Category Archives: Story-Telling

Why Had She, Married Me

I wonder, W-H-Y, is that, huh???  Translated…

MERS-CoV had, affected my moods.  But actually, it doesn’t matter where we all go on our family vacation, it’s dangerous all around.  Just like, for my dearly beloved wife and I, being married over twenty years, still very much in love, and this trip to Japan, we’d had, our equal shares of fights with each other.  We’d argued on the bigger matters of, should we wear those masks or not.  Which way to go, what to have for our suppers, just not that, it’s too pricey, and, as she’d gone into the shops, she’d always stated, “I’ll only be a minute!”

And, “how many articles of clothing we should bring for the kids?” this long debated over topic for instance.  My “he’s dressed too warm already, he’s turning eighteen soon”, and I still couldn’t win from, “Then, if he gets a fever and it’ll be your fault if we aren’t allowed on the flights tomorrow then!”  and I can, only use the advantage of how later on that day, as my wife shopped around, sweating all over, as if there are, nine suns shining inside the malls, asking my son in front of her, “Are you, cold?”, this sort of, a prickly language.  And my youngest was compliant, stated, “wow, you’re right dad, it’s, super, duper cold!”, and, his mother rolled her eyes, all the way around her head several times.

There are, still a ton of, repeated events, that occurred, outside of or within, our, awareness.  Like the heating packs.  I’d later discovered, that my child’s mother, took the ten packs that she went to Hokkaido with, when it wasn’t, that cold, packed it all back in, to the luggage to Kyoto again.  She’d, brought it along, like, a security blanket, whether it’s, actually, cold or not.

Just like, how we’d wanted something brand new on these trips, we’d wanted to, connected these streets and shops inside of, our memories, and finally, we’d, trekked through all the specialty stores of Kyoto in, three years, then, at four, we’d, bumped into a shop that’s, about to close for the day, to finally, sit ourselves down, for lunch.  As I sorted through the menu, ordered the foods, I feel my legs’ numbness, go all the way, into my brains.  My youngest son stated, “Mommy, you look like you’re, about, to cry from walking so long.’, a joke or sorts, and, it’d, accidentally, twisted open ALL the faucets available there in Kyoto.  His mother’s tears came overflowing outward.  And, my youngest and I stared at each other, felt like, it must’ve been, something that each other had done, to cause, all of this.

“Before the temple awhile ago, at Kiyomizu Buddhist Temple, I’d called out to you both, to take those masks off for the pictures,” she’d, sniffled and continued, “and, I’d called you two as our two sons…………”, then, she’d, finally, melted down.  Yeah, surely, this was, the very first trip we’d, taken, without, our, eldest son.

Just like, we needed a place to travel to, to help everybody get past something, through that long underpass shopping strip, to the train station in Osaka, we’d bumped into a kind girl, who’d, helped me wife load up on her bus pass.  As we’d found that the young woman was, also from Taiwan, my dearly beloved wife started, casting aside all of our, itineraries, and started that conversation with that young lady, and found she was here, for a work-vacation.  Then, she’d started, showing her cares and concerns of how the young woman’s mask wasn’t, thick enough, like it was, lined with, only, a thin piece of, gauze or something.  The young woman told her that she’d run all over the pharmacies, but, all the masks were, out.  Then, my dearly beloved wife suddenly, pulled out the medical-grade mask she’d prepared for this trip, a pack of FIVE!, placed it in the young woman’s hand.  After pushing it back repeatedly, this young woman finally, took it, this gift that’s, not bought or sold, along with the kindness, from a complete, stranger.

This made my goosebumps surfaced, and I’d, felt, mildly, proud of my wife too.  She’s, quite compassionate.  Just like, my losers friend told me, that’s why, she’d, married me.

And all of that led to your, final conclusion of, “that’s why she’d, married you!”, it’s because of how kind, how sympathetic, how empathetic your wife is in nature, that she’d, married you, and, you should be, blessed, to find a wife who’s, kindhearted like that too!

Leave a comment

Filed under Awareness, Because of Love, Expectations, Life, Marriages, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Romance, Story-Telling, Translated Work, Values

The Lies of the Ninth

The memories of trauma, suppressed, because the individual, was way too young, and, something DID happen, maybe, just not the version of the story that this person had told, to her/his, adult counterparts, translated…

There was something that happened when I was younger, that impacted me, something that’s, a part of, my chaotic memories…

At nine, my mother wanted me to test into the GT classes of an all-star elementary school, that’s, farther away from where I used to live, I’d gotten in, and, she’d, transferred me there.

On the first day of school, as I arrived home, I’d told her, that I was, almost, abducted by a bad guy, there was, a woman in a covered up motorcycle helmet that told me she’d brought the lunches for my mother to me.  I’d told my mother: back then, I was playing outside the gates of my school, and the woman asked me to go with her, I’d felt that something wasn’t quite right, because mom wouldn’t do that, and I’d, run scared, back to the school.  But, I wasn’t, acquainted with my new school yet, it took me, a long time, to finally, get back into my class.

As I’d told, I’d, started crying scared.  My mother was shocked, the very next day, she’d, called up the school, as well as the Department of Education to, we’d, almost gotten the case on the press; within a week’s time I was, transferred, back to my former school again.

But actually, this, was a story I’d, made up.

illustration from UDN.com圖/豆寶

There were, two primary motives of me lying: to find a justifiable reason for me heading into school ate, and find a way to go back to my former school, that’s not based off of “I don’t want to go to my new school”.

Two years ago, with my deep-rooted guilt, I’d, told my parents this truth, admitted that I was, lying to them from back when in the family therapist’s office, and I’d, made up the stories, from an illustrated book my parents bought for me, “I Have a Way”, and, the details of what the woman whom I’d told had, tried to take me away, came from the illustration of a person in a helmet, trying, to take a child away in the pages.

Because my story was, fully-thought out, without any flaws, to the point, that my parents, as well as the staff members of the school all thought it was, true, for almost, twenty years.

Do children who read, really behave themselves?  The knowledge I’d gained from reading, taught me how to commit a crime.

And yet, up to recently, I’d felt, chaotic of this memory.

There was a part of me that felt, that might there have been, something that’s, happened to me, even though it may not have been, the version of the stories I’d told?  How else, would I come up with, the specific details, including what the woman sounded like, what she was dressed in, what her scooter looked like…………

The me at nine years old, I’d, watched the scenes, played on in my mind, as I’d, “retold” my mother what had, happened (and if I remembered correctly, the highest scoring section of my G.T. exams was in the “thinking skills in space and images”).  And, I’d, started crying like there was, no tomorrow, to the point I was, trembling hard, if I were lying, then, how come I had, such physiological response?  Could it be, that I’d, fooled myself into believing?  Or, had there actually, been something that’s, too awful, too shocked, for the me at age nine to accept?  So I’d, forgotten, and, altered this memory of mine, to make it, fictitious?

Several years ago, I’d gone to a hypnosis therapy session, to deal with the problem of ‘feeling a ton of pain, but I can’t cry”.  This was, completely opposite to the me at nine, who’d, “made up a story, that’s, false, and cried like it actually, happened.”

And yet, at the physical classes, I’d shown, the “reflexive response outbursts” in crying, as the coach helped me to relax my diaphragm, I’d, started, wailing hard, it was, a sort of cry, from the depth of my body.

The coach told me, that the diaphragm is a place where, “unresolved emotions are, stored”, so, there may be, some sort of, very deep trauma from long ago, that’s still, not yet, entered, into my consciousness, stayed still inside of my body.

I’d instinctively felt, that in the lies I’d told when I was nine, there might have been something, that’s made me stuck, as a twenty-nine year-old, grown up right now.

So, something definitely happened to you, because of the physiological response of your body, and this sort of a response only comes, when the body had, experienced, something that’, extremely, traumatic, so, maybe something HAD, happened to you at age nine, just not as you’d, remembered it, being almost abducted by a stranger, maybe, it was, something else, that’s, more serious, because the body, it, NEVER lies, and it’s, up to this individual, to dig even deeper, if s/he can, to find out exactly, what had, happened to her/him in his childhood years, and resolve what happened to her/him, piece, by piece.  And, until this person resolved everything, s/he will, always, have that thing that’s, blocking her/his path, from reaching her/his, full potential.

Leave a comment

Filed under Awareness, Being Exposed, Betrayals, Getting Exposed Too Young, Growing Up Too Fast, Innocence Lost, Life, Loss, Mental Health Issues, Perspectives, Story-Telling, Suppressed Memories

Plucking These Numbers

The philosophies, from an everyday, encounter, translated…

“If you stand beneath the fig tree, I’ll, see you.”

“If you see me, then, I shall, go with god.”

“Do you believe?”

“I absolutely, DO, and I absolutely, DON’T, either way, I shall have my, freedom.”

“There are too many places that squirrels buried those nuts, and the worst case scenario, if a squirrel forgets, then, a walnut tree will start growing from the ground up.”

“I shall go with God to the walnut tree.”

“How can you believe what I say?”

“Because you’re, smiling.”

“I’m not smiling, I’m, a flower.”

And so, this, is how easily, you can, be fooled, into believe something that someone claims, because you lacked that strong sense of your selves…you start following that “leader”, with the blindfolds on!

Leave a comment

Filed under Fate, Lessons, Life, Philosophies of Life, Story-Telling, Writing

The Season of the Frost

As death, slowly, takes over, the living, translated…

The afternoon sun came in, from the southwest side, the light that weren’t, blocked out, by the house next door, slanted down, lazily, imprinted itself, onto the patio, reflecting the rhombus pattern of the screen door, her black cat, Charcoal lay, on that patch of sun that’s, on the ground, it seemed, that he was, unwilling, to leave that spot.

As she stared, at this frame, there came, the eyes of that elderly woman, the elderly face was, so thin, with the deepening of the wrinkles on her face, her skin, dark in complexion, very thin in its, layer, with one eye, slanted, and the eye that stared at people, it’d, looked, extremely, delicate, with the corner lifted upward.  Maybe, back when the elderly was a younger woman, she was, beautiful, it’s just, that the year drifted too far away from her now, and, she’s not related to her, and so, she can, only, make her own guesses on her.

what that, looked, like…查看來源圖片photo found online

She’s, a caretaker, taking the shifts from the night previous.  The elderly woman is close to eighty years of age, not even forty kilograms in weight, quite weak in physique, and even so, she’d still, insisted on, taking herself to the bathrooms.  She’d, taken into considerations her stature, and wanted to allow the elderly to have what’s left of her own, dignity, she’d, allowed the elderly, to lean on her, and took her to the bathroom, and, as the night got deeper, she’d, made the trips, many more times.  The elderly always, sat on the toilet a long time, and, as she helped her back into bed, she could hear the elderly pant like a dog.  As the nurse saw, she’d, grilled her, to NOT help her go to the bathrooms again, that she could just, let the elderly go in her diapers.  Later she’d, taken care of the diapers’ worth of brownish, sticky material.  As the families learned of this, they’d told, that in these recent ten days, the woman lacked an appetite, and didn’t eat anything when they took her home, only had the liquid nutritional drinks, how can she expel so much waste.  As she heard, her heart went colder, and reminded the families in a round and about way, that they need to be, prepared.  What she couldn’t tell them was, please, take your mother home with you, so the high tech devices, don’t drag her life out for longer than it should’ve, lasted.

As the elderly woman was lying there, she’d, used her delicate eyes, asked, “Miss, can you please give me some medications, that I can take, and just, die.”  Then, “I’m going to find my dad now.” And from time to time, she’d, hung her head down low, held tight to her tiny achy frame, mumbled on, “I’m going to die”.

As the day broke, the families came by, the elderly started grilling them, “are you, leaving me here, to die?”, her children were about fifty or sixty years of age, looked honest enough, but without a clue, and, as they’d heard their mother’s questions, they’d, seemed, helpless, rebutted, “We sent you here to get better, how can we leave you here, to die?”  the nurse told the families to go outside, she’d watched the loved ones, nodded away like bobbleheads, they started, writing something down on a sheet of paper that the nurses handed them.

this, is what the end, might, look like…查看來源圖片photo from online

At around noon, the medical staff, suddenly, gathered around in the room.  The families, as well as she, were, ushered outside.  In a panic, the elderly had, multiple tubes going in and out of her body: the trachea, the feeding tubes through the nose, connected to the stomach, the catheter, the drips, with some tranquilizer, the elderly lost consciousness, with the oxygen mask over her face, the assortments of drips on the poles, then, the entire bed, got wheeled off, into the I.C.U.

She received a day’s worth of nurse’s pays, dragged out her luggage, walked, on the golden sun rays of the season of the frost, as the golden sunshine was about, to get off the clock.

As she arrived home, there were the cats, and no humans around, her kids had all grown up and left home, her husband no longer alive.  She’d put a kettle on, gone to pick the two sticks of chamomiles out in her yard, on lemon grass, three leaves of mint, made it, into a cup of, lightly, sweetened, light green solution.  As she’d, found her calm again, she’d recalled, a patient she couldn’t, let go of as she was being trained as a caretaker, it was, also, an elderly of eighty or ninety years of age, she’d helped turned him over in the bed, and, as she’d touched his body, she’d found, that the man was, so stiffened up, that he’d, looked like a curled up shrimp, most of the patients she worked for, as she’d helped them flip over, would sigh, and yelp, but this elderly man, is a dead body, with just, one breath left inside of him, like a cookie, she’d turned him, left, and then, right, no response, there’s, no changes in the lines on his body, or posture, he’d, stuck on the hospital bed, and it’s, actually, abandonment, in the name, of terminal care, how long had it been, since someone, helped moved his muscles?  Otherwise, how could he be, so stiff?  And yet, the people around him, they’re sliding on their cell phones, eating their meals, and just, busying themselves, around, and about.

The sun had, retracted, to a corner on the lanai now, the rhombus shaped pattern now, gone, Charcoal hopped, into her lap.  She’d, patted that body of color, Charcoal started, purring at her.  The elderly with the corners of the eyes lifting upward, your wings of youth had already been, put up, stored away, inside, that long hallway of time, without all those, tubes to keep you alive, hmmmmmmmmm, it’s, hard to, say.————She took a small sip of the light scent, then asked Charcoal who’s in her lap, “the season of the frosts has arrived, do you know that?  And the days, go fast one by one, vanished, do you know, what a, good spot you were lying in awhile ago!”

And so, for this woman, in her line of work, she’d, seen it all, because she took care of the terminal patients, who are, on the verge of dying, and in taking care of these elderly, she’d, seen everything, from how the bodies are, no longer, capable of sustaining life on their own, of how the only thing that’s, keeping these bodies alive, are the machines, and tubes in the arms, connecting to the machines, and how the families refused, to let go of their elderly parents, and just, keep on, making them suffer even longer!

Leave a comment

Filed under "Professional" Opinions, Awareness, Cost of Living, Expectations, Lessons, Letting Go, Life, Observations, Old Age, On Death & Dying, Philosophies of Life, Right to Die, Story-Telling, the Finality of Life, Things Left Behind

Sir, I Want Some Baked Goods that Are, Imperfect

The acts of kindness, initiated by the owner of the bakery, and it warms everybody who knows the details of what’s going on, translated…

Yesterday, as I was at the bakery selecting my breads, suddenly, a boy of about ten ran into the shop in a hurry, started hollering to the owner, “Sir, give me some imperfectly baked breads!”, the owner of around sixty years of age squinted his eyes, smiled and replied, “okay!”, then, I saw the child used the clasps, picked up a few breads, the owner bagged the items for him, and only took one small coin from his hand, then, handed him the goods, and told him, to walk carefully, and, the owner smiled, as he saw the young boy off.

Those of us, customers who saw this scene, we’d, all looked at each other, and smiled, while the owner of the shop told, with a heavy note, that the boy’s name is, “Lucky”, he was, a prematurely born child, back then, his mother gave birth to him out of wedlock, and couldn’t tell who the father was, in the end, she had to, leave the family, abandoning her own son, and for many years, nobody’s, heard from her, for several years, the boy was, left to raised by his grandmother who’d, lost her husband.  She’d hoped that he would be, blessed, thus, she’d, named him, “Lucky”, but because she’s elderly, without abilities to work, she could, only make the amount from recycling the materials, they lived on, very, poor.  “Thankfully, although Lucky may be, developmentally delayed, but his physical growth was, normal, he’d, helped his grandmother out without being asked regularly.”

a batch like this???查看來源圖片sold, at a, discounted price here!  Photo found online

The owner told, that since he learned of Lucky’s story, when he’d come to buy the breads, he’d, symbolically, accepted a coin from him, as payment.  But, one time, his grandmother took him in, pointed to the bread, then inquired to the owner, that did Lucky steal the breads?  If not, how come, all the money she’d, given to him were, still there?  The owner replied, “Lucky is a good kid, he did NOT steal anything, he’d bought the ‘breads not baked perfectly’, so that’s why, I gave it to him, at, a discounted price!”, as the grandmother heard, she’d, felt relieved, and continually, thanked the owner for his, kind heart.

As I’d heard the owner of the bakery told the story, a surge of warmth rushed up.  Think about it, Lucky is, exactly like his grandmother hoped he’d become, a kid blessed, otherwise, how would he have, met up with the kindhearted, bakery owner?

And so, this, is one of these tiny tales that warms up the heart of those who heard, read, and knew it, and, the owner of the bakery saw that this young man was in need, and, started giving him the help, because he knew, that he and his grandmother, are living on so little, and this story warmed up the hearts of others, it gives us hope, to see, that there are, still, smallest amounts of kindness, happening, all around us.

Leave a comment

Filed under A Cycle of Kindness, Expectations, Helping Behaviors, Kindness Shown, Lending a Helping Hand, Life, Observations, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Stories of Hope, Story-Telling, Values

Seeing You Off

The final passage, remembering the woman whom you’d come to know, as your, mother-in-law, from your father-in-law’s second marriage, translated…

Sitting silent, in the back of the church, on the wooden bench, stared at the white coffin, paved with flowers in the shrine, hearing the pastor slowly, told of your, eighty-two years of colorful life; as the pastor described you as being straightforward, generous, it’d, made me cry, and I’d, lifted up my head and smiled, started recalling the thirteen years of friendships we’d, come to share in life.

It was a snowy day in April in Norway, my husband who’d, planned to be single for the res of his life, drove me in his car, and, came to your door, my father-in-law, and his second wife, you, immediately led us in, and, in a panic, started, preparing the snacks, the coffees to serve to me, an unwelcomed guest.  Back then I wasn’t, fluent in Norwegian, I’d spoken in fluent German with my father-in-law, and, it’d, made you, who lived in the U.S. for over a decade object, that you had difficulties understanding us, and, we’d, realized that we had, excluded you, and immediately, we’d, both started switching to talking in English then.

On Christmas Eve that first year of our marriage, you’d, burst the hopes of your three daughters, sons-in-law, and nine grandchildren’s dreams of family union, you’d come to our home, and, baked for us, the traditional Norwegian pork ribs, meat balls, and sausages, and prepared seven types of pastries.  And, as lucky as I in the first time, I’d, scooped up, the only almond, hidden inside the rice pudding, and received, that special award for piggy almond candy.  Underneath the Christmas tree with the Norwegian flag, were the gifts, stacked up, you, my father-in-law, my husband and I, the four of us, sat around the tree, and started, tearing open the presents, the excitement, the joys, it’d, filled up the house.

The summer that my mother, second aunt, and nephew visited Norway, you’d not just, invited them, you’d also, found your youngest who’s my age, along with your young granddaughter, who’s around the same age as my nephew as company, you’d, set up a wooden board in your yard, with the balloons, and started, shooting the darts.  And even though, it’d rained that day, we’d, still, had a ton of fun; to this very day, my mother still talked of the cherries, the raspberries, and currants you grew in your own yard.

On your seventy-fifth, because your body was, ailing, you’d, delayed your birthday celebration in May, but you’d, not told us flat out, only asked, if we’re available to show up in June.  And, as my husband and I arrived, I’d found, that it was, a family birthday celebration your daughter, son-in-law, and grandson had set up for you; we’d, not brought anything, and we were, embarrassed, but you’d laughed and told, that it was because you didn’t want any presents, that was why, you’d, not told us it was to celebrate your birthday.

illustration from UDN.com圖/錢錢

2017 was, especially cruel to you.  First, your best friend who lived in the U.S. died in the spring at the age of over ninety, several months later, it was, my father-in-law, the second love of your life, passed away, in the autumn.  On the evening my father-in-law passed, you, me, and my husband, the three of us, stayed close by his side, until he’d, swallowed his, last breath.  You’d, dragged your, deteriorated health, your, slow steps home; the following day, we took you to the funeral home, to set up my father-in-law’s final affairs, you’d spoken of how you’d, not slept through the night, that you’d, paced around in the living room; even as your kids and grandkids were there, to accompany you, it still, didn’t, take away from your losing your husband.

Within two years after my father-in-law’s funeral, I sat here, in this, same church, heard the same pastor, hosting your funeral.  This pastor was the one who’d, conducted the wedding ceremony of you and my father-in-law thirty years back, he’d retired since, but, two years ago, he’d, made an exception for my father-in-law, spoken on his funeral, and this time, for you too.  You marrying my father-in-law, had once cast a huge shadow for my husband’s not introducing me to his own mother, but, for the eighteen years, the three of you had, died, and all the displeases of the past are now, gone, with the wind.  I’d heard of the news of your death as I’d returned from Egypt, I’d, come, to see you off, I’m so grateful for your kindness toward me, even more grateful, that you were, a “stand-in mother-in-law” to me, giving my families and I, such, wonderful, memories.

And so, this, is on how strong the connections of strangers who became, families are, and this still just showed, how if you’re kind to your daughters or sons-in-law, they will, reciprocate, and love you like you were, their own, parents too.  This is quite rare, to see a stepmother-in-law and a daughter-in-law get along so very well together.

Leave a comment

Filed under Connections, Expectations, Family Dynamics, Family Matters, Friendships, Lessons, Letting Go, Marriages, Memories Shared, Observations, Parenting/Parenthood, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Story-Telling, the Finality of Life, Values

The Sense of Humor that the Bus Driver Has

Through an act of kindness toward a stranger, hoping, that someone else will follow your lead, and show the same kindness needed, to the man too, translated…

I took my six-year-old son out and waved at the bus driver as we were, catching the bus.  Unless nobody’s getting on or off, the driver would, stop at every bus stop.

To a certain stop, we saw the driver run really fast off the bus, then, slowly, helped a visually impaired person on board, right then and there, I saw the man with a sign with the bus route written on it, readied, to put it inside his knapsack, and that was when I’d learned, that as the visually impaired man heard the bus wheeze by his side, he’d, taken out the sign, so the drivers can see it.

like this???查看來源圖片kindness, sighted!  Photo found online

The driver confirmed with him what station he was getting off, returned back to the driver’s seat, I saw the man with his cane, prodding around, headed slowly, toward a certain object on the bus, I’d, reminded him quickly, “sir, there’s a seat next to you!”, he’d, patted the structures of the seats, asked, “right here?  Thanks!”, my husband next to me spoke in synchrony, “Yes, be careful sitting down!”, I watched him smiled, and nodded toward our direction, then, he’d, picked up his cell phone, put on his earphones, and immersed himself in the music happily.

As I was about to get out, the man was, still enjoying his music, I’d, held my son’s hands, as we got off the bus, because I believed, that this, was going to be, a beautiful relay, that as others saw how helpful I’d been to this man, that he was in need of assistance, I’m more than certain, that others onboard the bus will also, lend him, a helping hand.

And so, kindness still, started with one, and this woman hoped, that with her show of kindness toward the visually impaired passenger onboard the bus, someone else will also, follow her example, in lending the man, a helping hand, and this, is exactly, how kindness gets passed down from one person to the next, it all starts, with one!

Leave a comment

Filed under A Cycle of Kindness, Awareness, Cause & Effect, Connections, Helping Behaviors, Inspirational Tales, Lending a Helping Hand, Life, Observations, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Stories of Hope, Story-Telling, Translated Work, Values

Passing Through, on a Bamboo Raft, a Poem

On burying one’s own, offspring, translated…

A Bamboo Raft, Like a Red Lotus Passed Through

Vanished, into the Fog

“Affinities of Children, Thin Like the Foams on the Waterfront”

So True These Words

Watching the Sunset Light Withering in the West

Time Has No Place Here

Memories Can’t Hide

The Awareness, Electric Shocked

Who isn’t, Like that Small Raft

Drifting in-Between Life & Death

Listening to the Heaviness of the Repentance of Love & Lust

With the Broken Bridges, Severed Off Streams, the Dying Smokes

And so, this, is finally, coming to one’s senses about the finality of life, because you’d lost the ones you loved when they were too young, and you are, still living, you’d, needed to, cope with losing the ones you cared for, loved, your, own young…

2 Comments

Filed under Awareness, Because of Love, Coping Mechanisms, Cost of Living, Despair, Lessons, Letting Go, Life, Loss, On Death & Dying, Story-Telling, the Finality of Life, Translated Work, Values

Status

On death & dying, in the funeral home, translated…

On day, an Indonesian Woman Took Her Mother in, But, No Matter How We’d, Checked & Crosschecked the References from Taiwan, We Can’t See, that They are, Mother & Daughter………

That Column of “Spouse”, Left Blank

One day, the owner of a funeral home took an elderly person’s copy of identification, and left it on the desk at the office the moment he’d, walked in.

We looked at the identification, asked, “is the person, coming in soon?”

The owner said, “no, not the man, but his wife, she’s, almost, gone.”

I looked at the identification, there’s nothing on the spousal column, it’d been, left, blank, could it be, someone who’s, just like me, who’d imagined he had a wife, and, the air was, almost, out of, his air-filled dolls? As I thought, I’d, felt empathy, looking at that identification card, I’d felt, closer, and, it didn’t, look like that eyesore that it had become to me.

The owner looked at my face, knew that I wasn’t, thinking straight, said, “He’d been with a divorced woman a long time, they’re both, getting older, with no need to get married again, and, twenty years had, come and gone. Now, the woman is dying, and the man wanted to know, if you can, help take care of the final affairs?”

We’d first inquired, “are they, cohabiting partners?”

The man said, “nope, they are registered separately.”

Then, we’d inquired, “Would they need to set up separate wills?”

The owner shook his head, “They don’t have enough money for that!”

We’d sighed, “then, we can only, ask the social services to sort it all through”.

The owner smiled bitterly, “the elderly just thought, they’d been together so long, they should, help each other with one another’s, final affairs.”

illustration from UDN.com圖/Emily Chan

The woman who was, sweeping up the floors close by said, “Then…how about, marrying one another?”

The few of us were, lost in thought: one of them is in the eighties, and, the other one, about, to get, sent in here too, and, this marriage would be………

The owner smiled bitterly, “I’ll go and ask them.”

About a week later, the owner took an elder into the funeral home, to set the affairs up, the elderly took out his identification, it looked, familiar, I’d, flipped it over, there’s a name on the spouse column now, and the elderly said firmly, “I want to, check my wife in”.

This elderly looked like he was from the lower end of the socioeconomic statuses, leaving the final affairs to the social services, it would surely, help him save up on a lot, and, is, “status”, really, that important?

The Woman Who Wheeled My Mother in

One day, an Indonesian woman sent in her mother, but, we’d, read the paperwork, and just, couldn’t believe, that they were, mother, and daughter at all.

The woman said, back then, it was her aunt who’d, married to Taiwan first, so she could, come over here too, she’d, used some measures, and, managed to have the mother’s name become her aunt’s, and her birthmother, she’d, called her “aunt” instead.

Waited until she’d started living stably here, she’d, moved her mother over to Taiwan to live, and, within a few short months, her own mother tripped, fell, and died.

As I heard this story, although I felt bad for her, but, aunt is aunt is aunt is aunt, and, we’d, slashed the services for those from other countries, that only the blood relatives can be taken care of. We’d, told her the situations, as she’d heard, she’d, waved to us, said, “the cost is nothing, I want to know, can I, help her sort through her final affairs as her daughter?”

We’d thought a bit, consoled her, to go back to Indonesia to try to get the status changed, but, it’d been, a very long time since she’d, changed her information, and, the costs of the funeral would not be, something small.

She’d thought for a bit, and we could tell, she was, really, distraught.

In the end, other than registering her mother as her “aunt” and her being the “niece” of the deceased, she’d, used their real status, but, as the funeral processions happened, she’d started, wailing in front of her own mother’s coffin, cried on how she wasn’t fitting as a daughter, not being able to, give her own mother, a rightful status when she’d died.

Sometimes I’d wondered, so long, as she’d, treated her aunt like a mother in her heart, took care of her, like her real daughter would, would it be important, that the status of “mother” is, specified?

That Most Unforgettable Household Registry

On yet, another day, came, a man, there was a lady who’d, cried so hard outside, actually, this wasn’t, any sort of a big deal, for the death of a spouse, we’d thought, that it would be rarer, if the person doesn’t cry at all.

And yet, this man’s body was only, accompanied by this one woman in his family, and she’d told us, that she’ll, give us the paperwork of their relations later on.

And, as we’re, about to, place him in the ice bins, the woman asked, “can I, say some final words to him?”, we’d nodded.

She’d bent down, patted the man’s head, “Honey, this, is the very first time I called you honey, it’s also, the last, you need to take care of yourself on the other side. Thank you for looking after me so long. You and your older brother, are, the most perfect men I’d ever met in this life, I love you………”

She’d, started, crying like HELL at the icebins, but, as she’d, walked away, she’d, become, very strong.

At this time, the proof of relationships came.

This had happened a long, long time ago, but sometimes, I’d still, gotten reminded of that household registry, with only TWO people registered, the relationship being brother and sister-in-law.

Sometimes, I’d thought, “status”, didn’t seem, so important at times like these.

And so, for the sake of paperwork, you’d, needed to, prove your relationships to the deceased and sometimes, it’s, more complicated than that, because, the two of you may have, related to each other as a husband and wife, but, you’re, actually not, you might be related, in other ways, and yet, the system mandated that we need to proof our status, who we are, in relations, to one another, to have our, loved ones, properly, buried.

Leave a comment

Filed under Basic Human Rights, Expectations, Letting Go, Life, Observations, On Death & Dying, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Story-Telling, the Finality of Life, Things Left Behind, Values

Regarding the Extracurricular & the Camps

Getting involved, in non-school related activities here, translated…

My youngest was headed out early in the morn, because the camp from her major was starting, as a freshman, she is very enthusiastic of all the activities hosted by her major.  I remembered, that, we’d, headed out before light for her last thing too, in the nearly zero degree icy cold floor of the CKS Memorial Hall, rolled around on the floorboards, it was her salsa club of her high school, she was responsible for coordinating a “recital of her younger schoolmates.”

My youngest started dancing from her kindergarten years to date, dance had become, her favorite.  It’s just, that her school teachers mentioned how if she’d worked too hard on her “hobby”, it may, cause her grades to slip, but she’d, asked us, not to worry, “the extracurriculars are important rites of passage, just let them give it all they got for this!”  but, I’d, found my daughter, with that lack, of enthusiasm, turned out, she had, dropped her activities, because she’s still, trying to figure out what she’s good at academically, she’d told us, “I’m more than certain about dance, and anything else, is not good enough for me.”  Until her final year in high school, she’d, transferred from the sciences, to the social sciences, and now, she’s, in the major she has great interests in, communications, and, she’d, danced every day, and now, she’d, gone out early in the morn, for her summer camp activities.

查看來源圖片the assortments of activities, not related to the academic…photo from online

My eldest and I, were both into the extracurriculars in our high school years, I’d, gotten involved in two groups, one was for vanity, the band, the other, school paper.  Being in band, I’d, played the trumpet, without much talent, just so I can, put on that marching uniform that made me shine on flag day, and, walking across the podium before the President’s Office.  As for the school paper, it was, where my heart lies, I’d, let my own, writing talents, poured out.  I’d recalled, how hard it’d been that I had, worked, on every topic, how I’d, gone to the shopping marts, to find the old photos, to do the interviews, and published my not-mature-enough writings, wanted to pour all of my doubts of the world, my feeling lost for my future, along with my dissatisfaction toward school, all out in the open.

I can no longer recall how the periodical had, turned out, but, my grades, slipped, and, that became, a F-A-C-T.

I’d found a university that I really don’t hate to study in, but the major I was in, it wasn’t anywhere near my interest profile.  And, by then, editing the periodicals, no longer, satisfied my mind, maybe back then, love was, taken up half of my mind.

And yet, because I’d, lost love, I’d, decided, to go for the president of the club, to let myself, embrace this major I’d, found myself to be in, tired, to learn to be a, leader.  And so, the memories of my college years, were revolved around the freshmen orientations, the camps, the seminars, the book fairs, the competitions.  I recalled all the guest lecturers I’d invited, remembered all the shows we’d put on for the freshmen orientations, recalling that freshman ball we hosted, remembered the singing and skit competition I’d, set up, remembering being in the trainees of the officers of the clubs of the school too, along with how I continued being the team counselor as I went into my senior year.

I’d once not wanted to graduate, because I loved being a student too much.  And, the best memories of being a student, are from, the extracurricular activities, as we’d, entered into the groups on our own, there’s, too many connections there.  Like how I watched my eldest get too excited as she’d, started, editing the footage, like how I imagined my youngest happily, leading the freshmen, because she’s, finally, a sophomore.

查看來源圖片volunteer counts too!  Photo from online

Some had found their significant others in the extracurricular groups, like my eldest brother and sister-in-law.  A lot of people found what they truly loved, like my youngest and I.  Recently, I’d, edited a periodical of a bookstore, and, I’d, found my passions there, and that, was when I’d, recalled, this, was what I loved, doing back then.

And so, these extracurricular activities in college, they’d not, only enriched our schooling careers, but it may also, point us, toward the directions of our, future jobs too, and so, don’t be too worried, when your own young got too involved in their extracurricular activities, besides, the university years aren’t about making the grades, it’s about, discovering, who we are!!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Choices, College Life, Connections, Friendships, Hobbies/Pasttimes, Lessons, Life, Memories Shared, Observations, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Socialization, Story-Telling