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What My Name Says About Who I Am

Name changes can be an act of self-preservation and confirmation in how we show up in the world — and on paper

An illustration of a woman, split in half with 2 different colors, crossing her arms and holding her face.
Illustration: Jenn Kitagawa

II became Mia Nakaji Monnier in college. I didn’t change my name so much as reveal more of it. While I’d always gone by Mia Monnier before then, the rest of my name appeared on all of my official documents: Mia Gabrielle…




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Mia Nakaji Monnier

Mia Nakaji Monnier

Mia Nakaji Monnier is a freelance writer in Los Angeles with work in BuzzFeed, Shondaland, The Washington Post, and more. She’s also a professional knitter.

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