Sunday, October 16, 2011

Bend in the Road

This must be one of those unknown bend in the road. My seemingly secure job has come to a screeching halt. Somehow Kroger has gotten too many floating pharmacists that there are not enough jobs for all of us. Reluctantly I surf the internet looking for another job. Life comes to a stand still. Throw out any consideration of taking few days off for pleasure. Throw out the careless desire to buy things to improve the old house we have not done anything to for the last 5 years...

I wonder what will wait for me. I wonder how this will plan out in the big picture...

Monday, October 3, 2011

What do I want to be When I grow up

That is a funny question. Here I am a grandmother yet I am thinking of this. Being a pharmacist is very physical and mental job, so my mind wonders, what can I do? There must be easier way to make a living....

Pumpkin Vine Trail

Yesterday I took a walk in a beautiful pumpkin vine trail. Whenever sadness wells up in me I want to take a walk in nature enveloped in God's beauty. I was weeping. My heart ached for the disappointment I caused my father. In my probing of myself I realized as a small child watching my father always studying. I did not know him during his successful days. I knew he so desperately wanted to be able to provide for the family. He was always studying and that is all the memory I have. As I saw him I made a vow that I will someday become successful so he can be satisfied. I will be what he never became. I will someday meet all his needs so he can rest. I will be his pride so he himself can be elevated. So much of my sadness came because I was not these things for him. At this moment I realized that vow could never have fulfilled. I cannot fulfill anyone's yearning, desire, and longing. I lifted up this vow to God.

I spent all my life trying to fulfill all the vows I made that my parents and grandfather wished for me and from me. Oh my mother. She saw the whole world and it's misery because of her marriage into a poor family with so many in-laws she had to take care of and serve. All her longings and wishes she verbalized to me. Her deep desire for me to succeed one day so I would not have to work at home; cooking and cleaning was for servant girls. This was the life she knew and grew up in. Somehow I must not repeat such a low status. She hated the fact that my father was so generous or foolish with money, wasting it all on his family (his mother, father, and so many siblings and their children). I grew up seeing my father through her eyes and never felt much love for him. Dear father I wish I saw you through my own eyes, a person who tried so hard to make things better for us. Dear mother, you still hurt. I wish I could take all your pain away ... but that is beyond me. I will continue to be your sounding board, hear all your pain in life, and you always feel better afterwards.

And my grandfather. He told me over and over... one day I will fulfill the proud heritage of Kim clan, or is it Kim Dynasty. He told me that daughters will do well in this family. For some reason sons have not done well he said. And I cried. I tried so hard to fulfill his yearning; to elevate the Kim family to the status of kings but this wish was too lofty for me. I was not that daughter that will bring the Kim family up to king's status. I did not have the innate ability to achieve such a grand scale. I lived my life to fulfill the deep hole my elders had. I have failed each of their dreams and again I gave each vow I made to God. I am just a simple person with not too much capability.

I am sorry my children. When my focus should have been you as I was raising you, I was filled with urgency that all the wishes of my parents and grandfather so longed to see in me somehow gets taken care of. The funny thing is those vows I made for my parents and grandfather has become my own and did not even realize where it came from.

Dear kids, I love you so much. I love you for who you are. I pray for you that you may find peace in life. You are all grown already and I pray that your path will lead you to God. I love you.

Saturday, October 1, 2011


It was 1993.Our family made a memorable trip to Guatemala. Ana and Mario invited us. They became a Christian few years ago. We were very much involved in bringing them up in Christian life. We saw them often and became close friends. Mario had injury at work and was no longer able to provide for his family. They moved back to Guatemala.

When we landed in the airport of Guatemala city, we walked down the steps to the concrete outdoors with dust flying from planes landing. As we entered the building, it did not seem less dustier than outside.

As we stood in the building we realized that no one was there to greet us. There was no familiar face waiting for us. Tom had told Mario the date we would arrive and that was all. We looked out to the street where cars were buzzing around. They all looked like junk yard, rusted, old cars that somehow got revived. The air was dense with car exhaust. None of us spoke Spanish and we did not have Mario's phone number or his address. I imagined us being stranded here at the air port not being able to get connected with Mario. It was sickening feeling. Tom said, well, if all else fails, we can call dad. He should have Mario's address & phone no.

Maybe it was one hour wait. It was the longest one hour. We saw him running towards us. We were so happy to see him. We struggled with our luggage to his car. To our dismay it was a small Volkswagen beetle. There were 6 of us plus luggage. He offered to run two trips. I don't remember how we did it. We managed to squeeze in and made in one trip. It felt like the small car could burst.

The next four days were a whirlwind. I could not believe that we could have fit in so many activities. Mario's dad was a fireman. We rented a van. I still remember to rent the van for one week, the cost was almost $700. Car rental was done mainly by Americans and it seemed they figured that Americans could afford any fee they charged.

We drove through the town. There were potholes everywhere. It was expected that your tire would blow once a week. Well. as expected we had a flat tire within days, but repair cost was only $2.00. The city was heavy in pollution. I could feel my lungs longing for fresh air. As soon as we exited the Guatemala city, I was keenly aware of wonderful and fresh air.

One day a group of church members took us out to eat. We were special. It was not everyday that an American family visited the local church in Guatemala. There must have been twenty of us. After a meal, the waiter made a bee line to Tom. He was the only white man at the whole table. So Tom paid the bill. And wherever we went it was the same. Yet everything seemed to be so inexpensive that it was really OK.