In Search of An America Boy
By Srihitha Pallapothula
This piece is about patriarchal ideals within my culture and the way they have affected the women in my family.
When I remember my Aunt, the first thing that comes to mind is the time she made an omelette for me. Eggs sizzling in hot, glistening oil. Power boiling in her blood. My Aunt is my father’s younger sister. A woman wedged between two brothers. Her father, my paternal grandfather, was an ambitious man. He sent the boys to America to become engineers. Kept the girl home, safe. My mother only made it to America through marriage, my father, a vehicle for her desire to see this land.
My mother tells me every girl wanted to marry an America boy. When she says this, I remember Cher. When her mother told her to marry a rich man, Cher laughed and said I am a rich man. I am a rich man. Why couldn’t my mother become an America girl? I wonder, but I already know the answer.
I was thinking about how my uncle and my father had moved to America in their early twenties, while my aunt stayed behind in India. I asked my father about the rationale behind this situation. Inspired by his response, I began writing this piece.
Srihitha Pallapothula (she/her) is a high school junior based in California. She loves to delve into writing, a longtime passion of hers. Srihitha’s other interests include reading diasporic work, cooking fried snacks such as mushroom manchurian and writing lengthy, professional emails.