To me, she wasn’t just someone I saw occasionally.

The others were always on their best behavior when they saw her.

Not me.

She saw me grow up. She made me food in the morning. She watched me throw tantrums. She spanked the shit out of me. She told me stories of her life in North Korea. She told me of her parents, of her siblings, her life as a ballerina.  She bragged about me to her friends. She watched me run away from home. She let me take her to church. She sang me hymns. She prayed for me.

She loved me.

I remember everything.

Thank you.


There used to be a hospital bed and an oxygen machine there. During the last days of her life, she would gaze out the window and talk about my grandfather.

The pistachios (her favorite) I bought for her were still there. They were the last thing we ate together.

My aunt asked me if I wanted her watch. She had it from before I was born. I said no.