History of a Name by Isa Condo-Olvera


     As in the name my mother loved “before it grew popular.”

     As in the name I never quite know how to say outside.

          Should I make it easier for the gringos? 

          Sometimes I do, it can be exhausting not to.

          It can be exhausting to feel like I’m making a statement 

          just by saying my name as my mother did when she gave it to me.

Isabella           can morph into 


     Isa sounds the same in English and Spanish.

     Isa hugs me and brings me joy.

     Isa allows me to not have to make a statement, while still saying my                name right.

     Isa doesn’t make me feel reprimanded.

     Isa’s a little more childlike.

     She can play a little more.

Isabella           still needs a little more loving though.

     She deserves it.

     And that’s on me.



     As in the name no one else had.

     As in “wow, if your name was Ana, your name would be Ana Condo.” 

          Like anaconda, get it?

     As in “short for condominium?”

     As in “omigod, it’s like a condom.”

     As in Lázaro Condo

     As in an indigenous leader who led a revolution in Ecuador

          Maybe my relative? But we don’t know.

     As in the quechua word “condor”

          A great bird

     As in my selfless hardworking love of a father.



     As in not Olivera. But you tried. Close enough.

     As in the part of my name that gave me my tongue.

     As in the part of my family who fucked over the other part of my family.

          Because my ancestors are the oppressors and the oppressed.

     As in the part of my name that I make sure to include to show people I           really am Latina.
     As in my asshole abusive dick of a grandfather.

     As in my badass loving strength of a mother.



Isa Condo-Olvera is a passionate Costa Rican theatre maker currently based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Born and raised in San Jose, Costa Rica to an Ecuadorian dad and a Mexican mom, Isa was always intensely fascinated with storytelling. Her work as a young female producer in Costa Rica led to her selection by then Vice President, Ana Helena Chacón, for a distinction for her leadership in the artistic field in the organization, Nosotras: Women Connecting. Isa has since worked as an actor and singer in both Costa Rica and the US.

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