My name was uncommon in my own Punjab community at the times my parents named me. I’ve met people with the suffix ‘kirat’ like ‘Jaskirat’ and ‘Harkirat.’ but I have yet to meet another ‘Mankirat.’ My name means ‘setting your mind to something and working to achieve it,’ so it’s nice to have that inspiration when I’m doing school work or something.
When I was seven or so, I used to really hate my name, because kids in my school would always mispronounce my name, and say ‘MankiRAT’ instead of ‘Manki-rit,’ and then go ‘Haw haw, you have a ‘rat’ in your name!’ And so I would come home and demand to my parents that I get a name change immediately. I think I hurt my parents’ feelings a bit because their daughter disliked the name that they gave her. Now that I am grown up, I love my name because it allows me to share my culture when asked about its origin.