By Linh Ho

May 4, 2015.

A whole new chapter of my life has begun,

The flight was 24 hours long, and yet it happened so quickly.

A blink of an eye, and it's been how long?

Five years.

Five years since I have left my home. I've missed five Tết already.


Everything was so different here, perhaps, so new?

Everything that was different is now normal

Why is that?

Is it because I've changed?

Did I “adapt”?

It’s only been five years, how much could’ve changed?


So much.

So much has changed since,

even I have changed.

I now speak a completely different language than my parents.

I sometimes even think in this different language.

Adapting to this new place was hard, But I had to,

There were no other options.

Mom said this was a good page to begin my life more opportunities, she said.

This place so-called the land of opportunities is now my new home? The American dream.

Since then, I got to do many things

Many things that I wouldn't have had a chance to do back there.

Yet, I missed every bit of Vietnam

I miss my childhood,

I miss all my memories,

I miss…

wearing my uniform, biking to school,

running around barefooted, dancing in the rain,

making kites out of paper and bamboo sticks,

hide and seek until night,

hearing the crickets chirping,

waking up to the rooster’s crows,

But most, spending time with my nanny.

All of those memories will always be there

to remind me of who I am.


Every so often --

I imagine myself never boarding that flight.

What would’ve happened?

Life would've been so different?

Wouldn’t it?

I would’ve been a junior in high school,

I would’ve been wearing my white áo dài to school every


I would've had five more years of memories with my nanny.


not boarding that flight would also mean that,

I wouldn’t have been able to spend time with my mom,

I wouldn’t have met all of my friends,

I wouldn't have been able to do soccer, I wouldn't be writing this either --

Life happens,

There are certain things that we don’t have control over,

We’ll never know what will happen tomorrow.

A “what if” will make us wonder,

it will also make us realize how much goodness has happened.

Just live your life to the fullest, enjoy every bit of it.

And let those moments become good memories later on.


-Linh Ho