This is a slightly different post this time. Although I share some of the most intimate moments in my life here, I feel like that this is way more personal.
I hate phone calls. I don’t like talking on the phone.
My hatred towards phone calls dated back to my high school days. One morning I got a phone call that woke me up. It was my friend from school. The first sound I heard from the phone was a sob. Then the broken voice of my friend, that I wouldn’t have recognize without the caller ID. Half crying, half trying to breathe, she told me that our mutual friend, the kindest the most beautiful girl I knew, passed away from a sudden illness. From that morning on, I couldn’t sleep without my phone, but at the same time I dread every late night or morning phone calls. Cos hardly anyone would call me in the middle of the night to tell me any good news.
I got one of those phone calls today. In broad day light though, when I was on the bus going to my good friend’s baby shower, my mom called. She told me that my granny is in the hospital, back in China, and that this time she might not make it. It really isn’t a surprise, it has been a long battle.
So I was born in China. My parents and I moved to Finland when I was only six. So my childhood memories of my Granny are very limited. Of course I visited China and her once in a while, but they were brief visits. It was a pity that I really didn’t get to know my granny, because judging from the stories my parents told me about her, she’s one hell of a woman.
My granny is almost in her nineties now. She was so ahead of her time when she was young. Unlike most women back in the days in China, 1940s and 1950s, my granny was an accountant, she carved herself a career in a society that still today preferred women as housewives. Not my granny, she did get married and had three children, but she kept her career. She killed at business meetings with her sharp negotiation skills and ambition. I heard a story about her that once at some business meeting, she was faced with a challenge. As the custom goes in evening meetings in China, alcohol plays a crucial role. The challenge was they could close the deal then and there only if my granny could drink the whole bottle of cognac by herself. And the deal was closed that night.
Not only was my granny an awesome businesswoman, she was so very brave on her personal life too. She is the only woman I know of her age in China that got a divorce. And found new love and remarried. The judgement she must have faced back in the day. She didn’t let that stop her.
Out of my four grandparents, I feel like that I got most of my personality from my granny. My mom always says that granny is quite cold for a woman, very ungranny-like, but I see so much granny in myself. Very stereotypical of me, I am very good at math. I don’t like math, but I found it so very easy at school. I knew that was from my granny. And later on in life, the effortlessness I have with computers and technology, I know that was from her too. My granny would be a wizard with machines only if she were born later. My fearlessness to pursue love in my life, even taking huge risks and my unwillingness to settle for just any relationship, it was all from her. I might come off as cold sometimes, but anyone who has had me on their side would know that they would need to find real hard for anyone as fiercely loyal as I am. My take-no-prisoner attitude is also from her. My confidence, my passion, my tiny spark of bravery to jump head first into the great unknown, all from the most awesome woman I know: my granny. And I couldn’t be more grateful.
Obviously I couldn’t tell her everything about my life, but I did get to tell about all the things she had given me and how grateful I am earlier this year, I wrote her a long letter. And I’m really glad that I did. Although I might not be the dream granddaughter who gets married before 30 and gives her great-grandkids, I know from the bottom of my heart that granny would be proud of me. If she knew how happy I am now with myself, the coolest woman I know would’ve approved. I will continue to try my hardest to be the best version of myself that I can be. For granny.