Lunch together as a family.
I always thought my parent's story was amazing, even as a child. It resonated with me about the sacrifices that a parent makes and when faced with tough choices they always do the best for their children. I know I was born into a different time, when they were settled here in the States. I was the very first US citizen to be born into my family. I could run for president! I tried to be grateful growing up, knowing the circumstances of how our family came to America; how we were among the "lucky" ones that didn't go by boat, were separated by years or lost family members to reeducation camps or worse. Of course, the story took on a completely different meaning when I now actually had a baby that was born into very fortunate, abundant and welcoming world. I could barely imagine how my mother was feeling or how she could have carried a 10-day old infant and 4-year old, sitting on the bench of a C-141, an aircraft suited to carrying equipment, not people to an unknown destiny -- unsure of what was ahead of her. She left behind her mother, her sister, her home and all worldly possessions, only with the hope that she was doing what she and my dad knew would be best for their family.
When Derek turned 10 days old, I asked my family to just get together to be grateful that we are still a family and to remember a bit about the story of how our family left Vietnam and eventually made it to the US. I thanked my mother for being the amazing woman she is and for always being an inspiration and role model. I thanked my father for always being a wonderful man, the strong support and pillar that we needed to be successful in our lives.