| by Thuy Truong, M.A. Ed., TPT Teaching and Coaching, 10/14/2020|
I was one of those kids who loved to hang out with my grandmother. Who wouldn’t love the warmth of scintillating conversations, intriguing stories, and always having good things to eat? Wait, but there was so much more. My grandmother sometimes would recite poetry until I fell asleep, and in my childhood imagination, she was like an ethereal, gentle being who never yelled (but when she does, it’s over). Wait, there was more. The reason why I found it fascinating as a young person to listen to our family debates with other adults in our extended family was because it let me have a glimpse of the adult world with juicy details that showed people’s vulnerabilities as well as a rich tapestry of multigenerational perspectives. Chewing on the smooth, delicate mooncakes under the moon as a nine year old, I would hear phrases like: “It was an arranged marriage; she bluffed about running away to deter her father’s effort.” Or, “It was sad to see how her father turned out, but he did not treat people well.” And the ever dramatic phrase that always dropped like a pendulum of reminder: “In the end, you reap what you sow.” I adored these thunderous truths that I heard both as thrilling and thought-provocative social commentaries. It had taught me the importance of observation through conversations. It even taught me the simple truth that if I really pay attention to someone I might even learn something new and precious about life so I can face life confidently because I have a strong moral compass that lights my path. It also made me become more familiar with people’s moods, feelings, and perceptions as I grew up and entered the workforce.