Category Archives: Things Left Behind

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.

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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

The Air, My Friend

The column by Jimi Liao, translated by me…

The child to the sloth, or, the sloth, to the child…

Let’s take it slow now…………

No matter how quickly the world changes………

Let’s just, take it slow……………

No matter, how worked up others are around us………

We will, continue to, take it slow together………

One day…

Someone will, finally, get us………

Understanding, that slower is faster……

We’re in no rush……………

Slowly, slowly, slower, slower………………

And this, would be how hard you’re all, PUSHING your children, to catch up to your tempos or paces, and by doing that, you’d, deprived your young, of taking their times, to grow UP slow, at their own paces, and, at the same time, you’d, SLAUGHTERED your young children like P-I-G-S, depriving them, of a happy, AND carefree childhood!

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Filed under Awareness, Bad Behaviors, Bad Parenting Behaviors, Being Exposed, Child Development/Education of Children, Childhood, Growing Up Too Fast, Interactions Shared with the World, Kids Raising Kids, Lessons, Losing Sight of What's Important, Messed Up Values, My Thoughts on Various Issues, Parent-Child Interactions, Parenting/Parenthood, Perspectives, Problems with Grown-Ups, Properties of Life, Story-Telling, Things Left Behind, Translated Work, Wake Up Calls

She Was Mine, a Child, Lost in Time…

She was mine, a child, lost in time, and time has, its, death-grip around her throat, slowly, suffocating her, choking her, into that slow death.

She was mine, a child, lost in time, the one who’d, never had the chance of being “formed”, and yet, I still, loved (in the past), love (in the present tense!) her so very much, simply because, she was, mine, and there need not be, any other reasons.

She was mine, a child, lost in time, and, she’d, drowned slowly, in the river of time, and, there was, nothing I could do, but to, kneel by the riverbeds, and cried all my tears, and my tears, in turn, formed another, grander river, then the river of time, my child had been, drowned to death in.

She was mine, a child, lost in time, the one who’d, never made it, the one who’d been dead, way before her time! And, there was still, NOTHING I could’ve done, or can do about this death that I’d been carrying, since 2008………

She was mine, a child, lost in time, and, in lost time’s embrace, I know, she’ll, grow up safe and sound, and besides, it’s better, that my daughter stays DEAD, because this world is so full of FUCKING shit, and I surely as HELL wouldn’t want what had happened to me, to happen to her too!

She was mine, a child, lost in time, and, time shall, keep her safe and sound, untouched, and, she wouldn’t lose her innocence as I did, when I was, a very young child myself………

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Filed under Abuse, Awareness, Basic Human Rights, Because of Love, Cause & Effect, Choices, Death by Negligence, Domestic Violence, Early Exposures, Getting Exposed Too Young, Growing Up Too Fast, Lives Lost, Love Became Murder, Parenting/Parenthood, Philosophies of Life, Rationalization, Reality Clashes with Dreams, Things Left Behind, White Picket Fence

Learning to Let Go from Saying Goodbye, to Be a Man of High-Quality

On the last rites, the final rites of one’s passage, translated…

I’d gone to two funerals of my high school classmates in these past few months, and, at the funeral, the collages of their lives were played.

Those old scenes all came back to me, I’d thought about the laughter, the sorrows, the ups and downs of life we’d shared, our friendships which were kept, I couldn’t help but start crying hard! And, in the three, or five-minute short film, it’d, told of the stories of their over fifty years of life, and this was, saying goodbye to life.

We are all, staying afloat in this sea of mirage, and we’d felt, that cold chill! In this mirage of a life, we’d gone to the funerals, and we were often, impacted by the mixtures of emotions. Looking at others, then, thinking about ourselves, our whole life is a huge lesson in learning to say goodbye, and the hardest part of it all, is learning to say goodbye to ourselves, to say farewell to the youth that’s slowly going away, to wave goodbye at the beautiful faces that time had, sculpted, to say farewell, to those whom we loved and cared dearly, our families, to say farewell, to all our meaningless pursuits of fame and fortune…to bid farewell, to everything earthly. Life is learning to let go!

As I’m about to become Buddha! My funeral, I’d wanted to be like how the Buddhist Master, Shen-Yen’s making myself into a better person.

Before I go, I shall, have that slight smile, and with a heart of gratitude, for everything that’s happened in life to me; before I go, I hope that my loved ones, friends, families, and relatives can, use the Buddhist chants, to help my soul return to the West. As for the rituals, I’d wanted everything to be simplified, I shall become nothing but mud, to become the guardians of the flowers.

And so, this is, what life is reduced to, when we all die, we’d become, NOTHING, it’s what we did whilst we were still living, that will, hopefully, get remembered, it’s the lives we managed to touch when we were still on earth, that will keep on flowing, even after we’re gone, and, like this person, just keep everything simplified, because, there’s NO need, to have a flashy funeral, because you’re, already D-E-A-D, and you should NOT care who shows up at your funeral, besides, why would it matter to you? You’re, no longer “here” (on this PLANET???)………

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Filed under Aging Gracefully, Awareness, Expectations, Letting Go, Life, Observations, On Death & Dying, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, the Finality of Life, The Right to Choose How One Will Die, Things Left Behind, Values

He’d Shown an Immense Talent in Playing the Traditional Chinese Instrument in Prison, Learned, that His Own Father is a Professional Musician Too

Helping these inmates, find a motivation to get better at something, so they won’t return to their old ways after being released, from the Newspapers, translated…

Yesterday, the Cultural Department of Hualien went into the Hualien Penitentiary to host a certification program of the street performers for the inmates, “Yang” an inmate received good comments for his piano skills. He’d started getting into music after he’d started serving time, and fell in love with piano, and after he’d started taking the lessons, he’d, learned that his own father had earned the championship trophy for piano skills, and, as his father named him, he’d used what made him glorious, the piano, as a character in his name, and he’d hoped, that after his release, he can use the piano, to start off on a new page in his own life.

“Yang” is thirty-five years old, at age 25, he’d made the wrong moves, had planned out a kidnapping ransom, was sentenced to twenty-four years; five years ago, he was, transferred to the penitentiary in Hualien, and went into the Chinese instrument playing program, and because the Yangqin wasn’t played by anybody, he’d started picking it up, and, loved the sound.

the instrument looks like this, photo from online…查看來源圖片

Later he’d learned from his family, that his own father who’d passed, was a professional yangqin player too, and had earned the championship trophy in Guangzhou.

“As I’d played, I’d often thought about my father.”, Yang, who’d gotten his name from the instrument told, that as his father named him, he’d already, passed this glory to him, “I can’t let my father down”.

Yang still has two more years until he’s up for parole, he hoped to pass the certification for the street performers, and, after his release, hoped to play as a single or in a group, and go to the nursing homes to perform for the residents, to give back to the community.

Another thirty-six-year-old, “Lei”, got involved in drugs when he was younger, and, he was convicted for robbery, sentenced to fifteen years, and, learned to sketch in prison, he’d picked up the art skills, and had already, kicked his drug habits now, he will be up for parole this year. He said, that taking up art had helped his parents accept him more, and, his work hung all over his home. He’d signed up for the certifications program, hoping that after his release, he gets to go home to open up an arts workshop.

So, these are, two examples of men, who’d, worked hard, to overcome their pasts, and, they’d, found viable skills, and they now have goals that they’d hoped to achieve, and, hopefully, this will keep on driving them, after their release from prison.

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Filed under Choices, Maturation, News Stories, Overcoming Obstacles, Properties of Life, Substances Abuse, Things Left Behind, Turning One's Life Around, Turning Over a New Leaf, Values, Wake Up Calls

These, Bruised Dreams…

Reality had, started, using DREAMS, as its, PUNCHING B-A-G!!!

And, before we all knew it, these dreams, they’d become, so bruised to, beyond RECOGNITION already…These bruised dreams, what are we supposed to do with them now? They’re, NO longer perfect (compared to in the beginning, when we’d, dreamt them all up, before reality started, KICKING their ASSES???), and, we don’t want, ANY sort of imperfections, appearing, in our dreams, do we? So yeah, we’d, tossed them out, along with the TRASH, on Monday mornings, for the collectors to, pick ‘em all up, and, recycle them.

punched to bruising 的圖片結果like this???  Doesn’t, look pretty, does it???  Of course N-O-T, not my photo…

These bruised dreams, maybe, we should, keep them ‘round, who knows, the bruises on them, may eventually, be gone, and they’d all be, good as new again, won’t they? And, tossing them all away, wouldn’t it be risky? After all, it’d taken us, long enough, to finally, start seeing these dreams, slowly, coming true in our lives, and, we shouldn’t just, toss them all away, because of those, itty, bitty, bruises that’s now, startin’, to show, should we???

These bruised dreams, even AS they’d, made their, complete recoveries, they will, NEVER be the same again, because, these dreams will, NEVER get, returned, BACK to the time, before they got, those, blue, green, purplish, bruises, coverin’ up, ALL their, “bodies”………

what reality is doing to dreams, EVERY second of, every day of our lives…illustration from online…

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Being Exposed, Broken Promises, Cause & Effect, Cost of Living, Downward Spiral, Lessons, Life, Nowhere Is Safe, Observations, Perspectives, Properties of Life, Reality Clashes with Dreams, Things Left Behind, Values, Vicious Cycle

What? I’m Korean!

Finding out why, and, letting go of that feeling of being betrayed, realizing, that what the adults in your life did, was what they thought was, best for you, translated…

Ever since I could recall, I’d lived alone, with my mother in Korea, we’d never spent, a day apart. Later, I’d come to Taiwan to study, to marry, to have children, and settled down in Taipei, with my mother there, by my side. But, shortly after she passed, my former classmates from Korea sent me a weird news: there were, a couple of Koreans who were, desperately, searching for me, and claimed that they were, my relatives.

How’s that possible? Am I, zoomed in, by the international scam artists?

From before when there was only a small circle of Asians we’d associated ourselves with, there’s, that invisible sense of pride from being Chinese, that was, that sense of superiority of being Chinese, not wanting to be with the Koreans, we were, living, on someone else’s land, but felt, that they were, second class citizens. This weird belief, showed the most when someone is arguing with an Asian person, when we only needed to blurt out, “You looked like a Korean!”, it was, the biggest sort of insult to the individual, and, the person you’re arguing with will totally get outraged when you’d called them that.

korean children adopted 的圖片結果like this family???  Photo from online…

Growing up in this sort of an atmosphere, I’d only begged to pass the Korean language exams, and, every other course in high school, I’d made straight A’s, only Korean, I’d scored toward the bottom; and, my communication abilities was just enough, for me to use when I go shopping in the marketplaces.

When the Korean who’d come met me to show me he was related to me, he’d provided the adoption papers, and photos of me as a young child, mailed everything to me, and, all of those, “evidences” proved, that I was, a Korean, heads down!

Isn’t it outrageous, thinking that I was, Chinese all along, and then, I turned out to be, Korean? This was, the biggest kind of irony. I refused to admit that I was, Korean, I hated that classmate who’d, exposed me for who I was, and I’d, hated my birthmother, for giving me up for adoption.

After six months’ worth of struggles, my second eldest sister kept making those international calls to care for me, and, repeatedly, sent the presents to my husband and my two children, and my heart finally, started, to disarm itself, and finally agreed to, meet with them.

In the city of Suwon, I’d finally, met my five sisters and my younger brother. All these middle-aged uncles and aunts, as they’d, described of the hardship and trials they’d weathered through in life, I’d not heard a single word of complaint, their persistence, optimism, passion, comparing to my own prejudices, my aloofness, my dissatisfactions, made me so ashamed I wanted to find a hole to hide in.

What right had I, to hold my prejudices against Koreans? And, why can’t I understand, the pains and hardships my mother who’d carried me for ten whole months, and know how trying it must’ve been, for her, to give me up for adoption? Had it been not my birthfather’s death when he was way too young, had it not been my mother being too young, and needed to remarry, had it not been for my second eldest sister crying for one whole weeks at my adopted mother’s home, and got “returned”, and I got sent up for adoption, my fate would’ve been, so totally, different, how could I have gotten to live as an only child, cherished, sent to Taiwan for my college years, to become a teacher, to meet a good man, and marry and have children.

korean children adopted 的圖片結果or this???  Photo from online…

And now, both my mothers had passed, but the love they had for me, was enough, to last me, my whole life. Toward my birthmother, other than being grateful, there’s, that extra understanding; for my adoptive mother, other than, being grateful, there’s that sense of, missing her forever!

And so, it’s all due to fate, that this had, happened, and, back when you were a child, you may not understand WHY it was, that you were, given up for adoption, and perhaps, you’d carried the resentments toward your birthparents, for giving you up, and your adoptive parents, to keeping the truth from you, but, as you got older, and started your own family, you’d, realized, that given the situations of your past, all those adults did what they thought was, best for you, and, you’d become, grateful, for having everything that you have in life…

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Adoption, Awareness, Because of Love, Childhood, Choices, Connections, Cost of Living, Lessons, Letting Go, Life, Perspectives, Socialization, Things Left Behind, Values