Another Warning (Possible Tear Jerker)-What I am Most Thankful For
These are the corkboards in my office. I am thankful for everything on them. Birth annoncements from the children I have cared for and loved with all had to give over the the last 13 years. One summer I went home to Guam to take care of my newborn baby sister Tia, little Daniel, now 12, looked out the window everyday for almost two weeks waiting for me to come. I am thankful for my love of photography, my paintings, my pets, Chiara's rendition of me (in the bottom right hand corner). She has stolen my heart and I have stolen hers. Her mother told me that she said there is no need for her to attend the American School in Torino next year because she has Gina. Her mom told her that I may not be able to come forever, Chaira responded "Yes, mamma. Gina will always come."
There are mariage announcemetns, Christmas photos, jokes, my birthday calender, school photos of the children, drawings sent from Seattle. I especially love the fairy queen drawn by Emily. My husband's antics and stylish poses, his smirks and his scowls too.
This is one of our first refugee photos. When I look at my parents' faces I wonder what thoughts are running through their minds. My dad looks so handsome, my mother so young, my eyes are so large and black and my sister so innocent. Our refugee story is still a bit sketchy to me, as it is not something that we spoke of often when I was a child and when I went away to college there never seemed the time. I hear "Cats in the Cradle" by Cat Stevens in the back of my mind and I try very hard to keep those sentiments in the background with my letters, my phone calls, my e-mails and my blog.
So many times over the years I have written "Just Because" letters to my parents. This year was the 30 year annniversary of when my parents left their home and arrived on Guam. I appreciate their years of hard work, my college education, their sacrifices and their love. I see photos of my sisters and regret not having more time with each and everyone of them. How do you make regret go away? I try to with loving acts and heartfelt effort. Be patient with me I try everyday!
This could have been me in 1975. I know for sure in the confusion and with the language barriers, this is now I got my 4 names: Gina La, Sum Gia Ying, Gia Dinh Parsons and Gina Parsons.
This is a boat my mom's sister was on and it sank off the coast of Vietnam in 1979. She, her husband, thier two children and countless others were lost.
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