I owe my parents my life, but specifically this life that I live in the United States of America. They changed the future of our family when they fled Vietnam after the fall of Saigon, making me the first American in our family when I was born in Peoria, Ill. Growing up in the Midwest, which was not particularly diverse, I often wondered what life would have been like if my family stayed in Vietnam.
While my friend Janet Mock inspired marchers with her honest, pointed speech at the Women’s March in Washington D.C. on Saturday, I took my daughter to a birthday party. My neighbor Angelie, who I met through a mutual friend, invited me to join her 5-year-old’s birthday celebration. My friend Vicki suggested I ask my husband to take Fei Fei so I could march with her in NYC. I considered it, but I wanted to take Fei Fei to the party and let Angelie know that I appreciated her inclusiveness. Continue reading
A high school classmate, who is now a youth pastor, asked her Facebook community to send letters of support to the Islamic Center of Peoria in my hometown of Peoria, Ill. The entry sign to the center’s school and mosque was vandalized on Martin Luther King Jr. Day with a white supremacist symbol. It was an act of cowardice, hate and division that can be sadly added to the list of hate crimes committed after the election. I am answering Karen’s invitation to express my support. Continue reading
We’ve been living in Singapore for nearly a month – 28 days to be exact – and 28 days later it feels like I survived a sort of apocalypse. The world as I know is gone and I am sorting out the new rules, people and places. Continue reading