Chamomile Tea: Reflections on a Conversation with My Immigrant Mom

Relationships with immigrant parents are not always smooth sailing. Miscommunication, cultural differences, and generational conflicts may often mire a simple conversation, a shadow both veiling and highlighting the enormous chasm between immigrants and their offspring.

While I am reeling from my Filipina mother’s opposition to medication in this essay, I am simultaneously trying to build bridges of understanding with her through taking a breath, listening, and imagining life from her perspective.

Living in Limbo

My last blog post, back in October of 2020, saw me packed and mentally gearing myself up for the 14 day quarantine in Shanghai and +7 day stay in a hotel outside my school in Beijing before I’d be allowed back into my dorm and classrooms. At the time, I was optimistic to finally be returning to China. I had the necessary visa and plane ticket. Everything was good to go…Until it wasn’t.