Friday, February 5, 2016

The Asian American Experience: Parents

Last week, I walked to work because my car was stuck knee deep in snow. It wasn't bad-only 20 minutes away, 15 minutes if you're walking fast. But my mom didn't share this sentiment: when I told her I was walking to work, she was sad and felt bad for me. My mom had to endure a whole worse in Vietnam, or so I imagine, but here she was feeling sad for me because I had to walk on paved sidewalks no less to get to work. She didn't want me to have her life-now or never. As a result, I've always felt guilty for having such a spoiled life. This was one of the few times I could actually experience something my parents had to endure. I wanted to walk in my parents' shoes to gain a better understanding of them, but they never wanted me to have those shoes in the first place. And that my friend is the Asian American experience: immigrant parents spending their whole lives doing whatever it takes to give their children new pairs of shoes to walk in and when you try to borrow theirs, they won't let you. Their only wish is for you return the favor one day with a lot less walking.