Moon to Luna. When people look up at the sky and ask where the moon is, I always reply with, “I’m right here.” We always laugh and end up with a talk about space and it makes me warm inside, but I never talk about my middle name to anyone because it feels like a task instead of a simple use of my vocal cords. I still love my middle name and I would have enjoyed it being my first name with a fun and unique middle name. Though my name is very simple and not entertaining, no one gives me a nickname unless I come up with it.

My nickname to others is Mikey like Mike with a longer “E” at the end. It’s like a cat’s tongue, it looks soft and when you say it there are some bumps. It hasn’t always been Mikey and to most of my family it’s still and always will be, Mia, but to my friends at school, I am known as Mia or Mikey. My first and middle name vary from person to person, but my last name will always be constant and I love it most of all. My father’s last name means a place of wild animals and my mother’s last name means small wood. They fit so well together, a place of wild animals in small woods, if I could live near anything it would be in some area in a small forest where animals would be. The only part of my name that I can stand by and hold onto that makes me happy.

My name may not always be the name I hoped for, but any child named by an adult will go through a phase of not loving their name and then absolutely loving it later. My name is the love of astrology and a place for wild animals in small woods. I am the moon and the moon is me, I am the place of wild animals in small woods and they are me. I will grow to love my name the way I will when I love myself completely and utterly. I wouldn’t change my name for the world because I was given a reason for it and I will grow up to it.