So I was going through some pictures from my recent trip back to Hong Kong and the strangest realization struck me. To be honest, this wasn’t the first time this happened to me. I came across a picture of my cousins and I with my grandma. And I sit there thinking “Aw, that was nice, I really have to meet up with my grams more frequently next time I go back to HK.” But then I suddenly realized that she passed away last month.
It’s felt surreal, and it still seems like she never died. The same thing happened to me in HK when I walked into my cousin’s apartment. I saw the black and white photographs on the red Chinese offering altar of my grandparents (on my mom’s side), as well as one of my aunts, and realized that all these people were no longer with us. Standing there, I felt sadness wash over me again. I couldn’t help but relive the moments of when I first found out they had passed away.
It may have to do with the fact that I’m all the way on the other side of the world, but you would think that one would remember that they are now grandparent-less. However, I think it’s amazing that I have managed to forget about their passing. My interactions with them in the past, and how unique they are help me to keep them alive in memory. I guess with time, their image will fade, but in the meantime, I just wish that this could happen without getting me all depressed.
While we’re on the subject of my grandma’s death, I really must bring up how my dad said goodbye to her. He couldn’t make it back to Hong Kong in time, so instead, his brothers and sisters set up a Skype call for the two of them in her dying moments. Now I’m not saying that a Skype call is at all the equivalent of being there, but it was because of the technology that we have now that he was able to say goodbye. My dad actually saw her heart monitor stopping, and was able to mourn with the rest of his siblings. Although I’m a digital native, I sometimes have a fear of technology, but when I see something like this happen, it makes me rethink my standing on the topic.