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Evolution of Me

Summer Le

Love is patient  

Love is kind 

It does not envy 

It does not boast 

The two people that brought 

Me into this world 

Were the two reasons why I 

Wanted to leave it the most. 

Strands of my own dark hair on the ground, 

Bruises pulsing on my legs, 

Rather than lullabies growing up, 

I fell asleep to my own weepings instead.  

I wrestled with God, 

How could I possibly 

love my parents? 

The people I should feel 

Most safe with were  

More dangerous and that was apparent.  

From the age of seven to twelve  

I gained four younger sisters.  

I bid goodbye to my youth, 

Knowing that I’d miss her. 

To protect and provide, I became  

Their second mother. 

I did my best to protect them 

From the same conflict like no other. 

Then came 19, and I knew God was  

Writing my coming of age. 

One morning the sound of glass 

Was followed by rage.  

I clearly remember seeing  

my sisters trembling that day. 

A weapon pulled out,  

Centerpieces on the floor, 

My parents emotionally and physically at war. 

My sisters are like my own children, 

No harm was to come to them, 

God was asking me in the  

midst of chaos to trust Him. 

With my mother chasing after my car, 

 I drove my sisters and I away. 

To my great uncle’s house that 

Became our safe haven that day. 

It was the first time I had the courage to  

Stand firm against my parents 

Like David and Goliath God gave me his spirit. 

Time passed by and I became the age of 20. 

I knew in my heart there had to be more 

possibilities for me plenty. 

Berry College was not too far, 

But far enough for independence. 

My parents did not hear me out,  

Not even willing of a sentence. 

Because in my culture, 

Leaving the house before  

you’re married is seen as an  

act of selfishness. 

I was told at times that 

It was also borderline sinfulness. 

But God asked me again,  

Do you trust me above all things and people? 

Exhausting as it was, I knew at one  

Point I’d feel peaceful. 

I was called a radical in the Viet community at home, 

Losing all people except for my siblings I left for Rome. 

What was seen as an act of rebellion, 

Was anything but that to me, 

Why was it heavy to think for myself,  

at some points I felt guilty. 

The campus I refer to as my  

Countryside New York City.  

My inner child slowly 

Came out to play feeling giddy. 

Even though it was isolating at first, 

I was alone without loneliness. 

God has placed people and experiences in my  

Life to experience liveliness. 

The seasons changed, and next thing I knew I was 21. 

Working towards nursing school 

Was my entire personality for so long. 

Serving others filled up joy in my heart, 

But I was so lost when I felt nursing 

Tearing me more apart.  

I was numb from the world, 

And I slowly became someone 

I thought I’d never become. 

My friend Eden left the world, 

what could I have done? 

But I remember her last words to me, 

It takes as much courage to leave something 

That no longer serves you just as much as it does to  

Start something new. 

I owed it to her and to myself, 

To decide that nursing was something  

That I outgrew. 

I brought the news home to my parents, 

Out of respect if nothing else. 

I was greeted with remarks that 

I was far from heaven, closer to hell. 

Not only was I putting to rest a dream 

That wasn’t mine, 

Conforming to what was expected 

Of me as an asian I declined. 

Now I’m 22 and am currently  

exploring every unknown. 

God is patient 

God is kind 

He doesn’t envy 

He doesn’t boast 

Through Him I understand love 

And its purest form the most. 

Cut from Fall 2022

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