Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Communication Barrier

Lately it has been more difficult to understand my parents and vice versa.  The world in America is much different than the one they are used to.  I was born here so I can't really compare. 

The opportunities here are things that my parents can't even imagine are possible, they lack knowledge of resources and the possibilities.  If they aren't exposed to them, how would they know?

Living in the states for over 30 years, my parents still have a difficult time understanding English.  I kick myself when I get frustrated with them.  It doesn't make any sense to act that way towards them, yet I do it and am guilty every time. 

Even with me knowing how to speak my native tongue, I am still unable to communicate with my parents in the level that I want.  I am someone who has always expressed myself to them but it's a lack of understanding.  If I had the patience it wouldn't be this way. 

I blame this life style, I really do.  Call it ignorance, call me ignorant.

The things I learn in school I don't take home to teach my parents, why??  It's because here in the states the parents teach you!!  But my parents don't know what your parent's know.  Besides that lame answer, it's because I'm not putting the effort into it.  I lack patience and motivation to let my parents know and understand the possibilities in this country, unlike anything they could have imagined back in their home country.

It was a month ago that my mother learned that caterpillars turned into butterflies.  I was shocked!  How could this be?  Everyone knew that!! NO, NOT MY MOM! And there's nothing wrong with that.  She didn't go to school to learn this or see documentaries on butterflies or even see pictures and stickers of caterpillars and butterflies.

The other day I was telling her to not burn plastic because it ruins the ozone layer.  She never knew that before.  And there was nothing wrong with that either.  I was patient enough to explain it to her and why the weather has been so strange lately.  She was very interested!! She stated that she never knew that and now that she does, she won't be burning anymore plastic!!

The opportunities that I have been exposed to are endless.  I want to leave and I want to travel.  When I try to explain this, it's not understood.  This is where my challenge comes in.  I am unable to expose them of these opportunities so I am therefore prohibited to them. 

How can I communicate to them in a way that won't make them upset and understand what I'm trying to do for my success?

It's easier said than done.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

History Repeating Itself

I was talking to my dad while cleaning vegetables in our front yard when I asked him if he missed his country.  When I asked that, I realized what I asked and corrected myself, "Dad, do you miss the country you were born in?" (which happens to be Laos).  He answered with a big, "yes, I do!"

I started asking him other questions about war, why our people live in the mountains, and his view on things.

He went on and spoke about the Vietnam war and how the CIA asked for help and hired Hmong to help fight in the war.  I wanted to ask him if he thought that history was repeating itself.  I asked him, "Dad, do you think that history is repeating itself because the President asked the people in Iraq to help fight the war and now their people are dieing and Americans are pulling out without being able to help those people that once helped them.  Those people are dieing and going to be killed for a very long time just like our people."  He said yes, he thinks so too.

How can we let history repeat itself?  How did we not see this?  Others are suffering for our selfish reasons.  A whole race of humans may be destroyed and we can't do much about it.  We got them into this mess, we need to get them out of it.  That's how I feel about my people and about the Iraqies/Afghanistan people. 

My dad was talking about how the Laotions hate us, then how the Thai hate us, and how Americans hate us.  I wonder who actually loves us as a race and a people.  I know the Chinese also hate us, we were kicked out of our land and homes and made into slaves by the Chinese.  When will our people see the light in peace? 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Hmong Leaders

I have come to realize that a leader isn't someone who is rich and famous but someone who has inspired others to do great and better things.  In your eyes I may even be a leader, but in my own eyes I am far from it.  I still have yet to accomplish a lot and to do better things.

There are so many personal projects that I have (mingling in my head that need to be written down before I forget them) to accomplish.  All of which I plan to do as soon as I graduate from college this May or shall I say August, but for sure I'll be starting as soon as summer hits!

Hmong leaders have been inspiring me to do so much more in my life, to be better, and let our Hmong people's voices be heard.

I was so inspired by Ka Vang, the poet and writer.  She has so much to say, I could listen to her forever!!  She said some amazing things to me that I hope I always keep in my heart!!  She said something like,

The Hmong people are so strong, they have traveled from country to country being warriors and fighting for our rights, they have fought in battles that they have won and are still who they are to this day.  No matter how many people want to dispose of us we are still around, we are still standing strong!

Now that may not be exactly what she said, but that was the main point and I was so inspired.  Did you realize that?  All those people trying to kill us and we are still alive!  Think about it.  Another thing that another Hmong leader (Kang Vang who has directed movies such as Tou and Mai) said was that General Vang Pao wrote in a journal that when he spoke to the CIA and said yes in helping the Americans with the Vietnam War he wasn't thinking about guns and killing, he was thinking about a future for our children, he was thinking about making sure that our children have shoes on their feet.  Without him taking that chance we would have never come to the states.  People may hate General Vang Pao but they must realize that we would never have stepped one foot on American land if it weren't for him.  With all our people dying in Laos and Thailand there are few that survived.

Being Hmong and living in American I am very grateful of all the things that I have and all the things that I have learned.  I definitely owe it to my people to do something with my life.  I would love to be a Hmong leader some day and inspire others to pass the message onto others to educate them about our people.

When I was in NZ I wanted to educate as many kiwis as possible, as many people that I met.  I wanted everyone to know about Hmong and what struggles we have been through.  One Hmong person in a country that knew nothing about Hmong people, I wanted to see how far I could get my message to.  I didn't get very far at all, sadly.  I cried, I wept, and I came home and told some people. 

I went to a funeral this past weekend for my first cousin.  There was a man who I saw talking to my mom, who was pointing at me and my sisters.  Later that man came to us and asked me if I was Jenny, I said yes and he proceeded to tell my sisters and I about what my mom told him.  He said that he heard I cried because I was in a world that didn't know about Hmong people, that I felt left out and alone.  I said yes that was me.  He proceeded to tell us about this new religion that has come up recently and that he is one of the pastors.  It's a religion that is kind of difficult to explain, it's called Poj Koob Yawm Ntxwv.  This religion is mainly based on beliefs and practices that state that men and women are equal.  There are 16 principles to follow in order to have a successful marriage.  There was a lot of things that he talked about to us, he was trying to reach out to us in hopes that we will come to learn more.  I was very intrigued but I don't live in that city so I won't be able to attend.  

There are Hmong leaders everywhere, my parents are Hmong leaders.  They inspire me on a daily basis.  I want their stories to be heard as well.  That is why this summer I hope to accomplish one of my many projects in documenting what they have to say, their life story, and quoting their many wise words!

Be a Hmong leader and step up, you owe it to our people, to your people even if you're not Hmong. 

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


I am so inspired by all the talented Hmong people I see on YouTube!

These talents need to be seen! I'll link some awesome videos below if you haven't already seen them!

People need to be heard and seen! Life is on high right now for me!

I am Hmongspired!! :D

Take a chance and make a difference. Inspire someone! Do something for someone else! Get out there and shout in the sky! Make your voice be heard to the non-ending sky!

Some things that inspired me today to write this!

Friday, February 17, 2012

It's so Exciting

I have come up with so many projects that I want to do. All I need is my brain, a bottle of water, and my laptop.

I'm going to write, write, drink water, and write some more.

These ideas will blow your mind!

You'll want to know what it is, you'll want to be involved, and you'll want to be my friend!

All things that are possible.

I can't tell you too much but for now I'll just say it's about being Hmong and being plus size!!!

It's good to make a change, make a difference that'll help!

Monday, February 6, 2012

My Father

This past weekend I was at home to visit my parents. It was so great seeing them and spending time with them like the old days. It was like I was a child waiting for lunch and going shopping with my parents whom was driving, instead of me. It was nice being with them and listening to them talk while I'm in the back seat.

Now it's the other way around, it's me driving and my parents in the back being quiet or falling asleep on most days.

There was a lot said this past weekend in terms of growing up, being mature, and making something out of myself.

My parents put a lot of responsibility on me because I am in their eyes, reliable and not tied down. I feel that I am in most cases. And in this case I think they are right in keeping their hopes up in me to carry on.

I won't go into too many details but my parents were speaking to me as an adult for the first time. I mean, they have before but it wasn't anything like this. This was like I was the head of the house or like I am a very important person, they were speaking formally. They were treating me like an adult with parental discretion or something. I don't really know how to explain it, but it was definitely different than all the other times. I guess it's because of the responsibilities that I have taken and gained.

Anyway, what I wanted to mention was something my mom said about my dad that made me think and think and think. I could not believe that I did not think of this before, how stupid I was and how I still have time!

My mom said, "Why is it that your father's children do not listen to him when all of society listens to him! All of your aunts, uncles, and relatives ask for your father's advice, they seek his guidance, and his own children do not listen or seek his advice. Why is that?"

My father is someone who is really respected in our community. And I love that, but at times I feel like he does too much for them and not enough for us. That is one of the many things that Hmong people have a conflict with (but I will save that for another day). He is someone who all our relatives seek for advice, they wait for his arrival to make a decision, he is so important in their lives, and yet my siblings and I don't see that, we don't respect that.

It made me think to myself, I have time to listen, I still have time to seek his advice and his guidance. He has a lot of wisdom but no listeners. I definitely want to ask him about the Vietnam War, what he did and which areas did he fight in. I want to hear about his stories, his life changing moments, and what he thinks about life in America. I want to know so much but I feel I don't have the time.

If I really want to know all of these things, I will have to make it happen! I will be graduating soon, so I will definitely make time!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Plus Size Hmong Girls

One thing that I have noticed is plus size Hmong girls. The thing about plus size Hmong girls is you see them, but not a lot of them engage themselves in being a confident or beautiful plus size. I'm not saying all Hmong plus size women aren't happy for who they are but there is lacking something there. No matter where I go online or in real life I find that I can't find many plus size Hmong girls whom are proud of themselves.

I wish there were a community for us to help one another, I could use some support!! :D

I was thinking, maybe because it's the beginning for plus size in general and they're out there, I just haven't seen them yet. Or because they are shy of stating that they are plus size, like I was at first. Or maybe they do like themselves and flaunt their beauty but elsewhere, not like me who does it on youtube and blogger.

I would love to see more Asians in general being models for plus sizes, all I see are white and blacks which is totally fine but I think it's also nice to see Asians in there, make it a mixture of colors that way it can relate to other gals. Setting a common ground for your viewers always helps you pull them in. Once you get their attention it's easy because you have what it takes already.

I really just wish I could find more Hmong girls who are plus size that love themselves for what they are and who they are! I would like to meet you if you are one, weather it's in real life, youtube, blogging, anywhere!

Calling out to plus size women and Hmong plus size women, come say hello!!!!