[Normally, I write here about my 4 year old son with autism and the things we learn from each other. Friday afternoon, my mom went to the hospital. She nearly died and is now on antibiotics for a blood infection. My dad is by her side. I love them both. This blog post is about my parents.]
In 1934, a baby girl was born in a country full of turmoil called Korea. She was the oldest of six children. One boy and four more girls followed her birth. Her parents were teachers. She grew up very poor. She spent her days taking care of her siblings and washing clothes in a river. She would sneak off from her chores to play piano at the local church.
In 1949, this girl was 17 year old and had some ideas. She began passing papers that advocated against a communist government. War broke out and this young woman was sent away for her safety to her aunt in the South. The war raged around her. She became separated from her entire family.
She got a job at the Postal Exchange where a young American soldier was stationed. She was 20. He was 22. They flirted. They went to the movies. She took him to an Italian movie with Korean subtitles that she tried to translate into English for him! It was very funny and would be one of the memories that last a lifetime for they fell in love.
The war ended in 1953. The soldier returned to America. The young girl’s heart was broken. She was cut off from her immediate family in the North. She was sad.
She wrote love letters to her American soldier. He wrote back to her. He turned to his Swedish father. He asked to borrow money to return to Korea and marry the girl. The Swedish father, loving his son, loaned him the money.
The young girl and the American soldier were married in Korea. The girl’s aunt was not pleased. Americans were not good enough. She was a disgrace. The young, defiant Korean girl didn’t care. She loved this American man. So there was no ceremony. No white gown or walking down the aisle. No pomp and circumstance. Just a simple piece of paper with a stamp. A stamp that let her leave her country, her family, her life behind her. No looking back.
Many years later, a little girl was born to them. Their only child. A child they spoiled and that bonded them. The Korean mom swore her daughter would have the best of everything. She worked hard, bought and ran her own hotel businesses and sent her daughter to law school. Then, she retired.
The daughter grew up and got married.
50 years after the Korean girl and her American soldier were married, an adorable little boy was born to their daughter. He is their only grandson. That adorable little boy has autism. His mama blogs about it. And that is how we got here.
Writing is keeping me sane. Or is it? I may break down soon but not yet. Keeping it together as my mom continues treatment in the hospital. Dear God, please watch over my mom and dad.
Thank you to all who have expressed concern and support to me in this very difficult time. Your prayers and well wishes help provide me the strength I need to share with my dad. He continues his vigil by her bedside, holding her hand, night and day.
That is a true love story.