Good Mourning

by - August 26, 2015

Mum Pham passed away on August 17, 2011 but we honour her memory on August 17 in the lunar calendar, which this year falls on August 31, 2015.

I'm not a fan of funerals - all the sadness and the crying. When I pass, I hope y'all eat good food and celebrate the happy times. And by happy times, I mean remember all the dopey things I've done in my life and piss yourselves laughing. I call this 'good mourning' when you remember a person for how they lived, not how they've died.

To honour Mum Pham's memory, we will eat delicious food and think of her - the ultimate giver of delicious food. It is Phamly tradition to do food offerings on a mantelpiece before a photo of the deceased, and burn incense to send our prayers and thoughts to our dearly departed. Then we devour the food offerings because there's no point in wasting a good meal.

Each day I have moments that I wish I could share with Mum Pham. I wish she could see how beautiful Bubba is inside and out, and experience the wild child that is Mini-Bro Pham. I wish she could meet my boyfriend Mr. Charles and tell him embarrassing stories from my childhood with the odd life advice gem thrown in. I wish she could see how Big Brother Pham is doing well with his own tiling business, Phan & Pham Tiling. I wish she could help me convince Dad Pham (nag him until he admits defeat) to listen to his doctors.

I wish she could see how the older I get, the more I remind people of her. This is around the age she met Dad Pham so all my dad's side remember her the way I look now. I don't have any childhood pics of Mum since they were lost in a fire but my mother's side of the Phamly have always said how much I look like her. One of my Aunts who is now passed was senile in her later years - I used to visit her as a teen and she'd speak to me like I was Mum Pham so I assume teen me looked like teen Mum.

But most of all, I wish that Mum Pham is happy and proud of the legacy she left behind. The Phamlings are all kind-hearted, considerate and positive thinking people. We love each other and are all close. We have Mum to thank for that - she epitomised unconditional love in our Phamly.

On Mum's anniversary, I'll speak to her about all these things through prayer and let the incense carry my thoughts to her in the spirit world.

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  1. I don't think you have to wish that Mum Pham is proud... if your family is anything like you, I'm sure she's extremely proud

    1. Thanks Sean. Very kind of you to say. I don't think she'd be very proud of my vegetarianism - the woman was baffled when I wouldn't let her feed fish sauce to my vege friends. "It's not meat!" Ha. But I think we're keeping her Phamly love alive. :)