Selamat hari raya, maaf zahir dan batin! It is officially Eid, and as we do every year, today my family and I visited the burial sites of both of my paternal grandparents.
My grandmother passed away in March of 2002, so I don’t remember her much. I remember her taking naps on the wooden chair in the living room downstairs, I remember her staying over at my house once while my parents were away, I remember visiting her in the hospital. My grandfather, I had more time with. Until July 2010. He was a tailor, and one year all of my cousins and I received handmade trousers from him for our birthdays. He made us samosas and payassam. I taught him how to unlock and lock his old Nokia once. We all saw him through many visits to the hospital over the years. I remember many salams and kisses on visits over weekends.
I am thankful for memories with my grandparents. I was one of the younger ones so I did not know them very well. Where in China was my grandmother’s family from? What are my grandparents’ birth dates? What were their favourite foods? What were they like with each other? But every time I miss them or wish I had more time with them, I feel so thankful for all of their sacrifices. They worked hard in a way my skin and bones will never know. They did it for us before they ever met us. They might not have had a life as easy as mine but their lives were so wonderful because they made the life of the family they left behind so much better.