Childhood Sweethearts, the Connections of Love

Growing up, in an instant, because tragedy had, hit her, hard, it’d, taken away someone whom she loved, and loved her so very, much, translated…

He’d made me my formula, took me to the bathrooms, taught me how to use the chopsticks, tied my hair up, as long as I can remember, he kept by my side, fulfilled every one of my requests………

He Took My Hand, Led Me to School in the First Grade

He was the third child of his house, he had an older brother by eight years, a second older brother, by five years, they couldn’t play together growing up, ever since he knew it, he’d been asking for his mother for a younger sister to play with, and, he’d, bugged her, for years on end for it.  That New Year’s, he was, awakened, by the loud sounds from the firecrackers outside, his mother dressed him up in brand new clothes, new shoes, told him happily, “you have a baby sister now, let’s go see her.”, Hsian who lived in the back alleys close to them had a daughter.

As the eldest in my family, I was, spoiled, at the end of the following year, came my younger sister, the year that followed, my youngest brother was born, my mother was like a hen, in a jiffy, gave birth to three children, and quickly enough, all the adults started, paying a ton of attention to my youngest brother, but that was, okay, I have, a young older brother.  He’d made my bottles for me, took me to the bathrooms, taught me how to use the chopsticks, tied my hair, since I could recall, he’d been, around me, fulfilling every last one of my, desires, took me up to the mountains to watch the birds, to the creeks, to catch the fish, all of my happier memories of childhood, I’d made, with him.

In the first grade, he’d taken me to school, holding my hand, led me to outside of my class, told me, that I can only go to the bathrooms, after the bell rings, that his class was the fifth one, and the last room was the bathroom, that the girls’ bathroom had a girl doll, to not go into the boys’ rooms.  And, the teacher ranted on and on, I couldn’t get a word in, because I had to go, and, I couldn’t, hold it anymore, and I’d, wetted myself, and I’d, started to cry, and, it all, came out.

He’d appeared in between classes, I’d told him in a barely audible voice, “Older brother, I’d, wetted myself!”, he’d taken out a pair of clean underwear from his backpack, “it’s okay, I’ll take you to get changed!”, and as I was changing into the dry underwear he brought for me, he was, at the sink, cleaning my soiled underwear.

He’d taught me to read, to write, to draw, to shoot the slingshots, to make the paper boats, to kick the sandbags, to make the guns from the bamboo chopsticks, to saw up the bamboo, to make a whistling toy…………so many things, it’d, filled my childhood with a ton of color, and laughter.  Other people’s older brother wouldn’t allow their younger sisters to tag along, but my older brother took me everywhere he’d gone, I was, his tagalong, his Siamese twin.

There were, little materialistic wealth where we lived, but, an abundance of wild plants, we’d sought out the butterflies, the bees, the birds, the fireflies in the springtime, picked off the fruits, the mulberries, finding the cicadas in the summers, the frogs, the beetles, the tiny ladybugs, plucked the longan, the guava too………

There were, the tracks that the snails left behind after the rain, he’d taken me, to track them down, and picked them up, we’d, filled up, bag after bag, after bag, sometimes, we were, lucky to find the small red berries that were ripe, and, I was the one, he’d, given the fruit to.  That sweetened and soured taste filled up my mouth, and, I’d felt, very sweet on the inside too, that’s, what bliss felt like, I supposed!

Two Malt Lollipops, in Exchange for My Young Older Brother to Go to Middle School

He’d,taught me to break the snails’ shells with the rocks, and, he’d, used his smallknife, cut off the tails of the snails, gave the internal organs to the fowls,and the edible parts, he’d washed it with care in salt water, and gave it toMrs. Jing, she’d used garlic, chili pepper, basil, the pots to fry it all up,added in a splash of rice wine, soy sauce, smelled so very wonderful, and theuncles had their snacks before the houses, with some sorghum wine, and, therewas, a mixture of the various dialects, that managed to, ease their homesickness.

圖/Silvia
illustration from the papers online

I was born, with bad skin, the summers, the gnats attacked me, other people used the peppermint oils to get rid of the itches, and I was, covered in the red spots all over my skin, itching like crazy, I’d, scratched too hard, and, made my skin ulcered.  There were, many snakes up in the mountains, the snake soups can help rid of the poisons, he’d, scooped up a bowl of hot soup for me, then, took the meats off the snake bones, so I can, eat it more easily, life in the mountains was, leisurely, it’d, slowly, made us both, grow taller.

He’d needed to take the bus for an hour into town in middle school, I’d wanted to follow him, in the second grade too, and, I’d still, clung on tightly, to his shirt.  Seeing how the bus was about to go, he’d told me, that he was to bring me the malt candies after school, I’d gestured to him a “two” with my tears, circling in my eyes, “I want two!”, and, just like that, I’d, traded his going away for school, for TWO malt pops.

TheDaja Creek at the foot of the mountain was our water adventure park in thesummers, and, during the long summers, we either stayed in the mountains, or, soakedourselves in the waters, found the abandoned tires, to use as floatationdevices, and went “rafting” on them. There were, typhoons, the hard rains, and, the reservoir would, let thewater out, at unset times, and the P.A. in the police station would announce forus, to stay clear of the creeks, that the reservoir upstream was about, to beopened up.

what they were

查看來源圖片
phot from online

That day, we’d, dove behind the rocks in the deeper regions of the water, to see who made the bigger splash, and, the water, the screams, tuned out that life-saving message from town, and, the playful children can care less about the warmings.  As I was just about to do a bomb dive from one of the rocks, the water had, rushed to my feet, it’d, swallowed up my older brother, and the rest of my playmates, and, those tiny hands raised up, were taken away, I was, so dumbfounded.

Several days later, their bodies were found, downstream, stuck, between the rocks, and they’d told us, that their faces were, all smashed up, by the rocks in the stream, I’d become, dumbfounded, not said a single word.  My mother took me to the temple, to get me “treated”, it still didn’t do me any good, my older brother and our playmates had, drowned before my eyes, for a nine-year-old child, it’s, something that’s, too heavy a burden, for me to bear back then.

We’d moved away, away from my childhood home, which symbolized the end of my childhood, but, there was a part of my heart that’s, stayed, in that summer, with my older brother.

Later on, I’d read the verses of childhood love, and, suddenly, I’d, understand everything.

And so, this would be, a very prominent childhood memory for this woman, the boy started out as an older brother to her, taking care of her, looking after her, and, as they both grow up, the love of an older brother for a younger sister changed, into the love for a girl by a boy, and she didn’t realize it then being too young, and, tragedy struck, it took away, this young love of her childhood years………

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Training Ourselves to Communicate Better

Get to the point already, “sweetheart”!!!  This can cause troubles, if you don’t realize your own tendencies, and make the changes accordingly, translated…

Don’tknow when it’d started, happening, as my husband heard me talk, he would, startyawning like crazy, and, he may not have, wanted me to rant to him on the minisculematters of life, at most, he’d, asked me to get to the point, so his life canbe, saved.

查看來源圖片
from this…photo from online

This situation actually made me feel hurt a lot, because in my mind, if my husband takes me seriously, shouldn’t he be at attention as I tell him things, and, it’d be better, if he can ask me a question or two regarding what I was telling him too!

And, I started looking at myself, to see, if I was truly that boring as I’d started speaking, and, I’d, asked several of my best friend.  And, maybe because they didn’t want to hurt me, or because, we’re, the same kind, all of my friends all told me, “no, it’s quite interesting, holding conversations with you, time seemed to fly by so quickly!”, it’d, boosted my level of self-confidence.

Then,where, is the problem?  Is it because thetopics of interest are different for men and women?  Or, because of my husband’s type A personality,that he couldn’t even, hold still, as someone tells him something?  Or maybe, I’d become, too excessive as I’dtalked to him?

to this…

查看來源圖片
photo found online

And so, as he’d, started yawning again, I’d, worked up the courage and asked him why he was doing it.  And, he’d, used “my methods” of telling him things, and, told me back what I’d, just told him, and, as he was halfway done, I’d, asked him, “So, what happened then?”, and he said, “So, you see, don’t you want to get to the end quickly too?”

Wow,so that’s it then.  But, he was, a bit exaggerated,in taking up my persona.  Although, it’show I’d described things, in the lacking of the POINT that’s, made him dozedoff, but, I’d told him, maybe, this can cause us to stop talking to one anotheraltogether, because as one of us gets all worked up, wanting to sharesomething, the other person start yawning, and, if this happens many more times,who would want to, keep on talking?  Andyet, my husband got angered, said that I’d, mistakenly accused him, because itwasn’t that he didn’t want to hear me talk, he just wanted me to get to the pointsooner.

to finally, this…

查看來源圖片
photo found online

Fine, at least, we’d, faced this problem in communications actively, and I know, where the problem rests.  Although, I still have NO clue how I will, resolve the matter, but at least, if we can, both work on it, then, we might be able to keep on smiling at one another, as we tell each other of the things in our lives, as we grow older together.

And so, this, is this woman’s realizing her tendencies, but she’s still, not quite yet motivated to change herways, but she’d come to understand, that this may cause a sort of a riftbetween her and her husband, and hopefully, knowing this, she can, change hermannerisms of speaking, to improve the communication between her and her husband.

Something You Hadn’t, Gotten Used to Yet…His Goodbye

Something you hadn’t, gotten used to yet……his goodbye, but in time, you will, you must, because, youcan’t, forever, BE trapped, by the memories of love the two of you had, onceshared!

Something you hadn’t, gotten used to yet……his goodbye, and, I won’t tell you, that it gets easierwith time, ‘cuz it doesn’t, in fact, as the day passed, you’ll, only miss him,more and more, and you’re just, gonna have to, weather through it, like therest of us who got our hearts broken too.

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lovers, parting ways, photo from online

Something you hadn’t, gotten used to yet……his goodbye, but, your mind knows it’s, for the best, it’sjust, that your heart hadn’t, caught up yet. Something you hadn’t, gotten used to yet……his goodbye, there’s, no easyway, but to, keep on going, down this hard road of life, ‘cuz, there’s, NO “good”in goodbye!

Something you hadn’t gotten used to yet……his goodbye, don’t worry though, time will take care of everythingthat’s, lost, it won’t, give it back to you, but, as you’d, weathered these,hard-hitting storms of his goodbyes, you’ll, grow stronger………it’s not gonna be,easy, but, I have faith, that you will, eventually, come back out, of thatdeep, dark hole he’d, left you in, as he’d, kicked you to the curb.�

Expressions of Love

The changes in your behaviors, in your ways of expressing the love, after your daughter was born, translated…

My daughter was the firstborn in three generations, and so, she’d, received ALL our love.  From when she started to understand things, we’d, not held back on the way we’d expressed our love for her, we’d often say to her, “You’re so wonderful, come to daddy for a hug!”  “You’re, so wonderful, come, grandma give you a hug!”  “Thank you cleaning up your room, mommy loves you, so very much!”

As she’d heard these expressions of love from us, she’d, slowly, started, learning to express the love too.  Sometimes, as she was, using video conference with her two aunts who live away, she’d said, “I love you so, aunt.”  Or, “aunt, when are you coming home?  I miss you so very much!”

查看來源圖片like this???  Photo from online

Actually, my family and I, weren’t that expressive about love at all, before my daughter was born, I’d, held a family meeting, and decided, to show my daughter my love bravely, that way, she’d known, how to, express her love to others, and how to get along well with others too.

Although it’d, felt, a bit, awkward from the start, but, after I gave it a few tries, it’d, become, easier.  And now, as I saw my wife doing the household chores, I’d shown her my gratitude too.  After I’d learned to express my love, naturally, I’d become, a gentleman, like how that night as I was, washing my daughter’s dirty shirt, at the age of a little over two, she’d told me, “Daddy works so hard, I love daddy so!”  Hearing her words so sweet, it’d felt, that no matter the hardships, it’s, all more than, worth it!

See how a young child can, change everything in your life, because this father wanted his young daughter to feel and know that he loves her, he’d started, learning to express his love to her, physically and verbally, which was what he was, never exposed to, and yet, after he’d started expressing his love verbally and physically to his young child, it all came, naturally, and became the only way he knows, of interacting with his loved ones.

The Shadows of Filial Piety

When the love of her/his father became, conditional, and this still isn’t, how love of a parent to her/his children should be!  Translated…

I’m grateful to my parents, for not allowing me to worry over things when I was growing up, and so, a lot of the things, I’d, followed their rules, and, if something happened back home, I’d always, run to them first, as my father would joke on how I’d not achieved, greatness, I’d, just, laughed it off, after all, every job I’d taken, my father would say that I’m earning too little money, and told me to quit, that he’ll, give me the wages instead; let alone on the issues of boyfriends, nobody can match up to my father’s standards.  And so, at the age of thirty-something, I’d lacked the working experiences, and I’m still, single to this day.

查看來源圖片like this???  Photo from online

Then, my father grew old.

I’d bid farewell to my thirties, and started a family of my own.  I’d thought that my father didn’t feel right, intruding in on my sister and her family, and he’d not wanted to get into fights with my mother that often, he could come to my place to spend some nights, and so, I’d found a place that my father liked, bought a property, even installed the handrails in the bathrooms, believed that everything will be fine.

But, before the constructions were finished, my father was, hospitalized.  Although, he was lucky, that there was, no after effects, but he’d gotten to the place where he could, no longer manage to make his meals, and do the cleaning, and the washing.

After so many years, I got to, live with both my parents, and I do believe, that this was, a blessing for us all.  But, as my father walked into my newly remodeled house, and saw the lamp, and the décor, the first words he’d spoken were, “Throw it all out!”, that I should’ve, decorated my place based off of his liking.

I’d started shaking out of sadness.  All those years of, complying with how he’d wanted to live my life, where did it lead me?  Too many things I wanted, he’d told me no, I’d always, numbed myself, telling myself, that dad knows best.  I’d wanted to major in the arts, switching from the designs major, he was against it; fine, majoring in the arts, the jobs wouldn’t be, easy to find.  I’d wanted to become an entrepreneur, to start working creatively, he’d told me, that finding a workshop wouldn’t be safe; fine, if entrepreneurship is risky, then, saving the money up shouldn’t be, right?

查看來源圖片like this???  BAD, BAD mommy!!!  Illustration found online…

Recently, I’d read a book, “Low Achievers”, and learned, that I’m not, as care-less as I’d thought I was.  I was shot down since I was growing up, and, the long-term negligence, has its, bad consequences.  After I’d, let my father controlled most of my earlier years, can I, have some of my life back again?

My father who’s, very established in his career, had already been, retired, and as we’d gone out, he’d always, gloated to everybody he’d met, saying how, I am, his cane.  But I’d wanted to tell him, DO take care of your cane, DO put it down, and pick it up, lightly, because if you are careless with me, I will, break!

And so, this is the father’s EMOTIONAL abuse toward this person, that’s, caused her/him to end up like this, because this person had been shot down repeatedly by her/his father, s/he now lacked, the confidence to do anything, and, it’s because of how controlling this individual’s father had been, s/he will, always live under her/his father’s shadows, until one day, s/he finally, had enough, and learn to, stand UP for her/himself, but, seeing how things are currently going for this person, it probably, won’t happen, for a long time, or even, at all…

The Slower-to-Grow Fruits are Much Sweeter When Ripened

How this man slowly, found his “calling”, in making a musical instrument, translated…

A few days ago, I’d received the notices for my sister-in-law my younger brother invited us all, to help my mother celebrate her birthday.

On this youngest brother of ours, he was, my mother’s pride, also her worries.  After my parents had three daughters, they’d finally got a son in the older ages, but, this youngest son of theirs, wasn’t that studious, but, the three of us, older sisters, are goody-two-shoes who’d studied very hard, and comparing, my youngest brother became a “black sheep”.

I don’t need to mention how bad he was in school, and, after a ton of trials, he’d finally, gotten a college degree, and it’d, fulfilled my mother’s wishes.  Although he’d not done well at all in the academia, but he had a colorful college life, during his elementary years, he’d learned to play the harmonica out of curiosity with an uncle in the neighborhoods, not good in the academics, but he was, excellent in music, and, every time he’d played the instruments, he’d, gotten everybody’s accolades. 

illustration from the papers online圖/Tai Pera

During his community college years, there were a ton of extracurricular activities, and he’d, played his harmonica, and, gotten everybody’s attention on him, and naturally, the harmonica club became his focus in college.  In college, he was the president of the harmonica club, and started entering into the elementary schools to teach the lessons, and, introduced his younger schoolmates to teach in the elementary school settings, letting them earn the hourly pays, and he’d earned the money from the differences of buying and selling the harmonicas.  And just like so, he’d slowly, found the way that worked for him.

In order to add more profits to selling the harmonicas, he’d started trying to find cheaper products, and, the factories in China became his choice, and, it’d, opened the way for him to do business in China too.

Unlike how the normal businesspeople are, as he’d toured the instrument factories, he’d always, kept that humbleness, and asked the owners of the factories and the instrument makers his questions, and gotten along with everybody well.  The owner intended to sell him the factory, and he’d mentioned it to my mother, and, despite how we three sisters were, against it, she’d insisted on giving all her life’s savings to her baby, reason being, that harmonica is the one and only thing her youngest son is better than the rest of the world on.

My youngest brother’s insistent on quality and attention to details, came in handy in the making of the musical instruments, the harmonicas manufactured in his plant got the accolades of the buyers, his business was going up.  The copper pieces needed to make the instruments, in order to stabilize the costs, he’d extended his business into the merchandizing of the copper plates too, his business was up and running, very well.

Recalling how our youngest brother who’d had a hard time in the academics, thankfully he had the interests in playing the harmonica, which helped him to become established in the business that he owned and operated today.  Seeing how my youngest brother was growing more mature, it was, just like my mother told us, “the slower the fruits grew, the sweeter they are at harvest!”

And so, this, showed how important it is, to find something that’s interesting for you to do, for you, to have the zest, the love that’s needed, for you, to keep on going, like this man had, he wasn’t good in school, but, he’d found a skill in music, and, developed his love of music, into a business that’s, flourishing by the day.

Experiencing Growth

How much this little boy had, “grown up”, because of this experience in a specialty camp, translated…

Awhile back I took along my five-year-old son to a junior firefighter camp.  As I was signing him up, I felt it was, interesting, and my son seemed to be, onboard too, we’d, gone there earlier, to see what’s going to be happening.  Before the activities started, the parents and children were arriving, we’d said our simple hellos, and, as the firefighting crew lead us, we’d, started, experiencing the workings of a firefighter’s life.

At first, my son was, very excited, he’d listened tentatively to the firefighter explained the activities, and took turns with other children, using the hose to put out the fires, and learned to use a fire extinguisher, and changed into a miniature uniform too, hopped around on site, everything looked fine; but toward the bottom half of the activities, when the kids were supposed to, climb up on the ladders, experiencing the earthquakes in the simulator, then, get their photos in the fire trucks, he’d, appeared to be, a bit, wiped out.

Before the activities ended, my son gestured to me he’d, needed some snacks.  I thought, that this, is what always happens, as parents took their young to an activity, they’re, just making their own lives difficult, and so I’d, not, minded it at all.  Two days later, while I was frying fish, and those of you with experiences in cooking would know, that we don’t need to watch the pans at all time, and so, as I’d, placed the fish in, I’d stepped to the side, and started chopping up vegetables, then suddenly, my son walked to me, pointed to the pan, said, “It’s dangerous that you’re NOT watching the stoves!”, he was quite loud, and, sounded and looked, very serious.

illustration from the papers圖/黃鼻子

“I am watching it, it’s not dangerous!”, my son was displeased as he’d heard me say, and told me, to really “WATCH the fire”, and said that on the day of the camp, the firefighter told them, that we should, never be too careless, using fires.  And, after a few sentences of back and forth, I couldn’t, win, and I’d not wanted him to start throwing a fit, so I can only, stand in front of the pan, and fry my fish.

Several days later, I’d taken my son to the supermarkets, on the way back, he’d asked me if the bags were heavy, and wanted to help me carry them.  I was, so very surprised, I’d handed him a huge bag of toilet paper, and I’d asked him if he could actually manage it?  He’d nodded hard to me, told me it was, lighter than the hose at the firefighter experience camps.

On the way home, I kept wondering, could it be, that the activities from then had, inspired my son?  These past couple of days, he’d acted out of my expectations, it was, a sort of a surprise sudden coming of age.  He’d started, reminding me, and would care about how the other members of the family are doing, and even become curious to what the adults are doing, no longer would he guard the T.V.  It’d, made me wonder, what I was like as a child, it’s just, that it was, too long ago, I can’t, recall that much, as if, in a blink of an eye, I’m, a mother suddenly.

like this???  Photo from online查看來源圖片

How does growth happen?  I watched as my son, hugged onto that huge bag of toilet paper, felt a mixture of emotions, a part of me wanted him to grow up, but, another part wanted him to stay little forever, like in a blink of an eye, he’ll, become someone else’s husband or something.  But no matter what, I’m still, very glad, that a small activity had, broadened his horizons, perhaps, he couldn’t yet know his own becoming more mature, but, I’m blessed, to bear witness to it!

And so, this, is how an unexpected activity can, change a child’s life forever, and this showed the importance, of giving your own children a ton of new and unusual experiences when they were younger, because, all of the memories of what you take them to do, will become fuels to their coming of age processes.