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As contributed by Anny Ong

Tribute to Grandma Lan

Born 1947

I would like to pay tribute to my grandma. She is living her best life as a grandma. She taught me you can be anything if you are well fed and well rested. I guess that’s why I love food and sleep! 

Dear grandma, I know it has been difficult raising four grandchildren while our parents were out working. You persevered and, although it wasn’t the case with my brother and two cousins, the biggest accomplishment you taught me was to eat well. In fact, sometimes I feel like I should lend you out to those who have fussy eaters in their households.

My grandma has taught me to eat everything and anything. From Asian delicacies, vegetables, and all types of meats, I feel like I have Taste of Asia right in our home. But no, she’s not available for loan because like I said, she’s living her best life. 

Next, I would like to thank my grandma, for, if it weren’t for her, my brother would have choked on a huge fish bone. I did not know my grandma’s ‘grandma resume’ included first aid, but, man, I found out when she quickly, and without thinking, swooped her finger in my brother’s throat and cleared the airway. My brother is on the dean’s list now; thank you very much grandma! 

Am I on the dean’s list? Well, no, but did I choke on a monster fish bone? No, as well. My grandma saved me from many things, but choking on a fish bone just isn’t one of them. 

She taught me sacrifice, and, boy, I have a story to tell you. I remember it clear as day. When I was little, I loved stepping on leaves and twigs and listening to them crinkle and snap. One day there was a huge “twig” in front of my house and my mission was to make the loudest noise possible. Sadly, that twig was a huge ‘doggy doo doo’ and I found out with a huge stomp that didn’t snap. It smelled so bad! But my grandma sacrificed herself just to wash the stinky shoes. We could have bought new ones, but I guess at that time my family didn’t have new shoes in the budget. I didn’t necessarily learn to wash other people’s ‘doo doo shoes’, but I did learn that if there is a will, there is a way for everything! Also, that love is unconditional.  

Sometimes I feel like the memories I make with my grandma are so different because I am the offspring of her offspring. It’s a weird concept to ponder on, really... Like, she made life and that life made me! I’m talking about my grandma and mom to be exact. I just feel like I owe it all to my grandma for my identity. I learned how to cook, reciprocate love, to sacrifice, and to try to influence others positively. Oh, and never to step on a huge twig-looking thing for her sake. Most importantly, I continue to learn to live my best life from my grandma.

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