It’s been said, “Life is a blank page. You must put something on it”.
But, what if you found yourself a minor character in someone else’s story?
Because of my mother’s fate, the script for my life was already written.
Believing that I had my own story to write – and breaking free to live it – that is my story.
A Mail Order Bride
It’s true, stories don’t happen by accident. They are planned.
Mine was planned by my mother — Ah-ma, a tender, fresh-faced seventeen year-old beauty who brought me into the world.
Ah-ma was a mail-order bride from Hong Kong, to a bus boy in San Francisco Chinatown. Ah-ma was the second of eight children back in Hong Kong. Because she was the second daughter, she was chosen by her parents to marry a stranger 10 years older.
Her parents sacrificed her happiness, for the greater good — to bring her family out of poverty and emigrate them to the land of opportunity.
They divorced when I was five.
The pressures she carried were then placed on me.
She constantly reminded me that I was all she had, that I was the one to take care and provide for her.
Ah-ma wanted me to live the same life she was given, to work hard for the greater good– to provide a life that was worry-free and make up for her sacrificed youth.
Who would want to break their mother’s heart and crush her dreams of a better life?
I Worked Harder
From the time I was thirteen, I worked to help support the family.
When it came time for college, I dreamed of becoming a writer.
“A writer? You’ll die poor. We’ll die poor. Is that what you want?”
I worked harder… and became a well-respected, successful engineer.
And I was miserable.
More Than My Mother’s Daughter
One Christmas Eve, I heard a preacher say, Jesus came to give us hope.
“Hope,” I wondered, “Where’s my hope?”
For decades, I lived on duty and guilt, fulfilling my mother’s expectations. I saw no hope in my future.
Is this what God truly wants for me?
In that moment, I knew that living someone else’s story just couldn’t be what I was created for.
I decided, then —
“I am more than my mother’s daughter.
I am my Heavenly Father’s daughter.”
Knowing she would disown me, I made a decision to break free from Ah-ma’s story, to start living mine.
Not every one gets to choose the life they want —
There is pain in making the right choice. And it’s worth it.
“For you created my inmost being;
You knit me together in my mother’s womb.
My frame was not hidden from you…
When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,
Your eyes saw my unformed body.
All the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.”
~Psalm 139: 13-16
I entered today’s post in the The Million Miles Short-Film Contest!
I narrated and filmed my story from the streets of Chinatown, San Francisco– where I was born!
I would be really grateful, if you’d check out my entry, dear friends!
~ CLICK HERE ~ View My Film Entry & Vote For Me!
Thank you for giving me the courage to share my story!
You’ve encouraged me to be real, with the stories you’ve shared here on (In)Courage. Thank you!