A VISUAL STORY TELLING PROJECT BY MARIANA MONASI FROM PACHAMAMA CREATIVE CELEBRATING MOTHERHOOD IN ALL ITS FORMS. A PROJECT OF THE HAWAIʻI LGBT LEGACY FOUNDATION, PRESENTED BY CENTRAL PACIFIC BANK.
“Itʻs hard, and yet itʻs beautiful because I get to learn a new perspective, and Iʻm grateful to my kids for bringing me along in their perspective.” — Kumella
“Iʻm an island girl,” says Kumella Aiu, “my dad is English, my mom is Greek and I canʻt find my center without water.” Born in Arizona and raised in Colorado until age 11 when her family moved to Hawaiʻi, Kumella is a first generation American who considers the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi her home. Kaliko, her transgender son, grew up in Colorado, and moved to Oʻahu in 2016 after graduating from high school. Kumella and Kaliko met with Mariana at Kumellaʻs favorite park, Heʻeia State Park in Kaneʻohe, where Kumella says “I see a regeneration of indigenous practice; a place where I see progress.”
“Part of who I am, and my identity, is that my parents put me into indigenous spaces…” — Kumella
“One of the biggest things that you taught me was that even when weʻre met with something that really challenges our heart and our ego, we can still choose love…” — Kaliko
“Iʻve never not seen the underbelly of homophobia and transphobia. Itʻs like once you see, you canʻt unsee…” — Kumella
“I know [Kaliko] has always been māhū, so anything I struggle with in transness, itʻs the pushing away of old self.” — Kumella. “But I was never a woman, so there was no woman to push away…” — Kaliko