It's International Women's Day Everyday. A tribute to my asian mom
👸🏻 My asian mom.. sometimes utterly annoying because of their constant worrying, stressing and smothering. Taking care of everyone, except for themselves. I used to take it for granted, sometimes got annoyed, but now just realise how much she has sacrificed and does not understand, because she has never experienced “our current lives”.
🙇🏻♀️ Where I grew up wearing my jeans inside out (yes, this was a trend), dyeing my hair blond (probably a little identity crisis), being extremely loud and provocative with teachers, boys and anyone in a 2 metre vicinity (puberty, is that you?) - mom and her lady friends would be 𝒑𝒖𝒃𝒍𝒊𝒄𝒍𝒚 𝒔𝒄𝒐𝒍𝒅𝒆𝒅 𝒃𝒚 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒊𝒓 𝒕𝒆𝒂𝒄𝒉𝒆𝒓𝒔 if they would wear jeans, do anything of the above or do anything that would make them stand out in general. Their teachers in communist China would commence the day by announcing the black sheep in front of everyone at school. Mom never dared to talk to boys at school.
👨👩👦👦 Where I “𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒍𝒍𝒚 𝒏𝒆𝒆𝒅 𝒂 𝒗𝒂𝒄𝒂𝒕𝒊𝒐𝒏” and “𝒇𝒆𝒆𝒍 𝑰 𝒏𝒆𝒆𝒅 𝒕𝒐 𝒈𝒆𝒕 𝒐𝒖𝒕 𝒐𝒇 𝒉𝒆𝒓𝒆”,racking up on carbon emission points where Greta Thunberg would, rightfully so, bitchslap me in the face for, mom would sleep in a 6m² space with her 3 younger brothers until her 18th year. At 19 “she really got out there” and was sent to the Netherlands to provide for her family.
🤷🏻♂️🙅🏻♂️Where we 𝒔𝒘𝒊𝒑𝒆 𝒓𝒊𝒈𝒉𝒕/𝒔𝒘𝒊𝒑𝒆 𝒍𝒆𝒇𝒕/𝒔𝒘𝒊𝒑𝒆 𝒓𝒊𝒈𝒉𝒕/𝒔𝒘𝒊𝒑𝒆 𝒍𝒆𝒇𝒕, mom could choose between my dad or my uncle as marriage was required within a short time of arrival, out of fear for deportation back to China otherwise. Mom’s aunt “swiped right” and chose dad, because “your uncle was younger than I was”.
🇨🇳 Where we grew up with main concerns whether “Andy loves me or not” and “I hate my parents for putting me up with piano practice”, mom grew up with the main concern “whether family members were still alive” because of the cultural revolution and riots in China.
👟Whereas I’ve got a 100+ pair sneaker collection, jackets ready for 361 seasons that will never come and a sunglass collection Anna Wintour would be scared of, Asian mom would receive 𝒐𝒏𝒆 𝒑𝒂𝒊𝒓 𝒐𝒇 𝒔𝒉𝒐𝒆𝒔 at the start of every Chinese New Year. A couple of sizes bigger “so she could grow into them”.
🐖 Where I get hangry and stock up my cart with vegan snacks, chocolate-for-the-darker-days and cheeses freshly imported from the south of France, mom would spend the entire year looking forward to Chinese New Year again: the time that that 𝒐𝒏𝒆 𝒑𝒊𝒈 they raised during the entire year would be slaughtered and serve as their yearly meat intake. The rest of the year they’d survive on preserved vegetables, dried sweet potatoes and rice.
✨✨✨ 𝑾𝒆 𝒎𝒊𝒈𝒉𝒕 𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒍𝒍 𝒉𝒂𝒗𝒆 𝒂 𝒍𝒐𝒏𝒈 𝒘𝒂𝒚, 𝒃𝒖𝒕 𝒘𝒆’𝒗𝒆 𝒂𝒍𝒔𝒐 𝒄𝒐𝒎𝒆 𝒂 𝒍𝒐𝒏𝒈 𝒘𝒂𝒚.
👩🏼 👩🏻🏫👩🏽🚒👱🏽♀️So.. happy international women’s day. Happy mom’s day. Happy-to-be-you-day. And let’s-just-be-grateful-we’re-women-in-today’s-world-day.