On identity & raising kids who are proud of their roots

(This post contains a gifted / sponsored product. The opinions are 100% my own)

I’ve written about this same many years ago (here’s an old post) but I thought it would be good to reconnect over this since Anya was only 3 around that time. Over these last 4-5 years as Anya’s gotten older this has become even more evident in our lives. I’ve realized even more how important is for us as parents to feel proud of our own identity before we can expect kids to embrace their heritage. Kids are such sponges really absorbing things we don’t even know we are reflecting!

It’s also a sad realization that for me that growing up in Pakistan in a time when English instead of Urdu, everything “western” was considered so much cooler.. it wasn’t until I moved so far away, was raising an immigrant kid that I felt more connected to the “Pakistani” parts of myself and fell in love with them!

Identity can feel like a confusing thing as an expat or immigrant; at home in two places but sometimes a stranger in both .. but it’s also this amazing window into two worlds that can help us be kinder & better. It’s been so so important for me that Anya realizes that and feels proud of her Pakistani heritage💚.

▪️Here are a few tips to raise kids who are proud of their Pakistani identity or roots▪️

Connect them to Urdu. Music, TV shows, books are so helpful for this. (Sharing a list for you in another post coming soon)
Tell them stories; of your childhood, the places, the things you miss.
➖When you visit, don’t just make your trip all about meeting people & shopping but also make time to show them local sights.
Share inspiring stories of people from Pakistan (eg: Edhi, Benazir Bhutto, Malala.. )
➖As they get older be honest with them about the challenges the country faces & the many ways people are trying to bring change.
Own your identity yourself; by flaunting those outfits and speaking the language even when you’re around non-Pakistanis (kids can sense our discomfort)

Here’s a Pinterest board I use to collect inspiring, uplifting, positive or fun stories out of Pakistan to share with Anya

The custom pendant of my name in Urdu was sent to me by the husband-wife owned Zudo.co . It is one of my favorite most accessories to wear these days. I’ve been wearing it for a few months, it’s been in the shower many times & I love the quality and the finish. They have kindly shared this code (NATALIYA) to share with you to get 15% off your order. (All of Zudo’s products are 18K gold plated – they don’t tarnish and are safe for sensitive skin. They also use their platform to raise awareness on Mental health and sexual violence.) . Shop their Website / Check out their Instagram.