Thursday, August 31, 2006
a constant struggle
i hate the fact that i feel powerless when it comes to my relationship with my dad. of course, he's always going to be right because he doesn't give me the chance to speak. if i bother, he just yells and makes me feel stupid. worse, he goes psycho and brings down the entire family. i can't risk that. and so i stay quiet. the entire time. he lectures with his harsh pounding voice that drags on and on. i can barely take it but i love and respect him so i do because i've been taught to be the obedient daughter who goes to school, completes her homework, and studies for tests. i get good grades they don't complain about that because of course, it's expected, not praised. i'm happy that they have high expectations but that doesn't allow me to do what i want to do. it makes me feel selfish so i keep my passions to myself. they don't understand life in terms of happiness and doing what you love. life, to my dad, is what benefits you, what pays your rent. i can't blame him because he learned the hard way. after emigrating from vietnam as a teenage war refugee, he dropped out of high school in the states to build a business with his brother. he met my mom, began a family and flourished from the success of his company. throughout the nineteen years of my life my parents have given me everything i could ever ask for--and i am so very thankful beyond words. and that's why i want to do as they say to make them happy, to give them the bragging rights i know they so crave and deserve. to prove to the world that i have terrific parents. in doing so i would fall into the path of my dad's ambitions--graduate from med school, make big bucks, buy a house so he can retire. i want to give my dad what he wants because it kills me to know the stress he endures working fourteen-hour days. i see it in the the coarseness of his hard-labored hands, the grays of his withering hairs, and the wrinkles in his sullen face; it speaks--this is all for my family. and here i am crying, tired and tied between being loved by my father and loving myself for taking the risk to do what i love.