March 27th, 2006

Thinking of My Grandma Bessie Karamatsu

My grandfathers were strong and likewise, my father is strong like samurai, rarely showing sadness. When I lost my first three grandparents I was sad, but I got stronger through them, and to this day I feel them with me.

However, with my Grandma Karamatsu's situation, I feel scared because she is the last grandparent I have. Today, I received information regarding her that was not good. Late last year, I began to attend Jodo Shu (A Japanese Buddhist Sect) services with my grandma. She seemed happy that I was taking an interest in my culture. This past New Year's Eve and Day, I felt sentimental because I realized that the Japanese culture in my family is slowly dying. My grandma is the last person in my family that can understand the Japanese language and traditions. I guess losing culture is inevitable as the generations go by (Five generations in my family) and with inter-marriage with different ethnicities, which is common in my family. I will cherish what culture I experienced with my grandma and will share it with the next generation. I don't want what little tradition I know to die with me. In addition, I don't want to lose my grandma because I am not ready to lose the greatest generation and she is a great representative of that generation. I will do my best to remember all the memories I have with her. All the little things in life mean so much to me.

I love my grandma. I am not giving up hope that she may wake up and improve.