Have you ever met a real Princess(a)?

All in a Name – Three of Armijo’s Royals

Generally, when people reference “the Royal family”, they aren’t speaking of Armijo’s mascot, but they also aren’t usually talking about the Madison family, although perhaps they should be.

PrincessAnai’ya Madison (ID Photo)

PrincessAnai’ya and PrincessAndreya Madison are two students at Armijo who share their royal names with others in their family. Their brothers’ names are King-Hasanni and King-Naszayah as well as Prince-Aesir. Their mother is Princess-Maya while their uncle goes by the name of Sir. They even have relatives named Queen A’jai and Lady Jamica.

“My Grandpa named my siblings, most of my cousins, and me. He wanted us to always remember that we are kings and queens. We as Africans were the first,” said PrincessAnai’ya.

“When I was younger, people would always ask me if I was a real princess, and I would reply with yes. Nowadays, people just ask if it’s my real name,” she said. “Some people who even call me would just say Anai’yah because they don’t believe me. I like to make sure to tell them to call me Princess or PrincessAnai’ya. No in-between!”

PrincessAnai’ya continued. “At family reunions…my Uncle Master Jashon would always say when we enter, “The King and Princesses have arrived” it would always make me laugh.”

Princess Rhea Cruz

PrincessAnai’ya and her sister are not the only Princesses on campus though. There is also Princess Rhea Cruz. “My older sister had named me based off her favorite Barbie movie called The Princess and the Pauper,” Cruz said. “She bothered my mom about naming me Princess so my mother went along with it. My original name was supposed to be Ariana since my siblings all start with the letter ‘A’.” That would include her older sister Angelica who graduated from Armijo in 2020.

“Many people get shocked after hearing my name. I hear a lot of people telling me I have a cute/cool name which is flattering. There are people here and there that do find my name a bit weird and say, ‘Is that actually your name?’” she said.

Princessa Silva (ID Photo)

There is only a slight variation in names for Princessa Silva. “My name came from my mom’s heart because she loved me before she knew me. And as soon as her doctor told my mom that I was a girl, she started calling me her Princessa. She knew that she wasn’t going to have any more kids after me, therefore she decided to name me Princessa, because I was a precious gift from God,” she said.

“I haven’t met anyone outside of my school with my name, or something related to my name, but in school, I met another student that has a similar name to me, and she is named Princess. I met her in my Elementary School.”

A lot of people compliment Silva’s first name with comments like, “I love your name!” and “Your name is so pretty!” She also gets compliments on her middle name, Jaslyn. People often say, “Ohh like Princess Jasmine? That’s so pretty!” Although her name isn’t based on that Princess, they hear it together, recognize that it sounds like Princess Jasmine and they create a connection.

Silva’s family has a long history with Armijo High School. Her uncle graduated in 1992 and her mother graduated two years later. Four of her cousins are Armijo alumni as are her oldest brother who graduated in 2018 and the most recent Armijo graduate, her brother who graduated last year.

Madison, Cruz and Silva are all college-bound, but headed in different directions. Madison wants to go to New York University and possibly become a lawyer. Cruz, on the other hand will probably stay closer to home and attend a Community College. Silva intends to attend UC Merced and pursue a career as an ultrasound technician.

While their backgrounds and their career goals are all different, these three girls share one thing in common. They love their unusual names and would not consider changing them.