Art · digital art · drawing · Visual essay

Reunion (Happy New Year)

Korean Family Reunion 2018_sm

In August 2018, there was a reunion of separated family members from North and South Korea. The news was hard to bare.

One elderly man told his story in an interview that he had to escape from the house when the war started. He left his younger siblings in the North and came to the South. He was nine years old at that time. He was crying and said he should’ve lived or died together with his siblings and he will ask for forgiveness from them.

His story made me think about my grandmother. During the war, she was hiding in a shed with her children. A bomb hit the shed and one of my uncles lost his leg. My grandmother had to run, leaving him behind to save other children. My aunt told me that every time my grandmother told the story, she said “I couldn’t even put dirt on his leg…I couldn’t even put dirt on his leg…”. She was probably so happy and proud to watch her children grow, but never forgot about her lost son.

I had to question myself if I can blame them for what they did. My grandmother and the elderly man must have a big knot in their hearts that is never going to be untied. Certainly, I cannot blame their suffering.

I wish someday soon, all the separated families on the Korean peninsula, can visit each other freely.  If we can see our loved ones whenever we want, we are blessed.

Happy New Year everyone.

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