One of my favorite places to go to as a child was my grandparent’s house. I am very lucky to have two grandparents who loves me unconditionally. I always loved spending all of my school breaks at their house. All of my times there were always filled with happiness, laughter & love creating some of my best memories. Tha (grandfather in Khmer) would take us out for breakfast, pizza, dinner, & the movies. If it wasn’t for Tha I probably wouldn’t have fell in love with the Lord of the Rings Series. Yeh (grandmother in Khmer) would be the one to take me shopping, to visit close friends, & cook all of my favorite dishes.
I have a very close relationship with my Yeh & she is my go to person for everything & anything. I love the relationship we have & the fact that she is always there for me. She’s one of the people I have to talk to everyday & my day isn’t complete until I hear from her. I admire & respect my Yeh a lot because she is a strong, brave, courageous, & kind hearted woman. My Yeh was a survivor of the Khmer Rouge war but didn’t dwell on her losses. But instead used it to push her to work harder & make something off her life. I can still recall those nights where we would lay in my bed reviewing the Naturalization test. When Yeh passed the test I respected her even more, because she taught me the importance of hard work, dedication, & discipline. My Yeh would always tell me “nothing comes easy, word hard, follows your dreams, get an education, love yourself, others, God, & be grateful for everything”. My Yeh is one of my role models & I am truly grateful to have her as a Yeh.
But as I started to get older & more involved with the social life, friends, work, & relationship, I became a little distanced with my grandparents. The daily phone calls became shorter or at times nonexistent. It wasn’t because my grandparents grew distanced but it was because I distanced myself from them. From my work projects, to relationship, to maintaining a social life, there was a lot for me to balance on my plate. At one point I was going through a minor setback which took most of my time and efforts. I let the minor setback affect me more than it should & caused me to distance myself from everyone & everything especially my Yeh.
I hate how at times life can get really chaotic & you find yourself so busy that you forget everything else around you. You become so focus in everything that you do & invested your time in, you tend to have less time for the people that are always there. With everything on my plate I slowly distanced myself & gave myself space from everything. That’s when I realized as I was getting so caught up in my own life, I forgot my grandparents were growing older.
For the last week of 2013 I spent a couple of days at my grandparents’ house & it reminded me of old times & rekindled my relationship with them. I loved how my Tha & I had a profound conversation about college & careers. My Tha is an educated man & I really value his opinions. While I was there Tha also let me drive his truck. It was nerve wrecking for both of us & Tha smoked 3 cigarettes to calm his nerves. Yeh & I also had some priceless moments & the most memorable one was when we were lounging on the bed. Yeh started to talk about her life as a survivor of the Khmer rouge war, her role as a wife, mother, Yeh, & her two cents on love, life, & work.
I love how when I’m there it feels like everything is so peaceful & I get a chance to cherish the moments like laughing at Sheldon from the Big Bang Theory. We didn’t do much this break but just enjoying my grandparent’s company & being with them was all that I needed. When I was younger I remembered complaining about how my grandparent’s neighborhood was too quite & how I prefer the city. But as I got older I learned to appreciate the quietness & silence of my grandparent’s neighborhood. It makes me feel as if the world is calm & things are slow enough for me to catch my breath & really take in everything that was in front of me.
I was really glad I made time for my grandparents because that mini vacation was very relaxing & helped me realized how much I missed them. With life’s busy schedule you don’t realized what is left behind until you take a moment to look back. Remember time doesn’t stay still for anyone or anything. It’s understandable how one can get really busy in life, but always remember to take a few moments to breathe & enjoy what we have. Don’t let the moment slip & take every chance given to you. Sometime a simple phone call or greeting card can make your grandparent’s day. Be kind, respectful & most of all love your grandparents.