Love, Redemption and Regret

img_0096I’m guilty of not making more time to see my beloved Grandma. She’s the only grandma I’ve ever known actually. My Dad’s side of the family is all I’ve ever known or seen all my life. This year especially, I’ve been far too busy with work to pay her a visit and it’s terrible to know she misses me. I give her a call every lunch break to check in on her and she usually asks if I’m intruding — even though I’m the one who called. She’s far too forgiving for how hectic I am this time of the year. She’s alone by herself, which to some — is fine, but I know it isn’t. A women in her mid-70s should not be left alone to housesit — it’s not right.

I love her dearly. She’s been through a lot and truthfully won’t listen to a word from anyone except from me — much to everyone’s dismay. There’s a saying in Chinese along the lines of, “you’re finding money to eat.” It’s used when work overtakes making time for family, because the ends justify the means. Focusing on work means having money and focusing on your career. Family comes second in that regard. I’ve never been too fond of it.

Years ago, my only goal was to impress her and her only wish was I graduate college. So I did. I gave a fuck and somehow managed to be the top of my class and transfer to UC Santa Barbara. Part of me thinks that was all a fluke and I lucked out, but I know that couldn’t be further from the truth. When she came to see me graduate, her eyes teared up, voice crackled, and told me just one sentence, “your grandpa would be proud”. I absolutely lost it and cried in front of her. I redeemed myself — found salvation for all those years of not being anybody. Most of my professors have asked me during office hours if I was a A student before SB and I laughed all the time. The look in their eyes as I explained I was a college dropout, how I was failing every class at community college at one point, and how I was only here to impress my Grandma. It makes for an interesting discussion, but I would not be where I am if it weren’t for her.

Sunday, I’ll have time to pay her a visit. I’ll take her to dim sum and have a date with my Grandma. I know she’s excited. I am too. If there was only two of me.

Later world.


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