Should I stop grieving?

It’s not even a month yet, the wound still feel fresh, and it didn’t take much to takes me back to the painful realization that my dad is gone.

Cooking, looking at the green pan that he loves can bring tears to my eyes… seeing a jar of decaf coffee that he likes so much still sitting on the pantry is enough to break me down…

Days and nights come and go and life goes on, the world seems to be spinning still… although I feel so crushed and dead inside.

Nighttime is the hardest, when people around you sleeping and you just lay there with your own thoughts…  thinking, feeling the hurt and anger again… , wondering why. If everything happens for a reason, this is one of the occasions I wish God would’ve told me why…

God how I miss him so….

Then little voice talk to me, my Tyra told me last night… “Mommy, I don’t want to grow up. “ “but why?” “Well, if I grow up, then you and Daddy will die and I don’t want that, I will miss you so much and I don’t want to be sad all the time like you.”

I have a mixed feeling listening to that. I have been trying to hide my grief from my children. I cry on the way to work, on the way home from work, in the shower.. but somehow she must’ve seen right through me.

Should I stop grieving? Honestly right now I don’t know how or if I can stop…

Then I remember “my dad’s voice” that comes to me in a dream one night….  That tells me to stop crying and to go on with my life, how he’s still around… 

For my daughters sake and my family, I will try…  I will try to grief in different way…

God help me….

My dad June 2012. Fond Du Lac, WI


Put on a happy face

“Annie” at the age of 5 yrs old already taught us to put on a happy face regardless of what inside.

That’s what I’ve been doing. I hate to be blogging about my problems and sorrow and down stuff, but this is part of me being honest to myself and to heal.

In collage, I was known as being very bubbly and easy going. I like the idea of I always be the one to go to when my friends are sad or need shoulder to cry on or someone they can trust. I guess since that time I tried to keep the same image as the go to person. I forgot I also have feelings and I also human that are not immune to sadness and hardship.

 I recently find myself in places where I’m the one who need helps and I’m the one who is sad and not happy. Yet, I keep it all inside and don’t share it with anybody. I’m afraid they will change their image about me. Girl that is always happy.

 I know I’m sad and unhappy and wanted to scream and ask for help but unable to. This stupid pride keeps on blocking the way! I turned into long hours or television watching any stupid shows I can find just to dull the pain, to block it out. I was hoping if I ignore it long enough it will eventually go away.

 Finally, I can’t just keep on ignoring it. There are these voices inside of me that keep on screaming at me calling me a loser, a coward for not speaking out. Until friends calls me out on it. Until that time I never realized how important it is to really sit with whatever it is you are feeling, whether it’s depression, anxiety, frustration, anger and self-doubt when they show up.

You can try to ignore it and hide from it but eventually, you’re going to have to face the tough stuff.

So where did it go wrong? The happy girl I once am, I have a good life, two beautiful girls, a husband, a great job and I’m very blessed with it.. where did it go wrong? Am I just that ungrateful?

 I know that part of it is just being overwhelmed with a lot life changing event that happening to me recently. I guess I just don’t deal with it as good as I should. I guess I’m just not strong enough.

There are still many questions linger, but now I know to face the demon and to talk it out. I won’t let this beat me. I will find and be that happy girl again.

And I thank my friends (again) for helping me reach that realization that I can’t do it alone and I don’t have to. The role has reverse and they will happily hold my hands during this tough and confusing time.

Today is best friend day, I quote from email a friend sent me, ‘Friends are angels who lift us to our feet when our wings have trouble remembering how to fly.’ There is no beginning or end.. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift

Also in honor of best friend day, I read a quote by Katybeth that I truly love:

 “As we grow older, more friends become best friends in different ways. There is a childhood best friend that knew you back in the days; the best friend that you raised your children with over the years; the best friend you may only talk to twice a year, but it only takes you a few moments to catch up; perhaps the best friend you gossip with at the office; or, perhaps, the sister or brother that was once a thorn in your side but grew up to be your best friend. While our list of best friends may have grown to include more people, what makes a friendship “best” is sharing our most important secrets, hopes, dreams, aspirations, and disappointments with each other throughout the day or over the years.”

To you all my blogging friend, you had helped me getting through this tough time too through your post and your comment. Thank You!


Fear not a friend is here

Last couple weeks I’ve been stressed out without even realizing it. If you read my post last week you’ll see how I was off-balance.
A lot of things just happened so quick that I didn’t get a chance to catch my breath, it’s like boom.. boom..boom! We got back from Indonesia, I still very sad missing my family then we decide this is the right time to move, so we need to get the house ready, then my brother pass away, then back to the house.. then other things I can’t really talk about…. It’s a mess!
I was very negative with my friends – without me realizing it – and very short and don’t have any patience. I withdrawal from a lot of friends activity and just stay home trying to get things done, somehow it didn’t. It’s like a depression that keep on sinking and drawn me with it.
I didn’t realize how bad it was until few of my friends call me and set me straight. They notice how I’ve been acting differently and it’s not a good different. Of course I didn’t admit it, but it’s not like I’m lying, I just wasn’t aware that I need help. I didn’t aware how stressed I was until I lay out the whole situation.
Then I broke down… my friend at beginning was mad at me she told me flat out this is what she said “We are friends aren’t we? Why won’t you pick up the phone or email us and say ‘ladies I need help.’ We’ll come to help you in quickness. Will you let us help?” I literally just cry on the phone with her – not sure if she knows that or not.
I finally see that I do need help and that I am overwhelmed with changes that are happening and will happen in my life. I over estimate my own strength. Once I see it, it’s like a huge weight been lifted. I know I’m strong and I have a good foundation at home, but sometimes we need more and that’s the gap my friends – good friends – filled for me.
I may not have any family here, but really fear not, I have plenty of great friends around me. That’s what friends are for…
For you ladies.. you know who you are. Thank you.. thank you!!

A fat hippy Asian woman!

That’s what I dress like for Halloween. My closest friends said “well how can we tell a different from any other day?” – can you tell I have a great friends support systems?! Hahahaha…. Btw… I’ll post more on my Halloween story in different post.

Anyhoo… sorry for lack of posting this past week – for those you email me and nagging – 🙂 Life just got crazy and I lose the track of time. Some of you know I went back to school and last week was my first week. YES! I’m gluten for punishment! I just had a baby y’all, a toddler and a husband with attitude no different than teenagers (if not toddler), not mention I still work full time, I also serve as Board Director of one of non-profit organization.

BUT!!! Even though life is crazy as it is… so far we manage everything smoothly. Sometime my brain surprises me with how I’m able to organize all the chaotic in my life without going cookoo – or at least not yet. Ha! My personal reason is not so funny though… right after I gave birth to my first one, I went through a very bad post partum depression. It was very bad that it had occur to me to end it all (me) three times! I have a great family and friends support systems, but depression is not an easy thing to share. I just gave birth to a very healthy beautiful baby girl  but can’t explain why I’m sad all the times.

Finally after intensive counseling and other help, I got over it. But it lasted over a year! Looking back, I have to be honest on how amaze I was with myself that I’m able to keep it together. No one knew what’s going on – except for hubby & few close friends. I never “losing” it with just anybody, I was able to keep a good composer of myself. It is very hard. I’m just glad that my husband was there for me to help me not just throw me completely in the hand of my doctor and pills. He literally hold my hands through it all.

Anyway… kinda went off track there. So all my doctor (and insurance company) was so afraid I will fall off the wagon again with my second one. They were all very cautious about it, the insurance company even already prescribe Zoloft on my last trimester – which I refuse to take (some of you know how I feel about drugs) – I took a changes. So far I’m okay! But I know deep down I’m still afraid of it. Especially now I learned about Kalia medical issue. I’m afraid I will fall off the wagon.  I still remember how it feel, I still remember the sadness and what I go through before…  although I know post partum is not something we can help, but I refuse to give in to that feeling, I refuse to go through it again so keep myself busy is my way of not thinking about it.

I figure with me keeping myself busy I won’t have time to sit around wallowing about myself. Not all is about me!

This is my battle and losing is not an options!

I want my Mommy!!!

What one hell of a week I had last week.

Finishing the left over from quarter end at work, trying to orginized my daughter 5th birthday party, worrying about my mom Visa to come, my little one is sick and then, there’s this silly little drama that happen to me, although I’d like to keep that one private. Yup – that’s the sum up of the week I had last week.

I was still recovering from quarter/month end at work and then was hit by a very disturbing news about m y little daughter health condition. I’m very sad and very concern, there’s million of question running in my head and this waiting game is killing me! I’m very grateful that beside my husband I have circle of friend that are there for me, they were there when I need someone to cry … I was crying to three of my friends till pass midnight and they were there for me.

But I want my mommy! Somehow I feel like my mom have this magical power to make bad things dissapear. I feel such comfort when she’s around. Now more than ever I want her! Talking to her on the phone crying sharing news about my little one is not enough right now. I want her here, I want to cry with her, I want her to actually hug and hold me and tell me everything is going to be okay….

On top of all that, closed to the end of the week we heard that her visitor visa got approved and mydaughter party turn out great…. but there’s still matter of my little one…. Lots of people asure me everything will be okay, I know I have plenty of support and pray coming my way, and I’m grateful and hopeful that all will be okay. But I still want my mommy…..


I receive a challenges!  Here’s what slightly off balance said:

I know so many people having a tough week and it is only Wednesday.  I have friends who are sick, ending relationships, struggling financially, praying for a miracle, hoping for a baby, grieving over the death of a friend or just plain burned out.  As I said, it’s been a tough week.  Like the people in my thoughts, we all need a little extra TLC sometimes.

My week will feel better if I can brighten someone else’s day. So here’s a few of the people I think are amazing:

  • If you’re one of those mentioned above you’re in my thoughts and prayers more than you know.  I am humbled by your grace and perseverance.
  • My children’s teachers and caregiver – you are like miracle grow mixed with pixie dust!
  • My kids – you know when to not push me any further (dinner last night) and you back pedal with giggles, hugs and kisses. 
  • My husband – words cannot describe.
  • My fellow bloggers and writers – I have never met most of you but you motivate me and inspire me.
  • My friends – you keep me balanced, you’re there when I cry, you make me laugh and you don’t blackmail me.
  • Those who spend their time helping others.
  • Anyone who shows kindness to a stranger – this truly makes the world better.

So here’s your challenge – tell someone they’re amazing. Write it, say it, sing it, do an interpretive dance.  Just make the week better by making someone else smile, I bet you’ll smile too.

I too have a hell of a week, and can’t wait for it to be over and celebrate my girl turn 5 this weekend! But in bad times, then we know who’s really will be there for us.. friends lending hand, giving their thoughts and advice, their sweet words and just be there to listen. To all my friends who have their ear full, who’s there for me when I cry for the last two nights and stay up with me just to listen to me cry at 11 o’clock at night. YOU ARE AMAZING! I’ve been proven over and over again that you are my true friends…

We’re not perfect.. we’re family!!

That’s coming out of my 4 yr old few weeks ago. We were just relaxing in the family room when she just blurt it out. My husband and I just look at each other and laugh…  She’s right though. No one is perfect certainly not us, but we are family.

Bring me to this story… about a month ago, little incident happen to my father in law that lead to a discovery that he have dementia and early sign of Alzheimer. He was hospitalize for few days for observation. Although he is getting better but I think what had happen is this incident makes them finally realize that they not young anymore and can’t do things they normally do. Maybe they still can but need to slow down a bit.

We went and visit the family in WI over Labor day weekend and it was a nice relaxing family visit. No plan of sightseeing or places to visit, just a plain relaxing family visit. Some of my husband’s niece also come down to see us from other state and city, so is my husband’s sister that drive from Michigan. It’s like little family reunion. Now they all regret that we didn’t take family picture! Oh well, too late now.. hehehe…

We spend the first night at my husband’s brother house in Madison, they were waited for us that night and we have a very delicious Hmong food waiting for us when we got there.

 My mother in law know that Tyra is turning 5 this year and did little celebration in the backyard for her. She prepare everything, all I did was buy a cake. Early that Sunday morning when I woke up, everybody is already gather in the garage cooking for Tyra’s party, my mother in law made her famous Hmong egg roll and all of my older sister in law were there to help cooking and my brother in law already start the grill for bbq. I was really touch. Then the family start coming and we all have a nice lunch together.

On a  different day my husband’s niece also made an effort to cook for us and invite the whole family to come and eat. She make Kophia  (I know I probably butcher the spelling) from scratch! – and Pho. My sister in law made her famous Kaphong the next day for lunch.

Tyra is having so much fun with all of her cousins. She just play and play and play… I swear I hardly see her as she’s always out there playing. My 4 month old, somehow she was very fussy during our stay there, it was very nice to have a lot of helping hand around us, my mother in law so quick in jumping and help us with her, so is my sister in law, and niece, they were all helping us when we’re overwhelmed with her.

My husband comes from a big family and majority of them live closed to my parents in law and they house is always open and people always comes in and out from the house – remind me of my own family homes where all of my cousins living so close with us and their kids will comes to see my parents all the times – it gave me such warm and good feeling.

We stayed in Colorado because it makes sense for us financially. We kinda already settle here, we’re both have a good jobs and house, with my father in law being sick and the experience from our last visit we realize that money isn’t really everything. Yeah.. we’ll miss living in this beautiful place, yeah we’ll miss our friends here. In the end we just have to make decision that makes sense for us.

We have 3 – 5 yrs plan to move to WI, things may change along the way that enable us to move faster or not moving there at all… again, we’ll see what makes sense for us in all aspect.  The perfect plan is to move to Indonesia, but that’s almost impossible – I said almost because I come to realization that nothing really is impossible, you just never know what life can through at you, the good, the bad and the unexpected.

In term of family, things has not always this smooth, there’s drama along the way, things were said and done that wasn’t meant to, but just like Tyra said, in the end we’re family.

“We’re not perfect, we’re family!”

Enjoy some picture from our trip below….

Our niece Vicky making Kophia (Laotian chicken noodle soup) from scratch

Grandma and Tyra's auntie making eggroll & cook for her birthday

Family gather on grandpa & grandpa yard for Tyra's birthday

Tyra & some of her cousins opening present

Pinata time

Cousins play at the park

Tyra (on the right) & Bella

Bella & Kalia

Tyra & her cousins in Hmong dress